I enjoy making the most of life's experiences, exploring what Adelaide has to offer and sharing my experiences and discoveries with others via WeekendNotes!
Published November 17th 2013
A truly rewarding way to relax while the kids run amok
Parents can truly relax while their children play here at Lollipop's Playland & Café - there's plenty of room for everyone (and great coffee)...
Saturday was easily one of the most relaxing days I've spent with my son in a long, long time.
Back up to Friday night when, picking my son up from OSHC, he mentions that his mates and their mum would like to catch up at a certain play café. That certain play café is Lollipop's Playland and Café which opened its doors in Croydon earlier this year.
Having had the usual hectic and rather stressful week, I admit I was less than enthusiastic. Dutifully doing the 'good mother' bit, I committed to meeting up with said son's friends and their mother for what turned out to be an utterly relaxing and fulfilling day.
Lollipop's Playland & Café is at 449 Port Road, Croydon. There's a separate car park on the corner of Queen Street/Port Road for customers.
On arrival to Lollipop's Playland and Café, parking was much easier than some months ago. On the corner of Queen Street/Port Road is a separate car park allocated to Lollipop's customers. There's other handy access routes too. Take the train to Croydon station, hop off and over you go through the rear of the complex.
Ahoy me hearties! All aboard the pirate ship - a free ride (included in cost of entry) which operates every hour, on the hour...
The premises are fully secure - I've never seen anything like it, not even at the airport. At check-in each child is fitted with a barcoded wristband, and their trusty charge (who must be over 18 years of age) is provided with matching barcode. Neither can exit the premises without the other (there has to be a good reason if you do before they let you out).
Visitors shouldn't let the entry fee put them off. Those savvy enough would realise that paying an adult entry fee of $3.50, which includes a free tea/coffee voucher, sees you come out ahead in the beverage stakes. Kids entry ranges from free for infants up to 12 months of age, $9.90 for toddlers one to three years of age, and $11.90 for kids aged four years of age and over.
Entry is for unlimited play on the day between 9.30am to 5.30pm. The pièce de résistance that sets Lollipop's Playland and Café apart from all the other play cafés in metropolitan Adelaide (and there are a few to choose from), is their free Pirate Ship show ride which operates every hour, on the hour.
I'm totally amazed at how such a ride could be safely operated indoors (without going through the roof) - totally awesome...
Don't ask me how (I'm still trying to figure it out) but this pirate ship can handle a variety of different loads/combinations of parents and kids without going through the roof - totally amazing and great value.
Apart from this spectacular feature, there's plenty more action to be had by kids and adults alike: a bouncy castle, four lane speed slide, multiple play-frame activities, and canon and ball transfer stations (for endless mutinies).
There is a quiet room for reading, colouring in or dress ups, a separate toddler area with its own bouncy castle and ball pit, and a separate baby area that houses several cute electronic rockers.
But wait, there's more. For the older kids is a computer lounge complete with PlayStations.
Does it seem a bit one-sided here with regards to who's having all the fun? Fear not, over in the quiet area are two coin-operated massage chairs ($2 per shot - I invested in two and came away therapeutically better off).
So disappointing. Had my daughters birthday there today. Had two other kids and 3 other adults in the group. Cost aver $70 for the table so that's kinda expensive for what we got. I thought oh well it must be good. Wrong. It took an hour for our food to arrive not to mention waiting in line for 20 minutes even though there were only 4 other people in front of us. The two eldest staff members there were so rude. If I'm paying good money I at leased expect some respect and politeness from the staff. Absolute disgrace. Makes me wonder how these people get jobs, management clearly don't care about customer satisfaction. But hey I just grit my teeth and shut up about it. I say the worst you can do to these types of people is to say nothing, don't give them advice to better themselves, don't complain to then cos they don't care anyway, they will end up being bogans without jobs sooner or later when the management fires them because they don't wanna pay higher wages to older staff. Never going back again, will spend my good money elsewhere thank you very much.