Nightclub's closure a mystery

What became of Subculture? Photo by Christina McDonald.
What became of Subculture? Photo by Christina McDonald.

Mystery surrounds the closure of a popular Queenstown nightclub, about nine months after the long-time owners, who established the club, sold it to a Wellington entrepreneur.

The premises Subculture once occupied, beside Monty's bar on Church St, has been listed for lease with Colliers but it could not be confirmed when Subculture stopped trading and officially vacated.

The club was established by Simon Hendl, who is also known by his DJ name Downtown Brown, and sisters Antonia and Michelle Crowley, nine years ago.

In February, the Otago Daily Times reported the sale of Subculture to a consortium headed by Wellington musician and entrepreneur Jostan Murray.

In the same story Mr Hendl said he was excited ''to see what changes and improvements Jostan and his crew have in store for Subbies''.

The Queenstown Times has attempted several times to contact Mr Murray and in a message received yesterday he said he had no comment to make ''at this stage''.

When spoken to in May, Mr Murray said the club would continue to host live music and as a musician he understood how difficult it was ''to get a space to play''.

''I was looking around for this sort of business for quite a while and the music scene was what attracted me to Subculture,'' Mr Murray said.

Speaking from Auckland yesterday, Mr Hendl said he did not know what became of the club, but had noticed a ''for lease'' sign outside the entrance when he was in Queenstown.

''Subculture contributed a lot to the music of Queenstown and it is sad that it's gone,'' he said.

The club had ''brought a lot of international artists to Queenstown, who otherwise would not have visited''.

A staff member at Monty's bar said she was unsure when Subculture ceased trading.

It had a high profile both online and through word of mouth.

The ODT understands the owners of the building Subculture occupied are based overseas and an online auction site listing the lease of the premises said it was ''a fantastic opportunity to lease a larger sized club/bar in the heart of Queenstown's dining and entertainment precinct''.

The last listing for Subculture in Queenstown Times' ''Picks of the week'' column was on June 29 this year.


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