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Open-air cinemas with deck-chairs and sea-side view

10 July 2009 / 21:07:46  GRReporter
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“They are very few and unique. If they close, the audience will have to be trapped between four walls, with high decibels and maximum sound.” According to Mr. Makias, the reason for the audience to draw back is that “there are no good movies. People are interested but quality movies cannot be found. The old movies are good, the actors are professional, they are made by good directors and screenwriters.”

The tourists’ interest towards open-air cinema, however, does not decrease- some of them enjoy relaxing with a cocktail and a snack, watching a nice movie, after an exhausting day of archeological tours in Athens. This year Mr. Maniakis have included in his cinema’s schedule the movies “Roman Holiday”, “Sleeper”, “Un Homme et une femme” and “Love and Death “. And not to forget- the cinema’s special- cherry-brandy and morello jam made with black sugar, prepared by the owners by family recipe.

The rest of the cinemas have their specials too- the “Atinea” is famous for it’s cheese pie, “Egli” has its sheesh with mustard, kebap at “Fleri”, the meatballs at “Daphne”, mixed dish with dried tomatoes and parmesan on a rusk at “Palini”, Domino pizza at “Bomboniera” - specializing in blockbusters-, and the sunflower and all other kinds of seeds at “Oasis” cinema.

Some of the oldest summer cinemas in Athens are “Zefiros” – again at Thissio, “Psiri” at the Psiri square, “Box” cinema, which is situated on a terrace at the Exarchia square, and nearby at the Valtetsiou street, in a splendid yard you can find the “Riviera” cinema. Situated in Kolonaki  - the central part of Athens – is one of the oldest, or maybe the oldest summer cinemas in Athens – “Deksameni”, next to which is a small park with an unpretentious coffee place surrounded by plants, perfect for a cold beer and French fries in the summer.

Situated in the park behind the Zapio castle is “Egli” summer cinema, hidden behind the palm trees. Before or after the screening, one can enjoy the nearby coffee-restaurant, where you can find peacefulness far away from the noise of the city and a gorgeous view of the Olympic stadium Kalimarmaro at the hill. The ticket price for the movies has remained unchanged for years at 7 euros, while students, children and pensioners pay 5 euros.

An alternative choice is watching a movie at the terrace of “45 degrees” bar in Gazi, with a view of the Akropolis, but be prepared – you won’t be able to hear a word of the dialogues or the soundtrack of the movie, as the volume is lowered and music is playing from the bar.

The open-air cinemas first appeared in Greece in the beginning if 20th century and gain highest popularity between 1958 and 1974. Contemporary open-air cinemas have a rich repertoire of classic movies attracting huge audiences, or play movies that have already been played at the winter cinemas and are proved to be successful. A huge success last summer in the Greek open-air cinemas caused the “Mamma Mia” production with Meryl Streep and Pierce Brosnan, which stayed on the screens for a couple of weeks.

Marina Nikolova

Summer Cinemas:



50 Haritos Street, Kolonaki, Metro Station “Evangelismos”, tel. 2107215717



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