Alhambra Theater

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1101 Alhambra Blvd
Sacramento CA 95816
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Once named the ‘Showplace of Sacramento’ the Alhambra Theater was designed by Leonard Starks in 1927. The Alhambra seated about 1,850 and had California’s first permanently installed movie sound system, the Vitaphone, which was installed just after the theater’s opening Sept. 24, 1927.  So great was its splendor that the City of Sacramento even renamed adjacent 31st Street ‘Alhambra Boulevard’ in honor of the theater.

The legacy of the Alhambra and passion in which Sacramento’s moviegoers loved this building is evident in the grass roots effort known as “Save the Alhambra!” which attempted to save the theater from being razed.

In 1973, however, the Alhambra was demolished to make way for a Safeway grocery store. Today, the only remnant of the Alhambra is a fountain and a plaque located on the side of the store’s parking lot.

Luckily the famous organ once housed in theater the survived:

Two Images Courtesy of Preservation Sacramento


Posted: September 13, 1927


Category: Leonard Starks

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  1. […] Alhambra was designed by architect Leonard Starks with the firm of Nacht & Lewis (click here to find a page of its history on the company’s website). As noted on that page, the Alhambra Pipe Organ survived and is today at Ironstone Vineyards in […]

  2. Rich Anderson says:

    Your history did not include that saving the Alhambra included a bond by the city to buy the Alhambra. It went to a vote and the voters voted it down. That was what lost the Alhambra.

    • Anthony says:

      Hello Rich thank you for commenting on this post. In order to keep the description within a certain word count I was unable to add everything to the story. This blog being for the purpose of our firms Architectural history I had to choose to leave some parts of the story out. Thank you for adding it through your comment though!

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