The Metropolitan Entertainment Centre
Built in 1919, on a wave of motion picture palace construction across North America, today’s Metropolitan Theatre is the only theatre of its kind remaining in its original form in Winnipeg. The famed Allen Theatre, first named for its owners, now represents a bygone era of entertainment celebrating vaudeville acts, orchestral music, short films, and news reels of the 1920s. In 2007, Canad Inns purchased the site and appointed Number TEN to reconstruct and renovate the building. It opened in 2012 as the new, long awaited Metropolitan Entertainment Centre, a state of the art conference, banquet, and meeting facility.
After a century of wear, the Metropolitan’s original luster lay beneath a collapsed roof, water damaged interior, and decades of decay. Preserving the building’s historic integrity was central to design. The original massive cut-glass chandelier, the spectacular centerpiece of the main auditorium’s high domed ceiling, was completely restored to its original glow. The original plaster work of artist Emmanuel Briffa was skillfully repaired and restored to highlight the gently sloped cantilevered balcony, small side wall boxes, and twin staircases. Public areas were also given vibrant carpeting, wall paper, paint, and other embellishments to re-establish its original ambiance.
To meet modern demands, a new annex structure was also added to the original two-storey building. The addition addresses today’s requirements for barrier free access, washrooms, kitchen, storage, elevator, and emergency egress without unduly spoiling the inherent character of the existing theatre. The dated electrical and mechanical infrastructure was also completely replaced with entirely new modern systems. The original sloped floors and rowed seating were reconstructed into a series of stepped flat terraces suitable for a state-of-the-art food and entertainment emporium. Theatrical and special effects lighting were also added to round out the modern entertainment experience
Location: Winnipeg, MB
Client: Canad Inns
Number TEN's Role: Prime Consultant
Size: 43,700 sq. ft. Total | 31,180 sq. ft. Existing | 12,520 sq. ft. Renovation