South Loop Club building changes hands for $6M

Property has 36 studios and a ground-floor restaurant space with a 4 a.m. liquor license

Kiser Group's Aaron Sklar and Noah Birk with 701 South State Street
Kiser Group's Aaron Sklar and Noah Birk with 701 South State Street (Kiser Group, Google Maps)

A multifamily property next to Printer’s Row — and its elusive 4 a.m. liquor license — changed hands for the first time in 40 years.

The property at 701 South State Street was home to the South Loop Club, and includes 36 fully rented studio apartments and a ground-floor restaurant and bar space that holds the 4 a.m. license. The building sold for $6 million, according to Kiser Group partners Noah Birk and Aaron Sklar, who brokered the transaction.

Nicholas Vranas, the seller, had owned the building for more than four decades before selling it to a local buyer who is not yet identified in property records. South Loop Club, the business using the liquor license, has a website that shows it’s “temporarily and voluntarily closed,” but instructs visitors to “watch for the new beginning.”

Chicago had issued 128 late-night liquor licenses, according to a July report by Eater. Those licenses are a challenge to get, so an easier way to procure one is through purchasing a property that has already been granted one.

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Birk and Sklar said the new building owner plans to open some sort of restaurant and bar in the retail space and said that the pool for multifamily buyers who are also interested in operating a retail space is smaller.

“We knew that there was value in the 4 a.m. bar, there was value in somebody taking that over,” Sklar said. “A lot of people that own multifamily don’t necessarily want that. So we kind of needed to find somebody that appreciated the 4 a.m. license.”

The sale closed despite ongoing challenges in the downtown market, mainly with retail and office buildings that have yet to recover from remote work and the pandemic. Multifamily assets have generally continued to perform well despite the broader real estate downturn in the Loop. 

The brokers said the asset’s location and performance attracted strong interest. It stands out as one of the older properties in the area, as it’s surrounded by much newer construction on all sides, Kiser Group said.

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