Curzon Mayfair

38 Curzon Street,
London, W1J 7TY

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May 14, 2009

Viewing: Photo | Street View

Located in the fashionable Mayfair district of central London’s West End. The Curzon Cinema, replaced the earlier 1934 Curzon Cinema, opening on 6th April 1966 with Bridget Bardot in “Viva Maria” and 530 seats. It is an elegantly appointed first-class art house. The programming is a fascinating amalgam of current international fare of quality with selected revivals and repertory series.

In 2002, it was converted into a twin screen cinema, with 320 seats in the former front stalls area, which has a screen 43 feet wide by 20 feet high, and 83 seats in the former rear stalls.

The Curzon Mayfair is a Grade II Listed building.

Contributed by Gerald A. DeLuca

Recent comments (view all 26 comments)

HowardBHaas
HowardBHaas on September 24, 2016 at 9:07 am

Let’s hope the Curzon fights to stay in this wonderful theater!

rasLXR
rasLXR on September 25, 2016 at 2:00 pm

Don’t forget the Empire Leicester Sq cultman which is not longer a standard cinema even if it is still open. When I started at the Odeon Haymarket in 1977 Odeon alone had the following West End Cinemas:

Odeon Leicester Sq
Leicester Square Theatre
Odeon Haymarket
Odeon St Martins Lane
Dominion Tottenham Crt Rd
Odeon Marble arch
Odeon Kensington
Odeon Swiss Cottage
Odeon Westbourne Grove

Astoria had just closed along with the Metropole and New Victoria.

rasLXR
rasLXR on September 25, 2016 at 2:07 pm

The new Mayor has now stepped in. Sadiq Khan today vowed to protect London’s historic buildings from developers with new planning rules.

The Mayor said he is planning regulations which mean developers building flats near existing venues will be responsible for soundproofing sites.

It comes after more than 25,000 people signed a petition to save Mayfair’s historic Curzon cinema, regularly used for film premieres, from being shut down over a soundproofing dispute.

Developers 38 Curzon ltd, who are converting office space above the cinema into luxury flats, have complained of noise from films shown there.

They want the 82-year-old cinema to foot the £500,000 bill for soundproofing work. But the the Curzon said it cannot afford and would “never obtain approval for as the auditorium and surrounding walls are listed”, according to director of cinema development Rob Kenny.

http://www.standard.co.uk/news/london/sadiq-khan-plans-tough-new-rules-for-developers-as-he-wades-into-curzon-cinema-row-a3352481.html

HowardBHaas
HowardBHaas on September 25, 2016 at 2:30 pm

I’m a lawyer in the States who saw one movie here. My auditorium photos are on this site & remain the only ones there. I know nothing of British law and don’t know what terms might be in the contract or deed the purchaser of the upstairs owner has, but I’d think whoever purchased it should’ve done their “due diligence” in advance to determine any noise issues. That is, the new owners should’ve inspected the upstairs space, and planned in advance to cover costs of soundproofing the upstairs space.

CF100
CF100 on September 26, 2016 at 5:39 am

Any changes Sadiq Khan makes would not apply retrospectively; however, as the article notes, the installation of soundproofing was included as a condition of granting planning approval of the 2013 application for this development. (I cannot find the planning application on Westminster Council’s website.)

In the previously linked article (http://www.standard.co.uk/news/london/thousands-back-campaign-to-save-mayfair-curzon-from-closure-a3348601.html) Westminster Council says “we imposed a condition that protects the future use of the cinema from complaints by residents by making the developer responsible for installing adequate soundproofing. We are now investigating whether this soundproofing has been properly implemented.”

In the http://www.standard.co.uk/news/london/sadiq-khan-plans-tough-new-rules-for-developers-as-he-wades-into-curzon-cinema-row-a3352481.html article, the developer says “There are a number of outstanding complaints from a number of leaseholders, including existing residents on the third floor, and health and safety issues, and a remedy for volume and vibrations needs to be found.

“Up until now Curzon have simply refused to address the problems which are their responsibility. No changes to the fabric of the cinema have been suggested and no investment has been demanded. Indeed, we have no idea where the earlier reported figure of £500,000 has come from.”

So, from the above, it’s not clear whether the complaints are from leaseholders occupying units pertaining to the 2013 application, and/or otherwise, what type of soundproofing, if any, was installed; and the reference to vibrations suggests that extensive work may be needed; the mere installation of a bit of mineral wool won’t be adequate!

All new dwellings must conform to “Part E” of the Building Regulations (“Resistance to the Passage of Sound”) but AFAIK these would never require sufficient attenuation for movie playback at reference volume levels.

That said, can Curzon not simply apply limiting to all sound channels and possibly turn off the LFE channel, which would not affect dialogue intelligibility?

CF100
CF100 on September 26, 2016 at 11:17 am

I have now found the planning application, Westminster Council reference 13/03290/LBC.

It turns out that the upper floors are already residential use, with the conversion of the remaining office space on levels 2 and 3 the subject of the above referenced application.

The planning documents do include an environmental noise survey, but this is in relation to external plant-generated noise.

Westminster Council’s Decision Notice document granting planning approval makes no reference to sound control.

I would hazard a very uneducated guess that specialist acoustic consultants were not involved in this project and the result is now a complex dispute.

cultman1
cultman1 on September 27, 2016 at 1:56 am

Everything must be done to prevent the cinema from being forced to close on account of greedy property companies.

CF100
CF100 on October 4, 2016 at 10:14 am

If soundproofing is installed, even if the cost is not bourne by the developer, they may require access to the residential units on the first floor. Whilst they could avoid installing soundproofing by pressuring Curzon into surrendering their lease (i.e. Curzon may just decide they don’t want to face the mounting costs of potential litigation), the risk is that they would end up with very high costs themselves. Which doesn’t sound like a cunning scheme dreamt up by a greedy developer—but, hey, what do I know?

I’m afraid “the law is an ass”…

Lio Fo
Lio Fo on November 1, 2016 at 6:33 am

While on holiday in London last week, I went to the Curzon for the first time. Saw Daniel Blake. Good film but my visit was for the auditorium rather than the film. My impression is what I’ve already read in previous comments: one of the last civilized places in London to see a film. I’d be a regular customer if I lived in London. Pleasant cinema with a behaved audience and top notch projection (but why do they open the curtains before the projection starts? — looks nicer when curtains open on the first images). I asked permission to take a few pictures, which I posted here.

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