Play gym for toddlers? Why not? At toddler stage, your little one has discovered the joy of independent activity. Already a master at crawling, he’s now added walking, running, and tumbling to his repertoire of movement. Experts tell us that physical activity helps trigger neuro activity, making movement the key to learning. But with homes becoming increasingly petite, where can your toddler satisfy his urge to move?
Look no further than a visit to an indoor play gym for hours of gratifying fun with your toddler. Here, toddlers get to explore in a safe, padded environment that challenges them to crawl, slide, climb, jump and bounce, all in the name of good fun. If your little one is up for it, he or she could even scale multi-level play structures, where not knowing whether a spiral slide or suspension bridge awaits just round the bend adds to the thrill of the entire experience.
In between minding your little one, you could even sneak in some “me” time to relish a cup of coffee, knowing that there would be no cleaning up afterwards. Furthermore, there are perks like free Wi-Fi to keep parents happy.
Here’s our list of must-visit indoor play gyms that toddlers will love to monkey around in this lunar year of the monkey!
Best for Toddlers with Older Siblings
This 16,000 square-foot facility offers multiple play concepts that will cater to every child. Tucked at one end of a 150-seat café is a dedicated toddler play area, making it convenient for parents to grab a bite while their charges indulge in play within sight. Older siblings will adore the play structure that boasts a three-level slide, a two-level tunnel, and a spiral slide, among other features. They can also attend baking, art and craft and makeover sessions at an additional charge. Other amenities include nursery and baby-changing rooms. Free Wi-Fi is also provided.
200 Turf Club Road #03-10, The Grandstand, Singapore 287994. Tel: 6466 7611. $10 (unlimited play, child from 12-23 months); $22 (unlimited play, child from 2-10 years).
Best for Toddlers who Love to Explore
Images: Amazonia Singapore’s Facebook page
There is plenty to explore at Amazonia – your little one will love the themed toddler play area and imaginative playground, while more kinestetically-advanced children go “wheeee!” down the eight-metre high slide, bounce on the trampoline, manoeuvre across suspension bridges, and explore tunnels at the Super Play gym. Other highlights (charged separately) include a glow-in-the-dark mini golf area and a space ball area. A 70-seat bistro sells a good selection of food and beverages. There’s free Wi-Fi here too!
Great World City Mall, #03-08, 1 Kim Seng Promenade, Singapore 237994. Tel: 6235 4522. $22 (unlimited play on weekdays, 2 hours on weekends/public holidays, child 1-3 years old); $33 (unlimited play on weekdays, 2 hours on weekends/public holidays, children above 3 years.
Best for Friendly Shoot-outs
There are two Polliwogs outlets: one at Suntec City and one at VivoCity. The Suntec City outlet, the bigger of the two, houses a treehouse-themed toddler play area, complete with a bar table and stools so parents can snack while keeping a watchful eye on their little ones. Hard-to-resist attractions include a big bouncy castle and a multi-level play structure recommended for children above the age of three. Parents and older children can also battle it out at Laser Fury – the first indoor laser maze in Singapore – at an additional cost.
The VivoCity outlet has a dedicated toddler area and a big play structure that includes a trampoline. Both facilities have cafés, as well as nursing, and baby-changing rooms. Wi-Fi is available upon request.
The Polliwogs @ Suntec City, 3 Temasek Boulevard, #02-724 to 727, Tower 4, Suntec City Mall, Singapore 038983. Tel: 6887 4860. The Polliwogs @ VivoCity, 1 HarbourFront Walk, #03-12, VivoCity, Singapore 098585. Tel: 6376 8097. From $13 (unlimited play on weekdays; first two hours on weekends/PH/gazetted school holidays, with additional $5 for every half an hour or part thereof ) for children below 2 years; to $20 for children above 2 years.
Best for Heartland Frolics
Its two outlets are at AMK Hub and Downtown East E!Hub, with the latter being the bigger facility. However, this is undergoing renovations and has been temporarily relocated to The Alley @ Downtown East. Fortunately, the outlet at AMK Hub is equipped to provide hours of fun! Toddlers will love having their own play area and ball pool, as children aged three and above gravitate towards a bigger lit ball pool and a multi-level mega play structure complete with built-in air guns. A new kinetic sand area provides hours of beneficial sensory play. Need to breastfeed? No problem, there’s a nursing room on the premises. Once reopened, the Downtown East facility will have new features, including a mega pirate ship structure, and infuse educational elements into play programmes and activities.
eXplorer Kid @ AMK Hub, AMK Hub #04-02, 53 Ang Mo Kio Avenue 3, Singapore 569933. eXplorer Kid @ Downtown East (to reopen on 1 April 2016), E!hub @ Downtown East, 3rd Floor, 1 Pasir Ris Close, Singapore 519599. Tel: 6589 1668. From $5 off-peak unlimited play / $10 peak unlimited (toddlers aged 13-24 months); to $20 off-peak unlimited play / $30 peak unlimited play (public).
Best for Physical and Mental Stimulation
Both facilities at OneKM and One-north offer a reasonably-sized Toddlers’ Turf and a bigger Kid’s Den. Ideal for little ones up to two years old, Toddlers’ Turf has a nice offering of educational activity boards, toys, slides and see-saws. Older siblings with a bigger appetite for excitement can head for the Kid’s Den. Apart from the traditional play structure features, the outlet at OneKM has a flying fox, a rocket ball machine, and a rocking bull! Both outlets also include selection of specially curated children’s books at the Book Burrow, to encourage reading. A café and diaper changing station can be found at both venues. Free Wi-Fi is also available.
Happy Willow (OneKM), 11 Tanjong Katong Road, #02-01/02 One KM Singapore 437157. Tel: 6341 6468. Happy Willow (One-north), 1 Fusionopolis Way, Fusionopolis, Connexis Tower, #B1-06 Singapore 138632. Tel: 6466 6300. From $10 ( unlimited play on weekdays, children aged 9-23 months); to $22 (three hours on weekends/PH, children aged two years and above).
Best for Active Youngsters
Images: Kids Amaze website
SAFRA Jurong and SAFRA Toa Payoh are homes to the two Kidz Amaze outlets. If you are looking out for a stimulating spot for your little ones, the one at SAFRA Toa Payoh is a great option. It boasts a fully-padded Infant and Toddler Play Zone – specially designed by early childhood experts to provide developmentally appropriate play elements. There’s even a guide to teach parents the best use of these elements to maximise their child’s development milestones potential. This gated area is kept separate from a multi-level scavenger hunt attraction that is a big hit among the older children. Here, parents can chill in the spacious Parents’ Lounge where they have access to free Wi-Fi. Nursery and diaper-changing rooms are also available.
Kidz Amaze SAFRA Toa Payoh, 293 Lorong 6 Toa Payoh Singapore 319387. Kidz Amaze SAFRA Jurong, 333 Boon Lay Way. Tel: 6355 4550. Weekdays (Mon to Fri) unlimited play: From $7.50 (Kidz Amaze Member) to $12.70 (Guest). Weekends (Sat, Sun & PH) unlimited play: From $10.70 (Kidz Amaze Member), to $18 (Guest).
Best for Mums who Lunch
There is something for everyone here. A toddler area, complete with blocks, age-appropriate manipulative toys, and a small ball pit caters to the likes of the little tots. Children who are up for conquering heights would be enticed by the four-storey play structure. A café here serves gourmet coffee and food. Other amenities include a spacious nursing room, baby-changing room and free Wi-Fi. Free parking at Dempsey Hill is an added bonus!
8 Dempsey Road, #01-15 Dempsey Hill, Singapore 247696. Tel: 6474 4176. From $15 for unlimited play (weekdays) for children aged between 6 and 23 months, and $28 for children aged between 2 and 12 years.