Westlake Theatre sign outside


Westlake Theatre

An icon of the MacArthur Park neighborhood.

Place Details


636 S. Alvarado St. Los Angeles, CA 90057
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The bright, broad neon sign atop the Westlake Theatre announces the building as well as the neighborhood, harking back to an era when Westlake was synonymous with tourism and fancy living.

Built in the Spanish style with baroque ornamentation in 1926, it was modernized less than ten years later by the renowned theatre designer S. Charles Lee, who added exuberant flourishes to the marquee, box office, and lobby.

The nearly 2,000-seat venue operated as a first-run movie theatre and playhouse for years, then suffered from diminishing audiences and was sold in 1991. It currently serves as a retail swap meet.

While the seats and many of the Art Deco fixtures have been removed, the red and white plasterwork and Renaissance-themed ceiling murals by Anthony Heinsbergen (whose artistry graces the Elks Club and the Wiltern Theatre) remain.

Looking to contact the Westlake Theatre?

The Conservancy does not own or operate the Westlake Theatre. For any requests, please contact the Westlake Theatre directly.

Hunter Kerhart
Detail of Westlake Theatre | Jim McHugh
2005. | Cathy Gudis
Cathy Gudis
Westlake Theatre | Cathy Gudis
1973. | Anne Laskey
Security Pacific Collection/Los Angeles Public Library
Westlake Theatre | Security Pacific Collection/Los Angeles Public Library