Dancing at the Villa?
By Grant Smith, 26 August 2003
Near Ogden is a theater similar to the Villa. The
Cinedome 70 opened on 15 May 1970 and featured twin domed
auditoriums, each with 800 seats and a large, deeply-curved
screen. After the theater closed in February 2001,
a local businessman wanted to convert the building into a
concert and dance hall - a private club with liquor license. The
Riverdale City Council and local residents expressed concern
over the use of alcohol near a quiet residential area.1 The
plan was apparently abandoned later.
Now a “night club / entertainment destination”2 is
about to come to the Villa Theatre in Salt Lake. Dancing,
concerts, and alcohol will likely take the place of movies
and popcorn. But it won’t be because there was
a shortage of people interested in operating the Villa as
In the last 7 months, Grant Smith of the villatheatre.com
web site has had contact with four different groups interested
in the using the Villa as a movie theater. Additional
groups may have contacted the Utah Heritage Foundation or
approached Harmons directly.
The only reason the Villa is about to become
a private club is because this buyer was ready to act as
soon as the theater closed. Those interested in operating
the Villa as a theater never even got the chance to try.
The Villa was built as a movie theater and
that’s the function it’s best suited for. It’s
a shame to see the theater converted to an alternate use
while there are still good opportunities for its continued
use as a theater.
at the Cinedome?”, Ogden Standard Examiner,
8 June 2001
Shops at the Villa Theatre”, a flyer from Prime Commercial