Play centres are an ideal place to go when the weather is unfavourable or you want to meet up with your mums group.
As the Perth weather starts to cool down but you need to get the kids out of the house for a few hours, where do you go? A play centre, of course! Chipmunks is a chain of play centres located throughout Perth at Bibra Lake, Port Kennedy, Kelmscott, Wanneroo, Whitfords and Mandurah.
Play centres are great fun for those dull, wintery kind of days, when it’s pouring with rain and too wet for the playground, and for when it’s far too hot to go to the park (hot slides and climbing frames are no fun.) You can also have a child’s birthday party at Chipmunks and have a catch up with your mums group. So many reasons to go!
The Perth Crochet Club meets weekly to learn crochet, meet other Perth mums, and have a good chat. Whether you're a complete beginner or a seasoned pro, everyone is welcome to come along!
My two children and I recently visited the Kelmscott centre for a play – we had previously visited the Bibra Lake centre (and the Cranbourne centre in Melbourne) so we thought we would see how it compares.
Chipmunks Kelmscott is located on Albany Highway, in the same complex as the Genesis Gym, Hogs Breath and Better Pets and Gardens (plus Baskin Robbins. Yum!) You have to enter via the gym front entrance and follow the signs to Chipmunks.
As with the other Chipmunks franchises we have visited, there are distinct areas for babies, toddlers and older children, but my daughter – and most of the children visiting – doesn’t care for these sorts of rules and I generally find myself chasing her around the areas for the big kids.
The toddlers’ area has a multi-level play structure with padded steps, slides, tunnels and a giant floor piano that plays notes when the kids step on it. Cool! There is also a bouncy castle located just outside this area.
Do you want to learn how to knit? Or have recently started and would like to meet some new friends to share your creativity with, all while having a good chat? Perth Knitting Club has classes for you.
There is another play area for children aged 3 and over, which has a large, inflatable slide, racing slides and a multi-level play structure with lots to do. The kids will find tunnels to crawl through, soft balls to fire down onto the level below and plenty of things to climb up and down. There are also spinning cups.
The baby area is separate and fenced off and has lots of age appropriate toys for children aged up to 12 months old, including padded see-saws, stuffed animals and toys to help develop those fine motor skills.
As with all franchises, there is a cafe and restaurant area with plenty of tables and chairs, plus high chairs. The café serves a range of hot beverages, snacks and small meals, plus you can also buy things like fruit and yoghurts for the kids. Chipmunks Kelmscott offer birthday parties and have several dedicated themed party rooms, with prices starting from $24.90 per child.
Overall the centre was clean and the separate areas totally appropriate for the recommended age groups. If you need to find a great indoor activity, this is one for the to-do list.
Essential Information Chipmunks Playland and Café, Kelmscott
Unit 4, 2948 Albany Highway, Kelmscott
Cost: School Days: Children aged 1 to 11 years $10.90, non-school days children aged 1 to 2 years $10.90, children aged 3 to 11 years $13.90
Opening hours: Monday to Saturday 9am to 5:30pm, Sundays 10am to 4pm, closed Anzac Day