We were recently invited to visit Norwich’s new boutique bowling venue, Bowling House. Always on the look out for new family things to do, we thought it would be a great idea to see whether Miss Belle, now 3 and a half, would enjoy it. She’s only been bowling once when she was 18 months and she can’t remember it. Bowling House isn’t just about bowling though, it also boasts great food, milk shakes and cocktails, so I was excited to check these out!
Bowling House is on the corner of Dereham Road just at the bottom of Grapes Hill, so an easy stroll from the city centre. There is a car park on Barn Road, but we managed to get a space on Dereham Road just a short walk away. When you walk in you can see it has a cool vibe. It’s not like the big bowling alleys, with just five shorter lanes. The decor is pretty dark and moody, and you can tell this would be a great place to come with friends and no children too! The venue is family friendly but it also has hours where it caters for adults only – after 7pm it’s over 18’s only, and becomes more of a bar type place.
On first impressions it was pretty noisy and busy as there was a children’s birthday party going on. We were given a nice big booth, a high chair and some colouring for Miss Belle. We were there to have lunch first and bowl after. Miss Belle had the kids burger, Matt had a beef burger and I had a Halloumi burger. They came with fries and coleslaw. As I’ve said before, I love Halloumi and rarely have it at home, so this was a real treat. It came in a sweet brioche bun, and the best bit, with onion rings inside! It was delicious. Honestly, I’d definitely have it again. Matt said his was good too. The menu wasn’t huge, but it looked good – check it out on the Bowling House website.
With the kid’s meal you get a scoop of ice cream, so whilst Miss Belle had that, Matt tried a salted caramel shake. The Oreo one had my name on it, but post holiday, I was trying to be good!
Then it was time to bowl. And this is where it all went a bit wrong. Because it was noisy (understandably – 5 lanes of bowling going on) Miss Belle was not a fan. She was scared of the noise. She spent the majority of the time just watching me and Matt and sticking her fingers in her ears! Typical!! We did try to get her on board and show her the thing for kids which you use to push the ball (what is the technical name for that?!). But sadly, she just wasn’t a fan.
As predicted, Matt was the winner. I got one strike early on, but it was just luck! Matt got a couple…. show off!
I’m annoyed Miss Belle didn’t enjoy it more, I think when she’s older we would try it again. As a venue, it’s cool. The food is good. There were only two members of staff on as far as I could tell, one on the bar and one at reception and also serving our food. I did think they could perhaps have done with another member of staff. But I know they were busy because of the party going on. All in all, I would go back. But next time I’d go back in an evening with friends to try some cocktails!
Thank you to Bowling House for inviting us for the purpose of this review – Matt and I had a great time!