Hoyts Castle Theatre
57-61 South Street,
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Previously operated by: Hoyts Theatres, Western Suburbs Cinemas Ltd.
Architects: Christopher A. Cowper
Firms: John W. Roberts & Associates
Functions: Banquet Hall
Styles: Art Deco, Quonset Hut
Previous Names: Castle Theatre
Located in the Granville district west of Sydney. Originally on this site was the open-air Granville Castle Cinema, which opened in 1911 to 1923. The Castle Theatre opened on December 26, 1947 with Gene Kelly in “Living in a Big Way” and Glenn Ford in “Paula”. Seating was provided for 636 in the stalls and 270 in the lounge, a raised seating area at the rear of the auditorium. The Art Deco design took advantage of the Quonset system developed during the war. It was the first cinema to be built in a Quonset style in Australia, and was operated by Western Suburbs Cinemas Ltd.
The Castle Theatre closed on 23rd October 1959 with Bing Crosby in “Going My Way” and a featurette documentary “on the Barrier Reef”. It was converted into a supermarket, and then a reception center in 1986, which is open today with the name Grande Royale.
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The Cumberland Argus and Fruit growers Advocate (Parramatta, NSW – Wednesday 17 December 1947, Page 5, writes – NEW THEATRE FOR GRANVILLE
With the gala opening of the new Hoyts Castle Theatre, Granville, on Boxing Day, there will dawn a new trend in Motion Picture Theatre design — Sydney’s first real post-war theatre. Named, as many Granville residents will remember, after the original open-air theatre, which once occupied the site. This palatial edifice will present the most modern overseas methods in theatre construction and yet combine comfort and beauty, together with the high class in programme presentation, always associated with Hoyts Theatres.
Realizing the growing need for a modern theatre in Granville and at the same time, bearing in mind the acute building situation in Australia today, the architect’s pencil has given Granville a concrete construction of everlasting beauty. Its all steel, igloo type roof, single sloping floor, up to the minute- air-cooling and heating plant; its ultra-modern projection equipment and acoustics, make it a theatre as modern as tomorrow, a theatre of good looks, snug comfort and fine appointments. Now that it is a reality, Hoyts will continue their policy built up over years of experience, in the presentation of only the cream in motion picture entertainment – Contributed by Greg Lynch –