There was a flurry of bids for the 185,000 sq ft centre from those eager to secure it at the Acuitus auction with people making their offers by telephone and online.
With a starting price of £500,000 bids quickly reached £1 million and minutes later had been secured by a mystery buyer for £2.32 million.
The centre opened in 1990 with the original tenants Boots, Woolworths and Argos.
Prior to the auction, Mhairi Archibald of Acuitus said the Howgate was “a good example of the type of shopping centre which is attracting entrepreneurial investors”.
However, until the buyer – only referred to as Mr S during the auction - comes forward and reveals his plans there is still some uncertainty over its future.