The Pacific Theaters 14 is located at The Grove Shopping Center, next to the Farmer's Market, at the corner of Fairfax and Third, in Los Angeles.
The Grove Shopping Center opened a few years ago and quickly became the destination for shopping and entertainment.
It is easy to see why The Pacific 14 has become a premiere destination for movies. I have heard that it is, regularly, one of the top grossing theaters in the country. It is also packed with people. Despite this, it rarely seems crowded.
The theater was designed to evoke the movie palaces of yesteryear. The lobby is huge and carpeted with an old-fashioned pattern carpet. Ornate chandeliers hang from the ceiling and a staircase leads off to the left.
There are two ticket stations. A long counter on the right, set inside the lobby, is staffed by real people. Or you can go to one of the kiosks at the front of the theater. All of the lobby personnel wear uniforms evocative of the Forties and Fifties. I'm sure they are uncomfortable, but they are a nice touch.
The ticket taker is about halfway through the lobby. After you pass though, you'll see the concession stand directly in front of you. A while back, this theater added kiosks to order and pay for concessions. These are a brilliant addition. You can avoid the long lines of parents with three children at the actual counter. No more waiting behind momma as she tries to ascertain what her three daughters want and argues with them when they don't want to share. Touch the screen, order your items, pay with credit card or cash, and take your receipt to a designated area of the concession stand. This is not a foolproof system. If the theater is packed, this area can get backed up. But it is heads and shoulders above the alternative.
The Pacific Theaters sell Coca Cola, popcorn, etc.
Theater One is to the left of the concession stand. This is the largest screen in the complex. That said, there doesn't seem to be a lot of variation between any of the screens. They clearly get smaller, in seating capacity, but not by huge amounts. All of the screens in this theater feature stadium seating.
Theater One is likely where the newest blockbuster will be during opening weekend. Like most stadium seating theaters, you enter through a hallway which is generally to one side of the main theater. In Theater One, you actually enter the in the middle aisle. This aisle has handicapped accessible seating and seating for their companions. Because of this, it is also very wide. Above this aisle is the main seating section, with a center area and aisles flanking it. Below the aisle is another seating area which is curved. Each of these areas is great. Even if you sit in the lower, curved area, you won't be as close to the screen as you think. Also, all of the seats in this complex have moveable armrests. But because this theater is fairly new, the seats were constructed in a different way. They don't shake as much when someone kicks a seat behind you. And if someone has there feet on the seat at the opposite end of the row, you probably won't notice it.
So far, the only bad seat I have found in these theaters is on the first row of the second level. There is a bar in front of this row, to keep people from falling into the handicapped accessible row, I guess. In some places, it obstructs the view, particularly on the sides.
This theater is a great venue to catch a film; large screen, digital sound and lots of seating.
Theaters Two and Three seem to be identical and are located to the right of the concession stand. They appear to be as large as Theater One, but they may be slightly smaller.
A large hallway to the right leads you away from the Concession Stand. Theaters Four through Thirteen line both sides of the hallway as you walk away. At the end of the hallway is Theater Eight. All of the theaters I have been in are comfortable, fairly big and enjoyable. No shoebox theaters here.
Theater Fourteen is opposite Theater One in the main lobby, next to the main restrooms.
Pacific Theaters clearly went some extra distance when designing this theater complex. They created a series of large theaters with large screens, great sound and comfortable seating. The entire theater caught on and many people trek there to catch the newest films.
They also realize that many people come here because of the comfort of the theater. This theater has the second highest ticket prices in Los Angeles. During the week, a bargain matinee costs $8.75. On weekends, the price goes up to $9.75. A full price ticket will cost between $10.75 and $11.75, depending on the day of the week. Yes, they seem exorbitant, but I actually don't mind paying the prices. The theater is comfortable and I don't mind paying a $1 more for that comfort.
Because this theater is so busy, I would recommend buying tickets ahead of time, online. This becomes especially important if you are going to a new blockbuster, on opening weekend, or one of the first few weekends. However, this will tack on an additional surcharge to your tickets prices. Pay it or risk finding out the show is sold out.
The Grove Shopping Center is apparently part of larger trend in shopping centers. Designed to look like an open air piazza, the streets are lined with cobblestone like material and there is a large fountain in the center of the shopping. I have seen many people standing at the pond watching the fountain, much like people watch the fountains at the Bellagio in Las Vegas. However, the comparison ends there.
Parking at the Grove is also a little more advanced. If you are going to The Grove, be sure to use the large multi-level lot set back from the corner of Fairfax and Third. Don't park in one of the Farmer's Market lots. Those are for the tourists and you will charged a fortune if you stay very long. When you enter the Grove's parking structure, signs display how many parking spaces are available on each level. Go to the level with the most available spaces. As soon as a space is filled or vacated, the number on these signs changes. Pretty neat and a great addition to car obsessed Los Angeles.
Pacific Theaters has created one of the most comfortable, nicest multiplexes I have ever been in, only surpassed by the Arclight. It is all of these things because they seem to have designed the complex with the customer in mind and not simply to wring every available dollar out of every available foot.