United Palace of Cultural Arts

4140 Broadway,
New York, NY 10033

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Showing 201 - 225 of 238 comments

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on July 17, 2006 at 5:04 am

What? No KenRoe photos of the 175th? Don’t let me down, Ken… Passed by again yesterday on my way home from The Cloisters. Had there been an easy parking spot in sight, I’d have pulled over and filled my digital camera’s memory card with images. I grabbed a fleeting shot from my car window while stopped at the traffic light… but I hesitate to even post it. Of course, I won’t let that stop me:

Smile as you pass

I definitely was smiling. I need to get into this theater some day.

LuisV on June 18, 2006 at 3:00 pm

I thoroughly enjoyed the A&E specialon the Loew’s Wonder Theaters, but was left wanting more. Much More!!!!! The theaters are incredibly special and represent an architectural legacy that will never be duplicated. That all five of these theaters still exist is a miracle, but this show could easily have done a hour or more devoted to their history and current states of condition. It was truly uplifting to see what has been done by voulnteers to rescue the Jersey. Why can’t the same be done for the Kings! It is already owned by the city. The borough presidents office could easily earmark discretionary funds to jumpstart this project and Brooklyn corporate sponsors could be enlisted as well.

I was disappointed that we saw virtually none of the 175th St. theater in this special. I also was surprised that they didn’t devote more to the Paradise since it has just been reopened. I wanted to see more of the architectual details.

Maybe I would never have been satified no matter how much they showed! :–)

I was great to see these theaters given the attention they desparately need if we are to preserve them for future generations.

Bway on June 6, 2006 at 5:57 am

Does the congregation of this church use the original theater organ for their services, or has that been removed and replaced?

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on May 1, 2006 at 4:10 pm

The St. Nicholas Arena was near what is currently Lincoln Center in the mid ‘60’s off Columbus Avenue. While closed for many years, the arena was only demolished fairly recently – within the last 5-10 years or so? The arena was originally a turn of the century roller rink and played host to rock and roll concerts as well as boxing and wrestling matches. Not sure where the St. Nicholas Palace was located, but I am sure that the aka “United Palace” listed above refers to the building’s current name under Rev. Ike’s stewardship.

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on May 1, 2006 at 12:45 pm

That seems about right, Ken. There is a venue on 176th and St. Nicholas that shows up in the NY Times as playing movies but then switches to boxing matches in the early 40’s when the US enters the war. It can’t be this theatres since Loews 175th Street was open and showing films during this same period. It is possible that the St. Nicholas Palace had boxing events while the “Annex” or “Garden” continued with movies and concerts. By all indications this seems to have been a very active section of Manhattan at least until after the war or whenever the Major Deegan cut-off the Bronx. There was skating rinks, bowling and concerts nightly along with the movies, fights, music halls and plays.

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on May 1, 2006 at 11:19 am

Al; I have just found a Photoplay Palace Theatre in the American Motion Picture Directory 1914-1915. The address given is 176th Street and St. Nicholas Avenue, New York, NY. Could be the same theatre?

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on May 1, 2006 at 11:15 am

Al; The 1926 Film Daily Yearbook lists a Palace Theatre, 1326 St. Nicholas Avenue, New York, NY with a seating capacity of 574. It isn’t currently listed on Cinema Treasures (under the Palace name)

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on May 1, 2006 at 10:59 am

Make that St. Nicholas…

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on May 1, 2006 at 10:57 am

Is United Palace (above) a theatre name? Also, does anyone know about a Palace Theatre and annex on St. Nichol showing movies from around 1918-1922?

Astyanax on May 1, 2006 at 10:38 am

God bless Rev. Ike!

I passed by the theatre a few days ago and it looks fantastic. The marquee is intact and the edge-accents have been recently re-gilded. The facade remains as impressive as ever, sadly reminicent of the Loews Pitkin. If only the interior of the 175th St. should be in such grand shape.

pjacyk on April 24, 2006 at 8:40 pm

There is a new CD just released that features Lee Erwin playing the Robert-Morton Theatre Organs at Loew’s 175th and Loew’s Kings. The Kings Wonder Morton recording on the CD is of the organ’s farewell concert. More info at http://www.gstos.org/TheWondersOfItAll.htm

Vlad J Greenpoint
Vlad J Greenpoint on November 19, 2005 at 8:45 pm

Thanks Bway,
The link is actually fascinating, I had no idea how ornate this former theater really was, the site itself has some amazing images.

Bway on November 19, 2005 at 7:51 pm

Thanks Greenpoint, so people can access it again, but they must have changed the page address since I posted that message. My link used to work….

Vlad J Greenpoint
Vlad J Greenpoint on November 19, 2005 at 1:30 pm

your hyperlink of 8/24/04 was incorrect…
you had one to many .asp (Active Server Pages)extensions.

Heres the correct address:


Ed Solero
Ed Solero on November 14, 2005 at 3:33 am

I took the “scenic” route home from Sleepy Hollow, NY, the other day via Route 9 which eventually becomes South Broadway in Yonkers and then Broadway when it crosses into the Bronx. Anyway… passed a number of former theaters on the trip including this magnificent structure. I had never seen it in person before and I was kind of stunned by how imposing a building it is! As you approach from the north, you notice the stylish arched iron-work of the balcony fire escapes and then the huge structure that houses the lobby and foyer (where the vertical Loew’s sign remains attached). The theater occupies nearly all of the trapezoidal block bounded by Broadway, 175th Street, Wadsworth Ave and 176th street with the entrances on the corner of Broadway and 175th. The auditorium runs parallel to Wadsworth Ave so the building sort of angles away from Broadway as it runs to the north with a row of tax-payer storefronts filling out the Broadway frontage. I have to get myself inside with my camera one Sunday (services at 2:45pm according to the marquee).

While coming down Broadway, I passed a couple of theaters in Yonkers (I believe one was the RKO Proctor, and then the Park Hill further to the south) and at least one in the Bronx (the former RKO Marble Hill). I was surprised at how large the old Coliseum building was at 181st Street. I also recall a building up around 204th street in Manhattan that appeared to have been a theater at one time. Anyone know what this might have been?

Gerald A. DeLuca
Gerald A. DeLuca on October 18, 2005 at 10:38 am

The Village Voice just voted this place the “Best House 0f Worship That Used to Be a Movie Palace.”

Bway on September 19, 2005 at 1:23 am

It’s nice to see they even left the vertical sign up! EVen if they took the letters off.

br91975 on May 7, 2005 at 8:23 pm

Not that it’s extraordinarily relevant to this page in general, but to clarify Bway’s post from this past February 17th, the New Amsterdam has hosted in its post-renovation years a stage production of ‘King David’ and its long-running ‘Lion King’; ‘Aida’’s run was exclusively held at the Palace Theater.

Bway on April 28, 2005 at 10:51 am

Thanks Robert!
It looks good. I notice the Veritcal Loew’s sign is still there, minus the letters.

RobertR on April 28, 2005 at 9:10 am

Here are pictures of the 175 St.


They should restore the vertical

Bway on February 17, 2005 at 4:54 pm

Thanks for that information. I passed by the Pantages Theater about two weeks ago, and it really looked great. I didn’t realize that the old marquee had been covered, and then uncovered. Disney has done a lot for a few old theaters. In Manhattan, of course the most famous example is the old glorious New Amsterdam theater, which now houses the Lion King (but I think had Aida for a while, but could be mistaken). The meticulously restored it to it’s former glory.
Of course, also in Hollywood, Disney restored the El Capitan Theater. It looks beautiful all lit up outside at night. That marquee, while it does have an look old look, is sort of interesting. They installed one of those modern digital signs on the three sides, and had sort of poster pictures of the film that is playing. When I was there, they were showing a rerelease of “Pirates of the Caribean”, and that was in the digital display on the marquee. Very attractive.

William on February 17, 2005 at 4:42 pm

The same thing happened when Disney was restoring the Pantages Theatre in Hollywood. The marquee and the area underneth the marquee to the front doors had been covered over by fake walls and lower ceilings. The detail under the marquee was all covered over and the neon areas were made more streamlined. So when Disney restored the Pantages for the opening of “Lion King”. They found that a lot of the original facade was just covered over.

Bway on February 17, 2005 at 4:24 pm

What is interesting about the restoration of the RKO Keith’s Richmond Hill’s marquee was that they didn’t realize it was all still back there when they were going to “recreate” it. When they ripped the covering from the marquee (that must have been installed in the 1950’s over the original), there was the old marquee in it’s former diamond in the rough glory. They then restored the old original marquee instead of recreating it. Thankfully, it now remains as such today.

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on February 17, 2005 at 11:14 am

The lobby and auditorium can be viewed in later scenes in the 2002 comedy movie “The Guru”.

Also earlier in that movie can be seen exteriors of the RKO Keith’s Richmond Hill Theatre, to which the filmakers did a restoration of the marquee.