John organised a night out at the St George Open Air Cinema. He had been there a couple of years back and listening to his account of the venue I knew I would not be disappointed. Not only was I not disappointed but I truly loved it! In fact, I was so impressed I included the St George Open Air Cinema on my personal bucket list recommendations for everyone who visits Sydney.
The Open Air Cinema has an easy to imagine lure. Warm hot summer nights, big open space, something to eat and drink and a good movie to see. St George Open Air Cinema has all that but on a so much greater scale it is simply mind blowing. Imagine sitting at the heart of Sydney Harbour overlooking city skyline, the Opera House and the Sydney Harbour Bridge. Then add a massive screen that literally rises out of the harbour waters and fits just perfectly between the city skyline and the Opera House.
We went there to see ‘Rosalie Blum’, a good piece of close to our hearts European cinema. The cinema runs during January and February and has a wide list of movies ranging from mainstream Hollywood blockbusters to Foreign films with subtitles.
St George Open Air Cinema is not a picnic event. It has its own restaurant, bar and grandstand seating. Tickets provide entry to the venue but are not allocated seating meaning that it is worth arriving early not only to enjoy a bite to eat in the restaurants but also to ‘reserve’ your seat. On arrival you will be offered a seat reservation card where you write your name and then stick it on a seat of your choice. Once that is out of the way you are free to go to a bar or restaurant and enjoy the views over the harbour before the movie starts. This is a clever idea as the gates open at 18:15 and the movie starts at dusk (so around 20:30) which means you don’t just get a movie but you get a night out relaxing next to the harbour.
As the night falls, the cinema screen comes to life: it lights up bright red and slowly rises from the water accompanied by a soundtrack of the most significant movies in the history of cinema. I just loved that grand beginning and was totally impressed with it. I have videoed the beginning for you in the belief that a picture can tell a story of a 1000's words so you can judge for yourselves here. Once the screen arisen they showed a short movie about Australia, which you can also see in my video. Watching that short film in the beautiful Sydney Harbour setting almost made me cry with pride that half of my family is Australian.
It is an absolutely amazing event and no surprise it is hugely popular with tickets selling out well in advance of the screening year after year.
If you are lucky enough to visit Sydney in summer make sure visiting this cinema is on your to-do list. St George Open Air Cinema can easily be named the best cinema in the world! Perfect for a birthday treat (as in our case), Valentines Day surprise for your loved one or just simply enjoy a wonderful night out (no reason needed for that!)
Quick Review and Hot Tips
* Book well in advance;
* Join their mailing list to get updates and act fast when tickets are released;
* Arrive early to enjoy the night (gates open at 18:15);
* The cinema runs from mid-January to mid-February so if you want to be there bear that in mind;
* On site food is good and priced similarly to other placed in Sydney;
* Easily 5/5 event not to be missed.