Singapore’s indoor playground boom continues with the opening of Kaboodle Kids, a first-of-its-kind “imagination playground” at Big Splash on the East Coast.
With an emphasis on building and creativity, Kaboodle is literally what kids make of it (a “manipulable environment” if you want to get all scientific): it’s filled with soft, interchangeable blue pieces that can be used to make anything from a fort, to a car, to a see-saw.
Why blue? Because it’s meant to be calming, and the single colour scheme helps kids focus more on the shapes, says Kaboodle’s founder Tan Mui Jin. A mama of three (her kids are 5, 10 and 12) and an interior designer, she’s well-versed in Singapore’s indoor play spaces and had her fill of flashing lights, loud noises and garish colours (amen to that, mama!).
So she decided to build her own play space, “Somewhere that I didn’t mind hanging out for a few hours.” To this end, there is plenty of comfy seating for parents around the room. And with panoramic windows overlooking East Coast Park and the placid sea beyond, Kaboodle truly does have a calming effect that contrasts many of the other windowless play spaces I’ve visited.
Jin took her kids’ input into account when designing the space; they told her they preferred wooden floors to padded ones, resulting in a minimalist look that’s also extra easy to keep clean (kids are required to wear non-skid socks upon entry). They also requested a place where they could run wild to have Nerf Gun fights; it’s become a popular feature for private birthday parties!
I visited Kaboodle Kids with my 8-month old baby, who parked herself on various surfaces and enjoyed knocking over the giant blue blocks. I watched in amazement as Jin quickly fashioned a wheeled vehicle for her, then a see-saw (resulting in squeals of delight).
A bit later kids ranging in age from 5-10 arrived, bursting through the gates with the same kind of excitement my dog displays when I take him to the dog park! Immediately they began shifting the giant moving ball track, crawling in and out of a fort, and hopping on and off a “palm tree island”. Where I had just seen some big blue blocks, their imagination brought the space to life in a variety of creative ways.
“I love this place!” said a 10-year-old who’d come by after school for a birthday party in the private function room. “It’s the only place I’ve been where you can build giant things however you want. It’s really fun!”
There you have it, mamas. Whether your munchkin’s a Lego enthusiast, budding engineer, or just a quasi-Godzilla who enjoys knocking things over, they’ll almost certainly find fun at Kaboodle Kids.
Sassy Mama Perk:
From now through 31 March, mention “Sassy Mama” and get 10% off entry rates (valid for regular-priced admission only).
Kaboodle Kids, Big Splash, 902 East Coast Parkway, Block B, 02-05B, Singapore 449874
Tel: (+65) 6347 7020, www.facebook.com/KaboodleKidsSingapore, [email protected]
Opening Hours: 10am-6pm daily
For full details and pricing, click here!