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Gartenbau Kino (Official)
Architects: Robert Kotas
Styles: Streamline Moderne
The Gartenbau Kino opened in 1919 with 900-seats. In 1953 it was remodelled to the plans of architect Robert Kotas when CinemaScope was installed. It was re-modelled in 1960, re-opening on 19th December 1960 with Kirk Douglas in “Spartacus”. From 1st November 1962 until 12th December 1963, it operated as a 3-strip Cinerama Theatre. From 17th December 1971 it presented 70mm films and was equipped with 6-channel Dolby Stereo sound. However the screen was considered very small compared to other such installations around the world. In 1973 the European Premiere of “Schindler’s List” was attended by Steven Spielberg. In 1986, it was listed with a seating capacity of 760, with all seating on one level.
Today, the current seating capacity is for 736 and it is the largest cinema operating in Austria. There are square lighting panels which are randomly placed on the chequerboard side-walls and there is a chequerboard ceiling. There is a beautiful festoon curtain over the screen, which I believe rises, rather than draws across.
Films tend to be the latest blockbusters and art house films, all shown in their original language. It is one of the venues for the Viennale - Vienna International Film Festival.
In 2021 it received a 3.3 million Euro complete renovation/restoration, reopening in October 2021. The magnificent 30 years old red & gold festoon curtain was cleaned and restored. The cinema has retained its 70mm/35mm projectors.
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