Friday, December 14

Home is where the cinema is

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Investing in your own theatre can increase property value

The winter chill is setting in, meaning long nights of popcorn and movies, and with the exorbitant cost of cinema forcing many to stay home, now is the perfect time to set up a home cinema.

Not only will this make the movie experience more enjoyable, but it is also a good property investment.

“Home theatres add value to any property, especially if you are in the luxury housing band,” says Adrian Goslett, regional director and chief executive Re/Max Southern Africa.

“Buyers in this market are usually tech-savvy and want a home that reflects their high-end lifestyles.”

The recipe for creating a home cinema includes five ingredients:

Sound.

Screen.

Seating.

Shading.

Snacks.

Goslett says the difference between a living room and a home cinema is surround sound, and there are various ways one can achieve this effect.

A sound bar, he says, requires three walls to create an immersive sound experience, and will not create the same effect in an open-plan room.

For these types of rooms, Goslett suggests wall-mounted speakers. The placement of the sub-woofer is also important.

“Most people falsely believe this should face them to best project the sound. In reality, the sound reverberates better off a solid brick wall than if it were directed into an open space.”

When it comes to choosing the best screen, he says many people mistakenly base this on size.

While projectors give a room the cinematic look and feel, the image quality usually cannot compare to high-definition television sets.

From experience, Goslett says the deep contrast of plasma TVs create the best image quality in dark rooms, and the brightness of LED LCD screens is best suited for day-time viewing.

A movie marathon also cannot exist without comfortable seating, and unless one enjoys the feeling of cold leather, these sofa types should be avoided. Recliners, especially those with built-in cup holders, are the winners for home cinemas.

Goslett says: “Recreating that dark atmosphere of the cinema is one of the final touches when creating the ultimate home theatre. This can be tricky to achieve if you have chosen an open-plan space for your theatre, but block-out blinds can be helpful.”

Snacks complete the sensory experience of the cinema. For that cinematic smell, add a popcorn machine to the home theatre.

Goslett suggests homeowners also install bar fridges in the room so they do not walk too far for refreshments mid-way through a movie.

“Creating a home theatre can be expensive, but the end result could increase the value of your home. If you have the space and finances to make it happen, there is no reason why you shouldn’t.”

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