The entrance to the Skandia Theatre.
Opened on September 20, 1923 with 1299 seats, the Skandia Theatre was designed by Architect Eric Gunnar Asplund. This movie palace was based on a neoclassic theme with a semi-atmospheric ceiling. The ceiling had 60 silk covered star shaped lamps, which were extinguished one-by-one before the start of the film. In 1926, the 2/7 Mighty WurliTzer Theatre Pipe Organ was installed.
The unique Skandia is housed in a mid-19th century building located on the corner of Drottninggatan and Apelbergsgatan. Svensk Filmindustri assigned Erik Gunnar Asplund the task of designing the interior. Today he is internationally known as the architect and interior designer for such creations as the Stockholm City Library and Skogskyrkogården (the Woodland Cemetery) and as the chief of the 1930 Stockholm Exhibition where the Swedish modern movement - the functionalism - broke through.
The hallway at the rear of the auditorium.
After you go through the lobby, there is a hallway at the rear of the auditorium with many doors leading inside. At the end of this hallway is a mirror that gives the illusion of the hallway being much longer than it actually is.
In designing the Skandia, Asplund tried to achieve a feeling of lightness, playfulness and festive splendor. He gathered several young, then unknown artists of the day to create the ornamentation, which is still intact. The Skandia attracted a great deal of attention and enthusiasm as soon as it was inaugurated in 1923.
The theatre currently has 687 seats. In recent years the theatre's life has been patchy. From 1968 to 1991 it was re-named Look Theatern. It then reverted back to its original name before closing in 1996.
The hallway leading to the Royalty Box.
This hallway leads to the Royalty Box, a special place where the seats reserved for the King and Queen of Sweden are located.
The entrance to the Royalty Box.
Here, we see the entrance to the Royalty Box, These were the best seats in the house for viewing the crowd, watching movies, and listening to the Mighty WurliTzer.
Seats in the Royalty Box.
These plush seats in the Royalty Box are where for many years, the King and Queen, along with their aides, sat to be entertained in luxurious comfort. The Skandia is an audience's chamber of dreams, a magical cult center. This cinema is one of the great masterpieces of Swedish 1920's classicism. Asplund admirers from around the world arrive on pilgrimages to this attraction of international importance.
The auditorium originally had hanging lamps as stars. The interiors are covered with warm red velvet, embroidered with religious motifs in silver and gold thread. This magnificent example of textile art is unique in Sweden. At the back of the orchestra section are love-seats. For more advanced romantic encounters, there are intimate boxes in the balcony.
Here, we see one of the movie projectors in the projection room. Since 1993 the cultural preservation unit of the Stockholm County Administrative Board, the City of Stockholm and the Central Board of National Antiquities have all agreed that the Skandia should be granted historical building status, along with the Rival, Draken and Park cinema theatres. But nothing has happened because the building owners disagree.
The Skandia closed as a public cinema theatre in 1996 but was reopened in 1999 under new management. In May of 2000 the Stockholm County Administrative Board decided that the Skandia Theatre should not be granted historical building status, the news of which came a tragic surprise. The theatre closed its doors to the public once more on July 31, 2000. Today, its future is unknown.