Point of Sale

Shopping malls Iceland

Reykjavík streetlife is something of an oxymoron, a contradiction in terms. In the winter in particular, locals abandon the main street Laugavegur to the droves of travellers, seeking the comfort of home during the dark days. But even during the shortest days of the season, there are oases in Reykjavík, beacons of light where families […]

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Mall’s New Dog-Friendly Sundays Set Tails Wagging

Sundays at Kringlan shopping mall in Reykjavík just got a lot more pupular, Vísir reports. As of last week, the shopping mall is permitting local pet owners to bring their furry buddies on their Sunday shopping expeditions, provided they follow a few simple rules.

Kringlan, Facebook.

There are no specific size restrictions on the dogs that are allowed in the mall, but owners must be able to hold them on the escalators and/or pick them up if a situation requires. Dogs will not be allowed in either of the mall’s grocery stores and nor will they be permitted in salons or medical centres. Other shops may choose not to allow dogs and pet owners are asked to respect any requests not to bring their dog inside.

Kringlan, Facebook.

Soffía Kristín Kwaszenko brought her shih tzu Mangó with her last Sunday to celebrate the new rules and said that she hopes in the future, the mall will move to allow dogs every day. Mangó hasn’t been in such situations before, but the friendly fluffer just needs a bit of “environmental training,” Soffía said, and he did a great job on his first retail outing.

Some dog days opponents have worried about potential messes, but Soffía is confident that owners will be responsible and train their animals well. Moreover, Kringlan has received permission to allow dogs on the premises from the Ministry for the Environment and the city’s health authorities and assures guests that the new rules will be regularly reviewed to make sure that all visitors are having a pawsitive experience.

Sambíó Invites Bíó Paradís to Kringlan

The Sambíó theatre chain has invited the Bíó Paradís cinema to continue its operations in its facilities in the Kringlan shopping mall, Vísir reports. The invitation comes following the announcement this week that the popular downtown cinema, known for programming award-winning foreign movies and hosting a variety of film festivals, will be forced to close on April 30 due to a rent increase. 

A press release issued by representatives of Sambíó put forth the idea that Bíó Paradís could potentially be given a few of the theatres in its Kringlan location. “Kringlan has a very central location and very good services,” read the statement. “Sambíó Kringlan is a very popular theatre for older cinema-goers who want to see high-quality films. Oscar-winning films have been very popular at Kringlan, along with live screenings of performances staged by the Metropolitan Opera. The theatre is also popular with families.” A collaboration with Bíó Paradís would, therefore, make sense for Sambíó’s broad audience, explains the press release.

Bíó Paradís was opened in the fall of 2010, taking over from movie theatre Regnboginn. It has been an important venue for the Icelandic film community ever since. The theatre’s landlords, former executives of the investment fund GAMMA, have decided to nearly triple its rent in order to bring the space in better alignment with its market value.

Bío Paradís ‘vital to daily life and culture in downtown Reykjavík’

Calls for the government to support the downtown institution have poured in since the announcement of its imminent closure was made. A Stundin poll asking readers to vote on whether they support government funding for the cinema has seen high support, with 86% of its 6,133 respondents saying they “strongly support” government funding and 5% saying that they “support” it. 

On Friday, the Cultural Heritage Agency of Iceland issued a statement urging the City of Reykjavík to take whatever measures necessary to ensure the continued operations of the theatre, which they consider “vital to daily life and culture in downtown Reykjavík.” In its statement, the Agency noted that a 2019 conservation assessment of the cinema’s space at Hverfisgata 54 found that it had average to high conservation value due to its cultural history and cultural and educational programming.  

“…[I]t is the only operating cinema left in downtown Reykjavík,” continued the Agency statement. “And thus is a living testimony to this aspect of popular culture and entertainment in Reykjavík. The operation of the ground-floor cinema adds a lot to street life and atmosphere on Hverfisgata.”

Bíó Paradís CEO Hrönn Sveinsdóttir says the cinema has appealed to the City of Reykjavík and the government for support, but talks are still ongoing.