Chalet cinema in the Alps

Simple but effective, this French chalet boasts a dedicated home cinema for the owner to enjoy with family and friends that doesn’t break the bank. Amy Wallington takes a look.

Home theatres are taking an even more prevalent place in the requirements of a high-end home since the pandemic hit. With most of the world stuck indoors for the best part of a year, consumers are turning to home entertainment to keep them occupied. This can be on multiple levels; consumers with low budgets can invest in smart speakers and a big TV to create a DIY home entertainment system. But those people in the upper echelon with a much higher budget are turning towards a fully integrated, dedicated home cinema installation, such is the case here.

A chalet situated in the idyllic French Alps was bought with the intention of renting it out to seasonal holidaymakers, but the owner decided to keep it for himself, and his family and friends. The owner wanted to enhance the property with a high-end cinema that would comfortably seat eight people. It also had to be easy to use for the owners and any guests of the cottage.

Montpellier-based integrator, MultiZone, took full reign of the task and started the three-week construction in October 2020. “This customer came to our MultiZone boutique in Montpellier because he knew we are specialists in private cinema builds,” says Antonia Davin, commercial director of MultiZone. “We gave him a demonstration in our cinema showroom and he realised our passion and chose us for the job.”

The demonstration gave the homeowner a good idea of what he wanted in his own cinema room and it allowed him to work with the integrators to choose the best solutions. Davin adds: “Customers want results and for the system to always work to a high standard. But most importantly, they want good sound and a beautiful image. We advised the customer with the hardware installed and stuck to some of the biggest brands in the AV market that we know well and work with most of the time.”

The 25m2 room was a blank canvas before they started. It was completely empty and new, meaning the integrator had more freedom and was not constrained by any existing infrastructure. MultiZone worked closely with the homeowner to find out his exact preferences for the room, what materials he wanted, the desired decoration, etc. He wanted a chic modern look for his home theatre with simple and easy control and premium sound and picture as well as comfort.

“We make every effort to make our home cinema rooms simple and comfortable,” states Davin. “We want the viewer to have a real movie experience where the technology and everything around them disappears as they are immersed in the movie.

“Of course, we train users how to use the systems and also leave guides for them in case they forget anything. Our facilities are very intuitive. The homeowner can also contact us directly if he needs any assistance or has any issues. We can gain remote access and fix it straight away.”

Snowed under

The home cinema build was fairly straightforward, and apart from logistical challenges with delivering the equipment in the snow, almost everything else went according to plan. However, there were a few small hurdles to get over throughout the build.

One challenge was finding a place to house the equipment to ensure the room had a clean look. The result saw MultiZone creating a custom storage cabinet next to the screen to hide the technology away.

A key requirement in the brief was that the cinema should comfortably seat eight people. This posed a second challenge as the ceiling was fairly low. To ensure the second row of seats had the perfect viewing angle, the integrator constructed a slim platform to raise the seats up just enough to provide a clear view without bumping their heads on the ceiling as they enter and leave.

As already stipulated, the cinema room had to be easy and simple to control. This was not just for the homeowners but for his guests too. Although the chalet is not being used as a holiday rental, it will be used by the homeowner’s family and friends from time to time who will not be familiar with the technology or set up.

“We want the viewer to have a real movie experience where the technology and everything around them disappears as they are immersed in the movie.”

The integrator chose Pro Control ProLink.r processor, which controls the room’s lighting, the projector, and the AV in the room. Using an iPad running the Pro Control ProPanel app, users can control everything in the home theatre, including switching on and off everything in the room with one button.

Cyrille Vergely, executive sales manager at RTI Corp, adds: “RTI was the best control system for the home theatre because it provided full control and a customised user interface at an affordable price. The dedicated room could also be used by guests who have rented out the chalet for a holiday, so it was important that the system was intuitive to non-technical users.”

Sticking to the brief, the Pro Control platform allows the user to have a fully automated, high-end cinema room without breaking the bank. The cinema room cost €50,000 and the client got exactly what he wanted within his budget.

Davin reflects: “The home cinema has brought them a sense of wellbeing in their home. The client loves how simple it is to use and that he can turn everything on and off with just a single button press.”

The room takes on a chic and modern design to suit the client’s tastes. The integrators can customise the Pro Control software to meet the requirements of the user and ensure they have an exceptional experience.

 

Tech Spec

Apple iPad Mini

Elipson Infinite 8 Front Speakers

Elipson Prestige Facet 7SR Rear Speakers

Elipson Prestige Facet Sub10 Subwoofer

Lumene HD Fixed Palace Projection Screen

Lumene Hollywood Luxury III Cinema Chairs

Pro Control ProLink.r Processor

Pro Control ProPanel App Licence

Sony VPL-HW65ES / B Video Projector

Yamaha BD-S681 Blu-ray Player

Yamaha RX-A2080 Home Cinema Amplifier