I must admit that I am always on the lookout for any venue that allows me
to finish an entire conversation with another adult while my child is happily
occupied somewhere on the premises. I am not sure about you, but I am
a little tired of overcrowded venues, screaming children, VERY bad food,
and harassed moms who have lost the will to live during the course of the
afternoon. Life is too short for “make do” and I am delighted to see that
so many venues that cater specifically for children are springing up like
mushrooms all over Joburg.
One of my friends recommended the relatively new “Granny’s Garden”
in Blairgowrie, which is lovely and central because it is near my little girl’s
nursery school. I love the name, as well as the fact that the venue is a
recently- converted house. This really is a lovely venue for moms venturing
out on a playdate, or looking for somewhere new to try.
The highlight for me was the caregivers who literally beamed with delight
at the new children that had arrived to play! My friend and I settled quite
happily at tables under the trees while our children were whisked off to
explore the dress-up room with a variety of clothes, costumes and a
stage on which to perform. There is also an indoor climbing area that
has been a lifesaver on many a rainy day, as well as an outdoor playground and bicycle track where the kids can burn off some steam.
Younger toddlers are safely occupied in a specially designed Toddler Room that is dedicated entirely to age-appropriate toys and is off limits to older
children. There is also a well-stocked arts and crafts area for children wanting to make something to take home with them when they leave. The venue
has a dedicated party room and various party options for moms looking for somewhere new to host a birthday party.
There is an indoor tea-room, as well as the garden area outside. The menu is fairly limited and best suited to lighter meals and food for children but
the service and excellent child minders more than make up for the unimaginative food.
Granny’s Garden also offers a “drop-and-go” facility where you can leave your child for a number of hours – something for working moms to keep in
mind over the holidays. And having seen the quality of care the children receive, I would feel quite comfortable using this facility in the future.
All in all, this is a lovely venue that you will want to add to your radar screen. It’s warm and friendly, and the kids feel safe and have loads of activities to
keep them fully occupied. You can sit and catch up with a friend or read a magazine in the garden, or simply enjoy some time playing with your kids.
In a nutshell:
Granny’s Garden is not pretentious and overly fussy – the name actually sums it up. It’s a place for children to go where they can run, climb, swing,
dress up, paint, slide, ride bikes, and have an absolute blast. While the moms get looked after too. And in my book, that’s a win-win situation.
~Reviewed by Shelli NT