The iconic Chanakya theatre is back in a revamped avatar — as PVR ECX, The Chanakya — a three-screen multiplex with a seating capacity of 1,001, upgraded technology, luxurious ambience and set in a retail space with a string of international brands.
First built in 1970, the single-screen theatre which could accommodate over 1,000 people at a time, was shut down in 2007.
Indian film exhibition company PVR Cinemas, which has clocked 20 years, on Friday lifted the curtain on the refurbished Chanakya in the capital’s posh diplomatic enclave Chanakyapuri, thereby taking its own screen count to 600.
Joint Managing Director of PVR Ltd, Sanjeev Kumar Bijli told IANS the investment for the revamp was pretty high — around Rs 12 crore to Rs 13 crore.
Backed by a 4K projection system, 3D-enabled screens with ultra HD picture quality and Dolby ATMOS surround-sound system in all auditoriums, PVR ECX will offer Enhanced Cinema Experience, where the contemporary design blends with the best in cinema technology, officials said here.
The new theatre is not reminiscent of the heritage that Chanakya stood for, but PVR officials hope it gives fresh memories to the new generation of cine-goers.
“This is a property a lot of us grew up watching films in. It used to have the best Nirula’s, the best sound and projection and it was the number one hangout place and now with the help of DLF, which has let us be a part of this revamp project, we hope this destination with a mall and this cinema in its new avatar, attracts film goers,” Chairman and Managing Director, PVR Ltd, Ajay Bijli said.
“Chanakya holds a special place. It’s great that it has opened in its new avatar. I hope people enjoy movies here the way they used to enjoy at Chanakya.”
The old theatre had lost the battle to the capital’s civic authority NDMC, which gave DLF a chance to redevelop the property, where PVR is a tenant partner.
Designed by Madrid-based STUDIO GRONDA, the multiplex has magnificent lobby spaces, custom-made chandeliers and advanced technological integrations both on and off screen. The lobby is adorned by posters and, interestingly, the complex offers a digital ticketing solution to promote cashless transactions and reduce ticket-wait times.
There are also automated food and beverage kiosks of Quick Bites, wherein patrons can either pick up their order from the counter or get it served at their seats.
The multiplex is spread across an area of 21,673 sq ft, and will be a part of the new two-storied The Chanakya mall, DLF’s luxury retail housed at the Yashwant Place Community Centre — a nostalgic landmark for Delhi’s residents.
The mall will have boutiques for brands like Mont Blanc, Tom Ford Women, Kate Spade and Juicy Couture, as well as India’s first stand-alone Hermes store.