I don’t think I’ve seen so many Fitzroy hospitality and retail businesses for sale, or vacant properties for lease, at the same time. These are all in addition to ones I’ve already written about, such as the former Oven pizza, the former convenience store next door, the bike shop and the former Django Django cafe.

On Brunswick St, Polly bar on Brunswick St is currently available. The northern end of Brunswick St is looking shaky – is it a good time to get out? At the opposite end Martha Ray’s cafe is currently listed for sale. Cape Live on the corner of Brunswick and Johnston streets is available. Opposite, the former Kleen, currently Urban Attitude is closing and the property is already listed.

On Smith St, the Panama Dining Room sold recently. The former Soul food (and briefly Hex) cafe is listed. Dr Java cafe on the corner of Smith and Gertrude streets was listed recently. They’ve just had a significant interior facelift. After an aborted closure a few years ago Amor y locura on the western end of Gertrude St is closing for real.

On Johnston St, the Johnston St Food Store was also listed not long ago. No surprise there – Addict will surely wipe it out. The Marquis of Lorne pub has just sold and in the last few days I’ve seen people inside cleaning out the front bar. In North Fitzroy the struggling North Fitzroy Arms is for sale and so is the lovely Monkey Bar.

Amidst all these current business closures and the availability of a lot of property, it could be easy to overlook another phenomenon. Fitzroy is a former industrial area undergoing gentrification but there is still a lot of real industry going on here using a lot of property.

As these businesses gradually leave more property becomes available for hospitality and retail that has not been used for this purpose before, such as the premises of the former Lure hairdresser on Smith St.

The west end of Gertrude St is slowly being gentrified, such as by Catfish and Casa Ciuccio, but the west end of Johnston St has yet to be approached in the same way. The former Chan and Chan Trading Co building on Johnston St could be made into something fabulous, but is the location too risky?

Fitzroy businesses for sale

3 thoughts on “Fitzroy businesses for sale

  • 11 September 2014 at 4:15 pm

    I counted 12 shop fronts for lease between Alex. Pde and Johnstone St, and Cote Provence is now closing down.

    On the south side, Urban Graffiti is at the end of its lease and Cecil Walker is closing down.

    An interesting time to be a real estate agent or commercial landlord on the strip.

    • 11 September 2014 at 5:05 pm

      That block is expected to suffer major problems should the East – West Link go ahead so it’s not surprising everyone is planning to get out!

  • 31 October 2014 at 5:21 pm

    And the quick fix to be mooted, to spark up business in the area, will probably be something really stupid, like turning Brunswick St into a “greenie” fantasy pedestrian paddock from Alexander Pde to Victoria Pde. No traffic, No parking, fewer outsider customers. And in the side streets more traffic, more congestion and a parking schmozzle. Followed by some equally air headed proposition that this will miraculously breath life into the street. It wont work. Not even once a year. New years eve. Hardly anything stays open that late on Brunswick anymore.. The “heyday” is long gone. Brunswick St, is passe, it is a cliche. It is fails to live up to its reputation. The community that once made it vital are gone, they are now driving Kia Wagons and living in Endeavour Hills. But my pessimism could be misplaced. My instinct wrong. The future may still bear strange fruit regardless of present hypothesis and contentions; and failing businesses aside.

    I foresee an image of trendy Brunswick apartment blocks on a unsullied Brunswick St pedestrian mall already glinting in an architect’s chardonnay clouded eye……..The Paris end of Yarra … Avenue des Champs-Fitzroy. The realty vultures are circling. And regeneration will happen. Eventually. But it won’t be the 80’s revisited. It may be better…


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