It is being reported on leading trade publication PubTic that the iconic Midnight Shift has finally been purchased by hotel group Universal, who own another Oxford St icon - Kinselas.
The first gay bar in New South Wales, the Midnight Shift closed last year after massive pressures from declining patronage thanks to the states controversial lockout laws.
“For us, it’s just basically trying to revitalise the area. Darlinghurst is such a massive channel out to the eastern suburbs, for transport and basically everything.”
Kospetas says they are planning “a new direction” for the famous gay bar, likely offering more of an open-to-everybody approach, and a greater focus on food & bev on street level. The upstairs club space will be suitably gentrified and ‘multi-faceted’ for use as a performance space or functions.
“Our push is to give each venue a different offering, but also to revitalise the area and bring people back to Oxford Street. It’s such an amazing precinct, so close to the city.
“Where previously the world was gay venues or not, now you’ve got to be open to everybody. Open it up to what Oxford Street is these days.”
The slow-burning deal was brokered by Stefan Ippilito and Michael Marano of Oxford Property Group, which specialises in commercial transactions in the area. Marano says the sale was a boon for all involved.