SOUTH VENICE — The clock is ticking fast to get the largest auditorium renovations completed at the B&B Theatres Stadium 11 in South Venice before the arrival of “Star Wars — Episode IX.”

Following a long period of depreciation under previous ownership, renovations began two weeks ago on the first three auditoriums.

The first phase includes the largest theater that has to be completed by Dec. 20 to accommodate the launch of “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker,” said Tom Cassidy, plaza owner of Gondolier Properties LLC.

New to the theater: four VIP electric reclining seats in each auditorium.

To remain open during the early part of season, the renovations are in three stages. Phase 1 — the first three auditoriums — is to be completed near the beginning of the new year.

Phase 2 will be to do the next four auditoriums projected to be completed by early March. Starting sometime in February or March, Phase 3 begins — renovating the final four theaters and the lobby hallway.

Intentions are to have seven auditoriums operational throughout the upgrading period — however, in March, the theater may close for a few days during lobby upgrades.

Cassidy said the theater is introducing a full bar serving beer, wine and liquor in the lobby. Food offerings are being expanded to provide hot items not currently served, pizzas, hot dogs, sandwiches, big pretzels and more.

Overall the whole property, everything except the screens will be completely fully renovated from the roof to the floor. All auditoriums will have all new seating, flooring, wall treatments and improved LED lighting.

Renovations are targeted to finish in April and include significantly improved heating and cooling with quieter, reduced noise ducting.

B&B Theatres Galleria Stadium 11 reopened in June and it is the sixth largest theater chain in North America and operates roughly 405 screens at 50 locations in Kansas, Iowa, Florida, Missouri, Mississippi, Oklahoma and Texas.

It is at 2101 Tamiami Trail and more information is online at www.bbtheatres.com.

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