Portland play area for Gambado

Portland Design has created a new children’s play concept for play area company Gambado.

The children’s play chain appointed Portland in March following a three-way credentials pitch. It tasked the airport retail specialist with repositioning the play concept as well as creating an ‘upmarket’ adults’ area at its new, 1700m2 Watford site.

Inspired by fairgrounds and the concept of parallel dimensions, Portland says its design integrates learning and creativity with play.

Gambado Watford offers a craft area called Crafty Doodah’s, as well as theatre section Thingamybob, the Oojamaflip playframe and a dodgems ride called Bish Boshers.

Adults will be catered for by the Yum Yums dining concept and a quiet lounge area called Ssshh, which features Internet access and satellite TV.

‘Tactility was key to the design, so we used soft rubber for desk and wall finishes, and liqui-gel flooring for a heightened level of interactivity and discovery,’ says Gambado senior designer Janey Fry.

She adds, ‘The liqui-gel is reflective and captures jelly-bright colours, an effect which we have tempered by using warm timber panelling.’

Following its launch at the Watford site today, Portland’s design is to be rolled out across Gambado’s two existing venues in London’s Chelsea and Beckenham.

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