Rivian Theater grand opening draws adventure lovers to Laguna

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From left: Greg MacGillivray, Rick Ridgeway, Anne Earhart, Barbara MacGillivray, Coast Film Festival Co-Founder Enich Harris, Tompkins Foundation Advisory board member Chris Evans and Coast Film and Music Festival Co-Founder Ben Warner visit the Rivian Theater on opening weekend. Photo/Jim Collins

Rivian opened the doors to Laguna’s South Coast Theater for the first time since the US automaker purchased the historic building in 2021 on Dec. 9 and 10 with a bevy of movie screenings, outdoor events and adventure activities for all ages. The theater is now Rivian’s first flagship retail location in Southern California.

The inside of South Coast Theater, renovated by US electric automaker Rivian. Photo/Mitch Ridder

Located at 160 South Coast Highway, the South Coast Theater is the Rivian’s 11th space opening this year and third in California, joining sites in Venice Beach and, most recently in Pasadena. The site will serve as the company’s largest retail location at over 11,000 square feet, and hopes to serve as a “welcome center,” for car shoppers.

As part of its opening weekend events, Rivian presented drivers and navigators from the Rebelle Rally, which is the longest competitive off-road navigation rally in the United States, and the first women’s endurance off-road rally in America. Photo/Jim Collins

The theater restoration hopes to reflect Rivian’s unique approach to its retail spaces. The automaker’s electric R1T pickup and R1S SUV will be on display, but test drives aren’t available from the Laguna space.

In keeping with the theater’s original function, Rivian will continue to show movies thanks to Laguna Beach nonprofit Coast Film Foundation, known for its annual Coast Film & Music Festival at the Festival of Arts grounds.

A happy dog sits on a Rivian rally car during a Dec. 9 event. Photo/Jim Collins
As part of its opening weekend events, Rivian presented drivers and navigators from the Rebelle Rally, which is the longest competitive off-road navigation rally in the United States, and the first women’s endurance off-road rally in America. Photo/Jim Collins
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2 COMMENTS

  1. It’s exciting for Laguna Beach to have the historic theater building renovated and open. Laguna needs such class-act investor innovators who work cooperatively with our City to understand and enhance our cherished community. The technology and design of Rivian Trucks and SUV’s is super impressive!

  2. Kudos to Rivian for their vision and thoughtful community intentions to make this project a reality. It would probably not have worked under any other scenario and now we can celebrate the restoration of this local historic gem that can be enjoyed by all.

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