“It smells good in here!” Rix observed as we set foot in the City of Dreams, Manila. “I agree!” I replied. And it does! It’s as if someone sprayed the whole “city” with expensive perfume. Except when you reach the casino area, where a whiff of cigarette could be inhaled.
Well, we were not there to evaluate the odor quality of the place but to bring the kids to DreamPlay. According to www.cityofdreams.com.ph, DreamPlay is “a fully immersive, technology-rich entertainment space for the family.” And it is! Especially for the children who like Shrek, Madagascar, How To Train Your Dragon, Kung Fu Panda and other DreamWorks franchises.
We were greeted with a very long line from the ticket booth. It took us around 30 minutes to buy ours. I cannot imagine what the scenario would look like during Saturdays and Sundays. Good thing the kids were a bit “entertained” by the action going on above us: adults and big kids going back and forth on a hanging obstacle course, by the big replicas of the movie characters and by the artificial water lilies on floating pods in real water. It’s also great that the air conditioner was cold. I almost needed a jacket.
Once we went through the turnstile, the place was not as packed as I expected. A sigh of relief escaped from me. Countdown started when we had our wristbands scanned. They’re so nice I wish we could bring them home! The children wasted no time climbing to explore, “swimming” in balls, and whooshing down slides multiple times. It’s a great and fun way to get active actually.
I think DreamPlay is a more sophisticated Kidsville, but with dimmer lights. Having been to Universal Studios Singapore, I cannot help but see DreamPlay as similar to it; sans the rides and lining up under the sun or in the heat, albeit smaller in scale and mostly for children. It is alike in the way the theme for each play area is carried out. It is comparable in its attention to details of the structures and the giant replicas of the characters. Even their Po mascot looks the same as the one in Universal Studios. I just wish we were given a map with a list of the names of all the attractions, too.
Two hours. That’s the option we chose. I felt like it was too short to enjoy everything, there were still more activities that we seemed to miss out on. Although, that’s enough to get a taste of DreamPlay to want more.
I was glad we got to catch the seven o’ clock gingerbread man cookie-making activity in Gingy’s kitchen, although only Ella and Caleb were able to participate. At least the kids got to take home something that was not bought from the souvenir shop: yummy cookies! I don’t usually like the taste of gingerbread, but I like their recipe. I think the kids playing chefs was my favorite activity, so far.
Cayla and I went to the Dream Theater; we caught the showing of Almost Home, the teaser trailer of the movie Home. It’s a 4D attraction minus the shaking chairs. My legs were tickled and we were sprayed with water. Cayla asked where was the movie showing Fiona. The reason was that the design of the theater had the magic mirror in the “ticket booth”, the princess Fiona and ogre Fiona flanking the sides.
Admittedly, I got thirsty and hungry, so we bought food at Chez Gingy. Expectedly, the prices were sky-high. I am glad there’s service water or else I needed to buy a bottled water for Php280, if I’m not mistaken. Even more expensive than the red velvet cheesecake worth Php240, if I remember correctly.
DreamPlay is a perfect melting pot of technology and active play. It’s a great place for the family to bond over games, activities and books. Yes, there is a room full of books to read with bean bags to lounge. I thought there was a storytelling session, but a guy said that feature wasn’t available yet.
We went on a Friday and I think it was considered as a weekend.
Looking at www.cityofdreams.com.ph/entertainment/dreamplay, it seems that one could make a reservation. Try it and let me know how it turned out. We may go back next time. 🙂
Would you and your children (or grandchildren, nieces and nephews) visit DreamPlay anytime soon?