The Labia – an independent 4-screen arthouse cinema, is our ever so worthy “Hidden Gem of the Week“. Showing a variety of classic and mainstream films, this independent cinema really does ooze sophisticated charm.

A golden oldie:
The Labia, originally an Italian Embassy ballroom, was opened by Princess Labia in May 1949 as a theatre where plays could be performed.

Today (and for the past 37 years!) it’s known as the oldest independant cinema in South Africa and appeals to a variety of people who admire the charm of its old-world ambience.


The unique experience:
The cinemas charm strikes you as soon as you enter the snug and cosy building. As you go to buy/pick up your ticket you are presented with an adorable antique ticket booth where you then get issued with an old school ticket stub!

Being able to fill your tummies until you pop with an array of sweets and treats surely has to be one the best things about going to the cinema, don’t you agree!? The Labia certainly gives opportunity for this allowing you able to buy a variety of reasonably priced snacks at its small bistro. Delicious treats include homemade chocolate biscuits, chips, soups and the popcorn stall.

And did we mention that this cinema has a fully stocked bar. Yep, so you can wash down your popcorn with a vodka slush puppy or if you are feeling a little more sophisticated you may opt for a bottle or two of wine to accompany your movie. We recommend arriving at least an hour before the film starts so you can really appreciate the olden day charm of this historic building (and bar!).

The movies vary from classics and blockbusters to an array of independent movies. Another HUGE selling point has to be how cheap the movie tickets are – just R40 for students and R45 for everyone else. So if you are travelling from the UK, that price is cheaper than a small cappuccino from Starbucks!


Dinner and a movie:
In addition to the usual cinema evenings Labia offers movie and dinner specials in conjunction with Societi Bistro, Diva Café Restaurant, Kauai and Ocean Basket. So you have the option to enjoy a meal at one of these nearby restaurants before going to watch a movie.

The history within the beautiful yellow walls on 68 Orange Street must be experienced for yourselves during your stay in Cape Town. So get your ticket, sit back, and enjoy!

Our top tips:
– Due to the layout of Screen room 2, you are likely to hear every crunch and munch of popcorn being eaten or chocolate wrap being opened. Therefore when choosing a film we advise you to watch in one of the other screen rooms, especially if you get easily distracted by background noise.

– The time on the ticket is when the movie will start and it will start on the dot. So don’t arrive 20 minutes later expecting to miss the adverts as you WILL miss 20 minutes of the movie.

– Eat as much popcorn as physically possible!


We need you……
If you visit or have visited any of our previous “hidden gems” then we would love to know. Equally if you have a gem of your own that you would like to share with us, please let us know through our social media platforms.


68 Orange Street / Lifestyle on Kloof | Kloof Street | Gardens | Cape Town | +27 (0)21 424 592