Six of the best alternative places to watch a movie in Dubai

Incase you're sick of the same old cinemas

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With awards season upon us, now is the time to get back into cinema – after all – there are tons of brilliant flicks to catch right now. But forget heading to your local multiplex, and cramming in with all the loud teenagers playing with their phones mid-movie. Dubai has far cooler places to catch a film. Here are our top picks...

Reform's outdoor cinema

For the ultimate date, look no further than the brilliant Tuesday night outdoor film deal at The Lakes' Reform Social & Grill. During the cooler months is when Dubai's al fresco lifestyle can truly be embraced, and what better way to do so than by snuggling up on a sofa and watching a screening of a classic such as Titanic, Dirty Dancing or Notting Hill. February's line-up is all about case you couldn't guess. With a couples package starting at just Dhs230 – which includes two Reform Angus cheeseburgers, two drinks (selected grape or hops) and two boxes of fresh popcorn – we know where we'll be meeting our other half at 8pm next Tuesday.

Movies Under The Stars – Pyramids at Wafi

One of the prettiest ways to enjoy the silver screen is the Movies Under The Stars night at the Pyramids at Wafi, which takes place every Sunday evening (excluding summer, obviously). With an eclectic line-up – February promises Sleepless in Seattle, Friends with Benefits and The Blind Side, for example – all you have to do is pitch up for the 8.30pm start time and pop a squat on one of their big, red beanbags. With no booking required (it's free!) it's a no fuss, stress-free way to enjoy your evening. What are you waiting for?

JLT Outdoor Cinema

Another one for the fresh air aficionados, these free cinema nights in JLT's Central Park are on for two evenings, every other week during the cool months. This is one for all the family, with kids films such as Little Hercules and The Legend of Sarila being shown from 7pm on scheduled Thursdays and Fridays. Sometimes, there will be a more grown-up choice (such as January's brilliant Nowhere Boy) which may not be quite so enthralling for the little ones, but makes for a great date night. As well as soaking up the feel-good community vibes, visitors can make the most of pop-up food trucks from people such as Toasted Dubai, to provide those all-important movie munchies. This one is on the grass so take a blanket or camping chair if you like a little something between you and mother nature. Check the JLT Outdoor Cinema Facebook page for updates on scheduled films.

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Vox Gold

Dubai is hardly lacking in luxury offerings, so it makes sense that this concept should extend to how we get to watch our films. The 'daddies' of this service, and there are a few to choose from (obvs), are Vox Cinemas. Their 'Vox Gold' experience (available at Mirdiff City Center, Burjuman and Mall of the Emirates) offers not only a huge, reclining chair that would put Chandler and Joey's to shame, there is also a full dining menu (which is brought to you in your seat, natch), a private lounge to hang about in (no sticky popcorn shoes for you) and your very own waiter. With tickets from Dhs120 it's the kind of luxury that most can afford, too.

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A4 Space

Fancy yourself as an arty type? Prefer to take your entertainment off the beaten track? Then you'll probably be familiar with the abundance of art galleries in Al Serkal Avenue, in Al Quoz's industrial area. What you may not know, though, is that the A4 Space gallery also has its own screening room, and regularly shows everything from art-house cinema to documentaries and even the occasional bit of Disney...did someone say Aladdin? Oh, and it's free! BYO kale chips.

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Private Cinema at Jumeirah Zabeel Saray

OK, so this isn't for your average Friday night activity, but if you're after something super swanky then the private cinema at Jumeirah Zabeel Saray should most definitely be on your radar. The 29-seat theatre features iconic red velvet seats, gold detailing and even those old-school curtains either side of the screen. Yeah, it's pretty special. There are even snacks and refreshments served by the hotel to accompany the selection of family-friendly and classic films on offer. So, what's the catch? Well, these free daily screenings are currently only available to hotel guests. So you can either fork out the Dhs1,299 starting rate for a double right now, or get some mates to come and visit (and chose where they stay). Either way – project private cinema is now well and truly on.

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Written By

Cressida Meale