8 May 2015
Child-focussed Restaurants Now on the Menu for Taiwanese Parents
Dedicated, safety-first eateries allow Taiwan's kids to let off steam without fear of breakages or irritating fellow diners.
Aside from the traditional diversions of hiking and sightseeing, Taiwanese parents now have a new option when it comes to entertaining their offspring – family-friendly restaurants. These dedicated, child-focussed eating establishments are designed with lively – even hyperactive – youngsters in mind and allow parents to relax without worrying about disturbing other diners.
The restaurants have proved a big hit in Taiwan, with the most popular ones being fully booked at least a month in advance. Their main attractions are their dedicated kids' play zones, which are largely focused on pre-school aged children. A number of operators have even invested in recreating beach/pool environments indoors, but with a strict emphasis on meeting all safety requirements.
Another key appeal of these establishments is their generous provision of free access to toys. One company taking a lead here has been Lego, the Danish plastic brick company, which has worked with a number of restaurateurs to create specialist themed cafes. These facilities not only display a wide range of Lego products, but also allow children to give free rein to their creativity in a suitably stimulating setting. Other restaurants have gone down the route of offering indoor racetracks, complete with kid-friendly racing cars.
Typically, these restaurants offer distinctly child-friendly menus, including sandwiches, pasta, salads, chicken pieces and a variety of desserts. In keeping with the establishments' overall kid-focussed approach, these are available in novel shapes and are often themed around cartoon characters.
In terms of cost, such establishments usually have a minimum price per head, with some also levying an additional charge for cleaning. The average cost is said to be around NT$300-$400 (US$10-$13) per person.
Sylvia Yeh, Taiwan Office