Orlando Stonewall’s LGBTQ+ nightclub closes, seeks new owner | Art Stories + Interviews | Orlando

click on the picture
  • Photo courtesy of Stonewall/Facebook

Downtown LGBTQ+ destination / Parramore Stonewall marked the final hours of 2021 not with a lively party, loud music and strong drinks, but with the club’s doors closed for the immediate future and a search for new owners In progress.

After an unassuming (and now deleted) post on New Year’s Eve on the club’s Facebook announced that the club was closing due to “unforeseen circumstances”, the usually bustling nightclub went dark. Watermark dropped the bombshell on Wednesday that Stonewall will remain closed until a new owner is secured for the Church Street nightclub.

Stonewall owner Steven Watkins gave an interview to Watermark in which he explained his decision to close the doors to the bar and two-story venue, and Stonewall Whey would remain closed until new owners take over the space.

“It’s no secret that I’ve been trying to sell for a while now,” Watkins told Watermark. “The current operators were buying the business, but they missed the deadline and then I found out they hadn’t paid their staff. That was the main reason I had to go in and close it. It was bleeding silver and I had to stop the bleeding; it was just ridiculous.

Later in the interview, Watkins ruled out taking over the operation of Stonewall himself as he now resides in Fort Lauderdale. So, as of this writing, he continues to seek new owners for the property.

Stonewall’s indefinite closure is a loss for Downtown Orlando’s LGBTQ+ nightlife scene, especially with the new model of Houses of Parliament still yet to reopen in its hoped-for downtown digs.

Stay up to date with Central Florida news and views through our weekly newsletters and consider supporting this free publication. Our small but mighty team works tirelessly to bring you news from Central Florida, and every little bit counts.

Jerry C. Greiner