It is surprising how incongruous INOX is, launched as it has been in a period of severe economic uncertainties, and yet unabashedly targeting just those who can buy entire third-world countries using their HRA.
And if the product/service justifies what you've paid for it, like at a Novotel
for instance, then complaining about prices would just be, as Maya Sarabhai would put it, too downmarket. However, the reality here is that while you, the customer, won't shy away from shelling out the dough to start with, you will end up feeling pinched.
It's not the ticket price - indeed, it is tacky to complain about it when it is the same as in any other multiplex, i. e., Rs. 100 (and Rs. 200, for some value-adds). There is however a vague unpleasantness that sets in when you get into the process of parking your vehicle within the premises. The parking fees are a put off, with a promise to reach obscene amounts if you're there long enough - there are hourly charges. So is the process of parking itself - a sinuous way down a bottomless netherworld, where you're not likely to remember where you'd parked if you're not alert enough.
Then, the way up to the movies isn't too straightforward, either. It's not just about waiting for a lift or taking a strenous flight of stairs. You first take the escalators on your right as you enter the mall, and at the 3rd floor, dodge to the one on the left, for a security check. The screens are on the 4th floor, and you need directions to get to each one. Again, the layout of the multiplex is chaotic, the screens are arranged too far from one another, and the doors not even immediately discernible from the rest of the interiors.
Outside the screens, the decor is intimidatingly 5-star-hotelish, with heavy-set doors, and upholstered walls and floors, but the bright lighting and the blaring film songs being played make it less of a deluxe experience. On the whole, INOX has a fussy look and feel about it, and when you compare it with the minimalism of a, say, Prasads
, it is pretty puzzling - what is the point, and what could it have cost to keep it easy?
Each screen is insulated from the hubbub of the common area (which is essentially a passageway tracing half the perimeter of the mall) by a set of two doors. Inside, the first thing you notice is the walls bursting into the INOX logo and its sidekicks, resulting in a bit of loud stellar activity breaking the silence of the deep blue. The seating capacity ranges from 151 to 271. The top row of every screen consists of ritzy recliner seats, costing Rs. 200 each.
The viewing experience is doomed if you aren't shelling out twice the normal amount per ticket, and if you aren't at the start of the queue and quick enough to avoid being dumped onto the wings of the hall. The sound and light quality is expectedly first-rate, though.
The cafeteria is your land of plenty, and nothing is 'not available' here. There are samosas, rolls, pastries, a chat
counter, as well as the regulars - the popcorn and the nachos - all in visible abundance. There's a lot to cheer up the ravenous, but you'd better be really ravenous if you want to dig in, because the prices here are higher than anywhere else in the city.
Cheer up - the mall, GVK One, is swanky, so head early, find a good, legal tow-free place to park, and you'll do just great.