Wednesday 01 April 2020 (UAE)
List of IMAX theatres in UAE
List of IMAX cinema theatres in UAE
- IMAX cinema timings are from 0930 to after midnight depending on location.
- "IMAX with Laser" refers to projection features which result in brighter and clearer picture for the audience. It is not just a marketing gimmick. In our experience the difference is quite noticeable when viewing Laser IMAX screenings, especially in 3D.
MAX vs IMAX films
- Several cinema complexes in the UAE have "Max" screens. These are not the larger film format IMAX theatres. Max theatres have a larger screen size showing the same film format as used for standard cinema screens.
- IMAX 3D
- IMAX Digital
- IMAX Laser
- IMAX Sapphire - this is not a reference to an official IMAX experience, but seems to be a marketing term for the IMAX theatre in Mirdif City Centre mall as a boutique cinema with VIP seats, or something. There are references to IMAX Sapphire in USA (but no cinema listings found), and there are IMAX Sapphire theatres in St Petersburg and Moscow, Russia, also with luxury seats (Mar 2019).
- Trademark information: IMAX Corporation filed a trademark for "IMAX Sapphire" in on 28 Sep 2010 for "Luxury movie theaters", but the trademark status was updated as "606 - Abandoned - No Statement Of Use Filed" on 09 Jun 2014. Reference: trademarks.justia.com/851/39/imax-85139605.html
- [Will cease operations in 2019] IMAX VR (Virtual Reality), as of Mar 2019 no IMAX VR Experience Centers in the UAE, only Bangkok or Toronto. It's not the same as watching a movie. You wear a VR headset and have a "mind-shattering VR experience" (says IMAX). In a 13 Dec 2018 SEC (USA) filing, IMAX Corp said "In connection with the Company’s previously-announced strategic review of its virtual reality pilot initiative, the Company has decided to close its remaining VR locations and write-off certain VR content investments."
IMAX theatres in Abu Dhabi
- Al Maryah Central Mall IMAX Laser, Al Maryah Island, planned opening 2018 ... Aug 2019 ... opened Sep 2019.
- 2018 Sep 18: Opening date of mall would be 27 Aug 2019 according to mall website, the news did not explicitly mention the IMAX theatre.
- 2016 Sep 08: Press release announced leasing deal signed between the mall developer, Gulf Related, and Majid Al Futtaim Cinemas for a cinema multiplex including an IMAX Laser screen. Opening date end of 2018.
- [Project abandoned or delayed?] Mushrif Mall IMAX. Announced 04 Feb 2016.
- [Typo?] Yas Mall website (when checked Mar 2019) says "Yas Mall includes 20 of the largest IMAX screens in Abu Dhabi ..." We assume it's a typo since Yas Mall doesn't have even one IMAX screen, let alone 20 of them.
IMAX theatres in Dubai
- Dubai Festival City, Novo Cinemas IMAX Digital
- Ibn Battuta Mall (IBM), Novo Cinemas IMAX Digital (?). Previously called Grand Megaplex IMAX.
- IMG Worlds of Adventure, Novo Cinemas IMAX
- 2019 Mar: special offer half price tickets or BOGOF until Sat 09 Mar 2019.
- 2015 Jun 10: IMAX press release announced agreement with Novo Cinemas to open two new IMAX Laser cinemas in Dubai, one at IMG Worlds and one at Wafi Mall.
- Mall of the Emirates (MOE), VOX Cinemas IMAX Laser
- 2015 Apr 28: IMAX announced the MOE IMAX theatre would be upgraded to an "IMAX with Laser" cinema.
- [Closed indefinitely] Meydan IMAX, screen size about 2x the Ibn Battuta Mall IMAX.
- Closed in 2014 (July?) temporarily due to "technical issues"? Has not reopened since.
- [Offline] Website www.meydanimax.com. [Offline] Website www.meydantheatre.com, tel 800 4629 or +971-4-3813760. [Offline] FB page facebook.com/meydanimax. LI page www.linkedin.com/in/meydanimax.
- Meydan IMAX Club Card: One free movie per month and a few other minor benefits. Costs AED 300 per year?
- Ticket prices AED 65 for cheap seats, AED 75 for expensive seats? Opening times 0900-2400 daily?
- 2012 Aug 16: Meydan IMAX opened with screening of the Batman film, The Dark Knight Rises. Press release said "This is the 4th largest IMAX theatre in the world."
- 2012 Mar 08: Meydan Group announced partnership with Primesco Films to open the Meydan IMAX Theatre, capacity 560 seats.
- Mirdiff City Centre Mall, VOX Cinemas IMAX
- IMAX Sapphire means a VIP experience and more expensive tickets. The "Sapphire" label does not mean any special technological enhancements, unlike the "Laser" label for some other IMAX theatres.
- [No] Wafi Center Mall expansion - Novo Cinemas IMAX Laser in Wafi Mall announced 10 Jun 2015. But later rebranded as Vox Cinemas, no IMAX, opening end 2019?
IMAX theatres in Sharjah
- [Check] Zero 6 Mall, Cinemacity IMAX Digital, opened Apr 2018, the biggest IMAX in the UAE according to Cinemacity?
IMAX theatres in Ajman, Al Ain, Fujairah, Ras Al Khaimah (RAK), Umm Al Quwain (UAQ)
- No existing IMAX theatres in the remainder of the UAE so far, and none planned as far as we know (as of Mar 2019)
Biggest IMAX theaters in the UAE
- IMG Worlds of Adventure, Feb 2019 (Novo said was the biggest)
- Mall of the Emirates
- Zero 6 Mall in Sharjah, Apr 2018 (CinemaCity said was the biggest)
- [Closed] Meydan
Best quality IMAX theatre in Dubai
- Either MOE or IMG Worlds. Both have an IMAX Laser theatre, both are large screens. IMG Worlds screen is a bit bigger than MOE but not so much you'd go out of your way to visit it, unless you're curious to see how much of a difference there is. We were curious so we went, and enjoyed it (watched Captain Marvel in Mar 2019). But next time it will be show time, travel distance, and potential audience size that will be the deciding factors.
IMAX 3D screenings
- When you collect your 3D glasses, either take a spare pair if you can, or check they're ok as soon as the 3D part of the film starts, and go and change them if not. We've had more than one faulty pair during our visits. You'll know if they're faulty because the 3D effect feels "off" e.g. blurry or inconsistent brightness in some areas.
Best seats in an IMAX theater
- In the UAE, the cheap seats are usually closest to the screen. The best cheap seats are the ones in the two rows furthest from the screen in that section. We've tried the rows closer to the screen but find them to be too close, and our necks get tired from having to tilt our heads up towards the screen.
- If money is no object, then the closest two rows of the VIP or Premium section, just above the cheap seats, are great if you like to be close to the screen and get the best quality sound effects. If you don't know what you like, try that. If you know you prefer to be further away then the middle of the VIP section is probably good for you. The Balcony seats (in theatres with three tiers of pricing) are more expensive than Premium but not so good for viewing or acoustics in our opinion, but we like to be closer to the screen.
Table of IMAX cinemas in the UAE
|Emirate or city||Location||Status or
|Abu Dhabi||Al Maryah Central Mall||Open Sep 2019||4K Laser|
|Dubai||Dubai Festival City||2K Digital||Novo|
|Dubai||Ibn Battuta Mall||2K Digital||Novo|
|Dubai||IMG theme park||4K Laser||Novo|
|Dubai||Mall of the Emirates||4K Laser||Vox|
|Dubai||Mirdiff City Centre||Vox||IMAX Sapphire|
|Sharjah||Zero 6 Mall||Apr 2018|
|IMAX Cinemas in UAE, closed, plans changed, or not IMAX|
|Abu Dhabi||Mushrif Mall||Abandoned?||×|
|Abu Dhabi||Yas Mall||Website error||×|
|Dubai||Deira City Centre||×||Max, not IMAX|
|Dubai||Grand Megaplex IBM||Rebranded Novo|
|Dubai||Meydan, Nad Al Sheba||Closed mid-2014||70MM projector?||29m × 22m||562||Open Aug 2012|
|Dubai||Wafi Mall expansion||Rebranded||×||Max, not IMAX|
IMAX news and updates
- 2019 Sep: The first IMAX theatre in Abu Dhabi opened, at The Galleria, Al Maryah Island (renamed from Al Mariah Central Mall).
- 2016 Feb 04: IMAX Corporation and World Media Holding announced two new IMAX cinemas would open in the UAE, at Mushrif Mall in Abu Dhabi and Zero 6 Mall in Sharjah, both to be operated by CinemaCity.
- 2015 Apr 28: IMAX and VOX Cinemas announced they would open three new IMAX theatres in the Middle East: one in Abu Dhabi, UAE; one in Beirut, Lebanon; and a new IMAX with Laser theatre in Mall of the Emirates, Dubai, UAE.
- Parent category: Entertainment in UAE, Movie cinemas in UAE.
- Child pages: none.
- Related pages: Meydan, Novo Cinemas, Reel Cinemas, Shopping malls in UAE, Vox Cinemas.
- www.imax.com/theatres/ - find an IMAX theatre worldwide, zoom in on the map to get UAE locations, with current films showing and showtimes.
- www.imax.com/countries/AE/ - redirects to www.imax.com/theatres/.
Last update Thursday 10-Oct-2019.
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