Mike's Cinemas Option

I had been writing my blog for a while and I usually mentioned that I watched the movies here and there, near my home, near office, or just to get the bank promotion and so on. I know that this might not be relevant for people, but I just want to share the locations or cinemas that I used to go to so it would be easier to refer to "that one" or "this one". Before I put down the list of the cinemas, I would like to highlight that there are currently 3 major cinema chains in Indonesia.

The 3 cinema chains are:

1. 21 Cineplex 
At the time I write this, is the largest chain with > 800 screens across 35 cities in Indonesia. They have 3 different classes targeted at different audiences. Cinema 21 was the original cinema and then some of them were upgraded to a so called higher class called Cinema XXI with additional carpets, design change and sofa change. The changes were done also to adjust to the atmosphere of the shopping malls. And the final class type is called The Premiere. This is targeted for people who want to enjoy luxury in the cinema, where the seats are using reclining seats and blankets are also given to the audience. Due to such luxury, the cinemas are having a much higher price compared to the original Cinema 21 and Cinema XXI. On top of those 3 classes, 21 Cineplex also already having IMAX screens and some of their studios already using a higher standard of sound system such as Dolby Atmos and Auro 11.1. For more information on this cinema chain, you can refer to their official website: www.21cineplex.com 

2. CGV Blitz (previously Blitz Megaplex) 
This is the 2nd cinema chain where the first cinema was built back in 2006 in Bandung, then started to be built across some cities and at the time I write this is opened in 14 different locations in Java, Batam and Balikpapan. It is also having one of the biggest cinema in Indonesia and even received award from the Indonesian Record Museum (MURI). Back in 2014 Blitzmegaplex went through IPO process and their shares were bought by the Korean movie chain named CJ CGV and later on they rebranded the name to CGV Blitz. Just like 21 Cineplex, CGV Blitz also have various classes targeted for different audiences. However, their specialty that other cinema chains are not having is their Velvet class where the theater is using a bed for 2 people to watch the movie. Another type that set CGV Blitz apart is the 4DX theater. 4DX allows a motion picture presentation to be augmented with environmental effects such as seat motion, wind, rain, fog, lights, and scents along with the standard video and audio. For more information on this cinema chain, you can refer to their official website: www.cgvblitz.com 

3. Cinemaxx Theater
The youngest of the cinema chains in Indonesia. Despite being the youngest one, it did grow significantly and reached a number of 19 cinemas in 12 cities within 2 years only. According to its website www.cinemaxxtheater.com it plans to open at 300 cinemas in 85 cities within 10 years. At the moment, its classes are called Cinemaxx regular, Cinemaxx Gold (similar to The Premiere in 21 Cineplex) and also an Ultra XD with very large screen filling up the whole theater from left to right and ceiling to the floor. Unfortunately I have not tried this one yet as it is only located outside Jakarta. Perhaps one day I should try it. 

So that's a brief summary of the 3 cinema chains in Indonesia. Below is the list of my cinemas option (based on alphabetical order of the shopping center's name):

Epicentrum - XXI (Picture courtesy of www.21cineplex.com) 
This theater is located in Epicentrum Walk Ground Floor, Jl. HR Rasuna Said. It is one of my favorite theater due to the location which is a 10 minutes walk from my apartment in Taman Rasuna area. In addition, it is having the Dolby Atmos sound system in both of its theaters and the two of them are actually very big with large wide screen. Another big plus is the price is one of the lowest compared to other 21 Cineplex theaters (Rp 25k - 35k ~ 2-3 USD) - updated Jan 2017 to Rp 35-50k (~ 3-4 USD). The biggest flaws of this cinema according to my personal view is that it is only having 2 theaters which makes it having limited option. Sometimes the theaters also being used for red carpet screening of new movies and resulted to no movies for general audience on that day. If only I can get invited to this kind of screening, then I probably would not complain, LOL. Now that I have moved to another apartment in Setiabudi, I spent lesser time watching in this cinema and only go there when I am really interested in having the Dolby Atmos experience and also if I really am in the mood to go there.

FX - Cinemaxx (picture courtesy of www.cinemaxxtheater.com) - Updated: Cinema no longer available

This theater is located in Plaza FX Sudirman, at Senayan area. I generally go to this cinema on Saturdays as I have a debit card from a bank which gives promotion of buy 1 and get 1 free ticket on every Tuesday and Saturday. Another positive thing I like watching here is the cinemas are not very crowded and I usually would be able to get the tickets at the seats my wife and I like. The other good thing about this cinema (and Cinemaxx theaters) are they sometimes show non Hollywood movies such as Japanese (anime) and Korean as well as Chinese movies that are not shown in 21 Cineplex. I also sometime enjoy the luxury of watching in the Cinemaxx gold class using that bank promotion (everything's that free is always nice, right?). However, what I do not like about this theater is I always have difficult time to get the promotion right when buying the tickets. I am not sure why when I have been buying these for more than few times already. Ooh 1 or 2 of its theaters also having Dolby Atmos sound system. So it's quite enjoyable watching here. The ticket price range from Rp 40k-60k (~ 3-5.50 USD) for its regular class and Rp 65-105k (~ 5-7 USD) for the Gold type.

Grand Indonesia - CGV Blitz (picture courtesy of www.cgvblitz.com)

I sometimes go to this theater on Sunday with my wife. Usually we go there when we also want to enjoy a whole day in Grand Indonesia mall having lunch, or just hang out in certain places where both of us can sit and do our blog writings, or even catching Pok√©mon. LOL. On Sunday, the same bank that give promotion for buy 1 get 1 free ticket in Cinemaxx also give the same promotion for CGV Blitz theater. So it's just nice to enjoy it on Sunday after our lunch, or before our dinner, or even at night. The other good thing about this cinema is its having so many screens (> 10 auditorium) and it also include their famous 4DX theater and velvet class if you want to enjoy something different. Though be ready to pay a little extra to watch them. I got to admit that this cinema's ticket price is a little bit high compared to the others. I think it's more because its located in a premium mall. The price range is from the lowest of Rp 50k (~ 4 USD) on weekdays to as high as Rp 150/160k (~ 12-13 USD) for 4DX or sweetbox during weekend. As for sound system, I think the regular ones are not satisfying if you want to enjoy it and the picture on screen not very bright. This is also the reason I usually watch there for movies that I do not require cool sound effects such as comedy or drama. CGV Blitz also having the same type of movies like Cinemaxx. So if the movie you want to watch is not playing in 21 Cineplex, then you can watch it either in CGV Blitz or in Cinemaxx.

Kuningan City - XXI (picture courtesy of www.21cineplex.com)

This is also a favorite theater of mine as it is located in Kuningan City mall at Jl. Satrio which is quite near my home in setiabudi. It is only 1 km away or 5-10 minutes drive and the mall is not a crowded one. I am generally able to get nice seats in that theater and the price is also quite reasonable, from Rp 30-40k (~ 2.50-3 USD) - updated Jan 2017 to Rp 30-50k (~ 2.50-4 USD). However it does not have Dolby Atmos or other type of sound system, so it's the general 7.1 Dolby surround sound system. My wife and I usually have few regular spots where we can also hang out and do our blogging in the mall, so that's also a plus point for us. It's a place where you can just relax and not having the rush feeling when you want to buy for movie tickets, even for huge blockbuster movies. 

Lotte Shopping Avenue - XXI (picture courtesy of www.21cineplex.com)

This is another theater that is the one frequently my wife and I go to during weekdays. Reason is my wife truly love to hang out in Lotte Shopping Avenue mall during weekdays. She has many favorite spots where she can hang out by herself or with her food blogger friends. Another reason for the cinema to be 1 of my favorite is that its Studio 1 is having 11.1 auro sound system which I feel is superior to the Dolby surround 7.1 system and therefore added to the element of enjoyment especially for me. The screen is also quite big and very enjoyable to watch. There is also the fact that a new movie usually premiers on Wednesday and for me who love to be quite update in watching new movies, this theater which is located near my office is definitely a plus as I can reach location quite on time on working day. The ticket price is also quite reasonable which starts from Rp 30k - Rp 50k (~ 2.50-4 USD) - updated Jan 2017 becomes Rp 35-50k (~ 3-4 USD).

Pacific Place - CGV Blitz (picture courtesy of www.cgvblitz.com)

This used to be 1 of my favorite cinemas when my office was still located in Sudirman Central Business District (SCBD) area as it is only walking distance to Pacific Place mall. However after my office was moved to Gatot Subroto area, it's becoming my least frequent theater to visit. Only after I have my car washed in SCBD area on Sunday, I may still go to watch movie in this theater. As I mentioned earlier, the bank promotion is valid in CGV Blitz on Sundays. So the ticket price is more economical then if there is no promotion (Rp 50-75k ~ 4-6.50 USD for regular) if I go on Sunday. Just like in Grand Indonesia, Pacific Place is also a premium mall with branded goods and therefore the cinemas target audience are the people whose office are in SCBD area or those that go to the mall for shopping. The screens in this cinema are smaller than CGV Blitz in Grand Indonesia and they are not having the cool sound systems for sound effects maniac like me. But the good thing as I said above, you can watch certain type of movies that are not shown in 21 Cineplex like those Chinese, Japanese, Korean and Hindi movies.

Plaza Semanggi - Cinemaxx (picture courtesy of www.cinemaxxtheater.com)

Due to the Saturday bank promotion, I also quite frequently come to the theater in Plaza Semanggi located in Semanggi area to watch movies on Saturday. However, there is only 3 studios and the theaters are quite small. There is no great sound systems either, just the usual 7.1 Dolby Surround system. However, the ticket price is quite low, ranging from Rp 30-45k (~ 2.50-3.50 USD). In addition I can watch certain movies that are not playing in 21 Cineplex. The mall location is also quite near my home and only takes 20 minutes drive so it's also an added plus for me and my wife. There are also lots of restaurants or coffee shops to hang out in this mall which can be a cool place to wait before the movie starts.

Setiabudi - XXI (picture courtesy of www.21cineplex.com)

Last but not least, this is 1 of my most favorite place to watch movie at the moment. It is located very near my home and less than 3 minutes walk. So it's a favorite during weekdays and sometimes in weekend. However, the cinemas are smaller than the other 21 cineplex cinemas that I am used to. They also have only the usual 7.1 Dolby Surround system. But due to the inexpensive price of Rp 25-35k (~ 2-3 USD) - Updated Jan 2017 now becomes Rp 35-50k (~ 2.50-4 USD) - and also the location, they more than make up for the "flaws" and I also chose to watch the movies which do not require those cool sound effects or the non blockbuster movies. And since it is indeed very nearby, I can also opt to watch the last show around 9 PM. 

So there you have it. The list of all cinemas that I enjoy watching. Most of them are located near or at least not too far from my home. I would choose which cinema I go to depending on the type of movies, the time of watching and the bank promotion I aimed for. If you go to any of those cinemas, who knows, perhaps I am also there watching the same movie as you are. 

Which cinemas that you enjoy to go? Maybe you can share your views or opinion.


1 comment:

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