VALDOSTA – Georgia Theater Company’s Valdosta Cinemas unveiled part of its long awaited updates last week.
Valdosta’s GTX theater, which opened in March, has been a big success with its oversized, reclining seats, upgraded screen and immersive sound, according to theater management. General Manager Jim Cody said some patrons will settle for seeing their second-choice movie instead of their first choice based on what’s playing in the GTX theater.
“I put our GTX up against any in North Florida,” Cody said.
The theater opted to undergo more updates by outfitting all regular theaters with reserved recliners. Eight of the 15 regular theaters now have reserved recliners, which took roughly three months to complete.
The remaining theaters will be shut down in January for updates, following the holiday movie season, and Cody said he hopes by spring break, the entire theater will be completed.
Although these updates have decreased the theater’s capacity by half, Cody said improvements were made to modernize the Valdosta theater. He said what the theater has lost in capacity, it will make up for in occupancy as it is now a more comfortable experience.
So what do these seats mean as far as cleanliness?
Cody said with these upgrades, the seats are easy to wipe down, which is done by the ushering staff after every movie showing. The ushering staff actually has to be larger because with the recliners the cleaning is a bit more intensive with the need to clean out cupholders and sweeping under each one.
In another modern spin, the official “box office” has been closed and replaced with kiosks where movie goers can purchase tickets, which will be a necessity as all seats become reserved. Reserved seating also means there will no longer be a need for searching, and occasionally fighting, for the best seats.
Cody said not to worry though; the former box office workers have been re-purposed as kiosk attendants to help people operate the machines. It is also possible to pre-order tickets online at gtcmovies.com and scan a QR code at the kiosks.
For people who aren’t quite comfortable ordering tickets in advance or using the kiosk, the employees working concessions also sell tickets.
The concession area underwent upgrades, now giving customers the option of putting as much butter as they want onto their popcorn with no judgment and drinks are now self serve.
Since there are only eight completed theaters at the moment, Cody said the cinema will be switching movies through the theaters so every genre will be played, giving everyone the chance to appreciate the new upgrades.
A common question that comes along with upgrades is about the possibility of raising prices.
As of right now, Cody said he is not aware of any plans to raise ticket prices.
“There’s more than enough room in here for everyone to have a nice experience,” Cody said. “I hope everyone loves what we’ve done.”
GTC Valdosta Cinemas is located at 1680 Baytree Road.
Desiree Carver is a reporter at the Valdosta Daily Times. She can be reached at (229) 244-3400 ext. 1215.