STAPLES OF SUMMER: When called upon to cite the staples that festoon the languorous stretch between Memorial Day Weekend and Labor Day Weekend, we might land upon a few tried-and-true things. Watermelons and lemonade and picnics and road trips are up there, for sure, but so are movies and hotels. They're two things that rarely meet, at least for people who aren't actually a guest of the hotel in question (for sure, you can catch a movie in your room on cable, but if you're not staying there, there's no cinema to enjoy). But these two summery touchstones are meeting up at a few overnight properties around the state, and you don't even need to register to enjoy them. Outdoor screenings are have become more of a Thing, capital T, at places like the Hotel Irvine, and locals are welcome to attend. "Friends, family, and neighbors" are invited to the hotel's Movie Nights in The Backyard. Live tunes and for-sale snackage are part of the scene, as are the youth-nice movie selections: "Back to the Future," "The Goonies," and "Ferris Bueller's Day Off" are all coming up.
"BACK TO THE FUTURE"... zooms like a souped-up DeLorean onto the Hotel Irvine's large alfresco screen on Friday, July 31, while the two movies to follow land on Aug. 14 and Aug. 21, respectively. Blankets and beach chairs are both allowed and there shall be food for sale, from barbecue choices to hamburgers to traditional film snacks (like popcorn). The seating is open and the beach chairs should be on the low side, to give everyone a view. Admission? It's five bucks if you're over 5 (kids under 5 are admitted free). And if you don't want to drive home after the credits, there's a Movie Night Retreat Package on at the hotel with a starting price of $169.
IS A HOTEL... or at least the grounds of a hotel the most unusual cinema you've ever heard of? And can a local really enjoy the hotel scene without checking in or visiting the restaurant? If the new summery movie trend holds, and other properties follow Hotel Irvine's lead, you can bet on it.