The Empire

Established in 1875, The Empire has long been an iconic Auckland watering hole.

We’re passionate about our customers; providing the best service and an exciting new range of contemporary cuisine is what we are all about.

Come add your story to the colourful history of The Empire.




1870 – Was the date this fine Victorian architectural gem was built. One of 91 pubs serving a population of 13,000 and venue of boxing matches, cockfights, and willing ladies.

1885 – Patrick Gleeson, an outspoken Irishman owned the pub for some years.

1960 – Home to the underworld, Machine Gun Shaw, John Gillies, Ronald Jorgensen who was convicted of the famous Bassett Rd murder in 1964.

1982 – 25 year old Simon Wooley purchased a dilapidated Empire, refurbished and restructured the drinking environment thus saving the Empire.

1989 – It was Bill Boyd’s life passion for 10 years and after purchasing the building in 2001, and sold to Michael Ocego and Dean Lodge both of whom worked for Billy.

2009 – Michael and Dean sold the business to Paul & Hilda Webber.

2012 – Empire was closed for 2 months at the beginning of 2013 for a refurbishment /re-modernisation.

2013 onwards – A facelift has brought the Empire into the 21st Century with the facilities required for the vibrancy of today’s life – The photos tell the story.

Long may the Empire reign supreme!


Copyright © 2014 The Empire Tavern, All rights reserved.