Opened: August 10, 1971
Location: Doherty’s Road, Altona
Capacity: 700+
Screens: One
Operator: Hoyts
Closed: 1982

Brief history

Designed by Sir Roy Grounds, it really was a picturesque drive-in in its day.

Altona was the last drive-in theatre built from the ground up in Melbourne. Hoyts reasoned that the Westgate Bridge would open the west of Melbourne to the inner bayside suburbs of St Kilda, Port Melbourne, Sth Melbourne etc. The hoards of inner bayside residents denied access to a drive-in theatre would pour across the bridge and two exits later be at their own drive-in, Altona. Whilst the reasoning was probably accurate, we never found out. The Westgate bridge collapsed during construction in 1970 and the opening was subsequently delayed until 1979, of course by then the drive-ins were already on the slide. To add insult to injury when the bridge did open, the tolls kept drivers off it until the Government of the day decided to make crossing free. Alas it was too late as the decision to close Altona had been made.

The very large Hoyts Altona screen was eventually purchased by Dromana Drive-in, cut down in size and installed as their second screen.
Chief Projectionist at Hoyts Altona, Ken Bourdrie