Christmas pop-up cinemas around the Square Mile

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St Katharine Docks' Floating Film Festival is back for winter

Come 1 December it will finally be socially acceptable to feel like a child again by watching all our favourite Christmas films. We’ll swoon over Jonathan Taylor Thomas in I’ll be Home for Christmas (such an underrated classic) and get our Dr Seuss fix with The Grinch Who Stole Christmas.

Most of these will be seen from the comfort of our home. As we sink into the couch all winter with tea and biscuits in hand, slowly becoming one with our huge stash of blankets. This is inevitable. But you’ve got to get out and watch some of these classics at some of London’s many pop-up winter cinemas.

Seeing Home Alone on the big screen makes such a huge difference. And singing along to The Nightmare Before Christmas with a whole group of strangers is so extra. So check out the list below for a full guide of Christmas cinemas in and around the City of London. You’ll certainly satisfy all your festive film needs at each of these jolly destinations.

The Curtain

For the first time since its opening, The Curtain Hotel’s exclusive member’s rooftop LIDO will be opening up to all for 12 Days of Christmas! The Shoreditch rooftop will transform into a magical winter wonderland for the festive season – hosting a cosy rooftop cinema screening a programme of Crimbo classics. Projected against the twinkling skyline, get toasty with a hot toddy or three, snuggled under their plush blankets. A Christmas Cabaret with G&R will present an evening of mayhem featuring drag, burlesque, club kids, trap queens and far too many Santas too. They’re even doing Christmas workshops for all those wanting to get crafty this winter.
45 Curtain Road EC2A 3PT

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The Curtain hotel is opening up the private rooftop to the public for Christmas

Leadenhall Building

The Cheesegrater is joining in on the fun this year with a whole series of jolly events taking place in the main public space downstairs. They’ve got their own 80’s après-ski resort featuring faux trees, chalet bars, attendants in brightly coloured ski suits and even an authentic Courchevel ski lift cable car for guests to enjoy a drink within. It’s all a go here. They’re also hosting a few Christmas film screenings from 27 November – 19 December alongside live music nights and the like.
The Leadenhall Building, 122 Leadenhall Street EC3V 4AB

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The Cheesegrater is joining the festivities this year

St Katharine Docks

And because this is the festival that never sleeps, The Floating Film Festival is back again this winter at St Katharine Docks. Jump aboard the outdoor pontoon (which is thankfully covered and heated) and enjoy some films by the water. It’s a little different. But still super cosy. And being set within the gorgeous marina doesn’t hurt either. There will also be a all the best festive treats and drinks including minced pies, mulled wine and hot chocolate available to provide all the warmth and fuzziness of a jolly Christmas evening. Tickets cost £12 for a deckchair and £24 for a beanbag for two (plus booking fees) and are available via their site.
St Katharine Docks E1W 1LA

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St Katharine Docks’ Floating Film Festival is back for winter

One Aldwych

This luxury hotel on the border of the City and Covent garden is hosting a regular Festive Film and Fizz experience this year, from the comfort of their own in-house cinema – because hotels have just everything within their walls these days. Take a seat in the blue leather clad 30-seat cinema with a glass of Lallier Champagne to watch a festive favourite followed by a three-course dinner in either the Indigo or Eneko Basque Kitchen & Bar. Yes, people, that’s dinner, drinks and a festive film all in one. There’s even the option to swap dinner for brunch on Saturdays for all those wanting to get their poached egg fix. Expect all the feel-good romantic comedies, magical fantasies and a few familiar favourites. Prices start at £60 per person but can go up depending on how much you really want to treat yourselves. For this is the place to do it. It’s not for cheap eats. Spend a pretty penny here on some extra special festive film going.
1 Aldwych WC2B 4BZ

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Watch a film and follow it up with dinner at One Aldwych Hotel

Southbank Centre

The Southbank Centre’s upstairs Circus Bar is hosting this year’s winter pop-up cinema experience. Sink into one of their bean bags with popcorn and mulled wine in hand and drift off into your very own holiday happy place. They’ve got the classic traditional Christmas films but a few less overtly holiday-themed too. Get around Bridget Jones’s Diary, Dirty Dancing and the obligatory Love Actually too. They’ve also got some fun ones for the kids, including Fining Nemo, The Jungle Book and The Little Mermaid. It doesn’t all have to be jingle bells and sleighs rides in winter – anyone can enjoy these classic films.
Circus Bar at the Southbank Centre, Riverside Terrace, Level 2 SE1 8XX

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Head over the Thames to check out some of the Southbank Centre’s festive film nights