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Blue Owl, Early Adopter of Speakeasy Trend, Is Up For Sale

blue owlDana Varinsky

Blue Owl, which got a good deal of hype back in 2006 but has since been overshadowed by countless other haute cocktail-bar openings (the latest: Pouring Ribbons), is up for sale.

A listing indicates the bar’s liquor license and “classic speakeasy decor” is available for $195,000, with the “below market” rent costing an additional $10,700 per month. The venue is described as “perfect for jazz, piano lounge, hooka bar.”

Helen Demetrious, a broker at New York Commercial Real Estate Services, confirmed the business is for sale, but said she expects a seamless ownership transition and doesn’t anticipate that the 1,400-square-foot basement space at 196 Second Avenue will be empty at any point.

When the owner of Opaline opened Blue Owl in February 2006, the nouveau speakeasy got no small measure of attention, with its obligatory lack of signage (that changed soon enough) and its “secret” back room. Every two weeks the bar hosted Brazilian and Latin music and dance, but according to Blue Owl’s Twitter feed its last “Tropical Tuesday” was Sept. 4.