Sunday, July 15, 2012

Cinetopia First Impressions

With my sister coming to town for the 4th of July, I wanted to make sure to tailor their visit to the things that they would find interesting. Among other things, we crammed in visits to Powell's City of Books, Jeld-Wen Field for a Timbers game, and Voodoo Doughnuts into their brief visit (all things that I had done before, so I somewhat knew what to expect). My sister and her husband are also cinema buffs -- so from everything I had heard, I felt the need to take them to Cinetopia, a Vancouver original.

For those not familiar, Cinetopia is a small chain of three movie theaters, 2 in Vancouver, one in Beaverton. They feature very comfortable seating, all-digital high definition DLP projectors, and even a living room experience (complete with ottoman and restaurant services from your seat). At the theater we went to (the Mill Plain 8), the restaurant was named Vinetopia, and had a large selection of wines available for tasting, one ounce at a time.

I cheated a little bit and went to a movie in the grand auditorium with a 50' screens beforehand, to get a feel for the movie experience. This was a pleasant experience, although the movie itself left a bit to be desired (I'm not a Family Guy fan, but though I'd give Ted a try, anyway). The seats were comfortable, had an ample recline, the picture was large, and the most crisp I've ever seen. I even got popcorn and used their butter bar, which gave several non-standard options for your butter toppings.  They had some other selections that you don't normally see at a theater, like baked goods, at the concession stand, as well.

With my sister, however, we chose the living room experience. With this, you are able to order food up to 10 minutes before the show begins. You're given a tray for your armrest with your food, and a comfortable ottoman to raise your legs. You still have the comfortable seats, and the digital projection, so the quality was just as good. It was a little early in the day to enjoy the full wine-tasting experience, though my sister did take advantage of ordering a wine in the theater.

Pricing between the two options were rather competitive.  The evening showing and the matinee in the living room theaters were both only $11.50.  Compared to the other local cinemas, it's only $1 more for the normal showing (and about $3 more for the living room theater showing).  But, as the ad in the theater proclaims, "Why watch a movie in coach, when you can watch it in first class?"

All in all, it was quite enjoyable, and I look forward to future visits to Cinetopia -- though my next experience may be at their Vancouver Mall location, which has 80 foot screens, and at least one theater equipped with the new Dolby Atmos sound system (which makes it one of only 14 theaters in the US with this technology).

No comments:

Post a Comment