Amidst all the hype about 1Borneo and the spanking new cinemas of Golden Screen Cinemas, you may be forgiven for not realising that Growball Cinemas had an upgrade and they too have a new cinema.
Fun & Games
Fun Square, which is accessible from Centrepoint Shopping Centre’s Palm Square, is a recent addition to the plethora of entertainment options associated with the Groball name.
Spread over two levels, it includes an area with computers for Internet access and LAN games, a huge new arcade with a variety of games and a buffet restaurant and lounge.
The pride and joy of Fun Square however, is Growball’s new additional cinema number 8, which easily takes the crown as Kota Kinabalu’s top theater hall.
But let’s start on the outside.
As you walk up the stairs from Palm Square, you are greeted by the vibrant and colourful front of Fun Square.
A giant big-screen above the entrance shows trailers of current and upcoming movies to whet your appetite. A new Box Office is off to the left (although this doesn’t seem to be in use yet) and a gleaming new confectionery counter is immediately adjacent.
A set of escalators will take you up to the next level and entrance to cinema 8. You are greeted by another, smaller confectionery booth, which we guess are so that punters coming from the 8th floor needn’t walk all the way down.
Inside Growball’s Ciname 8
Growball’s cinema 8 itself is a contender for biggest cinema in Kota Kinabalu with over 300 seats (tbc). The entrance is at the top and back of the stadium-seating and offers an oh-wow moment as you take in the view of the deep, wide theatre hall that swoops down to the stage below.
The stage area is big enough for a small performance and it’s clear that the theatre was designed with more than just movies in mind. Indeed, Growball cinema 8 is available to rent for presentations, product launches and lectures.
A comfortable seat especially for long movies
The seats in the cinema are chunky and solid and the high seat-backs proves to be very comfortable.
All the arm-rests can lift up, ensuring that, like in GSC, every seat is a potential love seat.
With slightly different padding compared to the GSC line, the Growball seats feel a smidgen more comfortable as it gives more support. This is good for those 130 minute blockbusters.
The beauty of cinema 8 is that every single seat in the house has a great experience of the screen.
The screen is big enough to be impressive from the very back row, yet not so big that viewers in the front row will have to crank their necks to catch the entire scene. The same goes for seats on the extreme edges, even from there the picture looks great.
The theatre is equipped with all the state of the art surround sound you’d expect from a new installation, which nicely rounds off the experience.
The only bad thing to be said about Growball’s cinema 8 is that like every other cinema in KK, the aircon can get a bit cold. So if you’re prone to shiver easily, do bring along a jumper.
Oh and remember, the big, new movies usually show in cinema 8, so catch them while they’re new.