Majid Al Futtaim, the leading shopping mall, communities, retail, and leisure pioneer across the Middle East, Africa and Asia, announced that VOX Cinemas, Little Explorers, Magic Planet and Yalla! Bowling reopened across the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia on Sunday following the recent government directive from the General Commission for Audiovisual Media. VOX Cinemas will additionally launch a new 11-screen multiplex at Sahara Mall later this week, marking a significant milestone as it surpasses 100 screens in Saudi Arabia in just over two years.
Spanning 3700sqm, VOX Cinemas Sahara Mall has a total seating capacity of 991 and features cinemas designed for young movie fans, and two GOLD auditoriums for guests who want to indulge in a luxurious experience whilst enjoying fine food and beverages delivered to their seats. With a total of 101 screens across nine movie theatres in Saudi Arabia, VOX Cinemas is the largest exhibitor by screen count, market share and the largest independent distributor in the Kingdom, adding to its regional success as the Middle East’s most popular cinema chain.
All entertainment concepts have undertaken extensive precautionary measures and put in place an all-encompassing sanitisation and physical distancing plan. Majid Al Futtaim also conducted extensive research to identify the top safety measures that would make guests feel comfortable about returning to its venues and used the findings to proactively reimagine the guest experience, which translated into a comprehensive site and training plan to ensure that all leisure, entertainment and cinema experiences were completely prepared for the reopening.
Mohamed Al-Hashemi — Country Head, Majid Al Futtaim Ventures, said, “We look forward to reopening VOX Cinemas, Little Explorers, Magic Planet and Yalla! Bowling in the Kingdom and welcoming our guests back through our doors. After weeks of preparation, we have introduced innovative new health and safety measures which have been successfully implemented across our entertainment experiences in Dubai. Since we reopened last month, 93% of guests have said they are satisfied or extremely satisfied with our enhanced measures. We will ensure a best in class experience in the Kingdom across our experiences with health, safety and customer satisfaction at the core of our reopening plans”.
He added, “We’re also extremely proud to be opening VOX Cinemas Sahara Mall this week, which marks a significant milestone as we surpass 100 screens in Saudi Arabia in just over two years. Majid Al Futtaim remains committed to realising the goals of Vision 2030 and is on track to build 600 cinemas in Saudi Arabia by 2023 as part of a SAR 2 billion investment. Having established VOX Cinemas in Riyadh, Jeddah and Dammam, we are excited to expand our footprint in Tabouk, Hail and Jubail later this year. We remain greatly appreciative of the ongoing support and guidance given to us by the Ministry of Media, GCAM and the Quality of Life Program.”
Majid Al Futtaim’s leisure, entertainment and cinema experiences are exceeding recommended guidelines to ensure that guests can have an exceptional experience with added peace of mind. Surfaces will be cleaned and sanitised after every guest interaction to ensure the highest levels of safety and cleanliness. It is also now mandatory for employees to wear masks and gloves, and all team members will have their temperatures checked on arrival for shifts.
Safe distancing ambassadors have been introduced and instructional signage has been installed to guide guests on best physical distancing practices. The capacity has been reduced in public areas such as restrooms and elevators and the capacity in auditoriums has been reduced to 50%.
Guests are encouraged to enjoy a queue less experience by advance booking their tickets online. To further minimise physical contact and exposure, contactless payment options are available.
There are also extensive measures in place to ensure that the highest levels of food safety are maintained. Employees will be following strict safety protocols which include sanitising of workstations and countertops every 30 minutes and washing their hands at least every 20 minutes and before handling food.