By: Jason Perlow
Like many Americans, my wife and I love to go to the movies. But as ticket prices are at all-time highs (around $14 per person if we are strictly talking standard digital projection and not 3D), it can be an expensive habit if a family wants to go several times a month, especially once you include things like concessions.
In recognition of a desire by moviegoers to be able to have a more affordable option, Regal Cinemas — following in the footsteps of AMC Theaters, who introduced a similar program a year ago with “A*LIST” — now has an “Unlimited” movies program.
For Coral Springs residents, this is a major announcement because up until now, if you wanted to participate in AMC’s program, the closest theatre that was available was in Sunrise, followed by Pompano Beach and Fort Lauderdale.
Regal’s Unlimited program works using their smartphone application, which runs on iPhone or Android. Signup is easy — download the Regal app (iOS or Google Play), create an account, add a payment method, and sign up for Unlimited.
There are three tiers of Unlimited, at $18, $21 and $23.50 per person per month. The Coral Springs Regal Magnolia and Boca Raton Regal Shadowood are both in the middle tier ($21) while the Plantation and Sunrise Regal theatres are at the basic level ($18). In Florida, only Key West and Naples seem to be at the highest tier ($23.50).
There are no blackout dates, and you can watch as many movies as you want, anytime you want. If you buy your tickets at the theatre, there is no surcharge. Just show your ID in the app to the cashier, and you are set to go. You can also reserve seats up to 3 movies at a time in advance using the app, and there is a 54-cent surcharge. There are also surcharges for things like 3D and IMAX. Additional rules apply, and you can review them on Regal’s website.
It should be noted that the Unlimited subscription can be paid monthly or yearly, and there is a minimum one-year subscription to the program. Additionally, the Regal Unlimited subscription is tied to a single smartphone, and the tickets are non-transferrable. If you change phones, you need to notify them.
Restaurants at Magnolia Shoppes and Happy Hour
If you’re like my wife and me, you probably want to combine your night at the movies with dinner. Magnolia Shoppes has several restaurants to choose from, and while they all offer Happy Hour, they are no longer as good a deal as they used to be as it seems all of these places are currently tightening their belts. Hopefully, with the introduction of the new Regal Unlimited program, they will reconsider re-introducing some better deals.
In terms of offering Happy Hour before seeing an evening movie, Moon Thai is the best of the restaurants in the plaza. It’s offered from 5 p.m. – 7 p.m., Monday-Thursday, at the bar. Hot Sake and all draft beers are $3.50, well drinks (such as fresh lime margaritas) are $5, and a selection of cocktails are all $7 including Martinis, Cosmos and Cucumber Saketinis. A variety of appetizers is also $3.50 to $7, including Pad Thai noodles.
American Craft has been one of my favorite bar and grill type places in Coral Springs, but they have recently been undergoing several changes. Currently, the food menu has been reduced due to a recent departure of their main chef, so what you’ll find is typical stuff like wings and hamburgers (which in my opinion, is one of the best in town). Happy Hour is from 4 p.m. – 7 p.m. Monday to Friday. There are currently no food specials for Happy Hour — they have a 10 percent discount on food items and $2 off all beers.
Casa Tequila’s Happy Hour is the least attractive of the restaurants in the plaza — it only runs Monday-Wednesdays, but it does run all day. They have no food specials on their Happy Hour, but they do have $6 fresh lime reposado tequila Classic Margaritas, $4 basic house Margaritas and $3 well drinks. It’s a decent Tex-Mex restaurant serving fairly typical fare. We particularly enjoyed a recent meal there of Steak Jalisco which they cooked perfectly medium-rare, skirt steak with cheese, mushrooms, and spinach. And the margaritas are sufficiently boozy and not watered down, so that’s a plus.
ANTHONY’S COAL FIRED PIZZA
Anthony’s is not in the main plaza structure with the Regal itself, as it has a private building, but it’s in the same parking lot. Happy Hour is Monday-Friday 4 p.m. – 7 p.m. The restaurant offers $2 off beers, $3 off wines, $4 meatballs in quantities of two, five wings for $5, and $6 personal cheese pizzas. Not a bad deal!
Jason Perlow is a long-time foodie who spent 20 years in the New York City and New Jersey metro areas reviewing restaurants for The New York Times and his personal food blog, Off The Broiler, which he started in 2006 and ran for ten years. He is also the founder of eGullet, a popular food discussion site and not-for-profit organization that was formed in 2001, which was featured on Tony Bourdain’s “No Reservations” cable television program.
As a technologist by profession, he writes the Tech Broiler blog for CBS’s ZDNet web site. He has been a Coral Springs resident since moving to South Florida in 2012.
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