The Vogue Theatre, a landmark on downtown Vancouver’s Granville Street and a magnificent example of the Art Deco style, may face significant changes to its interior.
Built in 1940, the movie palace is both a Vancouver Heritage Register A-listed building and a National Historic Site. Of particular note in its streamlined interior is the auditorium ceiling, an undulating swirl of stepped tiers back-lit with neon tubing. The auditorium’s walls are finished in padded fabric mounted with stylized Diana silhouettes and flanked by painted murals.
The Vogue has remained essentially unchanged, until recently serving as a live music, performance and film venue.
In 2006, it was purchased by Gibbons Hospitality Group, which has proposed converting the theatre to a new use: a licensed 1,000-seat supper/entertainment club. There is concern that this change may require significant alterations to the theatre’s exquisite interior.
In need of some interior restoration, new mechanical systems, and seismic upgrading, the owners of this designated National Historic Site should be able to receive some form of financial assistance from the federal government.
The ongoing lack of real protection and financial support for national historic sites in Canada puts these places at risk.
Update: In 2010 Gibbons Hospitality Group, the new owners, invested in a rehabilitation plan for the 1,000-seat supper/entertainment club, that included repainting the theatre in its original colours, restoring the landmark neon sign, refurbishing seats, extending the stage, and installing a new boiler and high-definition projector.
Location: Vancouver, British Columbia
Top 10 Endangered Places List: 2007