Santikos Theatres

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Santikos Entertainment is a movie theater chain based in San Antonio, Texas, USA. The company was started by Louis Santikos, a Greek entrepreneur, who had moved to Texas and immediately opened nickelodeons in the city in the early 1900s. His son, John Santikos, eventually took over the company and continued to create various movie theaters, including indoor multi-screen theaters and local drive-ins.

In 1987, John Santikos sold the company to Act III Theatres. John Santikos was able to buy back the company in 2001 due to the recession of 2001 that had affected the industry. It has expanded to seven local theaters and two outside San Antonio in the greater Houston area. Upon John Santikos' death in 2014, ownership of the chain passed to the San Antonio Area Foundation.[1] In 2017, Regal Theaters took over the two Houston locations.[2]

On August 9, 2017, the company released plans for a new theater to be built in Cibolo, TX, along Interstate 35, at Wiederstein Road. This location will include a sports bar, arcade, bowling, and high-quality digital projection. No timeline has been established yet.[3]

Current theatres

  • Santikos Rialto Brewhaus (formerly Galaxy 14)
    • Previously known as the Galaxy 14, the theater was remodeled into a dine-in theater, with a full menu of entrees, dine-in tables in the auditoriums and a bar. The theater was originally split into two parts: the Rialto Brewhaus, which was meant for people 13 and older; and the Rialto Piccolo, which accepts children. The Piccolo ceased operation in the early 2000s, and the theater became known simply as Galaxy 10 or Rialto 10. Despite the notation of 10 after the theater name, there are only 9 auditoriums in operation, as auditorium 6 was converted into a full kitchen, complete with walk-in coolers and storage areas.
    • The theater has a very basic, simple style, and showcases a high lobby ceiling which features framed pictures of famous actors from the early 20th century. The lobby ceiling is painted to look like outer space, with multiple galaxies displayed.
    • As of 2017, the theater has an extensive arcade wing on the west side of the lobby. The game area used to feature pool tables, but they have since been removed and replaced with new arcade games.
    • As the building is very old, many rumors exist between employees and long-time patrons about paranormal activity, or the presence of ghosts in the building. One piece of common folklore is that a young girl died by choking on food, and that she is the source of paranormal activity or strange happenings. No cases of deaths have been verified as of now.
  • Santikos Palladium IMAX
    • Opened in December 2006 as a part of the Rim development in Northwest San Antonio at Loop 1604 and IH-10, it features 19 screens, including two "VIP" auditoriums for adults-only and an IMAX screen. With heavy Greek influences in its architecture, the Palladium also features an arcade room, a gelato bar, a fully functional restaurant, and a mezzanine bar. A 65-million-dollar investment, the Palladium was the largest theatrical development in the country in 2006, and it is currently one of the most profitable IMAX theaters in the nation.
  • Santikos Silverado
    • Located at Bandera and 1604 in the Northwest region of San Antonio, the Silverado has 16 screens and was the first theater in San Antonio to feature Digital 3-D capability. With a Western theme, the theater also has a restaurant attachment called the Rough Rider Cafe & Bar.
  • Santikos Mayan
    • With a Mayan influence in its architecture, the Mayan Palace has fourteen screens and is in the Southwest part of San Antonio. The theater now features Digital 3-D and occasionally features Spanish-dubbed screenings of mainstream films.
  • Santikos Bijou
  • Santikos Embassy 14
    • Built in the mid-1980s at Highway 281 and Bitters Rd., the Embassy 14 has finished a renovation process spanning two years, now featuring a built-in Starbucks parlor and an overhauled interior. It is one of three Santikos theaters that have the "price extravaganza", where between 4:00 and 6:00 PM matinée prices are only $5.00. The theater now features a digital projector and began playing Digital 3D films in May 2009.
  • Santikos Northwest 10
    • The second Santikos theater located at the I-10/410 intersection, the Northwest is a 10-screen auditorium. An adjacent building called the Northwest Annex, which has four screens of its own, was temporarily shut down due to repairs, but has recently re-opened two of the screens. The company is planning to renovate the Northwest into a dine-in theater in the mold of the Rialto, though no development has started. It is the third Santikos theater to have the "price extravaganza" and currently has the cheapest prices for a matinée theater in San Antonio.
  • Casablanca 16
    • Located at the Alamo Ranch Parkway-1604 intersection in West San Antonio, the Santikos Casablanca will be built in a style that alludes to the Moroccan city of Casablanca and will feature retail shops and a restaurant. It was completed and opened in June 2016.


2010 shooting

On May 9, 2010, a teenager was shot in the parking lot of Santikos Embassy 14 theaters after having a dispute over a stereo. The victim had planned to meet with the suspect to sell him the stereo, but the suspect robbed and shot him instead. The suspect shot the victim once and then fled without the stereo in a car with two other teens. A vehicle matching the description of the car was located downtown shortly afterwards. The victim required hospitalization with possible life-threatening injuries. The theater was later criticized for its lack of security.[4]

2012 shooting

On December 16, 2012, a shooting occurred inside and outside the Santikos Mayan Palace 14 theater complex. The complex was evacuated and sealed off for several hours. The shooting started when the suspect fired shots inside a nearby restaurant. He then headed toward the theater and shot a male in the lot, before heading inside the theater where he fired a shot but did not hit anyone. An off-duty sheriff's deputy working security then shot the gunman. The suspect also fired at a San Antonio Police Department patrol car. The suspect was taken to a hospital but was not immediately charged.[5] The shooting immediately sparked fears of a mass shooting as the incident appeared to be similar to the 2012 Aurora shooting, however no one was killed and only two people were wounded. The suspect was taken into custody.[6]


  1. ^ "Santikos Theatres: History". Santikos Theatres. Retrieved 30 July 2015. 
  2. ^ "Santikos Theatres: History". 
  3. ^ TEGNA. "Santikos to open theater, bowling alley and more in Cibolo". KENS. Retrieved 2017-08-22. 
  4. ^ "Teenager shot outside Embassy theaters". My San Antonio. 2010-05-09. Retrieved 2018-02-20. 
  5. ^ "Shots fired, patrons panic at San Antonio theater". CBS News. 2012-12-17. Retrieved 2018-02-20. 
  6. ^ "Two wounded in theater shooting". My San Antonio. 2012-12-17. Retrieved 2018-02-20. 

External links

  • Santikos Website
  • Interview with John Santikos, August 30, 2002, University of Texas at San Antonio: Institute of Texan Cultures: Oral History Collections, UA 15.01, University of Texas at San Antonio Libraries Special Collections.
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