Sunshine Building - Albuquerque, New Mexico - Historic Downtown Landmark and Theater


Located at the corner of Central Avenue and 2nd Street in downtown Albuquerque, the Sunshine Building was among the city's very first "skyscrapers.'' It was designed by noted Southwest architect Henry C. Trost and opened on May 1, 1924, containing both retail stores and business offices as well as the 920-seat Sunshine Theater.

The Sunshine Building soon became known as Albuquerque's greatest original movie palace. Its first motion picture showing was the classic "Scaramouche'' with actor Ramon Navarro in the lead performing elaborate pantomime. A special orchestra was arranged to play music to accompany the soundless black-and-white production. A large-format screen was installed in the 1960s, and films continued to be shown here until the theater was remodeled for live music concerts in the 1990s.

The entire structure is made of reinforced concrete, covered with variegated yellow brick. Its lobby has been restored with marble and oak reminiscent of its early days. There is an attendant-operated elevator here, too - the only one remaining in operation in New Mexico. In 1985, the building was added to the National Register of Historic Places.

The Sunshine Building is so large that it has two addresses. Its west fazade is at 110 2nd Street SW, Albuquerque, New Mexico 87102-3337, while its north entrance is at 120 Central Avenue SW, Albuquerque, New Mexico 87102-3409. Office space is available here for lease.

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