Hiraratna Chalachitra Mandir
Hiraratna Chalachitra Mandir is one of the oldest movie theatres in Nepal. Established more than a decade ago, Hiraratna is managed by Manoj K.C. (the president of Nepal Technician Association). This big and spacious hall has comfortable seats enough to accommodate about three hundred audiences at a go (in one theatre). The building houses two screens, one showing Hindi movies and other, Nepali. Situated in Kalopul area, near Xavier’s International College, the cinema Hall has wide compound to facilitate the audiences as a parking lot.
However, even though the spacious and fully facilitated hall offers good sound system and picture quality on the wide screen, it is not popular in town as the more new establishments of its kind. The hall’s popularity is quite limited to the people living in and around Kalopul with very few others coming by, especially on the week days. Weekends, when there are new releases, are comparatively full. The hall is more popular for screening Nepali celluloid movies than any others although it screens Hindi movies, the screening depends upon the number of audiences showing up. If there are very few people, say, less than six or eight (based upon the situation), screening of the movie is stopped. The hall is wider and spacious than most of the halls in and outside of Kathmandu, however, due to lack of proper management/maintenance and popularity (publicity) has suffered a great loss. Although the manager has been trying his best to increase the audience rate and popularity of the cinema hall, there are always some factors hindering his efforts.
There is a cafeteria, or say, a food stall inside the hall, however, you can also bring your tit-bits to munch on from outside. The sellers come with the packets of snacks inside the hall, while there is still time for the interval, which is pretty irritating and also an uncommon practice.
The wash rooms, however, need proper maintenance and apart from few weaknesses that most of the halls built a decade ago have, Hiraratna Chalachitra Mandir is not so bad after all. The tickets for the shows are priced at Rs.150 for Hindi movies and Rs.100 for Nepali with discounts on morning shows. (Prices might vary overtime or for special screenings and seats).