Fine Arts 1 and 2

80 Post Road E,
Westport, CT 06880

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Additional Info

Previously operated by: Loews

Architects: W. Chester Browne, J. Frederick Krokyn

Firms: Krokyn & Browne

Functions: Retail

Styles: Colonial Revival

Previous Names: Fine Arts Theatre

Nearby Theaters

Fine Arts 1 and 2

The Fine Arts Theatre was opened in early spring of 1916. It was refurbished in 1940, when it was given a new Colonial Revival style facade and a similar style to the interior, designed by Boston MA based architectural firm Krokyn & Browne. Seating was provided for 712, all on a single level.

There were other Fine Arts Theaters in CT, like Brookfield, more in Westport and in Shelton. Was this a local, regional chain?

Contributed by Dave Bonan

Recent comments (view all 7 comments)

Roger Katz
Roger Katz on January 19, 2005 at 3:47 am

This theatre is now a Restoration Hardware store.

joemasher on January 19, 2005 at 4:22 am

There were four theatres in Westport, all last operated by Loews. The Fine Arts 1&2, listed here, was an old single-screen moviehouse. Behind it, on Jesup Rd., was the Fine Arts 3. A bit further up the Post Road was the Fine Arts 4, and the Post Cinema was a mile further east on the Post Rd. The FA3, FA4, and Post Cinema have all been converted to retail. In the 70’s, they were part of the Nutmeg Circuit, which merged with Carroll’s Cinemas of Syracuse, NY, to form CinemaNational. In 1987, USA Cinemas bought CinemaNational, and in 1988, Loews bought USA. Also part of this chain in Southwestern CT were the Wilton Cinema in Wilton (now part of a TJ Maxx), the Greenwich Twin (now Clearview Cinemas), the Community (now non-profit) and County Cinema (cabinet store) in Fairfield, the Norwalk Theatre (now closed-last used as a nightclub) and the Norwalk 1 & 2 (now the 4-screen Garden Cinemas) in Norwalk. The Fine Arts in Brookfield was also a part of this group, as was the Colony 5 in Wallingford (retail space).

shoeshoe14 on July 26, 2006 at 11:27 am

I passed by here the other day and the address is now 76 Post Road in the center of Westport. Behind the building you can tell it was a cinema.

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on May 18, 2009 at 8:40 pm

The original Fine Arts Theatre was acquired by Nutmeg Circuit in 1952, according to an item about a planned renovation of the house that appeared in the May 25, 1964, issue of Boxoffice Magazine.

The April 8, 1968, issue of Boxoffice said that the Fine Arts II, adjacent to the Fine Arts Theatre, was nearing completion. The Fine Arts was being remodeled at the same time, but remained in operation through the remodeling. The two houses would share a common entrance. The seating capacity of the Fine Arts II was 410, and the capacity of the remodeled Fine Arts would be 700.

bicyclereporter on June 24, 2011 at 9:37 am

Mentioned recently in the CT Post.

black_heart on July 25, 2011 at 12:39 pm

i worked at fine arts theaters in westport from 1969 till about 75…. those were the days! we all had lots of fun got to see many first run movies which today are classics.the only bad part was changing the marquee on a cold windy night.i still have some posters and stills i will never part with. i hope all my old buddies are doing fine although some i fear have passed …but if your reading this… hello to derek hylton, ernie groual, john hines, scotty, bob roscoe, ect ect ect…

the circuit was owned by bob smerling who owned many theaters in the tri-state area. i also understand the “ships lantern bar and restaurant down the street is gone…they used to slip me booze out the back door before i was 18… its a shame those were great days!!

Joe Vogel
Joe Vogel on September 24, 2023 at 9:29 am

The Fine Arts originally opened in 1916. The arrival in Westport of Horace S. Wakeman, formerly of Los Angeles, who would manage the new house, was noted in the January 8 issue of Moving Picture World that year. It was clear from the wording of the item that the house was not yet complete, but the arrival of the future manager suggested that it must have been approaching completion.

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