This text is part of the article “And the Living is A-Z”, published in Greece-Is Athens, Summer 2018 Edition. By Paulina Björk Kapsalis, Maria Coveou, Nena Dimitriou, Alex King, Maria Korachai, Pagona Lipsati & Alexandra Tzavella.
Athens has more open-air movie theaters than most cities in the world, and many of them are to be found in the most unexpected of places. During the summer outdoor cinema season, you can watch a film in a city garden, in the concrete spaces between apartment blocks, on a rooftop terrace with views of the Acropolis and even in schoolyards. All of these theaters have snack bars where you can stock up on drinks, nachos or even pizza, and many still allow smoking.
From the rooftop of Ciné Paris, you can get an idea what early 20th-century Athens must have been like, thanks to an incredible view over the traditional red-tiled mansion rooftops of Plaka spread out below the Sacred Rock. The sight of the lights going on at dusk is quite magical.
Off the tourist track in the residential neighborhood of Pangrati, Ciné Oasis is indeed a haven in the midst of the city. An old-school art-house movie theater ensconced in a small garden overgrown with jasmine and camellias, the theater is surrounded on all sides by apartment buildings and decorated with a hodgepodge of film memorabilia, ceramic replicas of ancient statues and potted plants donated to the owners by local residents.
One of the city’s oldest open-air movie theaters, opened in 1910, Aigli in Zappeio Gardens serves up new blockbusters and street-food classics such as souvlaki, hot dogs and pizza. You can also reserve a seat on the private terrace upstairs to watch the film while enjoying a romantic, restaurant-class dinner.
Ciné Paris: 22 Kydathinaion,
Plaka, Tel. (+30) 210.322.2071.
Tickets: €8 (Tue, Wed €6).
Oasis: 7 Pratinou, Pangrati,
Tel. (+30) 210.724.4015. Tickets: €7. Aigli, Zappeio Garden:
Tel. (+30) 210.336.9369.