A new play place and café for families called Social Play Haus has opened in Plainview.
“We really created the space not just for children but also for adults to enjoy,” says Jenni Bacayon, a child psychologist who co-owns the venue with husband, Marc, a former district manager with AT&T. Social Play Haus offers a café with baked goods made daily, salads, sandwiches, coffees and healthy snacks. It’s different from other play places in that it also serves wine and beer, Jenni Bacayon says. The couple named it Social Play Haus in a nod to the venue’s German beer garden feel, she says.
“As you walk into the play space, you’ll see it really has an open concept and a modern feel,” Jenni Bacayon says. The play area is geared to ages 6 months to 8 years, and it offers open space filled with areas for children to play — a puppet show area, two slides, a dress-up station, train table, a play kitchen and more. Staff members interact with the children in the play area; a table alongside the area allows parents an opportunity to get some work done on a laptop or just relax while the children play nearby. The staff encourages children to be kind to each other, rewarding them with a red smiley face stamp on their hands when they do, Jenni Bacayon says. “The kids say, ‘Look, Mommy, I got a stamp,’” she says.
Social Play Haus also offers a small reflection room where parents can take kids if they need a few minutes away from the stimulation or need to breastfeed or change a child. The venue will soon also offer two small offices that parents can use if they need to make a work call while kids are playing, Jenni Bacayon says. “As parents of young children, we just felt like there was a need for something like this,” she says. The Bacayons have two children, Weston, 6, and Alexia, 3.
The venue opened Nov. 5. It offers birthday parties, baby showers, gender reveals and more.
Larissa Limongelli, a nurse from Smithtown, brought her daughter, Valentina, 3, on opening day after seeing Social Play Haus advertised on Facebook. “I knew it was a safe and clean place for her to play, especially now that it’s getting cold out. I can have fun, too, get a cup of coffee and relax,” she says.
Sunny Boyle of Long Beach, a stay-at-home mother to Clare, 2, says she doesn’t get much time to herself because she watches her daughter. “Usually kids will come back to you and say, ‘Play with me, play with me.’ She didn’t do that,” Boyle says.
The cost for open play in the play area is $19 per day for the first child, $10 for each sibling. Crawlers are $10. Social Play Haus is at 200 Express St., Plainview. For more information, call 516-200-6444 or visit socialplayhaus.com.