April 04, 2018
After a nearly year-long renovation, a Montgomery County theater is showing movies again.
The AMC 309 Cinema 9 in North Penn reopened last week and film fans probably won't recognize the place.
Recliners. New movie screens and sound systems. New carpet and paint. More food and beverage options. And, soon, beverages for the adults.
The Kansas City-based AMC chain has been making over dozens of its theaters. It closed the theater at 1210 Bethlehem Pike (on the familiar corner at Routes 309 and 463) in May 2017. The 9-screen theater was back in business Thursday with two big movies on the marquee: "Ready Player One" and "Pacific Rim Uprising."
The theater has about half the capacity of the old one – to accommodate the power recliners.
With reserved seating, movie-goers can skip the box office and head to their seats by accessing their tickets on a mobile device.
In addition to popcorn, the snack bar features chicken and waffle sandwiches and tone-fired flatbread pizza.
On the way is AMC's MacGuffins concept for people of drinking age. Popular in many of the chain's other theaters, guests will be able to order beer, wine and cocktails before, during and after the movie.
Large and boutique theater chains are working to deliver an upscale moving-watching experience, and several other competitors in eastern Montgomery County will be opening in the next year or two.
In November, Penn Cinema plan to open an upscale 7-screen, 700-seat theater at The Marketplace at Huntingdon Valley in Upper Moreland in time for the Nov. 2 opening of "Mulan." The Lancaster Couty-based chain also plans a similar 7-screen theater in the Glenside section of Abington Township by the end of 2019.
An 11-screen Studio Movie Grill theater is proposed to open in the former J.C. Penney's space at the Willow Grove Park mall by Labor Day weekend of 2019. The dine-in theater would also serve adult beverages.