If you’ve been in China for a while and you’re starting to itch for a little reminder of home, a trip to the movies is a great way to sit back, relax, and get away from the city atmosphere. Guangzhou, as one of the first cities in China to open up to outside influences, is unique, in that foreign trends have been able to take root here earlier than other cities. As such, it has a wider selection of movies and cinemas to choose from than most other cities in China. There are numerous theatres where you can find not only Chinese films with English subtitles, but also movies in English from America and Europe. So, if you want to forego haggling with a pirated DVD vendor on the street for a high-end cinema experience, here are just a few of the places you can visit.
Probably the highest calibre cinema in Guangzhou is the China Plaza Theatre (中华广场电影城). Located on the 8th floor of the Zhonghua Square Plaza, a major shopping centre, it is easily accessible from the metro. Simply take metro line 1 to Martyr’s Park and turn right until you reach 33 Zhongshan San Lu (中山三路33号). This theatre was the first five-star cinema in Guangzhou and is one of the top ten box office theatres in China. It may seem crowded at peak times, but there’s a huge amount of room. The China Plaza Theatre regularly plays big box office hits from foreign countries, and as a result attracts many foreigners to its luxurious facilities. If you want the best seats you may want to reserve ahead by calling 020 - 8373 9423. An English speaking operator will assist you.
Another high-end movie theatre in Guangzhou is the Yong Han Cinema （广州永汉电影院）. Located at 186 Bejing Lu, (about equal distance from either the Line 1 / Line 2 Gongyuanqian Metro stop or the Haizhu Square Line 2 Metro stop), the cinema is within one of the most popular shopping districts in Guangzhou. If you are interested in seeing classic Chinese films, this theatre is a particularly good choice. Once again for prime seating and movie listings call ahead at 020 - 8333 0721.
The Galaxy Cinema (天河电影城), located on the 5th floor of the Tianhe shopping center (623 Tianhe Lu 天河路623号; Exit A of Guangding Metro stop ), Tel: 020 - 8757 6722), offers decently priced movies and prompt new foreign releases. Stop in to see what movies are playing, buy your ticket, and kill some time browsing around the immense shopping center. Discount clothing and electronics can be found on the first floor, and a video game arcade shares the 5th floor with the theatre, so if the kids don’t share your inclination for shopping they can keep themselves occupied. To get there head for the Gangding stop on metro line 3.
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