Vinitha : Hit it out of the park at Smaaash
Smaaash, indoors, Lower Parel
When Smaaash came under the BMC's hammer six months ago because of illegalities on its premises, it also broke many hearts in the city. But, Mumbai can rejoice once again, with Smaaash making a comeback. They have a long list of new games to try out and repackaged old ones too. So, I decided to take my 11-year-old son, Ammol, and his best pal, Drish, to review the new and improved space.
We kick off the fun with Camel Racing, Human Claw and zorbing. Camel Racing is a dual player competition where balls have to be thrown into slots to make your camel move forward. Suddenly, we find ourselves becoming Bedouins, urging our camels forward through the sand. Exciting, if you have the patience. In Human Claw, we are strapped in (hands inside boxing gloves) and suspended over a ball pool, with boxes of gifts lying around. We get one chance to be lowered and pick up as many gifts as we can until we are lifted back up and out. Grabbing boxes has never been so much fun! Zorbing is a bit of a disappointment because the pool in which we zorb is virtually a toy pool. But, we went in and rolled around and returned.
Most of the outdoor section explored, we head indoors to check out what's new and what's not. We pick the 7-D virtual games, rattling through some horrifying routes and blinkered-in virtual paths, getting a 7-D-sized dose of adrenalin. Then there is the slot machine where the prize is a smartphone. The game looks so simple — the smartphones literally within our grasp — that we use our charge cards to play over and over again. The catch? You'll come close to winning, but never win! Next up is Laser Blast, a game of laser tag where we strap up and pair off in teams to blast each other into oblivion. It is a game best for bigger groups, yet we have fun.
And, then, there's cricket, which you just can't do without at this venue. So, we order a round of snacks and start batting. This done, we head to what we are told is India's first multi-level karting space. Sky Karting, however, isn't working and the disappointed boys have to get off their mean-looking electric cars. We then spend 45 minutes at the Twilight Bowling Alley, smashing pins and high-fiving.
We call time on the fun when we find zero energy to try the trampoline park, the Quickjump and the Climbmax, which are all climbing and jumping areas, for which we will return.
The place gets a thumbs-up for continuing to be one of the top go-to places in the city for entertainment for both children and adults.
Where: Smaaash, gate no 4, Kamala Mills Compound, Tulsi Pipe Road, PB Marg,
Best for: girls and boys, four years and above
How to reach: The easiest way is by train. Get off at Lower Parel station on the Western line and cab it to Kamala Mills.
Time: All days of the week, 1 pm to 12 am
Budget: Depending on what package you choose, Rs 500 per head onwards.
Rest Room facilities: Clean.
Where else to go: Kamala Mills has an array of entertainment spaces to explore.
Parent Poll: Enjoyed all games
Kids' Poll: Loved the virtual rides, Human Claw and Twilight Bowling. Could keep playing all night.
What's Good: Loads of things to try out.
What's Not So Good: The alleys seem maze-like, the go-karting rink wasn't functional, it was crowded when we visited.
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