Howler trades for $4m

Howler’s northern boundary.

The warehouse-converted Brunswick bar occupied by Howler has sold for $4 million.

The price for 16 Michael Street – two blocks from Sydney Road – reflects a 2.6 per cent yield.

With options, Howler can occupy 16 Michael Street until 2031.

Twelve bidders contested at an online auction.

“Despite the property being leased to a hospitality operator who is battling the current lockdown situation, it was pleasing to see a strong turnout,” JLL director Nick Peden, who marketed the property with Jesse Radisich and Minxuan Li, said.

The buyer is a local investor.

The Howler building

The single-level bar spreads over the entire 905 square metre holding.

Its northern boundary abuts a public car park.

The pocket is three blocks from Jewell train station and a collection of sites VicTrack in 2014 sold to Neometro, which has since replaced them with major residential buildings.

In 2017, Howler found itself in a dispute with the former owner of the neighbouring office (8-14 Michael St), who was proposing an eight level apartment complex with – the pub argued – insufficient sound attenuation (story continues below).

The building from Michael Street.

That developer later sold the property as a permit-ready building block.

The purchaser however, an investor (and not the buyer of 16 Michael St), decided not to proceed with a rebuild – instead securing Howler as a tenant; that space now operates as Howlerland.

The Howler site spreads 905 square metres.

Brunswick building boom

Elsewhere in the suburb, earlier this week, we reported US real estate giant Hines paid $16.5m for a Ballarat St warehouse with plans for its first Australian Build to Rent project.

Last month, Mirvac spent $40m on a prominent site at the north west corner of Sydney Rd and Park St, expected to make way for traditional apartments.

Sixteen months ago – following another campaign by Mr Peden and Mr Radisich – a partnership comprising Molonglo and Aesop founder Dennis Paphitis outlaid $17m for the rundown Brunswick Market, with intentions for a mixed-use project.

Retired furniture retailer Franco Cozzo and Stockland are also proposing (separate) residential developments in the suburb.

Last year, a private developer lodged plans to replace the former Chamton factory, on Glenlyon Rd, with a multi-storey Bunnings, with which it has scored a pre-commitment.

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Marc Pallisco

A former property analyst and print journalist, Marc is the publisher of