I can’t tell you how old I was exactly; perhaps five, six or seven. But the first time I watched a movie in a cinema it was at Curzon Chelsea and the film was Disney’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. My memory of the whole experience is quite vague but I do remember the excitement, some of the images on the screen, a few of the songs, stepping outside afterwards and asking my mother if we could go to the library across the road.
Since my first cinema visit, Curzon Chelsea has been home to some of my fondest memories: watching Grace Kelly in High Society on the big screen with one of my oldest and dearest friends; seeing Ryan Gosling live on stage during a Q&A for his directorial debut Lost River. Needless to say Curzon Chelsea is where my love affair with the big screen started and continues to this very day.
So I am relieved to hear that when Curzon Chelsea closes its doors at the end of March 2018 this will only be a temporary closure.
First opened in 1937 as the Gaumont Palace, this cinema has experienced various transformations. The most recent will be completed in 2022 to allow for a new state-of-the-art cinema with 600 seats across three screens; full wheelchair accessibility (which Curzon Chelsea currently doesn’t have) and improved viewing as well as food and drink experiences.
On top of this the entire block will also be transformed. Waitrose (which is remaining open throughout the works) will be improved; there will still be a large pub next door; new stores and homes (both affordable and market rent) will be built, along with high quality office spaces.
And something I am very excited about; there will be a rooftop bar which will provide a unique view across Chelsea and beyond.
So while doors may be closing at the end of this month, there is a lot to get excited about. This part of King’s Road is not only getting a facelift but there will be plenty of quality reasons to enjoy this area of Chelsea again.