Loew's Oriental Theatre

1832 86th Street,
Brooklyn, NY 11214

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Loew's Oriental Theatre exterior

Viewing: Photo | Street View

Opened on October 13, 1927 with Ronald Colman in “Beau Geste” and vaudeville on the stage. The Loew’s Oriental Theatre was known for its lavish Oriental style decor. It was equipped with a Robert Morton 3 manual, 13 rank organ.

It was twinned in February 1977 with 1,076 seats on the orchestra level and 1,140 seats on the former balcony level. In February 1984 the balcony was divided into two auditoriums, making the theatre a triple-screen operation. It was closed on May 21, 1995.

The Loew’s Oriental Theatre has been converted into retail space, a common occurence with many of the remaining theaters in New York City.

Contributed by William Gabel

Recent comments (view all 239 comments)

DavidZornig on October 6, 2015 at 5:12 pm

1927 photo added courtesy of Stephen Sclafaniā€ˇ.

theatrefan on October 7, 2015 at 8:50 am

If the Loew’s Oriental opened in October 1927 the photo, must have been taken shortly after opening. The Buster Keaton Silent Film “College” opened on September 27th. Also notice the retail stores to the left and right of the theatre have not been rented out yet.

robboehm on October 7, 2015 at 1:39 pm

When did they scrap the vertical? You can see the side of it in the photo with the original marquee. Gone with the new.

theatrefan on October 7, 2015 at 7:07 pm

There is a photo with the film “Divorce American Style” listed on the marquee with the vertical in place which would put that in 1967. Meanwhile in the photo on top “Ice Station Zebra” is playing with the vertical gone, which would put us in 1968. So my guess would be sometime between 67-68 was when they scrapped it. The Shore theatre in Coney lsland had the exact same type and style vertical sign until Sandy ripped it apart in Oct 2012.

robboehm on October 10, 2015 at 10:30 am

theatrefan – the vertical in the photo to which you refer only reads Loews. That means that the original, since the older ones always had the theater name also, was replaced at some point in time. Nice to know when and what the original looked like.

theatrefan on October 10, 2015 at 11:31 am

robboehm, yes both the vertical and regular marquee were replaced by Loew’s in the late 30’s or early 40’s. The second vertical was made by Artkraft Strauss. I wish there were more pictures around of both types.

robboehm on October 10, 2015 at 1:46 pm

They replaced the Triboro vertical in the early 50s. Never touched the Valencia.

theatrefan on October 11, 2015 at 7:27 am

Until the church took it over, that was a very nice intricate one that had to really stand our against the elevated train that used to run there. Isn’t the one on the 175th St. the original one, albeit with the Loew’s letters removed? It’s really a shame that most of the verticals, were removed because it was said they would unfortunately compromise the structural integrity of the buildings facade over time, they were really something special & you could see them from blocks away as their calling card to beckon it’s patrons. The Ewalk & Boston Commons attempted to sort of replicate the old style Loew’s verticals as sort of a homage to the originals.

robboehm on October 11, 2015 at 10:02 am

The church in the Valencia modified the original vertical

theatrefan on October 12, 2015 at 8:30 am

Does the original exist under the church one? I hope so.

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