Cinema Ideal has existed since 1904, making it the oldest remaining cinema in Portugal. For over a century it was mostly a “cinéma de quartier”, situated in the historic centre of the city, but on the edge of a red light district. We took over the site in November 2013, and at the end of August 2014 we reopened it as a fully renovated cinema.
Cinema Ideal is a single screen venue, with 192 seats, a bar and foyer and a very particular architectural design. It is situated nearby the Chiado area and it is nowadays the only remaining cinema in the centre of Lisbon, all others having been shut down over the last three decades.
The theatre is equipped with digital projector and an 8-meter wide screen, on the floor above the auditorium there is a 35-seat café and a bookshop.
From the beginning we had a strong presence of Portuguese films and tried to mix European new release films with classics.
Although we only have one screen we try to think and act as a “multiplex”: as we operate for 14 hours a day, we can often have three different screenings in a single day.
Since we are the only remaining cinema in this part of the city, we want to keep also the ‘cinéma de quartier’ profile with which people living nearby can identify themselves. We collaborate with educational institutes, public centres for aged people and social care organizations, with which we have been organising events since the very beginning. For all these people we want to be another “shop around the corner”.
Pedro Borges, Manager