Saving the Terrace, a Masterpiece of International-Style

posted by ThrHistoricalSociety on August 7, 2015 at 11:06 am


Robbinsdale, MN: Considered a masterpiece of International-Style when it opened in 1951, The Terrace was one of the first ultramodern theaters in America. The spectacular venue was the most luxurious, comfortable and up-to-date theater in America. Local movie theater owners, Bill and Sydney Volk, spared no expense when they built their flagship overlooking the marshes on the west side of Crystal Lake.

The architectural firm of Liebenberg and Kaplan designed the theater. In 1952, the Robbinsdale Post reported construction costs in excess of $750,000. The Terrace was equipped with a sunken den and fireplace, a television lounge, well furnished nursery rooms, deep and soft cushion seats, and background music throughout the theater.

The Terrace was one of the first ultramodern theaters in America. The Volk brothers planned the theater to serve all of the metropolitan area of the Twin Cities. A guest register from 1952 contained signatures from 25,000 people in every state of the union, Canada and many foreign countries.

READ MORE about the Terrace on the Robbinsdale Historical Society website:

And enjoy their wonderful slideshow here:

Highlight and right click links to open in a new tab.

ABOUT THEATRE HISTORICAL SOCIETY OF AMERICA: Founded by Ben Hall in 1969, the Theatre Historical Society of America (THS) celebrates, documents and promotes the architectural, cultural and social relevance of America’s historic theatres. Through its preservation of the collections in the American Theatre Architecture Archive, its signature publication Marquee™ and Conclave Theatre Tour, THS increases awareness, appreciation and scholarly study of America’s theatres.

Learn more about historic theatres on our website at





Comments (5)

DanaQualley on August 8, 2015 at 4:32 am

I saw both The Shining and Altered States here. While it was one auditorium, it was among the best movie going experiences that I had. I say among because I saw a re-release of Oklahoma at our Cooper Theatre in mn

MPol on August 8, 2015 at 12:48 pm

That looks like SUCH a cool movie theatre! Sure wish we had one like that in the Boston area!

raysson on August 10, 2015 at 2:37 pm

Reminds me of the same architectural design of The Cameron Village Theater that opened about the same year as this cinema did back in 1951 in Raleigh,North Carolina.

alysiadavid on August 11, 2015 at 7:19 pm

For more information on our efforts to Save the Historic Terrace Theatre, check out our Facebook page:

dkrutzi1 on August 12, 2015 at 12:30 pm

I have so many fond memories of our Terrace theatre in Robbinsdale! We are currently in the process of trying to save The Terrace. It was such a luxurious theatre..we in Robbinsdale would love to see our theatre preserved and not torn down.

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