Hoyts Cinema Centre, Bourke Street, 1969

Original post 22 April 2020

Photos 20 September 2019

Pretty crazy but there it is in the middle of #BourkeStreet. The 1969 #HoytsCinemaCentre was designed by Sydney based #PeterMullerArchitect; vertical piers on the sides, some leaning-in solid bits too – vs the main leaning out volume, the #upsidedownpagoda (not really a pagoda but it does have an oriental feel). Used to be just grey concrete, like the (altered) podium is again. It was our first #multiplex, with 3 screens, later 4, and had nice interiors, really just the lobbies, which had many levels and balconies, all concrete with dentils, and lots of timber, incl a great timber chandelier. There was a ‘family restaurant’ around that atrium, you ordered by phone, it was thrilling as a kid in the 70s. I think a lot of the timber ended up painted and the chandelier went, so by the 2010s when it closed, nobody cared much that it was all gutted – I had conversations with the new owners but nothing was saved accept the concrete edging of the atrium. And only a few years later the whole thing went on the #VictorianHeritageRegister, that was unexpected, since it was never the most awarded or highly valued thing, generally seen as quirky, or maybe that was just my impression.

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