Muvico Boosts Investment in St. Pete

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Joining what Muvico CEO Neil Bretan has dubbed "Extreme Makeover, Baywalk Edition," Muvico is making yet another round of big improvements to their downtown location, bringing their investment in St. Pete to over $2 million just in the past two years. 

Citing confidence in the market, the boom in business along St. Pete's waterfront district and the promising future of The Shops at St. Pete, Bretan told us in an interview from the company's Ft. Lauderdale headquarters that "the residents of St. Pete have always deserved a best-in-class movie theater, and the upgrade is a continuation of our longstanding commitment to provide exactly that."  

The changes include making the theater one of the most high-tech in the nation with an all-digital makeover of Sony 4K projectors, digital signs at the box office, several new automated box offices, free Wi-Fi in the theater lobby and Dolby 7.1 surround sound. The new digital projector systems outpace the current industry standard of 2K and provide the highest definition available with picture resolution that's 4 times what's seen on a the highest definition TV set on the market today. They're also adding another 3D screen, bringing the total to three. 

Bretan says that among all their 9 locations nationwide, St. Pete's upgrade will represent the company's biggest investment so far this year. Overall, the latest round of improvements will total over $725,000. "Ours is the only movie theater within the city limits, and now that the Bill Edwards Group is completely reshaping the center, we want to keep pace."

Given the momentun of downtown St. Pete, the City's continued commitment to BayWalk and the downtown core, and that Edwards' team is already beginning the transformation of the lifestyle center, we wanted to know if attendance improved? 

"Our traffic has increased--no question about it." confirmed Bretan. At its height, the theater had more than a million visitors a year, but as of six months ago, they had less than half that. Today, the numbers are on the uptick, and faster and sooner than expected. 

"Once the center is chugging along, we expect to surpass the million mark," continued Bretan. "We're hugely excited about what Bill is doing and excited to reaffirm our commitment to St. Pete." 

Other features to look for are the new Muvistar Rewards Program, which is "the most generous, easy-to-understand rewards program in the industry" and a plan to move the theater to 100% reserved seating. Much like going to see a concert, guests will be able to reserve seats online, over mobile devices and at the box office, providing convenience and more time to park the car, order food and use the restroom without worrying about finding the perfect seat.

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