With the summer blockbusters out of the way, the next few months will see the release of a good number of the films that will be nominated for Oscars and other awards. The question is where you should go see them. Here is a little rundown on Sarasota's movie theaters and what you can expect from your visit.
Galleria Stadium 12 - If you're down in Venice, the Galleria is the go-to theater, largely because it's the only one. If you're looking for something a little more modern, you're going to have to come north.
AMC Sarasota 12 - Opened after the $50 million expansion of the Sarasota Square Westgate in 2006, these twelve theaters have stadium seating, large screens, and they're located right next to the food court if you'd like to sit down for a snack and after-film discussion.
Lakewood Ranch - As part of the Sarasota Film Society, the Lakewood Ranch Cinemas offers stadium seating and screens, as well as a number of special screenings and community events. After expanding their seating capacity by 25% over the last three years, the theater has also undergone a recent $750,000 renovation to their lobby to create a better flow to their new and improved concession stands.
Burns Court - For a more quaint experience in a much older theater, you may want to take a visit to the Burns Court Cinema in Downtown Sarasota. Old school seating in Sarasota's oldest theater, these three screens are the best place to catch the latest independent and art house films. In addition to the Fabulous Film Festival in September, which celebrates the LGBTQ community, Burn Court is also home to the Cine-World Festival usually held in November.
Cinebistro - For something more modern, you'll want to check out Cinebistro at Westfield Siesta Key a few miles south of Downtown Sarasota, one of the area's best new places to enjoy dinner and a movie. Featuring American Bistro cuisine, this theater boasts in-theater dining in comfortable reclining seats and a full bar. For dinner with your movie, you'll need to arrive thirty minutes ahead of time to get your order in, and after 6pm, you need to be 21 years old to get in.
Hollywood 20 - Celebrating its 20th anniversary this year, the Hollywood 20 began offering tickets for $6 earlier this year, but it looks as if those prices will be rising again. Following Cinebistro's lead, plans are underway for renovations that will decrease the number of the current twenty screens in order to make way for more luxurious movie watching. While the theater may be closed through the Fall, hopefully the changes to this Downtown Sarasota venue will be complete in time to host the Sarasota Film Festival again.
Parkway 8 - In case you miss any of the films you want to see on their first run, you do get one last ditch effort to see it on the big screen just about the time it comes out on Blu-Ray and DVD. The Parkway 8 is an older theater, but tickets are only $2.50 and the popcorn is just as good.
This should give you an idea of where to go and what to expect when you want to see a film. If you're a true filmophile and want to see a lot of movies, you might want to get a MoviePass. Similar to a Netflix membership, with a $9.95 monthly membership, you can go see a movie a day all month long. If you see more than one movie a month, you'll already be saving money.
I hope this helps you to enjoy all that Sarasota has to offer. If you'd like to consider moving a little closer to your favorite theater, let's arrange a tour.
Sarasota Area Real Estate Specialist