A perfectly considered blend of old and new with a reverend nod to the art deco design of the 40's and the golden age of cinema has restored, not only the town's beloved old Picture House, but the nostalgia and glamour of a night at the movies. As opening night approaches in the next week or so, locals and visitors in Youghal and East Cork will see the extent of work that has gone into elevating a simple night at the pictures to a bona fide night out. Inside of a minute, it's evident that no expense has been spared on the craftsmanship, décor and digital technology that culminate in the finished product which is the newly refurbished Regal Cinema. Speaking with The East Cork Journal, David O'Rourke (Company Director) said “It's been a hard but personally rewarding project. My family has strong ties with Youghal and that has helped keep inspiration and determination levels high.”
Grey panelled walls, an art deco inspired carpet and lighting, lush teal seating, together with reclaimed, reused, revitalised and restored original features evoke a sense of luxury that just doesn't happen the omniplexes of the modern era. However, the projectors and equipment for showing films is the most up-to-date and advanced available. A fully modern cinematic experience with a richness of style and splendour.
Let's face it, for a couple to hire a babysitter and go to the cinema can be a costly experience. While there will always be a place for the 8 screen multiplexes around the country, The Regal Cinema experience promises that special 'something extra' and unique surroundings that you cannot get from the city multiplex.
Screen 1 comprises of a total of 122 seats, 99 on the ground floor and 23 on the new mezzanine level – so some couple must bring the mother in law!! The seating in that upper level is the pinnacle of comfort with wide armchair type seating (made in France) covered in velvety red material, with each seat number stitched in golden thread. This area shall be reserved for adults only for both safety (due to the balcony) and audience comfort. The beautiful old surround of the screen is original, and the inlay has been tastefully revived.
Screen 2 will seat 55. Screen 3 is the multi-purpose room. It can seat 40 and, as needed, the seats can be removed and the space becomes, well, whatever you wish. There will be access for community groups, presentations and meetings. Groups such as Youghal Musical Society can use it for rehearsals for example and basically, whatever function you wish. The team will also be able to live stream concerts, plays and events right onto the screen. All sorts of community serving uses are in the plans for the Regal, such as autism screenings and old black and white film nights (as an aside from a movie lover, Jimmy Cagney and Fred Astaire were born 120 years ago next year – wouldn't the chance to view some of their classics on the big screen be phenomenal?) You could even arrange to invite friends and family to watch your wedding video! The possibilities for uses of the spaces are limitless. Fellow Company Director, Nick Eagle, said “We're delighted to have the multi-purpose space, which we feels offers the public something completely different from the norm.”
Now what extra facility could possibly up the ante for this great night out? Yes, a bar! David O'Rourke, owner of Redbarn Construction, is delighted to announce that a wine licence has been granted and a wine bar has been installed upstairs. In line with the luxury of the refurbishment, overseen and organised by Ned O'Connell's Interiors, the wine bar décor oozes the same luxurious attention to detail as seen in the screening rooms. The original half dome windows set the entire space apart. The tasteful lighting, colours, fabrics and upholstery throughout the building were chosen and put together by Michelle, Catherine and the rest of the team at O'Connell's. Speaking with The East Cork Journal, Michelle said, “We're delighted to be a part of bringing back the glory days of the Regal Cinema. It was a challenge and a lot of work but we drew plenty of inspiration from the sight of such a fine building with its original features and touches of the 40s. David, Nick and the team have been a pleasure to work beside, and we at O'Connell's wish them the very best with their new venture. I'll look forward to many evenings in the future when I can buy a ticket, relax into a seat and enjoy a show.”
Ticket prices are as follows:
Adults €8 before 5pm and €10 after
Student / OAP €7 before 5pm and €8 after
Family of 4 €23 before 5pm and €27 after
Children €6 before 5pm and €6.50 after
Mezzanine level is €22.50 and includes a large drink and popcorn
Tickets can be booked online at www.regalcinema.ie where up to date information will be available. Also details can be found on their Facebook site.