A Night at the Movies – Amsterdam Style

Things to Do, Travel Tips — By Scott Roane on March 23, 2011 at 6:14 pm

Cinemas in Amsterdam have more to offer than just films

An evening at the movies during a visit to Amsterdam might not be the first thing you’d think of to top your list of things to do. But given that Amsterdam is prone to the odd spring rain shower or two, combined with the fact that some of its cinemas are located in beautifully renovated Art Deco or architecturally significant buildings, you might want to think again. Many of these traditional movie theaters also have excellent bars or cafes, so they’re worth a visit even if you don’t plan to catch a movie. And because it’s a typically locals thing to do, you’re probably going to get an insight into Dutch culture at the same time.

The majority of Dutch movies are shown in the original language with subtitles (except films for children), so language shouldn’t be a problem, but it’s always good to confirm this when buying your ticket. Most of the cinemas mentioned below allow you to take your drinks into the auditorium, which gives them a real cosy feel.

  • Tuschinskis’s Theatre in the old centre is located in a wonderfully renovated Art Deco building.
  • The Movies has tiny auditoriums which feel a bit like someone’s living room. But the original wood panelling and cosy bar transport you back to a bygone era.
  • Kriterian (Dutch link only) Cafe Theatre attracts a more alternative studenty type to the large cafe inside the theatre, which in the 1920s was a Shell service station . Great value and a good atmosphere.
  • Het Ketelhuis (Dutch link only) is located in a converted red-brick built industrial building which belonged to the city gas works in the 1800s. Now it’s an arthouse theatre showing a lot of foreign films, so you might have to check out the language of the film before buying your ticket.