[Review] GV Gold Class vs Cathay Platinum vs Shaw Premiere

10:16 PM
Have you heard of cinema knees or experienced it before?  The proper medical term for it is patellofemoral pain - aiya basically knee cap pain when you over-exercise or sit for an extended period of time. I often experience that whenever I go for a 2-hour long movie and I guess it could be due to my preference for crossing my legs - increasing pressure. 


OR MAYBE I AM JUST OLD *sobs*


The various cineplexes have introduced premium seats for movie-goers who are willing to pay more for comfort. I managed to try three of them (except Eng Wah) and here's a short medium-length review of all of them! I do not have a lot of actual photos because the cinema is always dark when I arrived lol! 

GV- Gold Class 

credits to alvinology.com

If I am not mistaken, GV was the first to introduce these Gold Class seats. I went to their Suntec branch to watch "The Long Short" (awesome movie by the way).

You can immediately feel the class different starting with the booking of the movie at the theatres. Someone actually opened the door for me to step into the "Gold Class" area. Tickets came in "gold" paper as well. No one actually bothered to check our tickets when we stepped in for the movie- as though as they already knew we were coming. I mean of course they know humans are coming because of the number of seats booked, but how do they know where are we sitting? *inserts Harry Potter theme song*

Food: We only ordered truffle fries and they taste like truffle fries la, not overly fab but not bad either. I liked that there is a small light on the table - I could actually see how my food looked like

Seats: Apparently the seats were new, and they were really cushy. It felt like the seat is too big for my frame. You can control the back and leg rest separately. Bf also mentioned that he could have his legs fully stretched out. Unfortunately for me, the seat tend to want to go back to its original position if I moved, so throughout the entire movie I had to readjust my seat repeatedly. Very annoying. In the Suntec branch, the centre four seats are next to each other (in the 2-4-2 arrangement). Maybe GV wanted to cater to bigger groups of people, but just take note if you couples wish to sit at the centre.



[EDIT: 24/7/18: my own #nofilter haha photo from Vivo post movie]
so as you can see it is the 2-4-2 arrangement. Good for families with kids I guess. Although why on earth will you spend over $30 per ticket for your kid who probably doesn't understand half the show is beyond me. Oh the seat wasn't an issue for me this time round! 

Blanket: Came in a pouch and it didn't have any smell, which was great!
[EDIT: 24/7/18 we went to Vivocity's Gold Class for Antman, blanket didn't come in a pouch anymore. Aiyer]

Misc: The toilet was gold standard too, they used recycled paper made from some bamboo or something. Anyway, after you wipe your hand you can smell the bamboo scent :O Toilet looks nice and clean as well. Oh, you can also buy tickets in one branch (e.g. VivoCity) for shows in another branch (e.g. Suntec), not sure if this means anything in this "anything-can-buy-online" era, but this might be useful for those who are holding the physical tickets. 

Price: Weekend price is about $78 a pair, which is shit expensive for a 2 hour movie. There are some ongoing VISA/DBS promotion and the tickets would cost around $52 a pair on weekdays.

Shaw Premiere

This was the first premiere class cinema we tried. First with "Kingsmen" and then I could not remember the other one. Compared to Gold Class, it lacked the "higher class" feel. The waiting area/restaurant looks a lot like a cafe and it was located right next to the escalators, so it did not give off the classy,private feel (if that's what you are looking for).




Food: Again, we ordered truffle fries and they taste like truffle fries lol. We also ordered breakfast set, which again tasted very normal. The only downside is that there is NO light, so we had to be really careful while we ate. 

Seats: Not as comfy as Cathay or GV. BF could not stretch out his leg fully. You only have one button to control both the leg and back rest. It is also distinctively dirtier than GV/Cathay. We saw some white stuff on the chair (presumably cream/mayo?), definitely not a good idea to lean over to your partner for a chat-best to keep your whole body in your own seat haha. 

Blanket: Bf said his blanket had a distinct disinfectant smell which he disliked but at least it meant that the blankets are clean... right? The blanket was also rougher than those in GV/Cathay. Though you probably would not complain about the roughness of the blanket because it was really cold. ANYTHING WILL DO. 

Misc: The toilet is like a normal toilet you see in typical shopping centres, you even need to walk down stairs to access it. The service crew are attentive to our needs though, remembering the time to send our food over. Location wise it is very inconvenient because there is only a single branch in NEX, unlike Cathay or GV. The theatre size is not as huge as GV, with the arrangement being 2-2-2 as opposed to 2-4-2. Cinematic effect not as fantastic as GV's. We watch Marvel movies in both and we could feel sound vibrations in GV but not Shaw. So if you are all about having a very immersive experience in cinemas (I just made up these words, have no idea wtf did I just wrote), then go to GV instead. I cannot compare with Cathay because I sat in front lah (if that's not IMMERSIVE I don't know what is), where got fair right. 

Price: $25/ticket for weekdays, $30/ticket for weekends. You get $5 F&B voucher with each ticket purchased. So technically our truffle fries was nearly FOC (GST inclusive). Basically mai hiam buay pai, Shaw Premiere is especially good if you live near NEX. 

Edit 28 June 2018:
Finally took some pictures (still bit too dark though...)!
This has been my to-go choice for Marvel shows this year 😬

See the handphone light on the right bottom? That's mai seat
.

Ordered the "unlimited" popcorn set that comes with a free drink ($11.50 before GST). 
It is obviously a smart marketing tactic because neither of us can finish our bowls. 
*sidetrack* Anyway, so my friend was in tears of joy because GV Gold Class mixed the sweet and salty popcorn for her. She claimed that this is not normally done in normal cinemas. I wouldn't know because I don't buy overpriced popcorns. 
So I took this photo to one up hers because Shaw put the sweet and salty popcorns in two separate bowls hoho. 
*end of sidetrack*


We watched Jurassic (omg yawns) in the other premiere cinema, the one further away from the restaurant and toilet. Didn't even know it existed until then. 
Three rows from the screen is ok, but not the best, also we were seated at the side (2-2-2 arrangement as well), so also not ideal. 
Somehow this theatre feels older? Because my seat is obviously sunk in, but alright it didn't disturb my comfort. 
Two theatres were in used that day, so I think it was a little hectic for the staff, they missed sending our orders at the stipulated timing and we had to chase. 
Then again, because I paid like $16 per pax, so I am not going to complain so much. 

Food that I recommend: Popcorn (lol how to go wrong with this?!) and truffle fries. Basically you can't go wrong with finger food lah. 

Food that are bit blah: The American breakfast set and the linguine aglio oilo
As I said there are no lights, so very hard for you to cut through your sausages. Also it is a crime to put capsicum in aglio oilo. Just..no... 

Cathay Platinum 

We went to the Jurong branch for "Captain America: Civil War" 
The waiting area is definitely more exclusive than Shaw. They wasted so much space, having two levels of waiting area. You have to take a lift up within the Platinum zone in order to watch the movie. #cannotunderstandthislogic



Food: The Jurong branch does not provide food that you expect in premiere theatres (i.e. the truffle fries, pasta set and what nots). All they had were food you can ordered in non-premiere class - like honestly, what's the point? We had mac and cheese because I felt like it and it wasn't great. The pasta was hard and the cheese was not as great as GV's. Le sigh. 
[Edit 24/7/18: apparently Cathay is acting like Shaw and now starts to give free food (as opposed to Shaw's free F&B vouchers), have neither tried them, nor know what they are, so please go Cathay website to check the latest info

Seats: Bf liked the seats, he can stretched his legs out completely and there is also a sense of privacy (see pictures below). Like GV, you use two buttons to control the leg and back rest, but to me it is just not as comfy (as GV's). Maybe because we were seated at the second row (see below).  

Blanket: Comfy level in the middle of GV's and Shaw's, but it is quite short on the width. Might be an issue for bigger-sized people. 

Price: Weekend price is $76/pair. Again it is shit expensive and unlike GV there aren't many credit card promotions that you can make use of unless you hold some by-invite-only cards. 

Misc: Toilet is also pretty normal. Cinema size is also small (like Shaw's) in the 2-2-2 arrangement. It maybe different in other branches. Cathay had made changes to offline booking. If you want to watch a show in Jurong you can ONLY get your tickets in Jurong, not Cine, not at The Cathay. IT MUST BE AT Jurong. This is seriously inflexible, I don't even know why they had to do that -,- 


This is my seat second row from the screen. DO NOT even try man. It is probably not as bad as being in the front rows in the normal cinemas, but it is not that comfortable as well. 
Try to sit behind instead!



[Updated 28 June 2018] P/S my friend preferred Cathay over Gold Class because it is more private and sometimes it has this buy ticket free finger food platter set. Just thought you should know.

TL;DR: 
GV= First class suites (ok a bit pushing it) or how about SIA/Emirates/Qatar business class
Cathay = Business class in some less atas airline (but still more private than GV, for couples la)
Shaw = Premium economy

BONUS: Cathay Elite Seats

We watched "Deadpool" there. 

These seats are found only at the last rows of the normal theatres in Westmall (why is everything in the West?!), for a fixed price of $14 whether weekdays or weekends. These are perfect for people who do not want to pay so much for the "premium" experience but want that comfort (in the knees). There is no blanket given and the theatre can get very cold, so bring your own blanket and act atas lor =P

pic from greatnewplaces.com

Overall verdict: GV still leads in terms of class, comfy level and convenience. There are many movies that can be watched in Gold Class, whereas most of the time in Platinum and Premiere, they are only showing at max, two different movies. Cathay and Shaw are also very reluctant to release movie timings across extended period of time. Like now, I cannot even know the timing for the only movie screening in Cathay platinum (X-men) for Monday. Seriously -,-

I have to say I was being a cheapo - I never paid more than $50/pair for each movie that I have watched (thanks to kind people in Carousell) and I would also add that I will NEVER pay more than $50, regardless of how much comfort they provided me with since I don't print cash =P. If I cannot get cheap tickets to the proper premiere classes, then I would definitely go for Elite seats for movies that are longer than two hours. If you are as stingy as me, I hope this review can help you make your decision :) 


[Edit: 7 March 2018]

GV Duo Deluxe

This is a fairly new product from GV.
I must say I have NOT tried it and also NOT INTENDING to try.
Because it is in Paya Lebar which is too far away from where I stay. 
picture from GV.com.sg

I mean, just look at the above and question just what is so fantastic about this that you would want to travel for lol. 
 It cost $15 on a weekday and $20 on a weekend. 

"First of its kind 58-seater Duo Deluxe cinema features spacious, sleek twin leatherette seats that are specially designed with lumbar cushion for superior support and comfort."

If this are seats for premium economyy on a 8 hour flight mayyyybeeee.
But it is usually at max a 2.5hour movies.  Lumbar support Har Har har.

I would rather pick the Elite seats in Cathay because there is the leg rest feature which is PROMINENTLY missing from the Duo Deluxe and it cost less.
If I need to pay $20, I would rather pay for Shaw Premiere, the margins aren't that wide + I still get voucher for food.

If you have tried and think it is good, leave a comment and let us know :D




11 comments:

  1. Wow.... These cinemas are awesome. I will love to visit one like this. I may sleep there as well :)

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  2. 'Luxe' cinemas are such a treat! I like to splurge on them every now and then to reward myself :)

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  3. I've never been to any places above... TT Looks nice.. I wish they have the similar thing in my city, Surabaya

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  4. I have experienced such cinemas. They all seem amazing. Great review :)

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  5. Thanks for the review. Will try GV Gold Class

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  6. you wouldn't be disappointed :) happy holidays!

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  7. thanks for the very practical review. It is indeed expensive to buy premium movie tickets here in Singapore. So when we overseas, if we have the time, we make it a point to do it there.

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  8. really appreciate you for giving us a frank and honest opinion about what the experience in these different halls are like. cheers!

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    Replies
    1. you are welcome! If you have yet to tried, I have updated the post with a few more pictures ;)
      Enjoy your experience in whichever one you picked!

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  9. Wow! Thanks to your clear description. Will attempt at JEM for my first stop.

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