Covid-19 saw the closure of many a business, including entertainment outlets like the humble cinema. The beloved Piccadilly Cinema in North Adelaide was no exception, but the Wallis family owners saw the forced shutdown as an opportunity to reimagine the elegant, art deco establishment.
For the last six odd months, the historic Piccadilly Cinema has been undergoing construction and the space is one to be marveled at, even more-so, after an exciting restoration and rejuvenation.
If you thought the Piccadilly was already gorgeous as is, the renovations will have you stepping back in time, with touches paying homage to the original cinema of the 1940s. Stunning terrazzo flooring will be unearthed to expose the authentic design of the building, while a replica of the prototypical Piccadilly sign atop the cinema’s facade will loom over O’Connell Street in all its shining glory.
A brand spanking new candy bar will be incorporated into the Piccadilly’s layout which will tie in seamlessly with the existing art deco character, along with a brilliant non-candy bar where libations will be flowing and South Australian wines will be a-pouring. This new area will allow guests to experience a cinema in a way that isn’t just about sitting in the darkness.
As well as the newfangled elements of the revamped Piccadilly, accessibility is also at the top of the list with the installation of a lift, indicating that all community members are now welcome to enjoy a morning, arvo, or night at the movies.
The Piccadilly Cinema first opened in 1940 by cinema empresario, Dan Clifford. In 1983, Bob Wallis bought the Piccadilly, saving the building from demolition and later converted the single-screen cinema into a three-screen layout. The Wallis family have been the owners of the Adelaide landmark since that time.
After the uncertainty of the cinema industry due to Covid-19, the Piccadilly will soon offer varied entertainment – presenting quality arthouse and mainstream films, with regular retrospectives, presentations in 35mm and event screenings, in a venue uniquely designed for that purpose by IA Design and Premier Building Solutions.
With construction going to plan, the marvelous Piccadilly is expected to open before the end of the year. Prepare to witness and be part of history in the making with the new, old Piccadilly Cinema.
All images supplied.