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Palace Theatre London | Where stories come alive

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This Palace Theatre guide is designed to help you understand theatre, its facilities and directions on how to reach Palace Theatre for your show.

Venue Details

Address: Shaftesbury Avenue, London, W1, United Kingdom

Opened: 1891

Seating Capacity: 1400

Check out the Palace Theatre London Seating Plan here >

History Behind the Palace Theatre

The Palace Theatre is a magnificent red-brick building that is located at the junction of Charing Cross Road and Shaftesbury Avenue and can be easily spotted among the other structures. It boasts a seating capacity of 1,400 across four levels including the Stalls, Dress Circle, Grand Circle and Balcony, making it one of the larger venues in the West End. The Palace Theatre was built in 1891, three years after the opening of the Lyric Theatre, making it the second oldest theatre on the street.

Thomas Edward Collcutt was the architect who designed the Palace Theatre, which was commissioned by Richard D’Oyly Carte who had a vision for it to become the home of English grand opera. With this in mind, the theatre opened in January 1891 as the Royal English Opera House with the first production, Arthur Sullivan’s Ivanhoe, being a huge success. However, once the production came to an end, there was no follow-up, causing the building to shut down and be sold by Carte at a loss. The venue was later reopened as the Palace Theatre of Varieties and became very popular. In 1911, the theatre's name was changed to the Palace Theatre and it became home to several popular musicals.

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

Today, the Palace Theatre is most famous for hosting the play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, one of the most popular and critically acclaimed productions in recent years. Based on the beloved book series by J.K. Rowling, the play has been running at the Palace Theatre since June 2016.

Practical Information - Accessibility & Facilities

Accessibility Inside

  • The Palace Theatre can be accessed by two steps to the foyer from street level. Wheelchair users can enter the theatre step-free through an exit and are asked to inform a staff member upon arrival.
  • The Balcony is reachable by 77 steps, the Upper Circle by 56, and the Dress Circle by 30 steps.
  • The Stalls are accessible by three steps down from the foyer and can accommodate one large or two small wheelchairs with their companions, or transfer seats can be provided to any area in the Stalls, with space for up to four wheelchairs to be stored at the back of the theater.
  • Unfortunately, there is no access to the bars for those in wheelchairs, but drinks can be brought to their seats within the Stalls.
  • The theatre also features an accessible toilet near the exit.

Facilities Inside

Handy Tips

  • For parents attending the theatre with children, choosing the right seating area can be challenging. It is recommended to steer clear of the first few rows in the Stalls because of the height of the stage.
  • The best views can be found in the middle of the Stalls and near the front of the Dress Circle.
  • Grab a snack before the show, as the show is quite long - around 3 hours and 30 minutes, with limited intermission time.
  • If you consider yourself short, keep these in mind - Seats marked as having a restricted view are often difficult for shorter individuals to fully appreciate, and the Balcony has many restrictions.
  • To enjoy the best views of the stage, try to select a seat near a central aisle.

Plan Your Visit: Getting There

Restaurants Near Palace Theatre


Where is the Palace Theatre located?

The Palace Theatre is located in the Shaftesbury Avenue in London.


How many seats does the Palace Theatre have?

The Palace Theatre has a total of 1400 seats split across four levels.


What are the facilities available at the Palace theatre?

The Palace Theatre has bars at all levels, restrooms, and cloakrooms.


Does the Palace Theatre have accessible seating?

Yes, the Palace Theatre has accessible seating in the stalls.


Which is the closest tube station to the Palace Theatre?

The closest tube station to Palace Theatre would be Leicester Square.