The Metro section today has a nice look at the soon-to-be-repopened Loews Paradise Theater in the Bronx. After years of neglect and mixed uses, the 79-year-old theater, "once the Bronx equivalent of Radio City Music Hall," has recently undergone a two-year multi-million dollar renovation. The gold gilding and murals have been retouched, the gargoyles, cherubs, lions and other statues have been cleaned, the sky-blue ceilings (with twinkling stars) have been repainted as thousands of new plush seats have been installed.
The theater, originally completed in '29 just as the great depression hit, won't be reopened as a movie theater, however, instead focusing on performances and other entertainments (from gospel to graduations with a mitvah or two thrown in). The first show will be a salsa and merengue concert. If the newly renovated theater can make its money back though is an open question. The landmarked building needs to attract a strong tenant for the 30,000 square feet of commercial space in the building in order to begin to make money. Gothamist wishes them the best of luck, however. It's hard to begrudge anyone for bringing things back to a former state of splendor.
Photograph by Librado Romero for the NYTimes.