Regal Irvine Spectrum, Orange County’s premier movie theater, has reopened after a multimillion-dollar renovation.

It’s showtime at Spectrum

by LORI BASHEDA

When you head back to the movies at Regal Irvine Spectrum, you’re in for a surprise. The Irvine complex has just wrapped a multimillion-dollar luxury makeover.

The new lobby is something to behold: both classy and futuristic, with a rainbow of stylized neon lights, digital movie posters and a screen that wraps the sky-high ceiling like a ribbon and plays trailers nonstop.

You can order a fancy espresso drink at the Lavazza kiosk now. Or get a smoothie, super-food bowl or bubble tea at B-Fresh, an Israeli franchise new to America (only the second in the U.S.)

The IMAX theater has also gotten a major reboot, with orange leather rocker seats and a next-generation 4K laser, considered the most advanced projection system available. A 12-channel immersive sound system, with side and overhead speakers, delivers sound the audience can feel.

The raddest theater in my book, though, has to be the amusement park-worthy 4DX, with oversized motion-synchronized seats that lurch, shake and vibrate. Other special effects: rain, fog, wind, lightning, snow, bubbles and even scents.

If you prefer to watch your blockbuster curled up in a king-size leather recliner, nursing a hand-crafted cocktail and nibbling nachos (with a server at your beck and call), then I advise the VIP theater.

The Spectrum complex is one of Regal and IMAX highest-performing locations in the nation. Spokeswoman Cathii VanRiper says that since reopening Sept. 11, it has gotten more moviegoers than any of the company’s other 530 locations. “People want to come back to the movies,” she says.

Relax in the VIP theater lounge before the movie starts.

REGAL SAFETY MEASURES

  • Seats are sanitized between every movie.
  • Two regular seats or one oversized recliner are left between each party.
  • Patrons must wear a mask, but can remove it to eat and drink.
  • Capacity is limited within each theater, per state guidelines.
  • Hand-sanitizing stations are located throughout the theater.