The Paramount Theatre, at 560 Bay Street near Prospect, is now likely Staten Island’s premier ‘ghost theater’ now that the St. George has been reactivated. It was designed by architects Rapp and Rapp with a contrasting orange brick façade, opening in 1935 with a capacity of 2500 seats and two pipe organs, an extravagant feature during the Depression. In its latter days, it became an adult movie venue in the 1970s, and later, a rock club hosting the likes of the B-52’s, Squeeze and The Ramones; the British band XTC played here in 1982, shortly before it gave up on public performances altogether. The interior has been gutted, but its beautiful outsides are still in view, stretching along Union Place.
Renovation and reopening attempts have been fitful. According to Cinematreasures, an $800K restoration was started in 2009 but the owner ran out of money and plans were halted the next year, but the owner ran out of money and plans were halted the next year. In 2016, another restoration was going to turn it into a restaurant and catering hall. but when I passed by in late 2018, things did not seem imminent.