Queensway Ice Skating and Bowling (Review)


Bowling
Usually sessions cost £9.95 for adults and £8 for kids but we went during a promotional offer and had both our bowling and ice skating sessions for free – the only catch being that we had to pay for the penguin aid when skating.

There is no need or charge to wear bowling shoes and each game lasts for around 20 minutes. There was a booking clause online that states parties that are late to their sessions have that amount of time deducted off of their game. Eek. To book head here


Ice skating
Sessions are £11 for under 11s, £12 for 12 and overs. Every Monday all sessions are half price for all skaters.

Skates hire is £2.50 per pair and penguin aids are £6 per hour (for kids up to 1.4m tall). Queens skating have two different types of skates: the 'classic' single blade which goes from a size 4 (kids) to size 14 (adults) and strap-on double-blade skates for toddlers.

You can also buy gloves (£3.50) and socks (£2.50) in house too in case you forget – which is handy considering the few places we’ve been ice skating don’t offer these. There’s a cloakroom (which costs £1) and toilet facilities close to the rink as well as an opportunity to buy hot and cold beverages and a small seating area rink side. You’ll find plenty of lockers around the arena which charge £1 for 3 hours of use.

In terms of the amount of time you have on the ice it seems completely down to you – when booking online you’re free to choose what time you skate until (you can pop in and out with a wristband anytime between 11am-5pm). You can pre book tickets here


Facilities


Be warned that the venue isn’t accessible – there didn’t seem to be a lift and there were a tonne of stairs when entering the venue (there’s no way you’d be able to get a pram down them by yourself). There’s also virtually no signal in the venue although they do offer free WIFI – simply connect to their network and enter your email and you’re off.


You’ll find plenty of toilets dotted around the entire venue – including baby changing facilities. The toilets were super clean (except for the bins which spilled everywhere when I pressed the foot pedal). 

There’s a cool mini arcade next to the ice rink – perfect for a break from the freezing arena or when the ice is being resurfaced. 3 or 4 of the machines were off and the change machine was out of order too which was annoying. There’s also a photo booth next door to the bowling alley which was pretty cool. It was £3 for a set of 4 photos and an emailed copy (you can even pay by contactless).

The venue itself is very kid friendly (before 7pm, that is) and hosts a range of kids events including Monday Madness (where bowling session are £6pp every Monday), kids party packages and special skating lessons for ages 5+. You can find out more about that here


Eating at Meat Liquor

The food was all very reasonably priced and tasted delicious – I also have to say that they served the biggest onion rings I’ve ever seen (they were bigger than my burger and I couldn't even finish them)! There’s a kids set menu available at Meat Liquor, which is very conveniently located in between the bowling alley and the rink. High chairs are also available on request. For £7.50 you’ll get a kids starter (burger/hotdog/chicken finger sandwich/mac n cheese), fries and a juice box – not a bad deal at all compared to some of the other places we’ve been to. They really don't skrimp when it comes to portion sizes! You can find the full kids menu here



Our Verdict:

We headed to bowling first as I figured this was the activity that would wear him out the least. It probably wasn't the best idea considering we ate before we skated and all had the itis... 

Considering our session was FREE I cant complain about our time at Queens. The bowling alley was cute and quirky (although I imagine it gets very packed at weekends and during school holidays), the ice rink pretty much did what it said on the tin (but I was a bit disappointed in the quality of the ice – even when going on the ice immediately after resurfacing it wasn’t as smooth to skate on as it should have been), the food at Meat Liquor was amazing (be careful because some of the glasses that were left for us on the table were dirty) and the mini arcade made for a nice touch. The staff all also happened to be very kind and helpful which is always a plus. All in all I think we’ll be making another trip here soon. You can find a video of our time there here



Tips:


·       The closest train station is Queensway but it isn’t step free I’m afraid.

·       If you visit during the hotter summer months bring a picnic (or pop to Tesco Express) and head to Hyde Park

·       The skating area is super chilly even if you’re not on the ice so wrap up warm!

·       Bring your £ coins for the arcade, photo booth and lockers.
TimeOut are currently offering 80% off of skating and bowling at Queens meaning you can get both a skating and bowling session for just £5 (with no additional shoe hire charges!). You can find that promotion here



17 Queensway, Bayswater, London W2 4QP

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