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Reception This Way

This exhibition celebrates an Aussie staple from the 50s onwards: the motel.
By Sarah Ward
August 25, 2023
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By Sarah Ward
August 25, 2023
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Some holidaymakers are avid planners, scheduling every inch of their getaways. Others like to see where the moment takes them once they've organised the basics. Australia's motels can serve both — but there's nothing like hitting the road, driving as far as you feel like on any given day, then checking into the local roadside place to stay. Indeed, that very experience is the subject of exhibition Reception This Way.

Displaying at The Workshops Rail Museum until Tuesday, December 12, 2023, this celebration of Aussie motels makes its southeast Queensland stop after arising from a partnership between the National Archives of Australia and comedian Tim Ross. On offer: pieces, including photos and footage promoting motels, from the national archival collection. And the mood: pure nostalgia all the way.

Whether you have fond memories of motel stays on family holidays when you were a kid or you've just heard stories from your parents, Reception This Way surveys Australia's embrace of the accommodation spots from the 50s onwards.

Access to the exhibition is free with your general-admission entry to the The Workshops Rail Museum in North Street in North Ipswich. So, you'll pay $14.50 for adults to head along — and Brisbanites will take a road trip themselves, albeit a small one that won't require a motel for the evening.

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