The Float @Marina Bay is home to Art-Zoo, a gargantuan animal themed inflatable playground, from now till 26 March 2017. We checked it out with our little roving reporter Elliott to bring you all the highlights.
If you enjoyed hogging the bouncy castles at your neighbourhood funfair back in the days, Art-Zoo is probably the stuff of dreams for you. The giant inflatable playground is the upsized version of typical bouncy castles you’ve been bringing your kids to all this while. The brainchild of Singaporean artist, designer and curator, Jackson Tan, Art-Zoo is an experiential inflatable playground and art installation all rolled into one within the setting of a zoo. Trust us when we say kids will love it.
We got to check out Art-Zoo yesterday – our tot reporter Elliott in tow – and I must say it was the best thing to do on a Saturday afternoon despite the light showers. The bouncy animal themed installations which explore alphabets (‘A’ is for ant, ‘B’ is for bear and so on) made me wish I could be a kid all over again. It’s safe to say that Art-Zoo is for both the young and the young at heart! Elliott needed no instructions to start his bouncy zoological adventure. Follow him as he explores the 11 zone clusters that await you at Art-Zoo!
Instagram tip: kids bouncing away on animal inflatables make for great Boomerang videos!
(See also: Elliott Visits Waka Waka by The Polliwogs)
Kickstart your Art-Zoo journey at Antarctica! Get up close with the adorable striped penguins in blue bowties on the first tier, and then work your way up to pat the white reindeers. Right on top are three chubby polar bears of varying sizes resting on a blue and red igloo. It’s a great spot for that Instagram-worthy snap!
This sprawling bouncy installation is made up of three interconnected circular inflatables. Each one has a different living thing as its centrepiece! A cute blue and orange monkey occupies the first one while the third is taken up by a snoozing king of the jungle – the lion! Fret not, he looks gentle enough for little ones to approach. The second circle is home to a demure pink flower.
Are you up for a challenge? There’s no bouncing involved in this one but you’ll need a good memory and a decent sense of direction! Try making your way through this Giraffe maze, one of Art-Zoo’s highlights, without getting lost. Be sure to accompany your little ones lest they panic when they lose sight of mum or dad!
I’ve got to say that I loved the checkered prints on the Grasslands installation. Also, this is probably the only time ever you’ll get to spot kangaroos in patriotic shades of white and red! Bounce your way from the first level to the third one to meet the uber cute kangaroos in ascending sizes. Elliott was content enough to simply encircle the whole lot of them again and again and again.
5. Honey Hives
Which members of the animal kingdom could possibly be awaiting you at Honey Hives? Why, bears and bees, of course! Two massive photogenic bears sitting back-to-back make up the centrepiece of this inflatable. Their designs appear to be inspired by patchwork quilts and I reckon most children would be attracted to the multicoloured one (I was too).
Except for a rainbow right in the middle, the sheep, zebras, trees and mountains on this giant inflatable sport black and white stripes. Needless to say, little ones will naturally be attracted to the multicoloured rainbow, which serves as the perfect backdrop for a memorable photograph. Elliott too was fascinated by it as he lingered at one end of the arc – perhaps he was looking for that pot of gold.
We loved that most of the animal shaped inflatables at Art-Zoo were whimsical in the sense that they did not stick to conventional colours for the cute critters. I mean, where else can you find an orange elephant with blue tusks? Only at Art-Zoo! The brightly coloured elephants and monkey in Savannah sure did a good job of putting us in a playful mood!
This is probably the friendliest giant spider you’ll meet in your entire life. Standing at a whopping 12 metres, it’s one of the highlights of Art-Zoo. Just beside it is a bouncy free-play area in matching shades of red and black. There are no animal inflatables in this section so there’s nothing to get in the way of little ones who just want to run free!
Frogs, hippos, birds and lily pads fill Swamps, the lime green coloured zone of Art-Zoo. Elliott was a little hesitant to enter this one – I suppose it was the giant frog extending its long striped tongue to catch a fly that might have put him off. The two open-mouthed hippos flanking the giant frog make for great photo opportunities. Get your tots to pose while sitting between their open jaws (they won’t bite)!
Say hello to all your favourite undersea creatures here! The star of Underwater is an amiable red octopus surrounded by jellyfish, narwhals, crabs and whales. Little ones will have a whale of a time scaling the tiers and eventually reaching the octopus to run wild through its tentacles. My personal favourites here were the crabs with their dazed expressions – cute beyond words!
No bouncing to do here – but you and the kids can have a ball of a time, quite literally! Enter via the mouth of this massive 12 metre tall whale inflatable and find lots of pink balls strewn about inside. Throw them, bounce them or kick them about for a good cardio workout! But do exercise some caution and refrain from using too much force – you wouldn’t want to hurt the little ones running about.
As fun as this giant inflatable playground is, let’s not forget about safety. Unfortunately, the various zone clusters at Art-Zoo are meant for people of all ages – from teetering toddlers right up to senior citizens who are young at heart. There aren’t any areas specially dedicated to tots. So you’ll have to constantly keep an eye on your little ones or accompany them on the bouncy inflatables to prevent mishaps.
Need-to-Knows Before Visiting Art-Zoo
- There’s a strict NO RE-ENTRY policy so do ensure that the kids have used the restrooms before entering Art-Zoo.
- There aren’t any F&B stalls within the premises of Art-Zoo, so do bring along a sufficient supply of water.
- Little ones need to be able to support themselves unaided and strollers are not allowed on the inflatables.
- No high heels or stilettos please, mums – the animals at Art-Zoo are terrified of those!
The weather these days is unpredictable, so do be prepared to get wet if it rains. Art-Zoo’s organisers have stated that they will continue to run in light drizzle, but activities will be paused should there be lightning. It would be a good idea to pack a change of clothes for the kiddos in case of rain! There was a slight drizzle when we visited Art-Zoo yesterday afternoon and the water that had gathered on some of the inflatables was enough to drench my shoes. Best footwear on a rainy day? None at all. Leave them outside and have some slippery barefoot fun!
Thankfully for us, the skies cleared up soon enough and the sun came out to warm up the inflatables. On a particularly scorching day, the heated rubber could be uncomfortable for little ones so it would be best to keep on footwear. If you’d prefer to avoid the sun altogether, drop by in the evening. Art-Zoo is open till 11pm daily!
Single ticket – $13 per pax
Bundle of 4 tickets – $50
Single ticket – $15 per pax
Bundle of 4 tickets – $54
If you wish to buy tickets on-site, do arrive early as there may be entry restrictions once full capacity is reached at The Float. Prefer to purchase tickets online? Remember to bring along a copy of the confirmation email (a soft copy is fine too) and your ID for verification purposes. Each paid-for ticket will allow you to bring in two children under the age of two for free!
When: 3 – 26 March 2017
Time: Monday to Friday – 5pm to 11pm, Saturday & Sunday – 2pm to 11pm
Where: The Float @Marina Bay
Nearest MRT station: Promenade (CC4/DT15)