If someone wants to go to the movies these days, the first and foremost question would be, "What shall we see?" In fact, for some people, this is the only question. There will be a cinema close by that they can drop into and enjoy two hours of escapism. But for others, going to the movies involves a whole other side: service, food, wine, opulence. For these people, the choice is Gold Class. I decided to take a quick stroll through a Gold Class screening to see whether this luxurious way of seeing films is really that impressive.
The first thing you notice when walking into Gold Class are the doors. Large, glassy and gold rimmed, you immediately feel as if you're walking into something special. And that's what Gold Class is all about: making you feel special. When you've made your way through, a smiling waiter will escort you either to a table, or inside the cinema (depending on how late you are). This touch of a greeting at the door is a pleasant surprise. You may as well have walked into an inner-city restaurant.
To be honest, that 'restaurant' call is not too far from the truth. On first occasions, you're given the rundown of how Gold Class works, and immediately are handed menus with starters, entrees, mains, desserts, wines, beer, you name it. It's there. All Gold Class establishments are fully licensed restaurants as well: the kitchen is real, the bar is real. A nice touch. If early, take a seat at one of the plush couches and figure out what you want to eat.
Now, this is one of Gold Class' big calling cards. Any food you order is served to you during the film. For some, this is an absolute treat: to have kitchen-cooked meals served to you during a film, without any fuss, is brilliant. All the food can be eaten with hands as well, which is a big plus. On the other hand, some will find it incredibly irritating to have people tapping on your shoulder every 45 minutes, asking to take your plates away. Thankfully, seats are split into section of two, which means the waiters are never in the way of the screen.
Onto the cinemas themselves. Gold Class prides itself on giving customers the best possible viewing experience, and from my experience, they've done a damn fine job of it. Seats are massive (probably bigger than a normal home recliner) and comfortable, padded just enough to provide support without making you fall asleep. The seats are also fully reclinable, and the spaces between seats (in front and behind) are large enough to recline fully without annoying your fellow moviegoers. Economy class, this is not. Screens seem to be higher quality than normal, and the sound is fantastic. Big ticks across the board.
But how does this all compare to a normal movie experience? Well, for starters, the film you see will be exactly the same as anywhere else. Apart from a slightly better quality picture and sound, that part remains the same. The service, food, beverages and seats are what to go to Gold Class for. If you like your entertainment a little opulent, you'll love this. But for those who simply want to see a good film without fuss, just go to a basic cinema. Either way, you won't leave without seeing what you came for.