The VIP cinema experience – How the right seat can be the star of the show
The appetite for luxury-level movie going is growing and growing. This consumer trend is something that hasn’t gone unnoticed by the larger of theatre chains, which are increasingly adding VIP screens in venues around the world.
As world-leading Cinema chair suppliers, we know that there once was a time when the profit model for cinemas was simple – more seats, more revenue, today this model isn’t nearly so straightforward.
Make no mistake, cinema chairs are far from the purely functional pieces of furniture they once were. Consumers now expect more from their cinema seat and the movie-viewing experience. And they are willing to part with more cash for theatres that provide the luxury that they’re now looking for.
Whatever the size of your theatre, if you’ve been weighing up the potential of transforming a standard screen into a VIP experience, complete with cinema chair luxury, here are four reasons why this might be the right move.
VIP CINEMA SEATING
Four reasons to go VIP
Reason #1: Times have changed – patrons want an experience, not just a film
76% of Consumers Prefer to Spend on Experiences rather than on Material Items
Around the world, consumers are spending more on experiences – over and above physical goods. In the US, this change in behavior accounts for a 4x increase in revenue. In turn, this leads us to the cinema, where movie-goers are increasingly expecting a more luxurious experience, complete with electric cinema recliners. In the typical screen they want comfort, but in a VIP screen they want on-call service, more space, privacy, luxury and food and drink on par with the restaurant next door.
Reason #2: VIP cinema going is profitable (and great for your reputation, too)
As cinemas continue to battle it out over audience, luxurious movie experiences are proving a big draw in almost every market around the world. VIP screens provide your venue with a USP that your local competitors may not be able to offer, increasing attendance in the process.
But with that said, you might well wonder how the extra space needed for cinema chair luxury can possibly translate into profit. After all, VIP cinema seats usually demand considerably more floor space than their bog-standard counterparts. This means that theatres might lose as many as 50% of their standard seats when upgrading to cinema seat luxury. But in return, research shows that venues with VIP cinema recliners are now enjoying an increase in ticket sales of 80%. And this figure goes to show that VIP movie going can be your critical competitive edge.
Reason #3: Cross-sales of food and drink provide a further boost to your profits
The rise of so-called ‘dine-in’ movie-going seems unstoppable in many countries around the world. Offering food and drink straight to the luxury cinema recliners in a screen has proven to be a huge selling point for small, boutique and independent cinemas.
The 15-screen Village Cinema in Meridian, USA is the perfect example. Featuring adult-only VIP screens, to-your-seat cocktails and dinner, and Leadcom electric cinema recliners, patrons of this venue are ready and willing to spend far more than those who attend a run-of-the-mill standard cinema.
Here’s an outtake of what one journalist had to say about the experience (and in particular – our cinema recliners)…
“As I push buttons on a luxurious cinema recliner seat, my feet gently rise while my back lowers.
Aw, yeah. Folding my hands across my chest, I close my eyes and melt into my throne — nearly horizontal.”
Cinema recliner can include features that make concession sales from the seat a breeze. This can further justify a premium ticket price, while increasing revenue from cross-sales, just as the Village Cinema has demonstrated.
Reason #4: You decide how you define ‘VIP’
There’s no such thing as a standard VIP cinema screen. Each and every cinema chain defines their own VIP package, typically made up from a combination between the following features and services:
- Gourmet buffets in the waiting lounge
- On-call food and drink
- Unlimited complementary popcorn, nachos and soft drinks
- A wider selection of food – including freshly cooked meals and alcoholic drinks
- ‘Box’ or specialist privacy VIP cinema seats
- Extra wide seats and/or seats that recline to an almost vertical angle
- 4K picture quality
- Enhanced surround sound system technology
- Larger screens
- A private lounge and exclusive toilets for use before and during the movie
Choosing your seating supplier – 4 factors to consider
- Comfort – Take care not to mistake the extra soft cushion comfort of home cinema seating with VIP cinema seat comfort. While some seating suppliers manufacture excellent home cinema recliners which are incredibly comfortable, these seats won’t stand up to the challenge of commercial use and the heavy footfall of a cinema. Instead you should choose a supplier that manufactures electric cinema recliners to commercial standard using durable foam for optimal support.
2. Flexibility – VIP cinema seats should provide you with plenty of optional features, such as power-adjustable headrests to adjust viewing angles, tray tables, call buttons and space-saving wall mechanisms.
3. Low cost of maintenance – There are two factors that will affect how much your VIP cinema seats will cost to maintain.
First, whether the seating features replaceable parts, such as arm padding, arm protectors and outerback protectors. Being able to replace worn or damaged parts, rather than the entire seat, will significantly extend its lifespan.
Second, the durability of the cinema recliner, especially the parts that are most heavily used, will affect how often parts require replacement.
If a cinema recliner doesn’t feature both replaceable parts as well as highly durable materials and design, the cost of maintaining that seat will eclipse the cost of the seat itself.
4.Guaranteed delivery and installation timescales – Opening a new cinema? If the supplier of your cinema recliners can’t provide a concrete date as to when your seating will be manufactured, delivered and installed you could be left with a late and costly opening schedule. Alternatively, if you’re remodeling an existing screen, a delay could mean having to rearrange the services of other contractors, which could prove to be incredibly expensive.
Leadcom VIP cinema seats
Serving a world of cinemas, Leadcom seating is designed for cinema chair luxury. The features of these seats include:
- Swivel tray and inset, illuminated drink holders – Swivel trays and illuminated cup holders make eating and drinking more enjoyable for your patrons, and make for the perfect partners to hot meals and VIP cocktails.
- Service call buttons – Take your patron experience to the next level while boosting concession sales in the process, with staff who on call directly from luxury cinema recliners.
- Wall hugger mechanism – A must-have cinema seat innovation, wall hugger mechanisms save on precious floor space, so your venue enjoys all the benefits of VIP seating, while suffering only a limited reduction in total seats per screen.
- Automated foot lift, and plastic arm and outer back protectors – For easy, fast cleaning between screenings and maintenance made simpler.
- Next-level comfort – Using cutting-edge foam, our seats provide exceptional, ergonomic support – for at-home seating enjoyment made to commercial standards.
- Customization – Each and every cinema is unique. Our made-to-order service provides the level of customization you need for electric cinema recliners that match your brand. This level of customization is made possible by our 120,000 sqm on-site manufacturing facilities and strong engineering capabilities.
- Versatility – Our modular concept VIP cinema seating delivers both faster production timescales and smoother, cheaper maintenance for the years ahead. Mix and match seat types, features and materials, and easily replace or repair parts that become worn or damaged.
- Quality materials, design and manufacturing standards – Our quality control is stringent. We use only the most durable of materials, including high-grade steel which meets safety regulations, and foam and upholstery which adheres to the demanding BS5852 flame-retardant standard.
The VIP of VIP seats – Leadcom’s luxury cinema seat family
Let’s take a close look at premium cinema chair luxury. All Leadcom’s luxury cinema seats have long since been lauded for luxury style, space maximization and exceptional comfort. Used in projects in all four corners of the globe, few other cinema seats can compare with its form, functionality or level of luxury.