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14-Screen Movie Theater Shaping Up as Star of Santa Maria Town Center

Mall in talks with national retailers to occupy newly renovated space at revitalized complex

The new 14-screen Regal Cinema is beginning to take shape at Santa Maria Town Center, where crews are working seven days a week to complete construction in time for a November opening.

The activity has also drawn the attention of four national retail chains, which are contemplating signing on as tenants in the two-story mall across from City Hall, according to Amber Lease, the mall's assistant property manager.

Lease could not confirm any of the potential tenants last week.

Revitalization of the mall has been a part of the plan since new owner ERGS XIV REO Owner LLC purchased the mall last October.

Since then, crews demolished the vacant former Gottschalks department store and are nearing completion of the theater, which had been set to open in October.

The theater, which contains 2,800 seats, has been touted as an integral element of the mall's transformation.

Lease said the cinemas would offer one RPX, which stands for a regal premier experience, that allows movies to be shown in both 3-D and 4-D with a top-of-the-line sound system available.

The mall has also been able to add an outdoor farmers market between Macy’s and Sears, she said.

The markets run from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. every Saturday, and offer fresh local produce, live music and different activities for children throughout each season.

Already inside the mall, a pet store called Animal Kingdom opened in March, and new batting cages and soccer facilities on the second floor soon followed.

On Deck, an indoor facility with two batting cages, also opened in March in more than 7,000 square feet that used to be Anchor Blue. Kickers indoor soccer will fill 10,000 square feet of vacant space next door to On Deck, with an opening planned for April.

Noozhawk staff writer Gina Potthoff can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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