In the 1850s through to the turn of the century the centre of the village of Colintraive was just over the Milton Burn bridge from the present hotel, more or less on the site of the present village hall. It included a house or two, the inn, with a stable and a byre, a shop, the mill with its mill dam and, importantly the smiddy.
After the pier was opened there was a small post office and shop at the pier head. The hotel or inn was replaced by the present hotel about the 1900s and stables and a coach house, now the Heritage Centre, were built later.
In the early 1900s a new shop and new and larger post office were built across the road from the pier and old post office. Both are, at present, private homes.
The steamer service ran daily to Glasgow, reaching it in two and half hours and the mail coach ran, daily, to Glendaruel. The hotel ran its own motor boat and a daily tour coach to Glendaruel, connecting with the steamer service. In time it ran its own motor charabancs. The present shop was the tearoom and also acted as the village hall, with regular dances and social evenings often with Gaelic singing.
The smiddy continued to operate between the wars and the blacksmiths bothy and croft remained nearby. In addition to the bothy there were a couple of houses. The mill was used as workshop. All of these buildings continued to be used in much the same way until the 1950’s when they were demolished. The present village hall, which replaced them, was opened in August 1960.
The post office by the pier closed in the late 1940s. The shop, then including the post office, continued serving the village until it too closed in the 1990s.
After a gap of a few years the shop and post office reopened in their present position beside the hotel and, with one gap, have continued there since.
The bowling green opened in June 1994 and has thriving indoor and outdoor clubs. The community garden, on the site of the old mill dam, was opened in August 2003 after a working visit by the Beechgrove Garden team in June 2003.