Outdoor Movies are 'In' for Hotels and Cruises

Photo Credit: Dan MacMedan/ USA TODAY. Outdoor movies have long been a summer tradition. Hotels and cruises are hopping on the trend. One of the hottest new amenities at resorts and hotels this summer is the outdoor movie a film projected onto the side of a building or on a big screen set up around the pool. The latest to jump on the trend is the Flatotel in New York City, which this weekend begins projecting movies against a 30-foot wall at its outdoor Italian eatery, MODA Outdoors. The outdoor movie program comes on the heels of one at the Loews Annapolis Hotel, a hub for vacationers exploring the Chesapeake Bay. Loews began its own outdoor movie nights Sunday at its outdoor patio. Even cruise lines are getting into the act. Carnival's 2,974-passenger Liberty, which launches July 20 in the Mediterranean, will have a 22-foot-wide light-emitting diode screen atop the Lido deck for regular outdoor movie screenings. Princess, which launched movies on the deck of the Caribbean Princess last year, will have them on three ships this summer and two more by the end of 2007. Like Carnival, the line is using high-tech, light-emitting diode screens. "I wanted to bring Old World culture to New York," says Eric Mason, the executive chef at Flatotel's MODA. He got the idea of showing outdoor movies from the film Cinema Paradiso, in which movies are shown in an Italian piazza. The Flatotel plans to show Italian-made classics by Federico Fellini, Roberto Rossellini and Bernardo Bertolucci, all with English subtitles, in keeping with the Italian cuisine offered at the restaurant. Carnival, which caters heavily to families in summer, plans to show children's movies, cartoons and sporting events on its state-of-the-art screen, which has an elaborate sound system and will be viewable night and day, thanks to its light-emitting diodes. What others plan: •Loews Annapolis Hotel, Annapolis, Md. The hotel plans "pet-friendly" movies such as 101 Dalmatians and Beethoven for its new outdoor screenings, and pets are welcome. The Sunday events are free to attend. Food and drinks are available from the hotel's Weather Rail Lounge. •The Westin St. John Resort & Villas, St. John, U.S. Virgin Islands. "Dive-in" movies is the title given to this resort's outdoor movie program, which is offered around the pool. Resort guests can watch while floating on the water. (A 12-foot screen will be placed next to the 13,000-square-foot pool, the largest in the Virgin Islands.) •Loews Ventana Canyon Resort, Tucson. The resort will show movies on a screen by the pool on Saturdays this summer for no charge. Titles will be geared toward families with children. Free snacks will be offered; heartier fare will be available at the pool bar. Source: USA TODAY. Read full article at: http://www.usatoday.com/travel/hotels/2005-06-09-outdoor-movies_x.htm

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