Timezone is a games arcade which has over 35 locations across Australia, including one on the first floor of Charlestown Square shopping centre in Newcastle. It recently "re-launched" in late September 2019, after a colourful renovation with a brand new party room and new games. It may not be everyone's "cup of tea", with loud music, flashing lights and kids squealing, however, for many people, it is the perfect venue to go with friends and family or to take someone on a fun date - whatever the age.
As a mum, I personally enjoy the games we can play together such as air hockey or throwing balls to knock down clowns. Some of the other games are over too quickly or cost too much for the amount of "fun" they offer, in my opinion. On our first visit to the new and colourful Timezone in Charlestown however, we were impressed with the wide array of activities for all ages. Whether you like to shoot basketballs, ride motorbikes or play a dance game, there was something for almost everyone. Get ready for some fun!
Find Timezone on the first floor of Charlestown Square, under Reading Cinemas
If you consider visiting Timezone Charlestown with your kids for the first time, you may groan at the thought of how expensive the whole experience may be. We bought our daughter a card which had 60 minutes play for $26 (which was better value than the other offer of $20 for 30 minutes play). You can also pay for credit, not time, with deals such as "$30 credit for $25". It isn't a cheap experience if you have a lot of cards to buy - considering you can buy $11 movie tickets at Reading Cinemas above for longer time - but it's a bit of fun if you want to do something different as a family. See the Timezone Charlestown Facebook for deals, events and latest prizes to win.
Our family enjoyed every minute of our latest visit to Timezone Charlestown - these are our top 3 reasons for going back again next school holidays. Will we see you there?
Visit the customer service desk near the entrance to check out the pricing options and collect your swipe card(s)
Although we watched our daughter play the games, we could still help throw balls on many of the games which had multiple balls to play with, as well as play countless games of air hockey together in that time. We all enjoyed moving from game to game to see what each one did and she enjoyed being "in charge" of the card to swipe at each game. There was a lot of high-fiving when she won and groans when she lost. We were all excited by the idea of hitting the ticket jackpot and taking home a huge prize! (Side note - we didn't!)
One hour was a sufficient amount of time for our first visit - it gave her plenty of time to try everything out and we all had some fun, quality family time along the way. If your child is young or gets overwhelmed by too much noise and flashing lights however, you may prefer to choose 30 minute play, as there is a lot to take in.
Although many kids have computer skills from playing on iPads, Timezone also has a wide range of other games to play where they learn new skills and help with hand-eye co-ordination. They can throw basketballs at moving hoops, follow dance moves, throw balls up ramps and learn patience as they wait for the perfect time to press a button to catch a fish. Although they are having fun, there is an element of learning as they gain new skills at each game and learn patience as they figure out how each game works.
Learn some ball skills and feel a sense of achievement when they get in!
Timezone is an ideal place for a birthday party - particularly if you don't have much room at home for a party or you are looking for an indoor option for a winter birthday. Prices start from $25 per child, with a minimum of 8 children coming to the party. On our visit, the party room was empty for the first half an hour and then party guests started to arrive for an 8th birthday party. There was a lot of excitement, huge helium balloons and excited kids about to fill the venue for the next 1 - 2 hours. See here for details.
On our visit, kids of all ages enjoyed the games, the prizes, the lollies and the excitable "buzz" of Timezone Charlestown. If your kids are anything like our daughter, they will also enjoy the feeling of beating mum or dad at air hockey or finding out that they are good at another game. As adults, we found the music and chatter very noisy when we walked in, but by the time we left we were used to the atmosphere and enjoyed the experience.
Why don't you try it for yourself this weekend or next school holidays with your kids? You may be like us, and make it a regular school holiday activity for years to come. One thing is for sure - before we go again I'm going to have to brush up on my air hockey skills...