*We were given a day out at the Bowling House in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts are our own.
As autumn and winter roll in so will the rain, it is inevitable. Whilst we don’t mind being out in the rain sometimes it is nice to find something to do that is inside that isn’t soft play. I’m not a fan of soft play, the kids love it and so we take them but it’s loud, and it’s mayhem. But, what else can you do with a two and five-year old when it’s raining, that they will enjoy?
We was recently invited to Bowling House, Norwich to try out their swanky venue. A date night or family day, we could decide. As it coincided with Reuben’s birthday we picked a family afternoon. I was a little worried that Jessica may not be entertained after all she’s two, but we were pleasantly surprised…
Bowling House, Norwich
The Bowling House is just on the outskirts of the city centre. If you know the area it is opposite where Toys R Us used to be. I hadn’t checked out parking before we arrived, foolish of me. It also meant I was lacking in change for parking and so we had to head for a ‘pay later’ car park. This is fine as there are loads in Norwich but it meant we had a ten minute walk and we were going to be late. I called the Bowling House and they were absolutely fine with us arriving late.
Bowling House Decor
There has been a lot of thought put into the decor of the Bowling House. We assume it was an old cinema due to the size of the place and there are old cinema chairs used for seats throughout the ‘waiting’ sections.
My hubby said it was clear a designer had been involved, just with all the touches throughout. The lights, the style of texts, the artwork on the wall. There had been a lot of thought put into it and it looked good. Reuben spotted a Batman picture on the wall which he loved. We noted the details of it as there was information on how to buy it, we need to look into that!
Food at the Bowling House
We were given our menus, the choices are simple and I like that. I find it quite frustrating when I pick up a menu and I can’t decide what I want as the choice is so wide. There’s a good selection from smaller snacks to main meals or sharing platters and a kids menu.
We made our choices, I went for Chicken BoHo Burger, Sam had Pork Filled and Grilled Flatbread. The kids picked a burger and Mac n Cheese.
We had to wait a little while for the food, but not too long. It was long enough to settle the children, and for me to take a look around.
The kids portions were the right size, certainly for Reuben. Jessica maybe a little too much but it wasn’t wasted. The portion sizes for adults were good. I was impressed by how much there was included and it was a reasonable cost.
The only negative comment is the lack of ingredients list, and more so allergens. It is common place now to see a list of what is included in the meal. I had ordered a chicken BoHo burger, I don’t have allergies and so do not need to ask for ingredients however, I don’t eat cheese. I’ve not eaten cheese since I was poorly on some year ago. The chicken burger didn’t state anywhere that it came with cheese and so when it arrived covered in melted cheese I had to send it back. The staff were very apologetic about it and brought me my chips and said the new burger would be about 8 minutes which was fine. I felt terrible sending it back. It could have been avoided by stating that it came with cheese.
Bowling at the Bowling House
This was the first time we had bowled with children. The Bowling House was a great way for them to try it. With just five lanes it was quieter than other bowling alleys. The lanes were shorter and so the games were faster (well, as fast as they can be with a 2 and 5-year-old). It was more intimate and not as noisy. It was a quiet Sunday afternoon and so the kids weren’t hassling anyone else and we were able to relax a little more.
Bowling house have the normal set up for kids with bumpers, ramps and lighter balls. We had mentioned this in our booking and so they were ready to go for us. As you can imagine, shoes for Jessica weren’t there but they were happy with her wearing her little plimsole style shoes. I spotted sizes from 10 junior upwards.
The staff at Bowling House prepare everything for you so no typing in names, or that boring stuff no one really wants to do. It was shoes on and straight out to bowl.
Overall this was a great day out. We had some really lovely food, and a great game of bowling. We were there maybe 2.5 hours and that was just enough for the kids who started to lose interest by the end of the game. That said they loved it. They still talk about it now and Jessica keeps asking to go bowling again.
Bowling House is a quirky place, reasonable priced and the staff are really helpful and friendly. It would be interesting to see how the vibe changes in the evening when it is a child free zone and so we may pop back for a ‘date night’.
Looking at posters there they have lots on in the evenings and a cocktail list with my name on it!
Would we recommend it as a family day out? Absolutely! We had a great time and I’m sure we will go back again.
Have you been to Bowling House, Norwich? What did you think? Let me know below…