Marina Theatre

219-221 North Third Street,
Port Hueneme, CA 93041

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Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on October 9, 2009 at 2:04 am

The Melody/Marina Theatre was designed by architect Loy L. Smith, according to an article about quonset hut theaters, by Helen Kent, in the January 3, 1948, issue of Boxoffice. Smith is probably best known as the architect of the Cecil Hotel in downtown Los Angeles.

In 1924 Smith designed a theater that was to have been built in Alhambra, California, but the project was abandoned. It was to have been a 1400-seat house called the Indian Theatre, and would have featured an entrance courtyard in the manner of the Hollywood Egyptian and the Alex in Glendale. Had it been built, it would most likely have been one of the San Gabriel Valley’s most impressive theaters.

After having considerable success in the 1920s, Smith seems to have fallen into obscurity, and by 1948 was living in suburban El Monte. The Melody is the only building he designed after the 1920s that I’ve ever heard of. At least he finally got to see one of his theater designs built, even if it was only a small quonset hut building in a distant town.

MagicLantern on July 8, 2005 at 9:40 pm

The Mini Cinema was located at 631 West Hueneme Road, later became a bank and is now currently vacant, as is most of the adjacent shopping centre. At no point did the Marina and the Mini exchange names. There is currently a World Market in the space where the Esplanade 3 once sat.

mondostrange on July 8, 2005 at 7:47 pm

Does anyone have pictures of these theaters like the Skyview Drive-in?

lastan67 on June 24, 2005 at 1:45 am

Wrong! The other theatres in Oxnard in the 1970’s were “THE FOX” “CARRIAGE SQUARE” AND THE “MARINA CINEMA” which was at one time called “THE jerry Lewis Theatre”. In 1980 The Marina Cinema started playing XXX but it was never called Mini-Ciniema. In 1984 The Marina Cinema went back to regular movies and was re-named “The Channel Islands Theatre”. It was closed for go in the late 1980’s.
The Fox theatre in Oxnard Closed in the Fall of 1982. The Carriage Square theatre was turned into a twin theatre around 1972. In 1984 they added 3 more screens. In 1974 The Esplande Mall had a new theatre with three screens open! Sadly by the end of the 1990’s all of these places along with “The Skyview Drive-In” were all closed.

MagicLantern on August 25, 2004 at 9:34 pm

Actually, I’ll amend that “two theatres” estimate by adding that the SeaBee base has a largish cinema called the Needham Theatre, at which I saw a double-bill of “Star Wars” and “The Empire Strikes Back” in the early 1980s. Some photographs of the Needham can be found here:

and there’s another one called the Station Theatre at Point Mugu, information on which can be found here:

GaryParks on August 25, 2004 at 5:27 pm

The Melody/Marina was a Quonset-style theatre with a very simple Moderne facade which followed the arched profile of the Quonset. The marquee was semicircular, horizontally echoing the arch shape of the facade.