El Rancho I & II Drive-In

Hickey Boulevard and Crown Circle,
South San Francisco, CA 94080

Unfavorite 3 people favorited this theater

Help us make this street view more accurate

Please adjust the view until the theater is clearly visible. more info

El Rancho I & II Drive-In

Viewing: Photo | Street View

This drive-in was located on top of a hill near Hickey Boulevard in South San Francisco district of Colma, to the south of Daly City. What was pretty cool was this was one of the first drive-ins that had FM sound transmission. I had friends who lived up the hill, they could see the movies from their windows and listen to the sound on their radios.

Originally a single screen, operating by 1948 by Redwood-Lippert Theatres, it was later twinned. Closed in the early-1980’s and replaced by a condo-complex.

Contributed by Victor

Recent comments (view all 8 comments)

GaryParks
GaryParks on October 16, 2004 at 4:37 pm

I remember seeing this drive-in from the 280 freeway. The screen looked like a little animated postage stamp, off in the distance from that vantage point.

FoxFan
FoxFan on October 17, 2004 at 3:38 pm

This poor DriveIn was constantly “fogged out” and eventually
leased out by its original owner to an independent who could not
afford to keep it going thus resulting in the eventual sale
for condominiums which don’t mind cold weather all year long.

lvmstar
lvmstar on October 4, 2005 at 12:15 pm

Wow, I grew up right around the corner in Buri Buri. My parents took me to the El Rancho almost every weekend, I’d pack up my blanket and watch in the back of mom’s 68 Barracuda – I can remember many movies but the scariest one I remember was Jaws, think I was about 8. What great memories…

Doron
Doron on November 27, 2006 at 1:10 pm

I grew up during the “70’s in the Serramonte area. We could see the movies nightly from our living room windows. I wish I knew then about the FM Radio station! :–)

Drive-In 54
Drive-In 54 on January 25, 2012 at 6:40 pm

New picture… alot of broken links.

Jemimah63
Jemimah63 on June 6, 2013 at 2:12 pm

The Google map I get for 157 Hickey is the wrong location for the El Rancho. The address shown in the map is for Pacifica. The El Rancho was in Souty City. It was located where the Briarcliffe development is now. Look for Crown Circle—-that is where it was.

Gbarulich
Gbarulich on June 16, 2018 at 10:47 am

This does appear to be the Rancho Drive-in in So. San Francisco. The photo is old, I lived in the houses behind the marquee in 1953. That is Conrad Court, what isn’t clear are all the other houses that remember up on the surrounding hills. Winston Manor shopping center is to the left of this theater and we walked to the store by it always as kids. Fond memories.

stevenj
stevenj on June 16, 2018 at 11:52 am

When I was a kid my dad would sometimes take the “back way” into SF (before the Serra Frwy was built) by using either Junipero Serra Blvd or Skyline Blvd. You could see the screen and parking area from those roads above the drive in. Today the entire area is covered with subdivisions.

You must login before making a comment.

New Comment

Subscribe Want to be emailed when a new comment is posted about this theater?
Just login to your account and subscribe to this theater