We were back within a month of our initial visit, and we live 12 miles away – which in London might as well be a different country.
There’s not a lot in it, but its location on the edge of Peckham Rye and the welcome addition of a baby-sensory room mean Apple Tree 2 just edges it over its sister site.
The design gives off some seriously jazzy nineties sci-fi vibes, a la Red Dwarf via The Fifth Element, but imagine both are set in Romford.
Appalling weather? Kids bouncing off the walls of your tiny London flat? Fear not, there is hope in the shape of the capital’s myriad indoor playgrounds, from the most stylish play cafes and museum children’s galleries to the least awful soft-play centres we can think of (and, good God, there are some dreadful ones).
The kids’ club is just as much a parents’ club thanks to its lush cafe, play buddies and some of the best toilets I’ve ever had the pleasure of changing a really awful nappy in.
Bella Boos is the only soft play I’ve ever been to that’s reminded me of going clubbing.
I’ve never quite managed to find a public soft-play centre in London that doesn’t make me want to kill myself… until now.
This could so easily have been just another generic soft-play centre, but the owners have clearly put a lot of thought into making it stand out from the crowd.
I would genuinely be more inclined to go if it was called Bertie and Boo’s Dystopian Nightmare (actually, that sounds awesome).
I can’t abide an ugly soft play centre, but if it’s tastefully appointed with a muted colour palette, clean lines and the odd kitschy add-on I’ll gladly climb aboard.