Mayfair Theatre

214 Santa Monica Boulevard,
Santa Monica, CA 90401

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Showing 1 - 25 of 77 comments

DonSolosan on February 10, 2016 at 2:40 pm

A shoe store has moved into the downstairs retail. The blade sign says “Shoe Palace” on it, with logos on the marquee.

kfogg on September 29, 2015 at 10:49 pm

I worked as an usherette in full uniform with flashlight at the Majestic Theater in Santa Monica in the summer of 1958. It was my first job and I was 15 yrs old. The place was impressive, smoothly running, and fun to work at. The only time I hated it was when they showed the film “Hot Rods from Hell” The sounds drove me crazy. I had to listen to those films over and over all day.

DonSolosan on February 12, 2014 at 8:16 pm

There’s just a fence around the front of the building now. No retail yet; don’t know if the residential portion is available for rent…

DonSolosan on June 13, 2013 at 2:49 pm

I went by the other day. The construction barriers are still up. There’s a marquee and blade sign (no name) on the front of the building now, but I’m not sure where they came from. Maybe they found the blade sign somewhere in the building; it wasn’t hanging up before this conversion. Also, the marquee is different (original 2-sided, now 3-sided), and the “Box Office” and “Alumni Bar” signs that were on either side have not returned.

DonSolosan on May 30, 2013 at 3:54 pm

I think it’s covered in the older comments, but this is yet another mixed retail/residential building that will keep the facade of the theater. The building is almost done. The last time I went by, the facade was in good shape, but all the signage, etc., had been stripped. I don’t know what, if anything, they are planning on putting back.

ChasSmith on November 20, 2011 at 8:41 am

Google Earth and Google Street View show the facade with the destruction behind it. (Bing Maps still shows the complete building!) Someone out there will have to update us on this.

Ron Newman
Ron Newman on November 20, 2011 at 7:18 am

Is the facade still standing, and if so, what is being built behind it?

ChasSmith on November 20, 2011 at 7:13 am

I just uploaded a flyer for a small Hitchcock festival in August 1972, my introduction to the Mayfair. I have Joseph Cotten’s signature on another part of it, which he graciously gave while chatting with people outside following “Shadow of a Doubt”.

The theater was indeed tiny. I enjoyed the films from the small balcony and the place felt ancient and almost rickety even then. But it had charm, too. The earthquake damage must have been inevitable, but I’m sorry to see it go.

LarryDickman on January 27, 2011 at 3:44 pm

re: postings of rigoldst on 12/24/04 and mv on 2/6/05:

Even as pre-teens in the late ‘60s, we kids knew the Mayfair wasn’t up to par with the other local theatres like the Criterion, Wilshire and El Miro. For one, the screen seemed so much smaller, even smaller than an elementary school auditorium screen. Once, at intermission, we counted the rows of seats and I believe there were 15, maybe 20 at most. So of course films like “Marooned” and “The Battle of Britain” had much less impact than they would have at another, larger venue. (Unlike mv, I was too young to catch grindhouse fare like “Night of the Living Dead” and “The Corpse Grinders,” which probably would’ve made the Mayfair my favorite neighborhood theatre!) Other films, like Hitchcock’s “Topaz” and the Burt Reynolds missing link drama “Skullduggery” seemed duller than perhaps they really were. But the Mayfair definitely had a friendly, small-scale charm about it, especially for younger viewers. It was the first theatre I’d ever visited that had a restroom vending machine that sold magic tricks, rubber spiders and other novelty items…and where can you find that nowadays?

Jdillon on January 27, 2011 at 2:39 pm

Hi, my name is James Dillon,i was the manager from 1968-1971.
please contact me if you know anyone who was working there at that time. please contact me at (5033071078)

DonSolosan on January 9, 2011 at 6:11 pm

They’re presently digging out the space for the underground parking. The building next door, which was Angelo’s Pawn Shop, is gone. All that’s left is the facade, propped up with some girders.

Harvey on July 21, 2010 at 8:21 pm

Currently watching the first ever episode of THE ROCKFORD FILES on the Season 1 set and James Garner stops there during one night scene. You get to see the outside lit up and the inside as well.

Starboy on July 17, 2010 at 10:28 pm

I worked as a doorman/usher in 1965-66 at the Majestic (then), while I was in college. It was a fun place and I got to tear a lot of famous actors tickets, who came there so as not to be noticed.
I was a late bloomer and got my first kiss there from a cheeky candy girl.
The projectionist and I kept our motorcycles backstage, and one night at closing, we rode up the two aisles and out through the lobby. Ü

vokoban on January 28, 2010 at 9:40 am

This article dates the name change from Majestic to Mayfair:
LA Times(September 30, 1967)

Double Bill Will Open Mayfair Theater

The Mayfair Theater, formerly the Majestic, in Santa Monica, will have its grand opening Friday at 7 p.m. The opening attraction is "The Long Duel" starring Yul Brynner and Trevor Howard, together with Otto Preminger’s "Hurry Sundown" with Jane Fonda and Michael Caine.

If he came to Santa Monica in 1920, he would be the 2nd or 3rd owner of the theater since it was built in 1911.
(October 16, 1934)

Robert Armour Is Dead at Home

SANTA MONICA, Oct. 15.-Robert Armour, 71 years of age, owner of the Majestic, Santa Monica’s oldest theater, died today at his home, 25 Alta avenue, after a lingering illness. Born in Glasgow, Scotland, he came to the United States in 1906. He formerly was in business in Salt Lake City, San Francisco, Butte and Spokane and came to Santa Monica in 1920. Besides his widow he leaves one brother and one sister in Australia. Funeral services will be Thursday.

vokoban on January 25, 2010 at 3:50 pm

Maybe they removed the top to restore it and replace later…who knows.

DonSolosan on January 25, 2010 at 3:13 pm

It looks like they removed the slanted roofs on either side. As for the top, it suffered quite a bit of earthquake damage. It’s possible they’ve only removed the parts that are too damaged to repair. But it’s worth keeping an eye on…

vokoban on January 25, 2010 at 3:06 pm

I took these today. I can’t imagine this being called anything other than a demolition:

View link

AndreaPK on November 1, 2009 at 12:02 pm

I was the GM of the Mayfair Theatre in the 80s. It was a fantastic theatre We played musical theatre, straight plays and great musical and comedy acts. It was a wonderful place to work and spend time. We had a great bar in the lobby and a restaurant upstairs, that was always changing. I was there for the show in the 1983 photo, my office was behind the windows under the Restaurant sign. I as devastated when I heard about the earthquake destruction. It was a great place and a great time.

Rockatansky on September 13, 2009 at 11:01 am

There’s some kinda restoration in progress, pretty much everything else is demolished but the facade.

DonSolosan on August 23, 2009 at 1:24 pm

The last time I was down there, they had boarded up not only the theater, but also the retail space to the west, which is basically Angelo’s Pawn Shop. It didn’t look like they were working on it though.

Ron Newman
Ron Newman on August 23, 2009 at 10:02 am

What is the current status of this property?

DonSolosan on March 21, 2009 at 5:26 pm

We should have been wearing our Cinema Treasures beanies…

GWaterman on March 21, 2009 at 12:40 pm

Don, I must have been there while you were, I took some photos of the guy taking photos!