Darryn Lyons selling Home House nightclub site

Lyons 50th party

Darryn Lyons pictured at his 50th birthday party in 2015 at Home House with ringmaster Arthur Penn and fire spinner Chris Carlos. Picture: Peter Ristevski

Celebrity photographer and former Geelong mayor Darryn Lyons has put the home to his popular city nightclub, Home House, on the market.

The freehold title to the 1145sq m venue is up for grabs with $5m price hopes through a private sale.

But the party will continue at Home House – for the next three years at least – with the venue holding a new five-year lease, paying $225,000 a year with annual reviews, with an option to extend the lease for a further five years.

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The new lease includes a demolition clause that could be activated from July, 2025, allowing new owners to give Lyons’ Home House management 12-months notice of last drinks.

Selling agent Pat Burke, of MP Burke Commercial, said the demolition clause offered flexibility for potential buyers to change the tune in the former woolstore at 40-42 Moorabool St, Geelong.

The 570sq m property has operated as a nightclub for various owners since the 1980s, but Lyons launched Home House to great fanfare in 2002. The nightclub plans to continue operating as normal.

The freehold to the Home House Nightclub at 40-42 Moorabool St, Geelong, is for sale.

The balcony overlooking Moorabool St toward Corio Bay.

The nightclub continues to trade, holding a five-year lease with another option.

Mr Burke said the property offered a terrific opportunity to enter an established, growing market at an affordable price. He said it was right time to sell for the owners.

The two-storey level building has an extensive mix of open plan hospitality accommodation, a dance floor with a DJ booth, various bar and lounge areas, a commercial kitchen and a large balcony area looking north along Moorabool St to Corio Bay.

While the property offered income and position, there was excellent scope to consider redevelopment options, subject to council approval.

“Being quite a substantial frontage to Moorabool St and having rear access to Gore Place North, it lends itself to be a number of different opportunities,” Mr Burke said.

The property is close to the Geelong head offices of GMHBA, TAC, NDIS and WorkSafe.

The freehold to the Home House Nightclub at 40-42 Moorabool St, Geelong, is for sale.

“There has been some indicative concept plans from Fender Katsalidis Architects for a small boutique-type hotel.

“If you did a major job on the existing structure you could probably create ground floor retail with some office above, depending on what sort of business would want to use it.”

Mr Burke said the property was an appealing position near the waterfront and among the big players in the insurance industry, such as private health insurer GMHBA, and government agencies TAC, WorkSafe and NDIS.

“The demolition clause allows that flexibility there. The tenant gets to stay on – they’ve signed a five-year lease but they’ve got a minimum of three years if the demolition clause goes from the day it’s due.

“Like all those things, they tend to roll along because of planning and design concepts and they have the approved.”

In 2018, Lyons sold the former Eureka Hotel to Geelong developer Bill Votsaris for $3.85m.