The Cabot

Beverly, Massachusetts
Architecture, Interiors

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The Cabot, a historic cinema and theater, has been a focal point of downtown Beverly, welcoming moviegoers throughout the last century. The theater was the legacy of the visionary showmanship and architectural passion of the Ware Brothers. Of the 20,000 theaters build in the 1920’s, only 250 still exist. At risk of falling to ruin, the historic North Shore gem was rescued by community activists and converted to a live-performance venue. Through restoration and preservation tactics, SV Design has revitalized the theater’s glory while adding thoughtful architectural and interior design updates for modern day technologies and functions. With the addition of a lively new bar and performance space, The Cabot is once again a vibrant venue, attracting new visitors from near and afar to the heart of Beverly.

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In addition to the restoration of the historic marquee and the replacement of the auditorium seats, the existing 1920 timber roof trusses were reinforced with tensioned steel cables. Flexible, open floor space was created to accommodate a broader range of performances and events and new energy efficient heating and cooling system was added throughout the building, theater, offices, and storefronts.

The Cabot’s newest project, a renovation and restoration to the lobby, began in early 2020 and is expected to be completed before the theater’s 100th birthday at the end of the year. To increase accessible access of the balcony and second floor, an elevator will be added. The historic architectural details of the rose window over the marquee and the grand arched ceilings, having been hidden by a dropped ceiling, will be restored and exposed. The flow of the lobby was re-designed to allow for a new box office and concessions stand, while removing the double doors that have divided the lobby for years. The revitalization of the lobby aligns with The Cabot’s art deco design.

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SV Design also added a new bar and music venue near the main entrance. Details of that project, which supplements the main theater during large invents, can be found here: Streetside at The Cabot.

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Watch the video below, to see the time lapse of The Cabot's balcony being installed.

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Photographer: Lauren Poussard

Photographer: Rocco Coviello