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London’s best outdoor cinemas this autumn, including a floating one

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Hollie Richardson
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London outdoor cinemas.

Looking for the best outdoor cinemas in London? We’ve rounded up the city’s options, including one that floats on water.

The pandemic means we’re finding new ways of having fun while following social distancing guidelines.

Theatre venues are looking at how to operate in order to safely reopen, including Regent’s Park Open Air Theatre. Following the success of the “Eat Out to Help Out” scheme, some bars and restaurants are continuing to offer a discount to get back on track. And we’ve seen a resurgence of outdoor cinemas and drive-in cinemas. There’s even been a socially distanced festival!

Now, we can add float-in cinemas to the list…

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The Openaire Float-In Cinema is a collaboration between Openaire, Merchant Square and GoBoat. 

Films are shown on a six-by-three-metre LED screen at Merchant Square in Paddington Basin (audio is provided via wireless headphones), which you can watch from a rented boat.

The 16 boats – which you pick up from Little Venice –seat up to eight people each, with prices ranging from £200 to £250 per boat depending on the number of people aboard. 

For a cheaper option, you can stay on land and pay £15 for a deckchair ticket. 

outdoor cinema
The Openaire Float-In Cinema at Paddington Basin.

Film start times are at 4.45pm and 8.15pm on screening days.

They include: Mrs Doubtfire, A Star is Born, Titanic, The Lion King, Bridesmaids, Rocket Man, The Greatest Showman and Dirty Dancing.

Find a full list on the Openaire cinema website.

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If you want to find a few more open air cinema options, we’ve rounded up some of the best ones in London.

Open air cinemas in London

  • Rooftop Cinema at Bar Elba, Waterloo

    Pray for dry weather and watch your favourite retro movie projected onto a huge outdoor screen with surround sound at Bar Elba’s Rooftop Cinema. Films are running most nights through September and include Knives Out, Strictly Ballroom, Notting Hill and Rocky Horror Picture Show.

    You can enjoy delicious movie snacks and cocktails served to you directly by the hosts. Oh and be sure to take a moment to look around and take in the twinkling lights of central London. 

    Tickets are £15 per person.

  • Drive-in Film Club, Alexandra Palace

    Drive in Film Club is taking place in the grounds of Ally Pally throughout the rest of August and September with three film screenings a day at weekends and two during the week. 

    They’ve got roller-skating waiters delivering your food, plus a panoramic new beer garden nearby. 

    Films include: Grease, Toy Story, The Goonies, Up, ET and Aladdin.

    Tickets are £27.50 per car for for 2pm and 5pm screenings, £29.50 per car for 8pm screenings. 

  • Summer Showtime, Battersea Station

    Taking place on the Grade II*-listed Coaling Jetty with amazing views of the River Thames and Battersea Power Station, Summer Showtime will run from Friday 21 August - Sunday 20 September. 

    The open-air event will feature performances from The Turbine Theatre and screening’s from boutique cinema operator, Archlight Cinema, both of which can usually be found under the iconic railway arches in Circus West Village. 

    Films include: Once Upon A Time In Hollywood, Rear Window, Stand By Me, A Star Is Born, and The Grand Budapest Hotel.

    Tickets for two people star at £27, or you can spend more for a pitch with deckchairs.

  • The Luna Cinema, Dulwich Park

    The Luna Cinema has been making its way around various beautiful London spots (the Old Royl Naval College is pictured above), and it will be coming to Dulwich Park in south London between 16 - 20 September. 

    Viewings start at 7:30pm each evening. Films include: Joker, Jojo Rabbit, Pretty Woman, Rocket Man and The Greatest Showman

    Tickets start at £35 for two seat pitches.

  • Curzon x Camden Outdoor Cinema, Camden Market

    Away from the blockbusters and classics, Curzon has UK premieres for three films lined up at Camden Market from 16-30 September. These are Francois Ozon’s Summer of 85, Sébastien Lifshitz’s Little Girl and Being a Human Person – a story about the reclusive Swedish filmmaker Roy Andersson.

    The screen will be located in the market’s North Yard, right next to the area’s diverse and tasty street food options. 

    Tickets are £15 per person.

  • Cinema on the Piazza, Covent Garden

    Cinema on the Piazza in Covent Garden.
    Cinema on the Piazza in Covent Garden.

    Covent Garden, the Royal Opera House and Luna Cinemas have partnered to offer London’s only free open air cinema on Covent Garden’s Piazza. It will run two screenings a day between Friday 11 and Sunday 13 September.

    The three-day programme will allow audiences to experience some of the Royal Opera House’s most popular performances just a stone’ s throw from the world renowned venue, including Swan Lake, Alice in Wonderland and La Bohème. There will also be afternoon matinee movie performances with The Greatest Showman, Back to the Future and Mrs Doubtfire

    Tickets are free, so be quick getting them.

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Images: Getty, Openaire Cinema, David Parry, PA Wire

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Hollie Richardson

Hollie is a digital writer at Stylist.co.uk, mainly covering the daily news on women’s issues, politics, celebrities and entertainment. She also keeps an ear out for the best podcast episodes to share with readers. Oh, and don’t even get her started on Outlander…