In 2008, Ron and Linde Thompson acted on their long-time idea of opening a movie theater in the heart of Greeley’s downtown. They chose an old building originally built in 1929 by Samuel Henry Kress, back when it served as the ‘five & dime’ Kress Department Store. The building had good bones, with beautiful Art Deco plaster work on the columns and elegant architectural style.
The business owners underwent restoration for their lounge, bar, and theater concept for nearly a year before launching. In 2014, they handed the cinema over to their daughter and her husband, Margaret and Justin. With its many quirks, highly trained staff, and irrefutable style, the Kress Cinema offers a charming getaway with a distinctive twist.
In 2014, the Chophouse built 1908, a speakeasy right below the Kress Cinema. As former Chicago residents and no strangers to modern speakeasies, Margaret & Justin had yet another idea. 1908 went out of business four years later, after which the Kress took over. Since claiming it as their own, the Kress Cinema has enhanced 1920’s style with classic jazz and Sinatra on the speakers, ambient lighting, and knowledgeable bartenders who embrace the rich history of early bars and prohibition in their Speakeasy below the Kress. It’s Greeley’s top choice for dinner, a movie, and craft cocktails reminiscent of the big city atmosphere.
The Kress Cinema is a beloved venue amongst the Greeley community thanks to its charming environment and unique movie-watching experience. It’s a popular destination for weekend date nights and even moonlights as a community center for various events, celebrations, and film festivals, speaking to its role in bringing Greeley locals together. Danyelle, a long-time manager at the cinema, holds the architecture and decor in high regard: “There’s just something magical about eating and drinking while watching a movie, in such an intimate movie theater.”
This holiday season, grab a meal, a couple of drinks, and maybe even some popcorn and candy before you step into one of the Kress’ top of the line theaters for a show. Round your night off with a nightcap at their underground speakeasy making your night out one to remember.
Visit their website at www.kresscinema.com to buy tickets online or read more about the establishment’s intriguing history and inspiration.