With the summer holidays in full swing, Jessica Bailey Ackerman meets up with the team of the new kids’ play area opened at The Pearl-Qatar, Tickles & Giggles.
When I think of children’s parties I think of sugar rushes, whirlwinds of gift unwrapping, themed cakes (my Cinderella cake will always reign supreme), bouncy castles and pure naive joy – what I would give to be a child again. In my years of adulthood it seems I missed the modern day advancements in children’s celebrations and had my eyes opened to a world of elaborate posh parties when I met up with UDC general manager Theo Swart to chat about the newly opened children’s party area on The Pearl-Qatar.
Tickles & Giggles is a concept that was first created by a couple with their flagship store in Dubai. Maya and Gassan Haffar identified a gap in the market for a one-stop shop for children that could offer a range of bespoke party services, a one of a kind indoor play area and children’s entertainment that promises the great cinematic childhood memories thst everyone dreams of.
In its brief existence in Qatar Tickles & Giggles has become an immediate hit with parents and children looking for a tailor made party to suit their needs. ‘It’s the first of its kind in Doha,’ claims Theo. ‘We are able to cater to the very specific needs of both parents and children, who want more for themselves.
‘Our team is able to theme a party unlike any other. In our dedicated party room, from the food to the décor and fun outfits for the children, almost anything is possible. We see the dedicated party room as a blank canvass to be decorated and kitted out to your heart’s content, and then take up to 45 children.’
The Tickles & Giggles team has already hosted a groovy disco-themed party, which included a catwalk for the children to show off their glittering outfits and feather boas.
At the time of my meeting, they were getting ready for a Disney Frozen-themed party, aiming to capture the icy everlasting kingdom of winter, which I am sure would have been an exceptional challenge considering the roasting temperatures outdoors.
What Theo told me next had me doubting my very own ears: ‘Apart from theming your child’s party to whatever they desire, we also have a little girl’s spa, complete with cucumbers, masks, fluffy pink gowns, fully equipped spa and makeup benches.
‘It is ideal for people who would like to arrange a specifically girly party and can take up to 20 girls.’
But wait, there’s more…
Tickles & Giggles will soon be opening their own children’s hair salon, offering baby haircuts and certificates to commemorate their first official haircut. They also have a retail section with a candy area, cupcakes and cakes, all expertly crafted by their in-house baker. There is a parent or nannies’ café for those who like to stay close by but not too close, as well as a unique indoor play area that is available for walk-ins. Even though all these offerings are fantastic, in my opinion the Summer Camp they will be hosting should be the cherry on top.
The Summer Camp, which will be hosted in conjunction with Doha Mums, will be the answer to many parent’s prayers. There will be baby yoga, cupcake, pizza and baking classes, pre-schoolers basic table etiquette, story book time and puppet shows which will all lead up to the mid-June Garangaou party, a traditional children’s festival where children dress up in festival robes and go around the neighbourhood asking for sweets.
Tickles & Giggles tagline is ‘make happy times’, and I can see why. Theo explains to me why this is their tagline, ‘we want to make parties that people will talk about for years to come, parties that create happy memories for a lifetime.’
To join their privilege club, and receive discounts on their services, you can ask in store at Tickles & Giggles at Parcel 9 of Porto Arabia, The Pearl Qatar (just behind Carluccio’s).
I get the feeling there are going to be a lot of happy children running about town in the very near future; now if only they could do my next birthday.
Tickles & Giggles is at 18 La Croisette, Porto Arabia, The Pearl-Qatar (4002 7576).
More places to play
The recreation room is a great place for you to leave the kids while you dine at one of St Regis’ world-class restaurants, or if you’re having a spa day at Remede. They offer an action-packed schedule of energetic, creative and enormously satisfying activities for children aged between three and 12.
St Regis, www.stregisdoha.com/en/recreation-room (4446.0306).
A great kid’s play area with an abundance of entertainment that will keep young ones busy for hours, while parents shop or dine out at one of the mall’s restaurants.
Open 10am-12am.Landmark Shopping Mall, www.landmarkdoha.com, (44876111)
Another great shopping mall kids play area that features unique rides and attractions in a fun-filled environment. The theme park is an enormously popular entertainment destination for families in Qatar.
Open Sun-Wed 12pm-10pm, Sat 10am-10pm, Thurs 12pm-11pm, Fri 1pm-11pm. Hyatt Plaza, www.hyattplaza.com