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The Cathay Cineplex

The Cathay Cineplex At Handy Road, Singapore, Is Closing After 83 Years

It’s the end of an era, as one of Singapore’s oldest cinemas, The Cathay Cineplex, is closing down after 83 years in the business. Starting 26 June, the Handy Road theatre will cease operations, with media company mm2 Asia — which runs the Cathay Cineplexes chain locally — attributing the reason to being “part of the cost rationalisation process for its cinema operations”.

Dear Guests, after a significant number of years and many unforgettable memories, Cathay Cineplexes will be closing the…

Posted by Cathay Cineplexes on Friday, June 17, 2022

“The cinema’s closure was a business decision. Over the years, retail traffic demographics have changed,” group chief executive Mr Chang Long Jong said in a statement. “We have had to evaluate the commercial viability of operating two cinemas in the Orchard shopping belt within 1.5km of each other and within 300m of another multiplex.”

The closure will not impact the other chain outlets, with day-to-day business proceeding as usual. The news comes amidst tough times for the industry, and follows in the footsteps of Filmgarde Cineplexes at Bugis+ and Century Square, both of which had shuttered earlier this year.

The Handy Road location has been around since 1939, and made its mark as Singapore’s first air-conditioned cinema. The shops and restaurants in the building are understood to be unaffected by the shutdown and will resume their normal operations, which means customers can continue to drop by if they wish.

Still, it’s sad to see that the cinema is taking its final bow, even if the news doesn’t come across as a surprise. Taking its place will be The Projector’s third outlet known as Projector X: Picturehouse — named in tribute to the building’s history in arthouse cinema — with operations expected to begin on 23 August. Alongside curated films and live performances, it will also feature a bar on its premises for patrons to enjoy cocktails and craft beer while waiting for their show or performance timings.

Thank you for the memories, The Cathay Cineplex! You will be missed.


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