Palace to shine in Portmore

BY RICHARD JOHNSON
Observer senior reporter
johnsonr@jamaicaobserver.com

Sunday, May 26, 2019

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Special features are coming for Sunshine Palace, the new cinema to be opened in Portmore, St Catherine, next month.

Palace Amusement Company, Jamaica's sole motion picture exhibitor and distributor, notes that there will be certain details which will be peculiar to the four-auditorium, 674-seater theatre at the newly constructed Sunshine Outlet Mall located along Braeton Parkway in Portmore Pines, St Catherine.

According to Melanie Graham, Palace Amusement Company's marketing manager, due to the nature of the Portmore community, they will have to adapt certain things to suit that market.

“One of the things we have to look at is show times. We have not decided on the specific start time for the movies, but it will not be the 5:00 pm and 8:00 pm which we have at our other cinemas. It could be about an hour later, which will give people some time to get home. So we might end up with 6:00 pm and 9:00 pm. We are also looking at the possibility of early shows on a Saturday and Sunday. Plus, for the people who like going out a little later, there will be late shows. We are still to decide whether we will have it on Fridays, but it will definitely be held on Saturdays,” Graham told the Jamaica Observer.

She also noted that the Sunshine Palace will come with the latest film projection technology and some of the most modern creature comforts available to the movie theatre world.

“It will be digital projection, which will give a crisper, clearer sound and visual quality. All four cinemas will have silver screens, which serves to enhance the picture quality. The concession stands will offer something a little extra and different from what you have at our other cinemas. As usual our seating arrangements will offer patrons the very best in comfort. Our box seats will all be rockers, and we are trying something new in one of the houses. We are creating VIP seating which will feature lounge seats for even greater comfort,” Graham explained.

This is not the first time that Palace will be venturing into the Portmore community with a cinema.

For a number of years, the company operated the Portmore Palace, which was located inside the Portmore Mall, located in the Portmore Town Centre. That cinema closed its doors in 2005 due to poor patronage.

Graham noted that the time is now different and strongly believes the community is ready for a cinema, hence the decision by Palace Amusement to return.

“When we opened the Portmore Palace, I think it was an idea that was before its time. At that time, Portmore was more of a dormitory community. Persons were accustomed to coming over to Kingston to work and for entertainment. That whole scene has changed over the years. Now you have a lot more people living and working in the community. There is now more commercial activity including call centres, and banks, which sees the residents staying in the community rather than the to and fro which took place in the past. In addition, we believe that the cinema at the Portmore Mall was not an ideal location. It was just in a bad location in the shopping centre and so that didn't work well for us. We are convinced that with this new location and the growth in the population, things should work out a lot better for Sunshine Palace,” said Graham.

Palace Amusement Company operates three other cinemas. Carib 5 and Palace Cineplex in the Corporate Area and Palace Multiplex in Montego Bay.


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