Saving the Huntridge is tricky business

Huntridge Theatre
(Photo by Liz Fuentes | Courtesy UNLV Architecture Studies Library)

Though the Huntridge Theatre, architectural centerpiece of the neighborhood southeast of downtown Las Vegas that informally bears its name, has been a part of Las Vegas since 1944, for locals considered amongst Generations X and Y, the historic venue holds a special place as a sort-of cultural touchstone in our shared experiences. It’s remained dormant for four years now, but somewhere in the back of our collective mind, we figured — more like idly hoped — that someone, somehow, would bring back to life the former movie house and live music venue. Now that faint glimmer of hope is quickly fading to black.

As reported multiple times in the Las Vegas Sun, Eli Mizrachi, the owner of the building at the corner of Charleston Boulevard and Maryland Parkway, is attempting to buy his way out of an agreement signed before he bought the property that restricts the iconic structure from being torn down. Mizrachi bears no ill will toward the theatre; it’s just that he needs to find a viable, profitable use for that property, and thus far, no one has come forth with a solution that would keep the decades-old building in its classic state.

Josh Geidel of the grassroots organization Save the Huntridge met Saturday night at the Downtown Cocktail Room to discuss ideas for saving the S. Charles Lee-designed building, which exemplifies the Moderne style popularized in the 1930s and ’40s. Mizrachi attended the meeting, reiterating his position that he’d like to see the theatre saved but must look out for his business interests as well. Until recently, Mizrachi’s family also ran a branch of their Cima Furniture chain on that corner, adjacent to the Huntridge.

More than 50 people attended Saturday’s meeting, including downtown booster, historian and art curator Brian “Paco” Alvarez and Jack LeVine of To get involved with the Save the Huntridge movement, visit the group’s website (currently under construction) at

Comments are closed.