The jury agreed that kudos were in order to the City of Coronado for restoring this theatre, originally built in 1947. The design was able to create 3 theatres from 1, maintain a functional lobby space, a nostalgic marquee and turn this previously blighted gem into a viable, community space. The architects were able to preserve the Art Deco design elements, incorporate murals in the theatres and maintain a streetscape that keeps the small-town feel of Coronado, which was so important to the community. This is one perfect example of the community rallying around an idea – the desire to have a theatre within walking distance for the neighborhood, and the city responding with an excellent adaptive re-use of the existing theatre after many years of disuse. The jury agreed that this successful project is worth imitation on many other Main Streets where former movie palaces lie in disuse.
The Village Theatre opened on March 18, 1947. It was closed in 2000 and stood unused for over a decade. In 2011 work began to convert it to a triple screen theatre. Interior designs were created by noted theatre interior designer, the late Joseph Musil. Murals in the auditoriums create 3-D optical illusions of historic places in both Coronado and Balboa Park. It opened on June 24, 2011 with “Cars 2.” It features a large, vintage concession concession stand, an Art Deco lobby runs the length of the lobby and there are three theatres. The theatres also feature red-velvet, high back chairs.
The owner retained Joseph Musil as the designer for the the revamped theatre, which boasts one large auditorium and two luxurious screening rooms. Mr. Musil was the designer of the El Capitain theatre in Hollywood, among others.