Florida Theatre

205 E. Flagler Street,
Miami, FL 33131

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Florida Theatre

One of the many theatres located on Flagler Street, across from from the Olympia Theatre (now the Gusman Center). This originally opened as the Hippodrome Theatre from around 1915, and was the second theatre with that name built in downtown Miami. It was closed in 1930, and became the Rex Theatre in 1931. It was operated by Paramount Pictures Inc. through their subsidiary E.J. Sparkes. It was closed and remodeled into the Florida Theatre in 1948 by the Jacksonville based architectural firm Kemp, Bunch & Jackson..

I remember seeing “Rosemary’s Baby” at this theatre. Unfortunately I can’t remember what the inside of the theatre looked like. I believe this theatre played some Cinerama travelogues, but by that time I had left the city.

Contributed by Bob Berg

Recent comments (view all 22 comments)

Ken Roe
Ken Roe on September 29, 2009 at 6:54 am

A few views of the Hippodrome Theatre here:
View link
Another vintage view of the Hippodrome Theatre on the corner of Avenue B:
View link

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on October 21, 2009 at 5:28 pm

According to Boxoffice magazine (November 20, 1961)the Rex building was torn down for the Florida. It states that the Rex and Hippodrome were the same location but the Florida was a new building.

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on January 17, 2010 at 12:55 pm

This Miami News article contradicts Boxoffice and says the Florida is a remodel of the Rex.

View link

RLSemes on November 30, 2010 at 10:25 pm

I have vague memories of the Rex Theatre in Miami. I may have
been in it once with my parents, but don’t remember for sure. In
1947 or so, when I was around six, I think it burned down, or
burned partially. I do remember my parents telling me it had
wood floors. The Florida, as I recall, was mostly a new building.

guarina on May 11, 2012 at 11:19 pm

It was THE theater that showed Cinerama. And the box office lady proudly boasted a very youthful neckline.

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on July 9, 2012 at 5:41 pm

Florida Theatre manager Ralph Puckhaber was head of marketing for ABC Florida State Theatres when I started working for them in 1974, twenty years after the article above was published. He was a flamboyant man who always wore plaid jackets with his trademark pink socks.

Al Alvarez
Al Alvarez on September 21, 2016 at 11:11 pm

“Suddenly, Last Summer” in the photo section.

David_Schneider on January 23, 2018 at 1:30 pm

The address is correct but the Street View image is not.

In Street View look for a storefront that says “205 Digital Marketplace” under a blue awning.

In my opinion the building is not demolished.

To me the storefront and building look like they could be the same ones in this photo on the photos page with some cosmetic physical alterations, and the Street View image can be rotated to match the tall building that still exists behind the Florida Theatre in the photo.

David_Schneider on January 23, 2018 at 1:37 pm

Click here for someone’s Amazon listing for an original postcard of the Hippodrome.

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