Loew's Valencia Theatre

165-11 Jamaica Avenue,
Jamaica, NY 11432

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JamesD on September 9, 2019 at 12:28 pm

This was one of the first movie palaces I remember going to when I was a kid. I’ve been back many times, first sneaking in to church services, and then on tours given by the church. I love the place, but hopefully they’ll repaint the lobby one day (yuck.)

Trolleyguy on September 7, 2019 at 10:24 pm

Great pictorial and history of this gem. https://tilesinnewyork.blogspot.com/2014/02/movie-palaces-part-1-loews-valencia.html

JAlex on September 5, 2015 at 10:49 am

Simply put: the chandelier was an addition by the church.

Chris1982 on September 5, 2015 at 2:05 am

There is no chandelier in any of the 1929 photos of the auditorium.

Life's Too Short
Life's Too Short on September 4, 2015 at 9:49 pm

Can anyone tell me if the chandelier shown in the Gothamist photo set is original to the auditorium? I’ve never seen an atmospheric design with a chandelier hanging from the “sky” before.

theatrefan on July 21, 2015 at 7:12 am

They also did a tour, sorry I missed it. In looking at the photo’s it looks like the original projection windows have been covered up and there is an air conditioner in one of them. I wonder what the former projection room is used for currently by the church?

HowardBHaas on July 21, 2015 at 6:57 am

new set of great photos here http://gothamist.com/2015/07/20/tabernacle_queens_movie_palace.php#photo-1

robboehm on April 11, 2015 at 12:37 pm

For amazing color photos of the Valencia go to ScoutingNY.com

robboehm on April 10, 2015 at 4:29 pm

Color photo from the balcony uploaded.

Ed Solero
Ed Solero on April 7, 2015 at 7:22 pm

I know this is late notice, but tonight, April 7th, at 8:30, WNYE-TV channel 25 will be airing an episode of their Blueprint NYC series devoted to the Loew’s Wonder Theaters. If you miss it, you may be able to watch the episode at their website after it has aired.

theatrefan on February 12, 2015 at 12:17 pm

Thanks Matt, Loew’s seemed to do the same thing in the Jersey, stripping out all equipment before they left. The 175th Street however was left intact when Rev. Ike took it over in 1969. I wonder if the original screen is still in the Valencia.

Matt Lambros
Matt Lambros on February 12, 2015 at 12:12 pm

I’m not 100% sure but I seem to recall our tour guide mentioning that the projection room was stripped of all projection equipment.

theatrefan on February 12, 2015 at 11:58 am

Auditorium #5 in the Sony/Loews Theatres Lincoln Square complex on New York’s Upper West Side is named in honor of this former Loew’s Motion Picture Palace.

theatrefan on February 12, 2015 at 7:55 am

Does anyone know what the status is of the projection booth is? Is there still any equipment left up there by Loew’s, that they did not take with them when they left in 1977.

Matt Lambros
Matt Lambros on May 9, 2014 at 8:04 am

I recently photographed the Loew’s Valencia. Check out some of the images and a short write up at After the Final Curtain

Patsy on November 19, 2013 at 10:42 am


This is a link recently sent to me via Facebook with many amazing photos of this former theatre.

Luis Vazquez
Luis Vazquez on August 22, 2013 at 8:26 am

Free tours of the Valencia are being offered by the church on Saturday, September 21st by appointment only. More info here: http://www.scoutingny.com/?p=6862

Bway on July 22, 2013 at 9:52 am

Yes, I didn’t realize the Alden was still open then yet too, and as a theater. In any event, while the removal of the Jamaica El was a fiasco for the Jamaica business district, it really only made a bad situation worse. It was in trouble even before the removal of the el. In any event, the removal of the el can’t be blamed as one of the reasons for the demise of the Valencia, as the Valencia had already closed BEFORE the el was removed.

BJK on July 21, 2013 at 1:39 pm

That’s a great photo, with a peek of the marquee of the RKO Alden across the street in the lower right corner. I had forgotten that this theater was still open in ‘77. Forgotten NY has a collection of photos of the downtown Jamaica strip from a recent walking tour: http://forgotten-ny.com/2011/06/jamaica-avenue-queens/ Looks like the teardown of the Jamaica section of the El was finished by the end of 1978.

Bway on July 21, 2013 at 12:07 pm

Actually, the Tabernacle of Prayer was already in the Valencia BEFORE service on the eastern end of the Jamaica El closed…. See here for a photo. Notice the Tabernacle of Prayer cross is already up, and the Valencia Theater sign gone: Click here for link

BJK on July 19, 2013 at 3:32 pm

“paktype: I heard that this theater’s patronage suffered with the closing of the Jamaica elevated in the mid 1970’s.” Ironically, the demolition of ‘The El’ was trumpeted as the key to a ‘revitalized Jamaica’. When the Jamaica portion was taken down in 1977, the two main dept stores, Gertz and Macy’s closed almost immediately after. This was a huge blow to the downtown Jamaica Ave commercial strip, an area that was in decline for almost a decade by that point. As pointed out by others, by the time the Valencia closed, it had long since stopped showing ‘first-run’ movies. I remember only ‘Blaxploitation’ and B horror/slasher flicks at that point. I was a child in the ‘60’s, and my fondest memories were of shopping on the Ave, and our mother taking my sister and me to a Disney matinee on a Sat afternoon.
However, as stated here, the Tabernacle of Prayer for All People pentacostal church has done a beautiful job of restoration and maintenance: it is well worth a visit if you happen to be in this area on a Sunday.

Luis Vazquez
Luis Vazquez on February 15, 2013 at 8:20 am

I just came across this on a site called Scouting New York:

Just a quick note on the incredible Valencia Movie Palace in Queens. For those who would like to see this work of art in person, the Tabernacle of Prayer Church has generously set-up visiting time every Sunday from 11:00-11:45am, when services will not be in session. Just walk right in the lobby – they’ll be expecting you! Please try to come during these times, as the church will otherwise be conducting services and programs in the theater throughout the day.

The address is 165-11 Jamaica Ave, with F, E, J, and Z service just a few blocks away. Needless to say, I highly recommend the trip.

cybermoz on January 28, 2013 at 10:25 am

The Queens Movie Theater You Will Not Believe – http://www.scoutingny.com/?p=6288

robboehm on October 19, 2012 at 8:38 am

I saw her appear in Let it Ride on Broadway. Also it’s interesting to note that she is buried in Farmingdale, as are a number of other celebrities.

Soapking1965 on September 3, 2012 at 2:35 pm

That is partially true. The last film I saw there was ‘MAHOGANY’ with Diana Ross and Billy Dee Williams in 1976.