KiMo Theater

423 Central Avenue NW,
Albuquerque, NM 87102

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KiMo Theater

Viewing: Photo | Street View

Opened on September 19, 1927, with an original seating capacity of 1,321, the Albuquerque KiMo Theater is ornately decorated in the Pueblo Deco style, which combines the Indian cultures of the Southwest with the flavor of Art Deco. By the early-1940’s the Kimo Theater was operated by Paramount Pictures Inc. through their subsidiary Hoblitzelle & O'Donnell. Stylish in every way, the KiMo Theater almost met the wrecking ball in 1977, but was saved and in that year was added to the National Register of Historic Places.

The KiMo Theater was beautifully restored in September, 2000 and is now a prime venue for concerts, civic events, and the performing arts. The theater’s resurgence represents the city’s recent upturn with new development and stores popping up throughout downtown.

As the focal point of the burgeoning arts community, the KiMo Theater is a proud reminder of the past and a symbol of the city’s future.

Recent comments (view all 22 comments)

carptrash on April 26, 2009 at 3:03 pm


The term “Pueblo Deco” was coined by architectural historian Marcus Wiffen who certainly did know what he was talking about.

He used it to describe a style of ornamentation that was a hybrid based on Native designs from baskets, pottery, jewelry and such and the more Moderne designs that we now call Art Deco – a term that was only invented around 1968 or so. We could argue about if all the ornamentation were stripped off the KiMo whether we would have a Deco shell of a Pueblo Revival shell, but I suspect that you’d loose were we to take a vote among deco enthusiasts if you still maintain that the KiMo is not a deco theatre.

rt66nm on June 16, 2009 at 4:57 am

Yes, its well worth the 15 minute stop as you could probably find a parking space almost outside on old Rt. 66 itself! Besides its FREE. Here’s a virtual tour Who knows, you might run into the ghost
Hasta Luego ! Oh, check for more exciting things to do/see in The Q.

ERD on June 16, 2009 at 1:40 pm

A very atractive theatre. I am glad it is in good hands.

Ziggy on August 11, 2009 at 4:57 pm


I am not writing this in an argumentative tone. I just wanted to state that up front so that people won’t “read” an attitude where there isn’t meant to be one.

Your post regarding the phrase “Pueblo Deco” proves my point. I stated that it must have been made up by someone in the last 30 years or so because it’s certainly not a term that the architects themselves would have used. You state that the term was coined in 1968. As an architectural historian myself, my contention is that the Kimo is not art deco. Even if art deco enthusiasts (of which I am one) were to say that it is, it would only show that those enthusiasts are misinformed.

Again, I am not writing this to start an argument, and if you want to continue this discussion I will be very happy to exchange ideas and comments with you via email. I love discussing architecture with anyone who will listen, and I promise to keep things on a professional, and good natured, level.

Ziggy on August 11, 2009 at 5:01 pm


I already find myself having to write a clarification. You did not state that “Pueblo Deco” was coined in 1968, but that “Art Deco” was coined in 1968 (a fact I was already aware of), but it sort of makes me think…..if I want to really be a stickler about things, I wouldn’t use the phrase “Art Deco” either, since it also was just “made up” by someone long after the style came and went.

Oh well, you all go ahead and use the phrase “Pueblo Deco” all you want, and I won’t use it, and we can all be happy.

My invititation to discuss architecture via email still stands.

TLSLOEWS on April 10, 2010 at 9:15 pm

Very Very Nice.

Don Lewis
Don Lewis on November 30, 2010 at 4:09 am

From the 1940s a postcard view of Central Avenue along with the Kimo Theater in Albuquerque.

CSWalczak on October 23, 2012 at 4:28 am

An article about the KiMo with pictures is here.

Homeboy on December 26, 2012 at 7:32 pm

The December 2012 issue of “Signs of the Times” has a long article on the KiMo. Although it’s mostly about the blade sign, it gives quite a bit of historical background on the theater as well. Unfortunately the article is not available online.

spectrum on January 3, 2015 at 12:46 am

The official webpage links to some nice interior photos – interesting to see that the original proscenium arch has been re-created; the original was destroyed in a fire in the 1950s and was replaced by simple curtained walls – nice to see the original back with the native American symbols.

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