Atop one of Porto’s many hills is a hill of much culture and bustling activity. Making one of the southeastern gateways to the city, the Batalha square is one of the city’s most iconic names. With that name is one of the city’s equally iconic cultural centres: the Cine-Teatro Batalha (Batalha Theatre Cinema).
Inaugurated in 1947, this fine piece of Art Deco makes the northern corner of the Batalha square, virtuously completing the rows of buildings with its impressive glass windows, and wavy delineation. The bas-relief on the western facade break the windows with beautiful art deco ornaments. A symbol of a brave new spirit effused in almost every art deco piece of architecture, brought the seventh art to the downtown of Porto, instantly becoming a remarkable and recognizable building in the city. The Cinema had however a rather rocky recent history. After closing in 2000, it opened back up once more in 2006 and then in 2016 was closed again. The building is today in disrepair and terribly degraded, but just a few weeks ago started being renovated again after getting being set free from a bureaucratic impasse.
So although the Cine-Teatro Batalha and its iconic neon art deco signs have struggled a lot throughout the recent years, this hallmark of Porto’s cultural life is set to be once again reborn, and this time around, hopefully for good!