10 Picture-Perfect Hotel Cinemas

There was a time when any hotel might win over a guest with complimentary HBO. But in an age when most films are streamed directly to the couch, heading to an actual theater is an extra-special occasion. Luckily, a clutch of hotels won’t make you travel far to catch a blockbuster, featuring bespoke, full-scale cinema rooms without the sticky floors and no less stylish than the presidential suite. A fabulous way to bring culture into a space—and, perhaps, an artful way to repurpose a basement—these cinematic hotels butter up the guest experience with screening rooms that pop.


Photo: Courtesy of Ace Hotel Downtown Los Angeles

Ace Hotel Downtown Los Angeles

Atypical for the pared-down arbiter of cool, Ace Hotel Downtown Los Angelespockets a most ornate theater whose original style is inherited; when the brand opened its downtown hub, it thoughtfully restored an on-site 1920s-era movie palace. With 1,600 seats throughout three stories, it stages anything from concerts to movie premieres under a lavish vaulted ceiling lined with thousands of tiny mirrors.

Photo: Courtesy of Le Royal Monceau Raffles Paris

Le Royal Monceau Raffles Paris

The showstopper might be its decadent popcorn, a caramelized variety made by Pierre Hermé Paris. But Katara Cinema, a private theater designed by Philippe Starck for Le Royal Monceau Raffles Paris, is no less stunning. Facing the 23-by-10-foot screen, most of its 99 seats are smoothed in champagne-colored leather—all but one, a seat tailored in burnt orange to add contrast (and a hint of drama).

Photo: Courtesy of Fogo Island Inn

Fogo Island Inn’s The Magic Picture Box, Canada

Housed within Newfoundland’s timber-made Fogo Island Inn, the Magic Picture Box isn’t just a 37-seat theater, but the first and only theater on the remote Fogo Island in Canada. Designed by a Newfoundland native, it features hyper-contemporized details inspired by Art Deco–style theaters.


Photo: Niall Clutton / Courtesy of Curzon Mondrian London

Curzon Mondrian London

Adding to Mondrian London at Sea Containers’ eye-catching features, a Tom Dixon–designed Curzon Mondrian London makes an entrance: The subterranean 56-seat theater is tucked behind a massive copper-plated wall that’s inspired by the hull of a ship (a nod to the hotel’s perch along the River Thames). It’s softer on the inside, swathed in rich texture—plush royal blue seats—accented with brassy trim and rails to make it moody yet delightful.

Photo: Courtesy of Public Hotels

The Public’s Public Arts, New York City

Billed as an avant-garde multimedia performance space, the 100-seat Public Arts theater at Ian Schrager’s new Public hotel in NYC is a sumptuous situation of front-to-back deep red velvet (where Patti Smith has already made an appearance). Bathed in a ruddy glow, the private screening room, complete with a customized projection screen, is fully florid.

Photo: Kelvin Gillmor / Courtesy of Ashford Castle

Ashford Castle, County Mayo, Ireland

Built long before the debut of film, Ashford Castle—the 13th-century former home of the Guinness family that’s now a hotel—recently unveiled a brand-new cinema that’s big on classics. An array of 32 red armchairs are surrounded by vintage movie posters ranging from Dirty Harry to Chisum, while popcorn is fresh, and a standalone candy bar is fully stocked and up for grabs.

Photo: Courtesy of Faena Hotel Miami Beach

Faena Hotel Miami Beach

The 36-seat screening room at Faena Hotel Miami Beach stays well out of the sun with a vibey darkroom interior. From the carpet to the walls, seats, and tinged lighting, its all-red look is private and cozy—and considering that one row of its banked seats are love seats, it’s a little bit romantic.

Photo: Courtesy of Soneva Jani

Soneva Jani’s Cinema Paradiso, Maldives

There’s little architecture to Cinema Paradiso, an all-natural design backdropped by the sunset. The screen, stilted in a lagoon in the Maldives, completes the picture for the outdoor, overwater theater at the year-old Soneva Jani resort. Poised along a clutch of islands in the Indian Ocean, it’s notably a “silent cinema”: Instead of interfering with abounding, nesting wildlife, guests watch and lounge on the deck while listening via Bluetooth headphones.

Photo: Simon Brown / Courtesy of Ham Yard Hotel

Ham Yard Hotel’s Ham Yard Theater, London

London has a penchant for brilliant cinemas, and Kit Kemp—co-owner of Firmdale Hotels—has a thing for textures and prints. At the Ham Yard Hotel in Soho, all eyes are on its slick bespoke theater, whose 190 seats are upholstered in tangerine-colored leather. Its walls are lined in blue wool, the same color as the carpet—not to match the drapes—the theater’s curtain is a flutter of fuchsia silk.

Photo: Courtesy of The Soho Hotel

The Soho Hotel, London

With more than enough stage presence, Firmdale Hotels also takes London’s multiplex experience in a new direction at the Soho Hotel. Of two screening rooms at the boutique, the second is nevertheless one-of-a-kind: 45 plump club seats are upholstered in either lipstick-red leather or black-and-white cowhide.

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