Revolver nightclub building still up for grabs after ‘left field’ proposals

Revolver nightclub in Prahran is still on the market.
Revolver nightclub in Prahran is still on the market.

A sales campaign for the iconic Revolver nightclub building has gone underground after “left field proposals” were floated by potential buyers.

The Chapel St landmark and Melbourne music scene pillar is still seeking about $20 million after its public sales campaign ended last week.

Joint owner of the Prahran establishment Kurt Falkenstein says there has been “hundreds of inquiries from interested parties” with some “left field proposals” for the building in the mix.

“Coronavirus restrictions have limited interstate and overseas purchasers,” Falkenstein says.

“We have had a number of offers from credible Melbourne investors, for which we are very thankful.”

He says the sale had gone off market, but inspections were still underway at 229 Chapel St and 24 Macquarie St. The buildings house Revolver Upstairs, Colonel Tan’s Thai restaurant and Falkenstein’s own company, co-working space Revolver Lane.

Confidential long-term leases, understood to be about 10 years in length, were secured prior to the sales campaign.

“We are still working through our options,” Falkenstein says.

The building housing Revolver is for sale.

“We’re confident that we’ll end up with a long-term ownership structure that will preserve Revolver’s place in Melbourne’s cultural identity, while enhancing the property to achieve its potential.”

News of an impending sale sent shockwaves through the music and entertainment industry, which has been hard hit by coronavirus restrictions.

But Revolver Upstairs assured fans through social media that the nightclub would not disappear from Melbourne’s music scene.

Revolver nightclub chapel street

There’s a co-working space inside the historic site.

“You may have noticed our building, 229 Chapel St, is for sale! Don’t worry, Revs has a long lease in place. We aren’t going anywhere!”, Revolver Upstairs posted on their Facebook page in May.

Falkenstein’s family bought into the building two years ago, after renting space for Revolver Lane since 2014.

He says the owners had jointly decided it was time to sell to a buyer who could bring “the whole property up to its full potential”.

Cushman & Wakefield agent Marcus Neill says the commercial agency relaunched the sale in May, after a short-lived expressions of interest campaign just before COVID-19 hit.

The vendor is reportedly seeking more than $20 million.

“The rear building could at some stage be redeveloped into a boutique hotel or office …. you could also put another two storeys above it,” Neill told the Herald Sun.

It’s possible the building could be converted into a different hospitality venture once lease agreements with the Revolver companies end.

The original building, The Colosseum, was rebuilt in 1914 following a fire and it has since been heritage listed.

In 1992, Revolver was first launched by another one of the vendors as a music gallery, before being converted into the now-famous nightclub five years later. It has one of few remaining 24-hour liquor licenses in the city.

This article from the Herald Sun originally appeared as “Revolver: Chapel St, Prahran building housing famous nightclub goes off market”.