The basis of the present structure apparently dates from the 1850s. Its annual assessed value remained at about £90 for more than 40 years. The corner section of the building displays features that indicate an early date. These include the relatively low ceiling heights, flat heads to first floor openings, near edge glazing bars to the french doors leading to the balcony and the large coarsely detailed chimney top. However, the building has been refaced and extended to the west along Wright Street and to the north along Lowe Street. The typical verandah balcony was added after 1890. The Italianate semi-circular headed paired opened windows were probably part of an 1880s refacing of the ground floor.
Like the Aurora Hotel, the Prince Albert Hotel had German associations. It was connected with Carl Edouard Wilhelm Dreyer, Otto Carl Haussen and Christian Spehr. Johann George Ludwig Dreyer, father of the hotel’s first owner, seems to have first settled at Nuriootpa, where he obtained a land grant of 80 acres in 1849. He also owned several sections on Town Acre 465, but in 1852 he gave some of his town land to his wife and children.
The Prince Albert Hotel was built on a town acre which by 1852 was divided into 12 allotments. Four of the allotments, including the six-room, two-storey stone and brick hotel were owned by an L. Dryer. Few structures in the immediate area had more than three rooms and several of the nearby town acres were vacant. The Prince Albert Hotel served a small local community which, judging from home sizes and their rateable value, had limited means.
In October 1900 Council approved additions to the hotel. It is likely that these works were not extensive and perhaps involved only the Lowe Street extension. Owner Eliza Dreyer was served a notice in 1900 to thoroughly cleanse the public urinal on the premises. Earlier in 1893 an outbreak of typhoid was reported from one of Dreyer’s properties on the town acre on which the Prince Albert is situated. The Dreyer family were associated with the Prince Albert Hotel from the granting of the first license in 1852 until at least 1976.