Ovation Cinema Grill 9, a long-awaited movie theater off the N.C. 55 Bypass, will begin showing first-run features Thursday, Oct. 13, bringing the growing dine-in movie experience to Holly Springs.
The nine-screen Carmike Cinemas movie theater opened for preview days on Oct. 5 at 320 Grand Hill Place in Holly Springs Towne Center. The theater will show films like “X-Men: Apocalypse,” “The Conjuring 2” and “Star Trek: Beyond” through Tuesday, Oct. 11, before first-run films begin two days later.
The town’s first movie theater has full-service dining, where moviegoers can order food and drinks, such as grilled shrimp tacos and a barbeque chicken flatbread, while seated in electric, luxury recliners that allow them to request service at their seats. Movie-goers can reserve their seats when buying tickets.
Brian Dobson, director of restaurant operations at Carmike Cinemas, said interest in this type of movie theater is growing because of the at-your-seat service and reserved seating.
“There’s no rush to get to the theater an hour before,” he said. “That’s your seat, whether you’re five minutes late, an hour late or don’t even show up.”
This is the third theater with full-service dining to open in western Wake County. Last year, CineBistro opened in Cary’s Waverly Place, and Frank Theatres opened a CineBowl & Grille in Parkside Town Commons, a mixed-use development on N.C. 55 near N.C. 540.
Dobson said Carmike Cinemas already has 15 dine-in theaters throughout the country with plans to open three more by the end of the year and five or six more to open early next year.
The theater has an outdoor patio, as well as a cocktail lounge in the lobby with a bar, fireplace and five flat-screen televisions.
The bar will serve craft beers from three Triangle breweries: Carolina Brewing Company in Holly Springs, Aviator Brewing Company in Fuquay-Varina and Bull City Ciderworks in Durham. These may rotate to allow for more local or seasonal beers.
“We really feel like that kind of Ovation Cinema Grill experience is arrive 30 minutes early, meet with your friends, have a cocktail or appetizer outside. Then come inside, have dinner, and on the way out, stop off for coffee and dessert by the fireplace,” Dobson said.
He said customers can come for just a movie and popcorn or to enjoy a full meal. Food is served in the theater up until the last hour of the movie, he said.
“We allow you to create the experience you are looking for,” Dobson said. “You don’t even have to have a ticket. You can come in and have lunch with us. You can have dinner with us. Stop by to have a cocktail, watch Monday night football, whatever you want.”
Tickets run from $6 for children and seniors during matinee times to $10.50 for adults during prime times. There is a $3 fee for 3D movies.
Carmike Cinemas offers a special on Tuesdays with $5 tickets for any movie along with soda and popcorn specials.
The closest theaters to Holly Springs are in nearby Cary, Morrisville and Apex, but the closest two theaters – Regal Beaver Creek Stadium 12 in Apex and CineBistro in Cary – are each 15 minutes away from the new site.
Kathryn Trogdon: 919-460-2608: @KTrogdon
Ovation Cinema Grill 9 will have preview days through Tuesday, Oct. 11. Second-run movies can be seen for $3. Proceeds will benefit local schools, the Holly Springs Food Cupboard and Meg’s Smile Foundation.
Preview week tickets can be bought for the following films: “Star Trek: Beyond,” “Ice Age: Collision Course,” “X-Men: Apocalypse,” “Ghostbusters,” “Angry Birds,” “The Conjuring 2,” “Central Intelligence,” “The Purge: Election Year” and “Cafe Society.”
First-run films will start with the grand opening on Thursday, Oct. 13.