W. Georgia Street & Granville Street,
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Opened on August 13, 1920 as the Allen Theater, one of the first super deluxe movie houses in Canada. The opening movie was Norma Talmadge in “Yes or No”. It was promoted as the finest and modern theaters in the country. It cost $300,000 to build and in just six months. After only just one year, this grand theater went bankrupt and was purchased for a nickel on the dollar.
At one point in 1932, the theater went dark for a year due to the depression. It had many modern amenities including a built-in cigarette lighters and boasted sculptures by Charles Marega.
On March 6, 1958 it featured the movie “Windjammer”, presented in Cinemiracle. Closed in 1973, there was much opposition to the Vancouver Centre project at the time because it mean’t the destruction to the Strand Theatre, The Birks Building and the loss of an iconic restaurant called Scott’s Cafe. The developers would not budge on the design and demolition came quickly in 1973. The Birks Building clock was restored and relocated to a new location and a White Spot Restaurant, which was part of the Vancouver Centre, is located where the Strand Theatre once stood.
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