Of the 'luxury cinemas', La Premiere at Hoyts might best be compared to business class. For approximately $5 less than Village's Gold Class, movie-goers can enjoy wide seats in a designated area at the back of the cinema, separated from the ordinary crowd by a velvet rope, railings that reflect the motion on the screen, and approximately $15 more than a standard adult ticket. The other perks occur before the movie, in a special (yet admirably wheelchair-accessible) lounge-and-bar area specifically for La Premiere patrons. Besides the luxury of attentive staff and the opportunity to queue up for free, unlimited popcorn and soft drink, it becomes apparent that in order to avail oneself of the bar and mid-movie dining, one must divulge oneself of (additional) exorbitant amounts of money. If it wasn't enough that you can buy nachos at the regular candy bar downstairs, you're sure to be delighted with $14 chips and an $18 burger. I would have liked to know if the portions were small or large, but unfortunately I couldn't afford to be overfed or underfed on anything but popcorn and luxury respectively. There is no additional provision for smokers, who must brave the usual staircases, ticket checks, blizzards, and loitering gangs of teenagers if they feel like a cigarette before (or during) their luxury movie experience. Walking between the lounge and the cinema, you get to see the projectors that service other cinemas in action, which feels like something between a privilege and an afterthought. Once inside, the large, comfortable, tray-furnished (though non-reclining) seats offer a good view of the screen, as well as the Hoyts minions who periodically scamper in front of you, serving food and drinks to your less-frugal neighbours. "Mmm, his salami and pesto pizza smells delicious... now get out of my way so I can see the film."
After living in Boronia and being a regular at the Village Cinemas in Knox, it has been a very refreshing change to now be living in Heathmont and having Hoyts as our local cinema. It is so much quieter, and you don't have to line up for 1/2 hour to get your tickets (often there isn't a line at all!). They have recently revamped their 'xtremescreen' cinema, so it now has super-comfy leather seats. We have also been to La Premiere a couple of times and it was pretty good. It doesn't really compare to Gold Class at Village however, as you are just up the back of a regular cinema, and you don't have the nice comfy recliners. The chairs are still comfortable, and the bonus is that you get free popcorn and drinks. The catch is that the cup and container they give you are tiny, so you have to keep going back for refills. Some of the cinemas are located quite far from the single DIY 'refill area', so you miss some of the movie from running up and down the corridor to top yourself up. There are always plenty of session times for each movie, with 2D and 3D options. They also have a good rewards program, where you can build up points to get free candy bar items or tickets (can take a while though!).
Went here last night with my partner to the La Premier class cinemas to see Wrath Of The Titans and all I can say is wow.....and Im not referring to the film!
When you ascend the stairway (to heaven perhaps) you are faced with a classy looking lounge/ bar area that could be a classy drinking spot in any inner city suburb and you forget where you are. You are greeted by a friendly, smiling staff member who ushers you to a table and gives you a minute to browse the menu and set up your food, snacks and drinks to come out at the times of your choice during the film.
I went with a Heineken and my partner set up a bourbon and coke to arrive every 45 minutes into the film and we both decided on a Chilli Beef Burger and had a cheese platter halfway through to share. I must also point out that in La Premier the popcorn and soft drink is complimentary, self serve and UNLIMITED, something I was automatically very impressed with.
The cinema seating itself is in lots of two, set up almost like couches and each has their own cup holder and small table to rest your drinks and snacks. The seating was so roomy and comfy and I almost dozed off towards the end! Whilst you don't actually get your own cinema like in say Gold Class, you get to be in the top balcony of the normal cinema and are sectioned off with a velvet rope, making you feel like a true VIP.
The food was amazing, I thought the burger was out of the this world and the portion sizes mean you really do get a meal and not a snack. For $18.50 the burger came with a huge stack of chips and a garlic aioli and I struggled to finish it all.
The cheese platter was equally impressive, the cheese of a high quality and served with a mountain of pita chips and refreshing slices of apple that complimented everything perfectly.
Partner and I were so impressed that even though this place is really a drive for us (we are in the Western suburbs, nearly an hour away) we have vowed to return and bring all our friends and family with us, this place is really worth the $33 a ticket and the service was so impeccable we really felt like we got that true VIP movie experience!