Alamo Drafthouse confirms permanent closure of its Westlakes location in San Antonio

click to enlarge COURTESY PHOTO / ALAMO DRAFTHOUSE
Courtesy Photo / Alamo Drafthouse
The lights won’t be coming back on at Alamo Drafthouse’s Westlakes location.

A spokesperson for the cinema-eatery chain confirmed the permanent closure of its far West San Antonio location Thursday via email.

“It is with a heavy heart that I write to inform you of the permanent closure of the Alamo Drafthouse Westlakes location, effective today — April 29,” said Ryan Fons, a spokesman for the Austin-based company. “Unfortunately, the impact of the pandemic has made it impossible for Westlakes to rebound, and this is one of far too many painful decisions we’ve been forced to make resulting from COVID-19’s effects on our business and industry.”

Westlakes, Drafthouse's first San Antonio location, has been shuttered since the pandemic hit U.S. shores last spring. It opened in 2004.

However, its permanent closure doesn’t spell doom for the chain’s other San Antonio locations at Park North and Stone Oak, Fons added. Park North is now screening movies, while Stone Oak is expected to reopen in June.

The closure comes as Drafthouse undergoes Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization due to significant revenue decline from the pandemic. The chain has said it expects to close locations to pay down debt.

Even so, business at Drafthouse theaters has been buoyed by the recent release of highly anticipated movies such as Mortal Kombat and Godzilla Vs. Kong, officials said. In a press release announcing the relaunch of 15 additional theaters across the country, CEO Shelli Taylor touted last weekend’s box office numbers as its biggest of the COVID-19 era.

“It would have been pretty healthy in the ‘old days’ era,” she said. “It’s so gratifying to see audiences so enthusiastically embracing not just our theaters but our industry as a whole.”

Fons thanked Westlakes staff, past and present, “for their passion, hard work, and dedication that helped make so many memories over the past dozen years.”

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