As El Nino threatens to soak every sandbox and water log every twisty slide this season, we are betting your beloved outdoor playground will be a ghost town until Spring. But before you go padding your living room walls in preparation for a deadly bout of cabin fever, check out these three amazing new indoor play spaces. From a mini amusement park that offers tot-friendly thrill rides to a chic hotspot that hails from LA and specializes in celeb-worthy parties, these places might inspire a rain dance or two.
Hop N Play
If you are blown away by ball pits and three-story slides, this place will wow your socks off, as it boasts colorful, motorized play structures that will spin, bounce and fly them into exhaustion. It really is like a little amusement park for the 4-feet–and-under set. Take a whirl on the Spinning Daruma, the Sky Rider or the Rolling Drum. Get boosted on the automatic Seesaw or chill out on the Wave Rider. The play structures are from YuKids in Japan, and have become a global sensation—and Hop N Play is the first in California to offer them. Each structure, as well as the entire floor, is wrapped in colorful soft padding for a thrilling yet completely safe experience. And of course they offer amazing party packages and private rooms for birthday parties the littles will never forget.
Good to know: Tots 12 months and under (and not yet walking) are FREE, so come let them practice those first steps in a place where falling isn’t so scary.
1150 El Camino Real, #142
San Bruno, Ca
Hours: Mon.– Sat., 10 a.m.–9 p.m.; Sun.11 a.m.–7 p.m.
Cost: $10 per child; $9 per sibling; $5 for final hour of play per day; Kids under 12 months are FREE
For a more analog experience, head over to Play Haven, a charming well-stocked play center that offers and equally appealing experience for parents as well as their kids. The spacious, sunny play room is designed like a dream preschool, with everything from a play kitchen to a climbing wall. The art sections are incredibly impressive, with Pinterest-worthy bins holding everything from felt shapes to oil pastels. Mini Picassos can take to the glass easel walls with paint brushes and spray bottles, while sculptors will gravitate to the table set with homemade play dough.
But what is most refreshing about this space is its chill vibe. The offerings encourage focus, imagination and creativity rather than running around and screaming, and the Zen look on the caregivers faces drive this point home (although there is a mini bounce house out on the back patio if someone needs to get their jumps out). Make yourself at home by wandering into the kitchen to make a cup of tea or coffee, or snag a snack bar or a banana. A $1 contribution is suggested, and you can just drop your Washington into the jar and go about your mellow morning.
254 Laguna Honda Blvd.
San Francisco, Ca
Hours:Mon.–Fri., 9 a.m.–5 p.m.; Sat. & Sun., 9 a.m.–3 p.m.
Cost: $12 per child; $6 per sibling; Save by purchasing 5 or 10-day passes or a monthly membership
The super cool new play space made a name for itself in LA (as well as a successful run on Shark Tank), where it has been the site of celeb birthday fetes—Nicole Richie, Charlize Theron, Channing Tatum, Megan Fox and more have celebrated their kiddos here. In their brand new SF location, there is the same sleek modern design (a serious coup, pun intended, for a kids’ play space), cool color palette and awesome play structures. An enormous ball pit, 2 story curly slide, swaying rope climbing tunnel and more.
Cool kiddies can also lounge in the COOP teepee or dance the day away on the electronic dance and gaming floor. But the real star at the Coop is the party packages. for parents with a Pinterest wall full of out-of-this-world party ideas, but no time to pull them off yourself, the place offers it all. Browse their existing party themes or work with them to plan your own. Just scrolling through their site or blog will get your party planning wheels turning.
303 Linden Ave.
South San Francisco, Ca
Hours: Contact them for hours, as they hadn’t officially opened to the public as of this writing.
Cost: $12 per child
Have you been to any of these brand-spanking-new play spaces? What did you think? Tell us about them in the comments below.