Lonely Planet Writer

Relive your childhood with London's latest novelty - a bar with a ball pit

Oh to feel young again! Well, now you can if you live in London and the idea of diving into a ball pit tickles your fancy.

Ballieballerson opens in London
Ballieballerson opens in London Image by Jeremy Keith / CC BY 2.0

BallieBallerson could be right up your street, particularly if you live in the Dalston area of the city. The premises, over two floors, allows adults to re-enter their childhood by diving into a pit with over 200,000 plastic balls. And for the multi-dimensional types, there are also foam toys and inflatable rings to play with. To make the fun and games competitive, the organisers plan to hide a bag of yellow balls in the pit, with the finder receiving a prize during every session. For those worried about hygiene, the owners say they have a cleaner which will freshen and clean the balls. The ball-cleaning machine – called GobbleMuffin – can disinfect 18,000 balls an hour.

Adding atmosphere for visits will be a host of DJs playing a variety of accompanying music – from techno, to funk to bass, and all within the ball pit. Unlike kids though, you don’t have to go straight home afterwards as there is a bar and café upstairs, where participants can chill out following their exertions. There are also plenty of retro cocktails that are available – including Dip Dabs, Wham Bars and Pink Shrimp Foam to revive you at £7 a pop. Or there will be craft beers for those who want a more conventional way to quench their thirst. Snacks from the kitchen include treats such as Yorkshire Balls – a beef meatball in a Yorkshire pudding, onion and gravy costing a mere £4. There will also be giant arancini balls costing only £2 each.

The BallieBallerson experience on Stoke Newington Road opens on Friday, and it will run until next month from Thursdays to Saturdays. Entry to the ball pit costs £5, but entry to the bar is free. The organisers say they will also cater for private functions on request.