The best movie theaters in Las Vegas
Countless consumer awards and regular high- profile premières pay tribute to the Brenden Palms' central role in the Vegas moviegoing experience. With the exception of June's CineVegas Film Festival, blockbusters dominate, with one major feature usually configured for the sole IMAX screen.
This 18-screener at the Orleans ushered Las Vegas into the cineplex era with such amenities as stadium seating and THX-equipped auditoria. Although it isn't as chic as its chief competitor, the nearby Brenden Las Vegas 14 at the Palms, it's remained one of the valley's most beloved movie theatres. Every so often, the roster includes a major studio-sanctioned art flick.
The 16-screen theatre at the Suncoast is a popular choice among Summerlin residents, while Vegas cineastes willing to make the trek also enjoy the CineArts series, which includes anywhere from one to three independent and foreign films. Cinemark also runs a number of other movie theatres in the city, all based in casinos and all specialising in mainstream fare. Among them are the Century 18 Sam's Town (547 7469), the Century Stadium 16 Rancho Santa Fe (655 8178) and the Century 16 South Point (260 4061).
Fancy a beer with your movie? This Galaxy theater will do you one better: You can enjoy yourbrew in the comfort of a huge reclining chair. This new movie house (which took over the space of a long-closed theater) serves beer and wine, and features large, plush seats you'll probably have to be prised out of once the show's over. Plus, the screens are enormous, the sound is incredible and the ticktes priced the same as everywhere else. Yes, it's quite a way from the Strip and you'll need to get your ticket ahead of time, but you'll be glad that you did.
The Regal cineplexes are among the busiest in town: partly due to their locations in the popular Station Casinos, but also thanks to the variety of programming. The best by far is the cinephile-favoured Village Square 18-screener, which shows as many as five non-mainstream films (plus concert simulcasts) at any given time.
You can catch the latest blockbuster at the only movie theatre on the Strip, but don't expect lots of locals, any great luxury or cutting-edge cinema technology at this ageing cineplex just north of the MGM Grand. Parking in the Showcase garage is free with validation; if, that is, you can get past the parking lot that is Las Vegas Boulevard.
This 50-year-old institution has survived several changes in ownership and the increasing popularity of indoor multiplexes, leaving it as Vegas's only remaining drive-in. It's ideal for traditionalists and cheapskates who favour bringing their own drinks and snacks, though lights emanating from the surrounding sprawl have affected visibility. Six screens offer double features of current releases; sound is available through your FM radio.