Local News

It’s showtime at mall

February 6 - 12, 2019

Gulf Weekly Stan Szecowka
By Stan Szecowka

Gulf Weekly It’s showtime at mall

ONE of the leading cinematic companies in the world had opened its latest operation in the kingdom’s newest mall, promising a whole new movie experience for all ages.

Cinépolis, the world’s fourth largest cinema operator, opened last week at the top of Atrium Mall in Saar with a red carpet event for VIPs, ambassadors, special guests and members of the media.

Announced as the company’s ‘official entry’ into the GCC’s movie theatre sector, the biggest cinema chain in Latin America also operates in the US, Spain and across India.

Ashish Shukla, CEO of Cinépolis Gulf, believes that with easy access for visitors from neighbouring Saudi Arabia, as well as Bahraini and expatriate film-goers, the location will be a smash hit too. “We are offering cinema like never before to the Bahrain community,” he said. “We know how much the community in Bahrain and Saudi Arabia loves movies, and we are relishing the opportunity to present a premium, yet wonderfully accessible, cinema experience that can be enjoyed by all.

“Our location just off the causeway will prove incredibly convenient for Bahrainis and Saudis alike, and we hope we can become a central part of the community for all.”

The complex has also been boosted by the opening of Lulu Hypermarket in particular last December which has helped generate a massive footfall to the mall.

The new 13-screen cinema using the latest big screen technology includes a Junior Theatre with a covered slide from the top row of seats into a Jungle Gym below. There’s bean bag seating and a 15-minute intermission during screenings to allow youngsters to take a break.

And the state-of-the-art 4D E-motion experience has already had movie-lovers buzzing on social media about the ‘theme park-like treat experience’. This immersive theatre format allows an audience to ‘live’ the movie with motion seats and special effects such as wind, water, smell and air shots, all perfectly synchronised with the action on the screen.

Founded in Mexico in 1971, Cinépolis is considered a ‘cinematic powerhouse’ that now boasts more than 338 million guests and 5,707 screens worldwide. Bahrain expands the company’s footprint to 16 countries.

Cinépolis Global and Al Tayer Group, have created a joint venture under the name, Gulf Entertainment, headquartered in Dubai. Cinépolis Gulf plans to continue its expansion path by opening soon in Oman, UAE and Saudi Arabia too.

The Bahrain complex will run 70 movies per day, starting every 15 minutes. There are large format screens, MacroXE with Dolby Atmos object-based sound systems and a range of seating options, including fully-reclining leather seats.

As well as serving traditional cinema snacks such as popcorn and nachos, its in-house ‘Coffee Tree’ venue offers treats including Panini, crêpes and specialty refreshments.

In keeping with the move towards web-based bookings, downloadable apps and new technologies designed to prioritise ease of use for customers, there’s an online booking system and an abundance of e-kiosks on site.

Shaikh Khaled bin Humood Al Khalifa, Bahrain Tourism and Exhibitions Authority’s chief executive, was delighted to cut the ribbon at last Wednesday evening’s opening ceremony. He said: “This adds a valuable element to the tourism and trading attractions in the Kingdom of Bahrain.”

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