One-2-One Bar Put Up For Sale

South Austin venue on market for $175,000

One of the owners of One-2-One Bar, a live music venue on South Lamar boasting a high production value and a focus on homegrown talent, tells the Chronicle he won’t reopen the club and that it’s for sale.

One-2-One owners Gregg and Destinee Ware (Photo by John Anderson)

The venue has been closed to the public since March 15 amid the COVID-19 pandemic. During that time, owners have hosted livestreams to help their roster of regular performers earn some money. The closure ends nearly 17 years of Gregg and Destinee Ware staging shows in Austin, first downtown at 121 E. Fifth, then – since 2012 – at 1509 S. Lamar.

Gregg says that One-2-One bar's monthly payment is nearly $10,000, including triple net. He reports that the business owes roughly $40,000 to its landlords, with whom he says he maintains a good relationship.

The Wares applied for several grants in hopes of keeping the business afloat, particularly the Creative Space Disaster Relief Program and the Small Business Relief program. After receiving what he now characterizes as a incorrectly processed email, Ware made a widely-shared Facebook post claiming the business was only awarded $500 of the Small Business Relief grant’s maximum $40,000 total. He later learned One-2-One received a higher, yet still unspecified, amount of funding.

Even so, the sum isn’t enough to pay back existing debt, let alone sustain the venue until a realistic point where concerts can again occur. Thus, the business has been put on the open market.

“We hate to do it. We just don’t see any other way, not with this pandemic floating around here,” he explained, noting the city being in Stage 4 and COVID-19 orders being extended into December. “Lets say I got awarded the maximum amount of both grants I applied for, $40,000 and $50,000. I've been closed since March. Even if we’re able to open in December, those grants would barely cover that.

“I predict most live music venues won’t be back at 100 percent capacity for a year or two.”

Ephraim Owens preforming with Black Red Black at One-2-One Bar (Photo by John Anderson)

On the Restaurant Realty Group website, One-2-One’s property lists at $175,000. That price would account for the business name, the remaining eight-year lease, and all the furniture and equipment inside. Ware says that the deal could be restructured if the buyer doesn’t want to use the space for a venue and won’t need the production gear.

“All I want to do is leave this thing without being in debt,” reflects Ware, who plans to remain involved in Austin music, but not likely as the sole owner of a venue. “I won’t make anything, but if I can not be in debt, I’ll be happy.”

Correction [5:55pm]: a previous version of this story reported that the awarded funding would come from the Creative Space Disaster Relief Program, when it is from the Small Business Relief program.

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One-2-One Bar, Gregg Ware, Destinee Ware, Creative Space Disaster Relief Program, Restaurant Realty Group, Ephraim Owens, Black Red Black

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