Thanks to our desert climate, we’re blessed with a great selection of indoor playrooms and soft plays, so if it’s looking like it’s going to be hot, hotter, or baking, take yourself off to one of our recommendations below… We’ve found those where there’s something for mama on offer too, like a great cafe or free wi-fi. Oh, and remember your socks mama – we ALWAYS forget!
Suitable from 6 months and up
A 2,000 square foot New York themed indoor playground for 0-5 year olds! We’re talking NYC apartment with slide, a yoga block skyscraper and a yellow taxi just for starters. Apple Seeds also offer several different classes for all ages such as art, cooking, science and Songs for Seeds (for the youngest) and much, much more. Their classes always get top reviews from our mamas in the know. Membership required. Also available for parties. Check out the full Sassy Mama review here.
Psst.. There is a strict shoes off and socks on policy here for mama and bub. Make sure to check your socks for holes!
Apple Seeds, Gold and Diamond Park, Building 6, Ground Floor, Shop 3, (+971)(0)4 380 6064, www.appleseedsdubai.com
Caboodle call themselves a children’s concept store, which actually is kind of a good way to put it. Not that there is shopping involved but the kids can pick and choose different areas and activities and it has a bright and airy feel to it, which is a nice change after having seen the dark padded walls of playrooms for years.
Caboodle offers playgroups, a mama+kiddie hair salon and spa (all organic nasty-free products of course) and soft plays for tiny tikes and toddlers alike. From 6 months and up. Should there be a special day coming up you can book the kids and their little friends in for a themed party. Jammin’ Jungle, Up Up and Away-themes party anyone ?
Check out the full Sassy Mama review here!
Caboodle, Dubai Mall, 2nd Floor, (+971)(0) 4 3253367, www.caboodle.ae
Epic Ideas Kids Town
Need some time to yourself mama? Check out this small but cozy, drop-off childcare facility with an indoor play area and a napping room (for tired little people). The staff are super friendly, most of them Filipino, and your little ones will be in good hands for a few hours while you take a breather. Open from 7am for over 2 years olds…sorry babies!
Sheikah Noora Building, Suite #208 Tecom (behind MOE and in front of Citymax Hotel, (+971)(0) 4 432 9606
Extreme Fun Play Centre
Let the kids go bananas at this indoor playground while you enjoy a coffee at the café overlooking the playground. Climbing structures, ball pits and slides will keep the kids busy for hours. There is a soft play and a toddler area to choose from, making sure the really young players are safely tucked away from the big kids stuff. Suitable from six months and they even have free wifi for mama.
Extreme Fun Play Centre, Motorcity (opposite Spinneys), (+971)(0) 4 4525543, www.extremefunuae.com
A definite fave amongst our Marina mamas, who love the clean and fresh look of this lovely play centre for kids up to 7 years old. With age separate play areas and a Jungle Gym, sand room if the real beach is just too much of a faff plus a cooking/arts science room, what’s not to love about this place?
They even have a little hair salon for tots trims. Birthday parties? But of course!
Favourite Things, Dubai Marina Mall, 2nd Floor (next to food court), (+971)(0) 4 434 1984, www.favouritethings.com
A relative newcomer to the Dubai playroom scene this fab little space is beautifully designed to include a giant play house on two levels, car track, and mini supermarket – perfect for letting little imaginations run wild. There’s also a small but lovely soft play with slides and room for arts and crafts. And the best bit? You get to sit in the café just outside while staff supervise your little one playing (fully visible behind a glass partition). The perfect excursion for days when you need a break (and the coffee is worth a mention too!)
Kiddies Cafe, Cluster Y, Lake Shore Tower JLT, (+971) (0) 43688571, www.kiddiescafe.com
An indoor playroom with an outdoor feel to it… (well, we can pretend!). It could be the painted trees and blue skies or the little benches strategically placed for exhausted mamas (yippee!) or just the fact that it is large and has a lovely feeling of space feel to it. Either way, Kids connection definitely gets the Sassy Mama stamp of approval for keeping our littlies entertained for the entire 2 hours you pay for, which by the way is only AED45 per child, AED35 for under 3 years- pretty darn decent for Dubers in our opinion!
Kids Connection, Wafi Mall, Oud Metha Rd, Dubai, (+971)(0) 4 327 9011, www.wafi.com
Through creative classes such as music, dance, and art for kiddos aged 0-6 years, Kidville believes in learning through hands-on activities and playing. Appropriate for newborn to 6-year old children. Available for private occasions and birthday parties too. Kidville also offers a pre-school option through the Kidville University program 2-4 year old little learners.
Kidville, Dubai Marina, The Walk at Jumeirah Beach Residence, (971)(0)4 440-1220, www.kidville.com/jbr
Kidville, Uptown Mirdif, Grand Piazza (near Spinneys), (+971)(0) 4 2363648, www.kidville.com/jbr
Calling all Green Community mamas – this one is for you!
Kids Zone has an indoor play area, arts & crafts kiosk and a read & learn area suitable for 5 year olds and below. They also offer workshops twice a week, where children of all ages can join in the fun. Baby Arabia and Boogie Babies for the youngest ones (6 months-3 years) and Kiducation and Kangoo Jumps for the older ones (3-5 years).
Kids Zone, The Market Mall, Green Community, Dubai Investment Park, (+971)(0) 4 88 48520, www.kidszonedubai.com
We sort of like to think of My Gym as a Fitness First for kids (without the beefed up guys of course). They offer a ton of different programs for children aged 6 weeks (!) thru 13 years that help them develop physically and emotionally in a fun and friendly environment. Not only are they a good way to get your little ones moving but also a great meeting point for other mamas. My Gym has locations in over 30 countries (we have actually tried their classes in Hong Kong as well as Singapore) and follows a proven concept around the globe.
My Gym, 520 Jumeira Beach Rd. Jumeira 3, (+971)(0) 4 394 3962, www.mygym.com/ae
My Gym, Lulu Building Barsha, 2nd Floor, www.mygym.com/ae
From 9am until 8pm (10 am at some outlets) a new activity starts every half hour at Peekaboo. We’re talking Playdough work, Origami, Cooking, Yoga, Puzzles, Dress Up, Arts and Crafts phew- you name it! Don’t worry mamas it is ALL all supervised and managed by the Peekaboo team! Suitable for 0-7 years but tots under 3.5 years must have an adult with them. Pay by the hour and your kids can enjoy any activity that’s happening during their time there. There is also a play area for the younger ones (below 2).
Peekaboo, The Village Mall, Jumeirah Beach Road, (+971)(0) 4 344 7122, www.peekaboo.ae
Peekaboo, Mall of the Emirates, 2nd Floor (Magic Planet), (+971)(0) 4 347 0622, www.peekaboo.ae
Peekaboo, Ibn Battuta Mall, Persia Court, (+971) (0)4 4297949, www.peekaboo.ae
The Little Gym
A fun place for your little ones with a serious underlying purpose- development through movement. This is not an indoor playroom but rather a proper little gym with real gymnastics equipment to help children explore their physical boundaries in a safe environment. With classes for 4 month- 12 year olds, sessions include parent/child gymnastics, dance and karate (!), there is definitely something for everyone to enjoy. From 3 years and up.
Psst.. they offer free introductory classes for interested mamas. Go check it out!
The Little Gym, Ibn Battuta Mall, Persia Court, Dubai, (+971) (0)4 445 6850, www.tlgibnbattuta.com
If you want your kids to be bouncing off the walls rather than climbing them at home or you have a mini parkour enthusiast on your hands, Bounce guarantees a heap of fun for the entire family. 100 interconnected trampolines and 500 square meters of padding & foam to land on make for a fab outing. The best ways to get the kiddos moving when outdoors is out of bounds. Check out the full Sassy Mama Review here:
Bounce Dubai, No. 32 4B Street, Al Quoz, Dubai (behind Ace Hardware off the Sheikh Zayed Road), (+971) (0)4 321 1400, www.bounce.ae
Bounce Dubai, Citywalk, Jumeirah 1, (+971)(0) 4 344 4570, www.bounce.ae
Cheeky Monkeys Playland
A great indoor activity centre that focuses on your little ones mental and sensory development. You will find a good-sized soft play area with climbing structures and trampolines, a Monkey Clubhouse where kids can play house as well as a Lego Station. They even have a little Salon where little clients can book themselves in for a cut, mani/pedi or a massage (mama?).
A big bonus is the free wifi at the little café where mama can browse away in semi-peace for a while. Birthday rooms available of course. Check out the full Sassy Mama review here!
Cheeky Monkeys Playland, Al Barsha Mall, Union CO-OP, Ground Floor, (+971)(0)4 385 0875, www.cheekymonkeys.ae
Cheeky Monkeys Playland, Etihad Mall, First Floor, Mirdif, (+971)(0) 4 252 4878, www.cheekymonkeys.ae
Chuck E. Cheese’s
Apparently we just can’t get enough of indoor gaming centres with arcade games, rides and prizes. So what’s special about Chuck E Cheese then you may wonder? How about if we tell you that they have an ice skating rink and a bowling alley inside? And they also offer pizzas (that aren’t bad!) and salads for the whole clan. Anything to keep you busy and full. Birthday party rooms available, of course.
Sassy Mama Tip: Discount vouchers available in the Entertainer Guide, Family Edition
Chuck E. Cheese’s, Dubai Oulet Mall, Dubai Al Ain Road, (+971)(0) 4 425 3030, www.chuckecheesesdubai.com
Yet another play room on steroids- your kids will love this place! Most of the outlets offer a soft play area that is surrounded by video games, rides and other craziness. Some of the locations even have a petite hair salon, Kiddie Kutz, to help you sort out your tot’s tresses.
Just like Magic Planet there is no entrance fee, but you do need to pump cash onto one of their power cards and watch your kids blow it all away on strange games and attractions of all sorts. Although they offer activities for all ages (from 0-4 at their Fun n’ Learn areas), check your location first for availability. Your kids will love you forever (until dinner time approx.) but mama might need to hit up Starbucks prior to entry for a little caffeine fix.
Needless to say, they do birthday parties too.
Arabian Center, Level 1, Al Khawaneej Road, Mirdif, (+971)(0) 4 2845679, www.funcity.ae
Century Mall, Level 1, Mamzar, (+971)(0) 4 2398634, www.funcity.ae
Ibn Battuta Mall, Tunisia Court, Jebel Ali Village, (+971)(0) 4 3669819, www.funcity.ae
Lamcy Plaza, Ground Floor, Sheikh Rashid Road, Oud Metha, (+971)(0) 4 3352700, www.funcity.ae
Mercato Mall, Level 1, Jumeirah Beach Road, (+971)(0) 4 3499976, www.funcity.ae
Oasis Centre, Level 3, Sheikh Zayed Road (Fun Ville), (+971)(0) 4 3397783, www.funcity.ae
Reef Mall, Level 2, Salahuddin Road, Deira, (+971)(0) 4 2222405, www.funcity.ae
Sassy Mama Tip: Discount vouchers available for both Fun City and Fun Ville in the Entertainer Guide, Family Edition
These play rooms are ideally located for for mamas who need time to catch up on glamorous things like grocery shopping, pick up dry cleaning or just enjoy the luxury of a 20 min coffee break. Bouncy castles, arts and crafts, toddler soft play and unhealthy snacks- all the makings of a good play area.
Fun Corner, Spinneys Centre, Al Wasl Road, Umm Suqeim 1, Dubai, (+971) (0)4 394 0315, www.funcorner.me
Fun Corner, Jumeira Plaza, Beach Road, Jumeirah 1, Dubai, (+971) (0)4 349 9119, www.funcorner.me
A fun little place for busy kids, where they can climb around a jungle gym, dive into a ball pit or bounce off padded walls in the soft play area. Ideal for parents who need a little break while shopping at Times Square Mall, yep that would be most of us.
Sassy Mama Tip: Discount vouchers available in the Entertainer Guide, Family Edition
Funsquare, 1st Floor Times Square, Sheikh Zayed Road (At 3/4th Interchange), Dubai, (+971)(0) 4 341 8020
Show your kids that they can become whatever they want at Kidzania. A massive edutainment centre, Kidzania was built for kids to enjoy role-play activities in a real life replica, kiddie-sized city! Doting doctors, brave firemen and passionate chefs – they’re all hiring! Mamas can check the kids into the “real” world and relax for a while or watch them go to work (literally) from a nearby lounge. Psst.. they recently added a Kinder Chocolate Factory to the mix..
Suitable from 4 years up to 16 years old (although we would find it kind of hard to convince a tired teenager this is the coolest place in town). 2-3 year olds cost 95AED and from 4 years up it is 130AED. For the below-2’s its free.
Kidzania, Dubai Mall, Level 2 (opposite Reel Cinemas), (+971)(0) 4 448 5222, www.kidzania.ae
Le Petit Palais
Galeries LaFayette has taken its French heritage to a whole new level with a built up French town replica for kids called Le Petit Palais. Your little loved ones get to leisurely (we wish!) stroll down a little French street past a Boulangerie, Salon de Beaute and even a little Chateau. Role play plus a bit of European flair – mais oui!
Planning a petit party – why not invite the whole class to France? These guys do parties as well.
Dubai Mall, Inside Galeries LaFayette, (+971)(0) 4 344 4570, www.lepetitpalaisdubai.com
Mix of education and entertainment for children aged 2-7 years old. Little Explorers has been divided up into five zones; Discover Myself, Locate Myself, I Can Do, All Together and I Experiment, where kids can discover, explore and work together. The idea is for kids to learn physical as well as social and emotional skills through interacting with their petit peers.
They also offer 60-minute workshops with hands-on activities and supervised exploration of the five Zones, every day on the hour.
Little Explorers, Mirdif City Center, 1st Floor (inside Playnation), (+971) (0)800 386, www.theplaymania.com/little-explorers
Enormous (supposedly the largest) indoor soft play area in Dubers with climbing structures, giant slides, ball pits, and a separate closed off toddler zone. Mama can enjoy the on-site cafe while the littlies go nuts. We only wish they would have a downstairs bathroom to save mama the schlepp upstairs. And oh, keep an eye on your little people as they are not easy to follow around the maze and you can easily lose sight of them.
Mini Monsters, Exit 42, Sheikh Zayed Road (near Dubai Garden Centre), (+971)(0) 4 341 4459, www.minimonsters.ae
Playaround@Some Place Nice
Fancy a tee off for the tiny? This is Dubai’s first 9-hole indoor golf course with a glow in the dark sea animals theme (of course..). Or as they put it themselves, a ‘neon-lit golf experience.’ It’s a fun thing to do, especially as dads tend to take extra interest when the word golf enters the conversation. They also offer various arts and crafts session if you are more into that. There is an on-site café that serves up wraps, sandwiches, pizzas- the usual.
Psst….they also do birthday parties.
Playaround@Some Place Nice, Jewels Tower 2, Basement 1, Opps JBR Shams, Dubai Marina, Dubai, (+971)(0) 4 4570455 / (+971)(0) 52 755 9008, www.playaround.ae
Teens and Tweens
The perfect solution for bored teenagers looking for something to do. Club Rush is a tweens and teenagers only (no parents allowed!) entertainment lounge for the 10-18 year olds. Activities such as mocktail mixing, scavenger hunts, guitar hero contests, tennis and dance challenges are just some of the things the club’s guests get to enjoy. Schedule is split into the early rush (10-18 year olds) from 2-6pm daily and the late rush (13-18 years) fro 7pm-midnight. Good clean fun for the older kids, we’re all for it!
Club Rush, Atlantis, The Palm, (+971)(0) 4 426 1365, www.atlantisthepalm.com/kidsandteens/clubrush.aspx
Part of the PlayMani Group, Magic Planet offers three different locations in Dubai. The Mall of the Emirates one is (unsurprisingly) the largest indoor entertainment centre in the city. Buzz, clonk, “that’s-mine”- you know what to expect. Indoor roller coasters, 4D cinema, arcade and video games and the list goes oooon.
We personally think this one is better for the slightly older crowd like your lovely braced-up tweens but there is a supervised toddler play area as well. No entrance fee, but prepare to rack up a fairly hefty swipe card bill in order to enjoy games and rides.
Sassy Mama Tip: drop the older kids off and hit the shops!
Magic Planet, Level 2, Mall of the Emirates, Sheikh Zayed Road, Dubai, (+971)(0) 4 341 4444, www.magicplanet.ae
Magic Planet, 1st Floor, Deira City Centre Tel: (+971)(0) 4 2954333, www.magicplanet.ae
Magic Planet, 1st Floor, Mirdif City Centre, Tel: (+971)(0) 4 341 4444, www.magicplanet.ae
Calling all tweens, teens (and papas?). This is an indoor theme park (where else than in Dubai we wonder?!) jam packed with video games, rides and simulators. Five different zones, nine main rides and 250 games to be precise- holy moly this place is big! Looking for some extreme stimulation for the over-4s in your fam? Send hubby and take a day at the spa.
You can either pay per ride or get a “Power Pass” (Dh175) for unlimited rides.
Dubai Mall, Level 2, (+971)(0) 4 448 8484, www.segarepublic.com, www.segarepublic.com
Sega Republic Game Zone
A slightly less hyper alternative to Sega Republic is the Sega Republic Game Zone where your kids will find a bunch of arcade and redemption games (yep, the more you play, the more you win…). There is a soft play area for toddlers if you have tots of all ages to entertain in one go.
Sega Republic Game Zone,Dubai Marina Mall, 2nd Floor (by Reel Cinemas), (+971)(0) 4 448 8488, www.segarepublic.com/en/About/SegaGameZoneDubaiMarinaMall
Laser Tag and 6D cinema (whatever that means!) Looking to score some brownie points with the little man in your life? Thrill Zone is a no brainer. With a Jurassic Jungle Themed set up, this is a place where slightly older kids will have the most fun since the below 5 years old tend to get a bit scared of the dark and dinosaurs combo- hey we don’t blame ‘em.
Thrill Zone, 3rd Floor, Oasis Centre Mall, Sheikh Zayed Road, (+971)(0) 4 388 3551, www.thrillzoneuae.com
Featured image sourced via Pinterest