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St James Rialto

The St James Rialto is a modern Arthouse cinema complex created within the shell of the 1916 Empire Theatre in Moray Place, Dunedin.

The challenge, working in conjunction with the Historic Places Trust, the owners, operators, and contractors, was to retain as much of the detail of the 1928 refit as possible. The result is a viable commercial project for the owner and a delightful series of experiences for the patrons.

Restoration included the upgrade of the Long Room, the marble staircase and the Upper Circle, the latter being converted into the new upper foyer. Ornate existing ceilings and columns were retained above the new concessions area.

  • LOCATION : Dunedin / New Zealand
  • Client: Rialto