One day at the movies – Best cinemas in North London

It’s not only about Leicester Square when it comes to cinemas in London – discover the best cinemas in the city, boasting boutique screens, sofas and Prosecco, affordable tickets as well as a touch of luxury.

Best value cinemas

What are the best value cinemas in London?

Odeon and Vue are the most popular cinemas in London. They are found all over the city and offer different levels (from general admission to luxury tickets) and memberships to make the most out of the cinema experience.


Founded back in 1930, Odeon is the largest and probably the best-known cinema chain in London. Famous the world over, Odeon Luxe Leicester Square has hosted over 700 of Europe’s biggest film premieres since the 1930s and it’s now the first Dolby Cinema™ in the UK. Their success lies in being at the forefront of cinematic experience: both IMAX and ISENSE offer extraordinary cinema viewing. They operate London’s BFI IMAX which is the largest cinema screen in the UK.
Odeon has the UK’s biggest cinema loyalty scheme as well – ODEON Première Club – with over 2 million members. In 2016 the popular Limitless Card was launched offering guests the chance to see all the films they want, as often as they like. Their food and drinks offer goes so much more beyond popcorn and soft drinks: they now have Costa Coffee in many of their cinemas, a superb cocktail lounge called Ambar at some sites, or the Gallery offering includes unlimited popcorn, nachos and soft drinks in other locations.

Adult ticket price – £10.95 – £13.95


Vue is one of the world’s leading cinemas managing over 280 sites and over 2,400 screens. Vue has 91 state of the art cinemas throughout the UK and Ireland, with over 850 screens. This includes 271 3D screens, 11 Extreme Screens, 7 Gold Class screens, 6 Scene Screens and Bars and 3 IMAX screens where Vue project the majority of their films in Sony Digital Cinema 4K for ultra high definition pictures with four times more detail. Vue Westfield London and Vue Westfield Stratford City remain the first and third highest grossing cinemas in the country. Vue Cinemas around the UK offer a range of content, in addition to highly anticipated blockbusters, with event cinema titles including opera, ballet, musicals, national theatre, live streaming of sporting events and concerts through to hosting Gaming championships and dedicating multiple screens to eGaming arenas.

Adult ticket price – £11.59 – £13.19

Best independent cinemas

We think these are the best independent cinemas in North London:

  • Regent Street Cinema
  • Arthouse Crouch End
  • Backyard Cinema
  • Phoenix Cinema
  • Rio Cinema
  • Hackney Picturehouse

Regent Street Cinema

The Regent Street Cinema, just 1 minute north of Oxford Circus, was re-opened by the University of Westminster in May 2015, reinstating one of the most historic cinemas in Britain to its former grandeur. Built in 1848 and housed within the Polytechnic Institution on London’s Regent Street, the cinema was the first in the country to show moving pictures. In 1896, the cinema showcased the Lumière brothers’ Cinématographe to a paying audience, and, as the curtain fell, British cinema was born. After being used as a student lecture hall by the university since 1980, it was restored into a working cinema featuring a state-of-the-art auditorium as well as an inclusive space for learning, cultural exchange and exhibitions. It is a truly landmark venue for the British film industry in the heart of London’s West End. The cinema is one of the few in the country to show 16mm and 35mm film, as well as the latest in 4K digital film. It offers exclusive premieres, repertory screenings, retrospectives, documentaries, animation and experimental cinema. You can also experience double bills, showcasing the best of home-grown British talent, world cinema and classic movies in a classic environment.

Adult ticket price – £13.00

ArtHouse Crouch End – Crouch End

Regularly voted London’s best cinema, this two-screen independent venue in a former Salvation Army Hall opened its doors in spring 2014 and quickly became a favourite with locals from Crouch End and the surrounding area. The ArtHouse prides itself on being not just a cinema but also a venue offering music, comedy and theatre. Its programme leans towards independent and foreign movies, while the foyer area offers a welcoming bar and café serving an attractive selection of food and drink.

Adult ticket price – £7.00 – £12.00 (non-peak and peak times)

Backyard Cinema – Camden Market

It once started as a passion project in its founders’ very own back garden, today Backyard Cinema is one of the leading alternative cinema experiences in North London. With the UK’s only themed cinema you can watch the five year sell out show Romeo+Juliet in a church with a live choir, and the screenings at Christmas Festival, Winterville. Backyard Cinema constantly guarantees its audience new and exciting interactive backdrops that truly transport its customers to a magical world, in which they can enjoy all their favorite movies. Specializing in creating nostalgic set builds inspired by the films it’s playing, these time-limited seasons harness the excitement of a pop-up event at a location customers can return to time and time again.

Adult ticket price – £29.70 – £36.30

Phoenix Cinema, East Finchley

The 1909 Cinematograph Act introduced laws to make cinemas safer. As a result, more purpose-built cinemas began to appear, including the Phoenix. It was built by in 1910 on what was considered an excellent site, with electric trams running past and the station nearby. However, the company went bankrupt before the cinema could open. In 1912, the building was purchased by businessmen who had been involved in setting up East Sheen Picturedrome. The cinema finally opened as The East Finchley Picturedrome in May 1912 with a film about the tragic Titanic ocean liner which had recently sunk. The Phoenix in East Finchley is therefore one of the oldest cinemas in the entire country. Patrons include Benedict Cumberbatch, Dame Judi Dench and Michael Palin. The cinema’s grand single screen has an Art Deco-style design, perfect for a romantic evening with a twist. Alongside the latest releases, the Phoenix also shows screenings of live opera and ballet.

Adult ticket price – £7.00 – £12.00

Rio Cinema, Hackney

The original building was an auctioneer’s shop owned by a pioneering business woman called Clara Ludski. She converted it into one of London’s very first silent cinemas in 1909, and called it the Kingsland Palace of Animated Pictures. Rio Cinema today is a locally-run, independent cinema in Hackney, which is housed in this magnificent art deco building they built in 1915 as an expansion of the original building. Today they cinema is focuses on new releases and foreign movies. Despite that, the main cinema room is unchanged from the 1930s and will transport you back in time thanks to its curved, blue ceilings and balcony.

Adult ticket price – £12.50

Hackney Picturehouse

Hackney Picturehouse is all about taking the cinema experience to another level, going beyond an over-priced coke and box of popcorn. Among the four screens, Hackney Picturehouse has recently opened a new auditorium, next to Screen 1, filled with cushions and sofas and with easy access to the gallery bar. The space will host screenings that make the most of the new relaxed surrounding, so alongside the usual new features there’ll be cult classics, documentaries and Q&As with actors and directors. Before or after a screening, checkout a performance at Hackney Picturehouse’s music venue Hackney Attic, which is above the cinema. With a bar, it is a perfect place to grab a drink and watch live performances.

Box Office: At least 30 minutes before the start of the first film

Downstairs Cafe: 9.00–late (weekdays, Saturdays) & 10.00–late (Sundays)
Restaurant And Bar: Opens daily at 12.00. Kitchen closes at 21.30, and 21.00 on Sundays.
The Members’ Bar & Roof Terrace: 12.00–late (varies depending on film times)

Adult ticket price – £7.70 – £14.40

Special Cinemas

What do special cinemas offer in London?

Special cinemas offer different extras and try to take the cinema experience to another level. From sofas and front row beds to being part of the movie, London offers a variety of entertainment when it comes to cinemas.

What are the most special cinemas in London?

These cinemas all offer something unique other than just watching a movie:

  • Curzon Mayfair
  • Everyman Cinemas
  • Electric Cinema
  • Secret Cinema

Curzon Mayfair

Originally built in 1934 from a commission by the Marques de Casa Maury the Wingate family leased the building after World War II and started importing foreign language films. Mayfair has a rich cinematic history having played host to numerous star-studded premieres. Curzon Mayfair opens 15 minutes before the first film of the day and closes 15 minutes after the start time of the last film of the day. Typically this will be approximately 1.00pm – 9:15pm, however please always check the listings for accurate information. Fancy a touch of luxury? Get the best seats in the house with the Royal Box. There are two luxurious Royal Boxes in Screen 1, at rear of the the grade-2 listed auditorium. Each box offers four spacious seats so whether you want to bring your friends, family, or just live it up all by yourself, the Royal Box at Mayfair is the ultimate way to see a film. And with the Royal Box Experience package you can enjoy a bottle of fizz and snacks.
Royal Box | 4 tickets | £100
Royal Box Experience | 4 tickets, 1 bottle of Moët 2017 (or drinks of equal value), choice of snacks | £160

Adult ticket price – £12.50 – £16.90

Everyman, Maida Vale and Islington

Everyman is there to redefine cinema. Bringing an innovative lifestyle approach to their venues, where you swap your soft drink for a nice glass of red wine and a slice of freshly made pizza served to your seat. They create a warm and friendly atmosphere, with an excellent food and drink selection and fantastic customer service. With a wide array of mainstream, independent and classic films, special events, launches and a diverse calendar of live satellite broadcasts, there is something for everyone at Everyman.

Everyman Cinema was founded in 2000, when entrepreneur Daniel Broch bought the original Everyman Cinema in Hampstead, London, which dated to 1933 and before then was a theatre. Broch led the growth of the company with the acquisition in 2008 of Screen Cinemas to add more locations. Everyman’s cinemas have one to five screens, a small number of which offer 3D.

Adult ticket price – £17.90

Electric Cinema, Shoreditch and Notting Hill

The 50-seater Electric Cinema Shoreditch used to be the Aubin Cinema but was recently refurbished by Soho House Group to include the Electric’s signature style. Now, plush velvet armchairs and footstools take the place of average folding cinema seats, and shiny round tables are ready and waiting to prop up your choice of American-diner style food and drink from Electric’s menu. The auditorium and bar open 10 minutes before the advertised programme time. The fully-licensed bar serves a selection of cocktails, wine, beer and champagne. Substantial cinema snacks are also available prior to each film. Please note the bar closes approximately 5 mins before the start of the main feature.

Secure online booking is available for all features and Electric Sunday screenings. For Kids Club and Electric Scream! screenings please call the Box Office direct as special conditions apply. Tickets are non-refundable and non-exchangeable. The Box Office is open from 9am daily (10am on Sundays) until 8.30pm. Online bookings cannot be made in the hour before a performance starts. Please call the Box Office to check availability.

Adult ticket price
• Armchair – £17.50 – £20.00
• Front row bed – £30.00 – 36.00
• Back row sofa – £40.00 – £45.00

Secret Cinema

In a secret location, Secret Cinema opens up the doors to an evening of suspense and spectacle beyond any film-lover’s imagination. Dressed as part of the cast, you can choose to blend right in with the crowd or take center stage as your reality blurs with that of the story. Once you have bought your ticket to this once-in-a-lifetime experience you are part of the secret. Whilst the show is the pinnacle of your experience, the story begins before you arrive. An online invitation will be sent closer to the show date with a login to a dedicated website. Here you gain access to a previously unexplored part of the story as well as details of the secret location, your bespoke identity, mission and the encouraged dress code for the evening. Turn imagination into vivid memories as you leave your distractions at the door.
All phones are sealed to ensure you experience the world through your own eyes, and not your screen. Whether you choose to be swept up in missions or simply explore the intricate, iconic locations as the action unfolds around you, no two shows are the same. Expect an evening filled with action, dance and plenty of surprises, as a film classic is brought to life in front of your eyes.

Adult ticket price – £60.00 – £110.00

In the magic city, London, even going to the cinema could be different. Amazing different. Wherever you decide to go, from Odeon to Secret Cinema, enjoy the experience to the fullest and let London spoil you to its best.


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