Visitor Information

Opening hours:

The Civic Box Office is open 90-minutes before showtime.

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Practical info

You'll find The Civic on the corner of Queen Street and Wellesley Street. 

The Civic Box Office is to the right of the main entrance (on the corner of Queen Street and Wellesley Street) as you come into the building. It opens 90 minutes before the start of performances.

The Civic is a 2,379 seat theatre. Download the seating map, or take a 3D tour of the theatre.

Visit our Tickets and Seating page for more information.

The Civic car park is a short walk from The Civic, making it a great option for shows there. It is important, however, to remember that sometimes all our venues are filled with events. Make sure you have a backup plan — or book a space in advance.

Visit our Parking and Transport page for more information.

You can enjoy a pre-show drink in the theatre bar, or for something a bit more substantial, visit Stark’s Café and Bar. Stark’s offers special show-themed cocktails, as well as Caffe L’Affare coffee, tea and cold drinks. If you’re headed to The Civic for a matinee, you can also enjoy cabinet food like filled baguettes, croissants and bagels. It’s a great place to visit for a daytime or showtime treat.

Visit our Eating and Drinking page for more information.

Smoking and the use of e-cigarettes in this venue is prohibited.

All Auckland Live venues can be accessed by wheelchairs and have lifts and ramps to assist those who have difficulty climbing stairs. Companion seats are available for those booking wheelchair spaces, and guide dogs are welcome at our venues.

For every show visually impaired patrons can call Ticketmaster at 09 970 9745 any time before 5pm on the day of the show and they will make sure the front of house team is aware of your needs. 

We have two wheelchairs available at the venue for you to use if you or someone you’re coming with has mobility needs. You can book one of these by calling Ticketmaster at 0800 111 999.

The Civic was built way back in 1929 and while it’s a gorgeous building, we know that the foyer spaces can be a bit of a maze. There is a lift available, but it can be difficult to find. We suggest you ask one of our team to show you where it is located as soon as you arrive. We’ll be more than happy to help!

We have a hearing aid loop available for all shows. Contact Ticketmaster at 09 970 9700 for advice on the best seats to use it in. To connect to the hearing loop, switch your hearing aids to ‘tele’.

Visit our Accessibility page for more information.

Take the accessibility virtual tour

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If you're a promoter interested in bringing a show to Auckland Live please visit our Hiring Our Venues page for more information.

If you would like to hire a room or area of The Civic for a meeting, party or conference please visit the Auckland Conventions website.

Auckland Live Café


Auckland Transport City Carpark Availability

Last updated at ... Please note: During peak times availability can change quickly, please allow plenty of time to find a carpark.
For all public transport and carparking information, please visit Auckland Transport.

About the Venue

The first purpose-built cinema for 'talkies' in the country, The Civic is a much-loved Auckland landmark and entertainment venue. Built in 1929, The Civic is an outstanding example of the ‘atmospheric cinema’ architecture style, with a unique soft-top ceiling design that floats above the auditorium, allowing the famed stars and clouds effect that is a recreation of the Southern Hemisphere night sky.

Love The Civic? Now you can enjoy your own slice of this much-loved Auckland landmark with a set of glossy new postcards, on sale at Starks Café and Bar. Just $1.50 each or $5.00 for five. Pick up a FREE The Civic brochure while you're there, or download a PDF copy and learn the fascinating story of The Civic's star-studded history.

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Re: news takes a tour of The Civic

About The Civic

The Civic is a Category One-classified protected building and is New Zealand’s premier lyric theatre with 2379 seats split across two levels.

The Civic, one of the few remaining atmospheric theatres in the world, was built in 1929 in just eight months. It was specifically designed as a 'movie palace' for talking pictures ('talkies'), which had just been introduced to New Zealand. It was the first purpose-built cinema of this type in the country, and today is a much-loved Auckland landmark and entertainment venue.

The Civic was - and is - an outstanding example of the ‘atmospheric cinema’ genre, with a unique soft-top ceiling design that floats above the auditorium, allowing the famed stars and clouds effect that is a recreation of the Southern Hemisphere night sky. Look up at the start of a show and see if you can spot the shooting star!

The rich and opulent Rococo-style interior reflects an Indian rock-hewn temple, and Indian motifs abound. In the public foyer these include seated Buddhas, twisted columns and domed ceilings – and many elephants. The main auditorium features Moorish turrets, minarets, spires, tiled roofs, and Abyssinian panther statues - often mistakenly referred to as lions – with their glowing green eyes, have all been faithfully restored to their former glory. 

The Civic has had a somewhat turbulent history, but was restored to its former glory in the late 1990s by Auckland City Council, and reopened in December 1999 after a two-year, $42 million restoration. The restoration provided the opportunity to convert the venue to live theatre capacity and upgrade to modern movie technology. As a result The Civic has become a popular venue for major touring shows, while once again providing Auckland’s most sumptuous cinema experience.

The Civic is considered the home of musicals in New Zealand.

Alongside acclaimed touring musicals such as Jersey Boys, Mary Poppins, Matilda the Musical,  Disney’s Aladdin the Musical, and The Book of Mormon, The Civic has hosted leading international singers and entertainers including  Bob Dylan, Roberta Flack, Elaine Page, The Rolling Stones, Mavis Staples, Nick Cave, Sufjan Stevens, and Sir David Attenborough  as well as the annual NZ International Film Festival.

Visit the Friends of The Civic Trust and their Facebook page, which features a colourful showcase of the space and its stories, including the short film The Mighty Civic.

 

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The Civic is rated Silver for accessibility by Be.Accessible.

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