With the opening of GV Paya Lebar on Friday (Oct 6), film fans residing in a "cinema desert" will have somewhere to go.
The new 756-seat cineplex is located on the third level of SingPost Centre mall, next to the Paya Lebar MRT station.
Till now, along the East-West Line, between Bugis and Tampines - 11 stops in total - there have been no operating cinemas.
To the south is the newly opened Cathay Parkway Parade, at Marine Parade Road, and the GV Katong at the 112 Katong mall, opened in 2011. The nearest cinema to the north is Shaw Theatres nex, at nex in Serangoon Central.
GV Paya Lebar is operated by Golden Village Multiplex, Singapore's largest cinema operator. It has eight halls, including a premium-class Duo Deluxe auditorium, featuring larger seats with increased back support. Tickets for the deluxe hall are priced at $15 for weekdays and $20 weekends, while seats in the other halls are the standard $6.50 weekdays and $13 weekends.
In a first for a local cinema, a laser projection system has been installed. All halls feature the system, which promises sharper, brighter images.
The cinema's Grab & Gold Cafe has menu items exclusive to the venue, such as banana fritters ($5.50), beef chilli cheese fries ($7.50) and basil cheese pizza ($7.90).
Ms Ching Su-Yin, director of marketing for Golden Village Multiplex, says that the area around Paya Lebar MRT has changed in recent years with the arrival of malls such as Paya Lebar Square and SingPost Centre, as well as new private residential and Housing Board blocks along Circuit and MacPherson roads.
"These are all new developments in places that were once occupied by light industrial and car repair workshops," she says.
Ms Clara Cheo, Golden Village's chief executive, says that the goal of the cinema is to create "a more sophisticated experience for customers," adding that "the introduction of the laser projection system will be a game changer, not only for us, but for the industry at large".
More cinemas, operated by other chains, are expected to open in the Paya Lebar area as new shopping centres come on stream. Early next year (2018), the 600-seat GV Bedok will open in the refurbished building that housed the former Princess Theatre.