Sandy • If you're looking for the most comfortable movie theater seats in town, sit down at the new Groove VIP Auditorium at the Megaplex at Jordan Commons.
Built in what used to be the arcade, the 58-seat theater is designed for "people who want to take the movie experience to the next level," said Jeff Whipple, Megaplex's vice president of marketing.
There's a VIP lounge, where you can hang out and order food from a VIP menu. Inside, there are wide seats some that recline that compare favorably with Hollywood studio screening rooms.
Because Megaplex partnered with Groove Satellite, the theater has access to all the sports programming on DirecTV and Dish.
All this doesn't come cheap. Regular admission to the VIP Auditorium is $17.50; the only discount is $12.50 for the first show of the day. The lounge can be rented out for parties, business meetings and private events for between $700 and $2,000, depending on day and time.
The VIP Auditorium is equipped with a Christie Solaria Series 4K projector, which translates into a better picture for moviegoers in those new seats. "The clarity of the image is amazing," Whipple said.
"It's four times the pixels that you see on a regular 2K projector now in theaters," said Eric Butterworth, sales manager at CLACO Equipment & Service, which is installing new digital systems in all the Megaplex theaters. "And your first run will look the same as your thousandth run with digital. No more scratches, blue dots, anything like that."
Many of the Megaplex Theatres include features such as captioning on devices that fit in cupholders and function like teleprompters for hearing impaired moviegoers, and descriptive audio for visually impaired guests.
The new systems are state-of-the-art, but all theaters must convert to digital soon because movie studios plan to stop delivering film. An average film can weigh 70 pounds; an IMAX 3-D film weighs up to 600 pounds. But digital films can be delivered on a hard drive that's a few inches square and weighs a couple of pounds, "which is a tremendous cost-savings for the studios," Butterworth said. And studios will save even more if films are transmitted by satellite.
Visitors to the VIP Auditorium won't notice that. Instead, they'll see a better picture and you can't miss the comfort-upgrade of those seats.
"It's awesome," Butterworth said. "I just laid down in the reclining chair today, and it is the VIP experience."
Grand Opening: Groove VIP Auditorium
The Groove VIP Auditorium at Megaplex Theatres at Jordan Commons (9400 S. State St., Sandy) opens Thursday. Visit megaplextheatres.com for showtimes and to buy tickets.