Hoyts Crying Room
When I was pregnant, one of the main things people told us to do before having a baby was to go to the movies. According to these experienced parents, we wouldn't be able to do this for YEARS once we'd had a child. This wasn't hugely devastating news to me as we are not major movie goers anyway, however I will admit it can be pretty nice to go and see an excellent movie on the big screen with a huge tube of popcorn and just chill out for a few hours.
I had heard of cinemas here doing "Mums and Bubs" movie sessions during the day, which is one of those things that sounds fun at first, but then when you really think about it sounds kind of horrible. A dark room full of babies all crying at different times while trying to watch a movie, anxiously waiting for your own baby to start crying? No thanks. I think I'd rather stay home and watch a movie for free with just my own crying baby to worry about.
The closest cinema to us is Hoyts Victoria Gardens in Richmond. When I went to enquire about the Mums and Bubs sessions they told me only ran once a month. However, they told me, they do have a "crying room". A crying room?! This I had never heard of, but it is a fantastic idea. Two of their biggest theatres have a small, soundproof room with seven seats at the back of the theatre. There is a big pane of glass to watch the movie through and the sounds is piped in through speakers. So you can watch the movie with your baby, safe in the knowledge that if they start crying you are not disturbing other customers, and you can continue to watch the film. Brilliant!
|Ella at 6 weeks in the crying room|
I've since been twice to the movies and its been a great experience. The first time was with my mom, we saw the movie "Trainwreck" when Ella was about six weeks old. She did indeed cry during the adverts at the start, but then slept through the whole movie on my mom. Success! The great thing about the room is that it is like you are in your own personal movie theatre, so I could also talk to my mom during the film without annoying anyone else. (When we went it was actually a Monday afternoon so I think there were like two other people in the main theatre anyway, but you get the idea).
Yesterday I went again with two of my other mummy friends to see "Mockingjay Part 2". We decided to go as the weather was 33 degrees and windy, which is not fun weather to hang out in with an infant. A cool air conditioned cinema seemed like a much better idea. This time I didn't think Ella would sleep the whole time as she is older and doesn't just drop off for a sleep after a feed like she used to. However luckily she woke from her morning nap about two hours before the start of the film, so she actually did sleep most of the time as she was due a nap anyway. I brought the Hug a Bub wrap for her to sleep in, and she cuddled up inside next to me from the start of the film until about 15 minutes before the end. Well done Ella! The only thing was it was quite a loud movie, even in the crying room, so I spent most of the movie with my hand covering her exposed ear thinking a loud sound would wake her up. (This never happened... it is amazing what babies sleep through when they are in a deep sleep!)
So there you go, Hoyts cinemas are amazing. This is just another example of how child friendly this city is, I love it! The only real downfall is that you have limited selection of the movie you want to see as there is only a crying room in two theatres, but hey, when it comes to being able to get out of your house and do something with your baby that isn't stressful you tend to be less picky about things like that!