The cinema was built originally for
Empire Exhibition in bellahouston Park, Glasgow. The cinema
provided Glasgow with it's first ever news reel showing. Records
show that Queen Mary visited the cinema on several occasions. Films
screened included The Champion with Charlie Chaplin and Sixty Glorious
Years starring Anna Neagle.
The building was designed by Alistair MacDonald,
the architect son of the prime Minister. When the exhibition closed
the cinema was dismantled and rebuilt in Lochgilphead.
The first film shown in Lochgilphead was Snow
White and The Seven Dwarfs on July 10th 1939.
In 1960 the cinema was hired for six weeks by Shepperton Studios
during the making of From
Russia with Love. Many of the films locations shot in this part
of Argyll and the rushes were shown each day to the cats and crew,
Conversion to The Travel Lodge took place in 1991 craeting Mid Argyll's
only purpose built travel lodge offering three star accommodation.
The Empire Travel Lodge today