Present Place Chicago- Lakeview

3701 N. Ravenswood Ave. #247

happyly approved

An Indoor, Sleek and Urban Play Space

Present Place Chicago is not your average play space.  It's sleek, modern and minimalist-if children under 5 and all their creative playthings can allow for minimalism.  It's the way you want your own kid's room to look, how you wish your basement (if you have one) could be outfitted.  It's a streamlined, comfy, cozy, creative space that also provides free coffee for parents and care givers.  Yes…Free Coffee!  

Present Place has 2 locations in Chicago.  One in River North and this one, in Lakeview.  Located on the trendy, ever blossoming stretch of Ravenswood Ave., this area was historically a large factory area with massive buildings that now serve for cool lofts, condos, breweries and kid play spaces!  There are ample parking spaces out front and along neighboring side streets.  Strollers can be left safely in the building’s lobby.  Once you’re in the building, be warned that there’s a little bit of a trek up a couple flights of stairs and down some large lofty hallways.  Present Place has everything well labeled and as long as your wee ones keep their feet moving, you’ll get there in no time. 

Enter the play space and hang up coats, take off shoes (socks only- for babies, kids and grownups too), store your gear all in easily accessible cubes across from the check-in desk.  Be sure to make a reservation online for your play spot before you attend.  It fills up!  There’s a community snack table (kid snacks available for purchase too) and the free coffee spot near the entrance.  Beyond all that, play and imagination awaits! 

All the toys are high quality, wooden and open-ended enough for kids to use them in whatever creative way they choose.  The space is full of little play houses, book nooks, ride on toys, a designated “home” play space and a giant indoor climbing playground (with slide, “rock” wall, firefighter’s pole and a clear floored bridge section).  There is a designated play space for infants and crawlers that is portioned off from the roaming tots with a clear plexiglass gate which keeps sight lines for the babies looking out and the tots looking in open and inclusive.  

Present Place has a changing table tucked discreetly in a corner and provides wipes and a bin (so you don't have to carry around those stinky diapers in your bag all day).  There are big comfy (and clean) couches along the brick wall so caregivers can have a minute to sit down and rest (and you definitely can- the kids are always in sight and totally safe) or mommies can nurse their baby.  You can purchase drop-in play times or purchase monthly and annual memberships.  Present Place often offers various classes in their spaces as well, so be sure to check their website if you’re looking to commit to a tot class. 

It is no wonder this place has a lot of buzz around it and has been voted best indoor play spaced by Chicago Magazine.  It really is one of the calmest indoor tot play spaces we’ve ever experienced!     

 

 

Reenie O'Brien King
My Location
A Chicago native, Reenie grew up in the city's Old Town area. After 6 years on the east coast (Boston and Philly) with her husband, Cabell, they returned to Chicago in 2018 and have settled in the Lincoln Square/Ravenswood area of the city. Reenie is the proud, dedicated and playful mom to two kids, Tiernan (4) and Adeline (2) and one on the way (due in May 2021). She holds a Master's in Education from DePaul University and has taught Kindergarten, First Grade, Middle School Drama and 8th Grade Art. Despite taking time off from full- time classroom work, Reenie remains passionate and active in the educational field serving on the boards of ISCJ School in Chicago and Ingles Sin Limites in El Salvador. She is a founding member and former chairman of the Junior Board at Chicago's Mercy Home for Boys and Girls. Reenie has also done work at Scattergood Ethics at The University of Pennsylvania and consulted with Free Forest School Illinois and Hike it Baby Philadelphia. Currently home "daily adventuring" with her kids, Reenie also serves as the Director of Online and Print Content at her family's Mental Health company, MADO Healthcare. A passionate traveler, horseback rider, yogi, mental health advocate and aspiring Children's Book Author, Reenie is glad to share some views of the city she loves with Happy.ly!
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