A major marijuana manufacturer has begun the permitting process that would turn one of Calgary’s most iconic theaters into one of the coolest dispensaries in Canada. Not only would the location be historic, but the dispensary would, reportedly, be high-end. Here’s how Calgary’s downtown is evolving with legalization.
The Palace Theatre Is One of Calgary’s Most Iconic Landmarks
Built in 1921 (during the height of classic Hollywood), the Palace Theatre hosted music, vaudeville performances, and showed a wide selection of movies. According to the Calgary Herald, William Aberhart, who was the Premier of Canada, first broadcasted on behalf of the conservative Social Credit Party from the theater.
The Palace Theatre featured its last movie, though, in 1990. And a few years later, it became a historic landmark. Since then, the building’s facade, the marble stairway, the ceilings, or any other of the theater distinctive features have been untouchable without provincial approval.
Next, the Palace became a late ’90s nightclub, renamed the Palace Nightclub. The mid-2000s brought hockey to the theater, which assumed its old name as a sports arena.
Today, it’s is a multi-purpose event space that shows movies, hosts talks, and concerts and can be rented out privately. With immaculately preserved details and a great sound system, the main space continues to be one of Calgary’s most iconic gathering places.
A Dispensary Could Be The Latest Use For This Historic Space
In an official statement released yesterday, Alberta-based Westleaf Cannabis officially announced their bid to take over part of the space. “Westleaf is currently evaluating a number of Alberta-based locations for our retail stores, including the Palace Theatre,” it reads.
On April 24th, Westleaf Cannabis submitted an application to open a dispensary in the Palace Theatre. They applied to open a “cannabis store,” which would allow them to sell both weed and weed paraphernalia.
“Cannabis cannot be consumed on the premises,” the application specifies. However, “[The permit] also allows for counseling on cannabis use.”
This doesn’t mean that the Palace Theatre will be closing and fully converting to a dispensary. So far, Westleaf plans on opening a dispensary in an unused portion of the theater. For the time being, it looks like the rest will remain an event space.