Place de Brouckere 38,
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UGC Belgium (Official)
Operated by: UGC
Functions: Movies (First Run)
Styles: Art Deco
Previous Names: Eldorado Cinema
Originally on this site was the Cinema des Princes which was demolished in 1932 and the new Eldorado Cinema was built. This giant theatre was one of the biggest in Belgium ever, seating 2,705, and opened in 1933. Designed by architect Marcel Chabot, the single screen auditorium was completly constructed with re-enforced concrete (3,000 m3 of it), which allowed for two big balconies.
The 22,000 m3 auditorium was lit by 360 lamps in three tints.
It featured many modern and luxurious features such as elevators and air conditioning, 90,000 m3 per hour was pumped into the hall.
The screen (Magnoscopique) measured 10.40 x 8.50m (34 x 28 ft). All the electricity was wired by 14km of tubing and 43km of wires. The projection booth was fitted with Ernemann projectors and Western Electric provided the sound.
The Art Deco style auditorium was inspired by African art and has decorative panels on the side-walls which were designed by C. Rodriguez with reliefs by Wolfe and Van Neste. In 1938 the facade and foyer were re-constructed to the designs of architects Leon Stynen and R. Grosemans. The foyer was in the International Modern style with cubist decorative panels by Van Vlassalaer.
In 1974 the auditorium was sub-divided into six-screens, with another two added in 1978. The upper part of the main original auditorium survives almost intact as the ‘Grand Salle Eldorado’. Seating here incorporates the two former balconies, the lower one now extended forward towards the former proscenium.
French exhibition giant UGC acquired the historic theatre in 1982 and renamed it UGC de Brouckere. It was restored and reopened in 1992 with a further four screens added in the adjacent building next door which originally had been the Scala Cinema. I recent years a screen has been built on the roof of the building, giving the entire cinema complex a total of 13 screens.
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