The venue was conceived and championed by the late Brian Treasure, then General Manager at Perth television station TVW 7 and theatrical entrepreneur Michael Edgley. Their interest was principally that their two organisations had mounted large stage shows which toured the country in circus tents; a process that created major logistical challenges. The venue was designed by architects Hobbs, Winning and Leighton and was forecast to cost $5 million, but its construction coincided with a period of intense industrial action. Delays and interruptions, including strike action which was timed to coincide with concrete pours, led to a cost blow-out. The final cost was $8.3 million and interest charges put immediate financial pressure on the venture.
The venue opened on 27 December 1974 as the Channel 7 Edgley Entertainment Centre with the Australian debut of the second Disney On Parade show. In around 1975 the owners approached the State and Federal governments for assistance and the Government of Western Australia took ownership of the building, renaming it The Perth Entertainment Centre.
With a capacity of 8003 seats, the Entertainment Centre was Perth's primary large concert venue from 1974 until its closure in 2002. It was listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as the largest purpose built regular theatre (containing a proscenium arch) in the world. The venue also played host to a number of theatrical extravaganzas, as well as a range of other events including musicals, circuses, corporate functions and international beauty pageants (Miss Universe 1979).
At the front of the Perth Entertainment Centre (west side) was "The Academy Twin Cinemas" which opened on 17 January 1975. The name changed to "Academy West End Alternative Cinemas" in June 1986. The name changed again to "Lumiere Cinema" in 1989. The "Lumiere Cinema" closed on 28 June 1996. The theatre remained empty, and was demolished along with the Perth Entertainment Centre.
The venue was owned by the Seven Network and was officially closed in August 2002. In 2005, the Government of Western Australia unveiled plans for a new entertainment centre to be built on the site of the carpark for the existing centre. In 2006, the new centre was officially given the name of Perth Arena. Demolition of the disused venue began on 11 May 2011 and was completed in December 2011, in preparation for the State Government's Perth City Link project and included tentative approvals for new residential and business towers on the site.
^ ab"Archived copy"(PDF). Archived from the original(PDF) on 22 July 2008. Retrieved 21 August 2008.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link) State Records Office: A guide to cabinet papers of 1976 Accessed 7 June 2008