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Oxford Street, Sydney's oldest gay hotel venue up for sale

Oxford Street, Sydney's oldest gay hotel venue up for sale
Oxford Street, Sydney's oldest gay hotel venue up for sale

Causing waves in Sydney's gay community, LGBTIQ icon Midnight Shift in Darlinghurst, at 85 to 91 Oxford Street, is up for sale, with two retail shops - up to 95 Oxford Street. The longest running Oxford Street hotel, with 31 years under its belt, has been a loved part of the street's culture for many years, but it appears its days may be numbered.

Samesame.com.au suggest that the closure may be due to a lack of business, with opening nights reduced from seven to four nights this month, but reassured that the venue is open for business as usual until the sale date. Midnight Shift began charging for shows in 2011, but has still been referred to as a "must attend" venue. The downstairs bar has remained free, but charges were increased to head to Upstairs Shift.

Oxford Street, Sydney's oldest gay hotel venue up for sale

Oxford Street, Sydney's oldest gay hotel venue up for sale

The reduction of nights open was said to be due to changes in liquor legislation and the impact of a five-year freeze on the CBD entertainment precinct, the promotions manage for the venue, Leigh Harder, said in March.

While some have taken to Facebook lamenting the loss of an icon, it does provide a good chance for an opportunistic business and party-minded new owner to grab one of Oxford Street's renowned venues with 28 metre frontage.

Oxford Street, Sydney's oldest gay hotel venue up for sale

Oxford Street, Sydney's oldest gay hotel venue up for sale

On approximately 849 square metres and being offered with vacant possession tenure, the colourful Real Commercial listing was put up today.

The listing notes that it is within "one of Australia's premier entertainment and retail precincts on the edge of Sydney," and that "Valuable hotel license and entitlements that can be purchased with the sale".

It has dual street access.

93 Oxford Street, which appears to be included in the listing, is Liquor on Oxford, which was sold in 2008 with a first level office lease to Midnight Shift on a 5+5 year lease commencing in September 2008 and a 5+5 year retail lease to House of Fetish from August 2008. The other shop appears to be a Pad Thai (pictured below) at present. According to RP Data, the November 2008 sale for 85-91 Oxford Street was for $8,250,000, settling in December. Before that it had been sold in 1994 for $3,300,000, with one other previously recorded sale - in 1992 for $2,900,000.

Oxford Street, Sydney's oldest gay hotel venue up for sale

Expressions of interest are closing 21st May 2014 after its listing today.

Disco dancing, a stage and everything theatrical, Midnight Shift has been home to many a memorable night, including colourful Strip Karaoke, that will see some mourning its sale.

Oxford Street, Sydney's oldest gay hotel venue up for sale

It is being advertised through Oxford Commercial, and sits between the Lick-Her Shop and House of Fetish.

It is currently owned by Arunta Investments after the 2008 sale, previously with the Midnight Shift title being in the hands of long-time owner Tim Berry, in a somewhat bitter situation reported on by the Star Observer back in 2010.

“Weighing the pros and cons of that, Tim decided that it was probably time that [Arunta executive director] Mark Madar gets the place and experiences for himself what it takes to run a pub," they reported Berry's partner Clarence Cruz as saying.

Jennifer Duke

Jennifer Duke

Jennifer Duke was a property writer at Property Observer

Tags: 
Hotel Commercial Sydney

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