City Name
Home » Recent posts » 13 Boutique Cinemas in Auckland for a Special Movie Night

13 Boutique Cinemas in Auckland for a Special Movie Night

13 Boutique Cinemas in Auckland for a Special Movie Night

Are you tired of the same old movie experience with uncomfortable seating and mainstream films? Look no further than Auckland’s boutique cinemas, as these hidden gems offer a cozy atmosphere, plush seating, and a carefully curated selection of movies. 

Whether you’re looking for a romantic date night, a fun outing with friends, or a solo adventure into the world of independent cinema, this guide has got you covered with the 13 best boutique cinemas in Auckland. Read on to discover these hidden gems.

1. The Hollywood Avondale

Website: 20 Saint Georges Road, Avondale, Auckland 0600, New Zealand

Address: 167 Great North Rd, Avondale, Auckland 1042, New Zealand

Contact details: [email protected] 

Built-in 1915, the Hollywood Avondale is one of Auckland’s oldest cinemas and oozes old-world charm. It features a single-screen theater with a capacity of up to 400 people and screens a mix of art-house films, cult classics, and independent movies.

They’re known for showcasing movies on 35mm film, offering a unique cinematic experience. The Hollywood Avondale has been praised by filmmaker Quentin Tarantino as the best cinema in New Zealand.

Pro tip:
The theater is small and has limited seating, so it’s best to arrive early to secure your spot, especially for popular screenings. Relax, soak in the unique atmosphere, and enjoy a movie-watching experience unlike any other in Auckland.

2. Academy Cinemas


Address: 46 Lorne St, Auckland Central, 1010, New Zealand

Contact details: +64 9 373 2761

Operating hours: 12:00 AM to 11:00 PM

Academy Cinemas is Auckland’s only dedicated art-house cinema. They specialize in showing independent, foreign, cult, and documentary movies and also have a licensed bar that serves candy, coffee, ice cream, beer, wine, and cocktails. 

The cinema has two theaters: a 210-seater and a mini 16-seater, both with Dolby Digital sound. They also have a variety of special events, such as director Q&As and cult movie nights. 

Pro tip:
Become a member. This will give you discounts on tickets and concessions, and you’ll also be able to vote for the films they show.

3. The Vic


Address: 2 Victoria Rd, Devonport, Auckland 0624, New Zealand

Contact details: 09 376 0001

Operating hours: 1:30 PM to 10:00 PM

The Vic is an old-school community theater and a local favorite in Devonport. It offers a range of blockbuster and independent films and draft beers. 

The Vic is known for its beautiful, original 1912 interior and plush seating, offering a unique and nostalgic movie-going experience. They also offer gelato, making it an excellent option for a date night or a night out with friends. 

Pro tip:
Take advantage of The Vic’s unique movie and ferry deal. A scenic ferry ride across the harbor from Auckland City to Devonport adds to the unique experience.

4. Silky Otter Cinemas


Address: 134 Ponsonby Rd, Ponsonby Central

Contact details: 09 523 0400

Silky Otter Cinemas has only four state-of-the-art auditoriums, each with a capacity of 28 seats. This ensures a more intimate and personalized experience than traditional large cinemas.

The cinemas feature luxury leather recliners with adjustable headrests, cutting-edge 7.1 surround sound technology, and best-in-class laser projection screens. Guests can enjoy a curated selection of food and drinks before, during, or after their movie. 

Pro tip:
Indulge in the food and beverage service. Enjoy a delicious meal or drink before or during your movie.

5. #EVENTBoutique Cinema


Address: Event Cinemas George Street, 115-129 George St, Auckland CBD 1010, New Zealand

Contact details: 09 309 3600

Event Boutique boasts two stunningly designed auditoriums, each with a distinct theme. In the Library, you’ll enter a world of bookshelves and leather-bound comfort featuring plush individual recliners and intimate side tables.

On the other hand, the Gallery has sleek designer seating and an upscale ambiance. It is ideal for a stylish and social cinema experience. You do not need to miss a movie moment; you can order food and drinks directly from your seat.

Pro tip:
Splurge on the whole Boutique experience – order in-seat service, recline in your plush designer seat, and enjoy a delicious artisanal meal while watching your movie. It’s the perfect way to treat yourself to a night of pure indulgence.

6. The Capitol


Address: 32 Dominion Road, Balmoral, Auckland 1041, New Zealand

Contact details: +64 9-376 0011

Operating hours: 

  • Monday to Thursday – 12:30 PM to 9:00 PM
  • Friday – 12:30 PM to 10:00 PM
  • Saturday to Sunday – 11:00 AM to 10:00 PM

The Capitol is an art deco gem and Auckland’s second-oldest cinema. It is known for its luxurious and intimate setting and boasts a rich heritage. 

It features a single, cozy 130-seat theatre decorated in a stunning art deco style with plush purple and gold interiors and chandeliers. The cinema showcases arthouse films, foreign festival award winners, cult classics, and special box set collections.

Pro tip:
Arrive early to appreciate the stunning Art Deco interior and grab a drink or snack from the concession stand. Then, settle into the plush seating and prepare to be transported by your chosen unique film.

7. Bridgeway 


Address: 25 Queen St, Northcote Point, Auckland 0624, New Zealand

Contact details: +64 9 480 1122

The Bridgeway Cinema is a 4-screen arthouse cinema that screens a mix of independent, foreign, and documentary films. Bridgeway prioritizes accessibility with assistive listening devices and level street access with a lift to the upstairs screens.

The cinema has won several awards, including Best New Zealand Cinema by the Australian Independent Distributors Association in 2013 and Best Independent Cinema at the NZMPIC Awards.

Pro tip:
After your movie, stroll down Queen Street or grab a bite at the nearby Clarence Road Eatery, soaking in the local atmosphere.

8. Matakana Cinemas


Address: 5 Matakana Road, Matakana, 1143, New Zealand

Contact details: 09 422 9222

Operating hours:  10:00 AM to 10:00 PM

Matakana Cinemas boasts three unique theatres, each with its own special touch. The Tivoli Theatre, the largest, features a massive ribbed-dome ceiling and a stunning chandelier, while the Paradiso Theatre has a ceiling adorned with 32,000 cloth roses. 

The Roxy, the most intimate theatre, is draped in deep blue and grey fabrics for a cozy and romantic feel. The Vintry wine bar, adjacent to the cinema, serves Matakana wines, local beers, cocktails, and nibbles, which you can take into the theatres.

Pro tip:
Indulge in the cinema’s food and drink offerings. The locally sourced snacks and drinks are a great way to enhance your movie-going experience.

9. Lido Cinema 


Address: 320 New North Road, Epsom, Auckland 1051, New Zealand

Contact details: 09 630 1500

Operating hours: 11:00 AM to 10:00 PM

The Lido Cinema is a beautiful example of Art Deco architecture, with a distinctive facade and stylish interior. The cinema has comfortable seating, including armchairs and recliners in some theaters.

The Lido Cinema shows a wide selection of films, including mainstream Hollywood releases, independent films, and foreign films. It also hosts film festivals, Q&A sessions with filmmakers, and live broadcasts of operas and theater productions.

Pro tip:
Arrive early to find your seat, relax before the movie starts, and check out the concession stand: The Lido Cinema has a concession stand that sells a variety of snacks and drinks.

10. Monterey Cinema Howick


Address: 132 Fencible Drive, Howick, Auckland 2014, New Zealand

Contact details: 09 535 3554

Operating hours: 10:00 AM to 7:30 PM

Monterey Cinema Howick is a historic boutique cinema originally built in 1930. It features five screens and seating for 40 to 100 people, offering a more intimate and personalized movie-going experience than larger cinemas.

It shows a mix of mainstream blockbusters, independent, and art-house films. It also boasts a fully licensed bar serving wines from Yealands and a snack bar offering hand-rolled chocolate tops and Little Island vegan ice cream.

Pro tip:
Arrive early to browse the collection of movie memorabilia and enjoy a drink or snack before the movie starts. Try their hand-rolled chocolate tops or Little Island vegan ice cream, which you won’t find in other cinemas.

11. Waiheke Community Cinema


Address: Artworks complex, Oneroa, Waiheke Island, New Zealand

Contact details: 09 372 4240

The Waiheke Community Cinema is a non-profit cinema staffed by passionate volunteers. It showcases independent, international, and local productions, offering a different experience than mainstream cinemas.

Waiheke Community Cinema boasts a laid-back atmosphere with comfy sofas instead of standard seating. Situated near the Matiatia Ferry Terminal, it’s easily accessible for visitors arriving by ferry.

Pro tip:
Come a bit early to enjoy the relaxed ambiance, grab some refreshments at the concession stand, and chat with fellow moviegoers before the show.

12. Rialto Cinema


Address: 167-169 Broadway, Newmarket, Auckland 1023, New Zealand

Contact details: 09 369 2417

Operating hours: 11:00 AM to 9:00 PM

Rialto Cinemas boasts seven large stadium-style auditoriums with plush seats. It screens a curated selection of independent, local, and international films alongside film festivals, Metropolitan Opera live streams, and National Theatre productions. 

They also host special events like “Golden Oldies Day,” “Sparkling Previews,” and “Ladies’ Film Night.” This ensures that there’s always something new and exciting to watch and can be a great way to meet other movie lovers.

Pro tip:
Become a member. Rialto offers a membership program with many benefits, including ticket discounts, concessions, and merchandise.

13. The Civic


Address:  Corner of Queen Street and Wellesley Street, Auckland Central City, Auckland 1010, New Zealand

Contact details: 0800 111 999

Operating hours: The Civic & Box Office is open 90 minutes before a performance.

The Civic is one of only seven surviving atmospheric theatres in the world. It was originally built as a picture theatre in 1929. It’s a beautiful and historic venue that hosts musicals, plays, concerts, and films.

They primarily screen independent, arthouse, documentary, and classic films, making it a haven for cinephiles who want to see something different than the typical Hollywood blockbusters. They are also a major venue for the Auckland International Film Festival.

Pro tip:
The Civic is a special place, so it’s worth dressing up for your visit. Allow plenty of time to get there, take in the surroundings before the movie starts, and visit the cafe and bar where you can grab a drink or a bite to eat before the show.