Being a historical city, many of the buildings in Istanbul have interesting stories. These include music halls, theaters, and even movie theaters. Especially, the movie theaters in Beyoglu are worth mentioning. And in this piece, I will provide information about the best movie theaters in Istanbul.
Best Movie Theaters in Istanbul
The best movie theaters in Istanbul often operate inside shopping malls. However, there are still street cinemas that Istanbul residents love very much. For example, there are two historical movie theaters on Istiklal Street, a pedestrian road starting from Taksim Square. Our list starts with these nostalgic cinemas.
There are 12 movie theaters in this article. 7 of these theaters are on the European side (1-7) and 5 of them are on the Asian side (8-12). I hope it will be a good guide for you.
1. Atlas Sinemasi
Atlas Sinemasi is located in Historical Atlas Passage. This movie theater was built by an Armenian businessman named Agop Koceyan during Sultan Abdulaziz era after the Great Fire of Pera in 1870 to be used as a winter house.
Atlas Pasaji became an entertainment and art center after it was repaired in 1932 and the theater hall that started operating in 1948 was the biggest one in Beyoglu with 1860 seat capacity. Also, Kulis Bar Restaurant and Kucuk Sahne Tiyatrosu were opened in 1948 and 1951 respectively.
Atlas Sinemasi has been active since 1948 on Istiklal Street and movies are shown in its three separate halls that have 500, 130, and 85 seat capacity. Atlas Sinemasi was handed on to the Ministry of Treasury in 1985 and it’s managed by Turker Inanoglu and Irfan Atasoy currently.
In the past few years, Atlas Sinamasi was under restoration, however, it’s been completely renovated. We should note that the projection screen of the main hall, constructed like an amphitheater, is bigger than many others in Istanbul.
2. Beyoglu Sinemasi
One of the oldest movie theaters in Istanbul, Beyoglu Sinemasi was built in 1989 and serves the audience in two halls.
When it was first opened, Beyoglu Sinemasi had one hall that had 300 seat capacity and it housed premieres, chat sessions, and workshops for a long time. The first movie of Nuri Bilge Ceylan, Kasaba, met the audience as the only copy in Beyoglu Sinemasi. Moreover, almost all movies of directors such as Zeki Demirkubuz, Dervis Zaim, and Yesim Ustaoglu met movie lovers at Beyoglu Sinemasi too.
Beyoglu Sinemasi is the first local movie theater to become a member of Eurimages in 1994 and it has always supported independent movies by showing over 3,000 movies from all around the world. In the 2010s, it started experiencing financial hardships like other historical city movie theaters and it’s trying to stay on its feet by a project named Loyalty Card that was initiated in 2017.
3. Cinemaximum Marmara Forum
Cinemaximum Marmara Forum is the first movie theater in Turkey where 4DX movies first began to be shown. The hall offers a truly fun experience with motion seats and effects like water and wind.
4. Cinemaximum Zorlu Center
Cinemaximum Zorlu Center can be reached via metro, metrobus, or bus and it boasts 14 movie halls, two of which are VIP halls.
5. CinemaPink Profilo
CinemaPink Profilo is located in Profilo AVM at Mecidiyekoy and it has 7 halls that have a total of 760 seat capacity. In its halls, Dolby Atmos sound system is used and it’s regarded as one of the best movie theaters in Istanbul due to its central location.
6. Cinemaximum CITY’S Nisantasi
Cinemaximum CITY’S Nisantasi is located in City’s AVM at Nisantasi and it stands out with its 7 movie theaters and 700 square meters foyer area. You can have a comfy movie experience on its seats designed by the designer of Ferrari.
7. Cinemaximum IstinyePark
Cinemaximum IstinyePark is both comfortable and easily accessible. Also, its projection screen is bigger compared to others. The movie theater has 12 halls and you can experience 3D movie technology on a much bigger screen thanks to IMAX compared to usual ones.
8. Rexx Sinemasi
Rexx Sinemasi is one of the symbols of Kadikoy and it has one of the biggest foyer areas among city movie halls. It was a theatre hall in the early 1900s and known as Hale Sinemasi till the 1960s. It was rebuilt in 1961 and was renamed as Rexx after its original name Reks.
Rexx Sinemasi has 1100 seat capacity and it’s regarded as one of the prominent movie halls on the Asian side of Istanbul. You can also enjoy 3D movies at Rexx Sinemasi.
9. Capitol Spectrum Cineplex
Capital Spectrum Cineplex is located in Capitol Shopping Mall at Altunizade and it boasts 10 movie halls. All of its halls have a curved screen that enables watching movies comfortably at any angle. It also boasts a high-quality Dolby Atmos sound system in its four halls.
In its football stadium shaped halls, the seat height can be modified and there are special seats for the physically handicapped. Moreover, one of its halls offers a VIP concept. Lastly, there is also an open-air terrace at Capitol Spectrum Cinexplex where guests can relax and chill.
10. Avsar Sinemalari
You can enjoy watching movies at Avsar Sinemalari, which is owned by Avsar Movie Company, in IstMarina Shopping Mall by Kartal coast. Avsar Film plays an important role in the history of Turkish cinema and also stands out with its movie hall.
11. Kadikoy Sinemasi
Kadikoy Sinemasi is one of the oldest movie halls in Kadikoy. It’s located in Kadikoy Passage on Bahariye Street. It was built as a theater hall in 1964 and served as a movie hall in winters and as a theater hall in summers for a long time. It was later bought by Funda Kocadag in 2019 and restored to serve as a movie theater, which has a 318 seat capacity.
12. Bulvar 216 Cinemo
Bulvar 216 Cinemo was founded in an attempt to create a new vision in cinema. It has a capacity of approximately 2000 seats in its halls, 6 of which are in Bulvar and 9 of which are in Beyoglu Grand Pera, including Emek Sinemasi (a historical cinema hall with spiritual significance for Istanbulites).
Bulvar 216 is located at Bati Atasehir and it aims to meet the demand of Atasehir neighborhood.
If you want to participate in art events in Istanbul, our article on the best theater halls in Istanbul may also interest you.
Best Movie Theaters in Istanbul by Serhat Engul