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Tuesday 31 December 2019

Zone Bowling Liverpool: REVIEW

I’d hosted 11 birthday parties for my twins, and in the past few years the brief from my daughter (my son is far more easily pleased) was simple: “Mum, it has to be action packed and fun, and I want to have my friends feel like they've had a blast when the party is over."

We’d attended a few bowling parties for her friends as guests, and now my daughter Estella was insistent: “It has to be a Zone Bowling party, and it has to include laser tag, and I want all my 12 friends to have had a ball when the party ends. Oh, I’ve gotta do that ticket machine thing at the end, Mum!”

Okay, let’s do this!

The EXCEPTIONAL team at Zone Bowling Liverpool were thrilled to host the whole shindig for us, and you guys... it’s the EASIEST party planning I’ve ever done. Or not done! That is: after a few chats on the phone (I’d seen the venue for other kiddie parties we'd been invited to, so I could visualise it all in my head) and the party for Estella and Rafael was good to go!

I don’t think we’ve ever had such a fun time at our kids’ party!

As any party planner knows, the objective when organising a party for the host is to make the life of those you are assisting a whole lot easier, and having them feel completely at ease that all will go well on party day.

Zone Bowling Liverpool manager Lisa is next level awesome. And truly knows her stuff. And can get inside the brains of kids, and knows what they expect from their parties.

Lisa gave me two options for the twins’ do. And that in itself was fantastic, as she gave me insight into what 12 year old’s expectations are.

You can start from the basic 'One Star Party Package', which is one game of either bowling or tag, kids’ style party food (classic hot dogs), chicken nuggets, beef slider, served with shoestring fries, plus drink, as well as 15 minutes arcade game play (take it from me, big AND little kids love this bit! You can add credit after your 15 minutes are done, but you don’t have to). Plus a dedicated party host who is with you the whole way!

More on packages below, but a word - and massive shout out - to OUR party hosts on the day. Becc and Joseph were EXCEPTIONAL! You’d think they were young graduates from a primary school teaching degree... they were that good! Attending to every need, nothing was a problem. And they always let us know what was happening next (it's shoe fitting time now, it's laser tag kit up time now, it's time to bowl, and let's move it all to the party room).

While the day had structure, which is what the kids need, the kids felt like they had full control of their day, and they felt like they were hosting a special do for their buddies at Zone Bowling, instead of the other way around.

Again, a massive shout out to Becc and Joseph. I’d highly recommend them to anyone wanting an excellent and memorable event, and all the Zone Bowling staff are highly trained. Attitude is everything, and the demeanour of all staff there is so friendly and patient, they are truly gifted little miracle workers to be able to handle many sets of rowdy and excitable kids at once. I love that they even get involved in laser tag and get in the full laser tag gear and join in (you get to see an instructional video as a group before you hit the indoors laser tag course).

While my kids are at that age where other parents can drop them off then pick them up later, some parents like to stay and we always love that. I like to fee them, and have a catch up!

Okay, now menus at bowling centres don’t have the best reputation for offering healthy or plentiful options. But, Zone Bowling venues have just rolled out all new menus, for both adults wanting platters of good food, and for children's options.

The adult guests had beef sliders which were fantastic, a plentiful trio tray of hot chips (sweet, potato, and shoestring), and freshly wraps and sandwiches, and calamari rings.

Adults, I’ll let you in on a little secret: during that time the kids are bowling and doing the laser tag thing, you get to hang with your mum and dad friends guilt free. The likes of Becc and Joseph have it the kids handled for you. Take them up on the inadvertent offer to run your kids ragged so that by the time they get to the party room they’re hungry and happy to simply hang out with their buddies and compare bowling scores and laser tag wins.

In the party room, usually the part the birthday kid’s parents are racing around serving everyone, is the time you’ll again see your party hosts and their kid wrangling skills come to the fore.

Becc and Joseph were champions at fulfilling all kiddie drinks requests, and handing out all hot dog and nuggets and burgers and fries orders (your host takes their kids’ preferences at the very start of the party), and generally handing out napkins and giving the kids what they need. I love that their meal ended with a healthy fruit platter filled with easy to handle mini fruit 'kebabs'.

The hosts ask when you’d like your cake sent out, they light the candles for you, cut the cake up for guests, AND THEY CLEAN UP CAKE AND MESS, YES!

They then take the birthday child (and in my case, twins) to the ticket blaster experience (remember ‘The Price Is Right’ - well this is the same, child’s version of the ‘grab for (pretend) cash’ concept, where kids have to stuff as much fake money notes as possible in their hands or shirts or pockets to then redeem at the arcade game area).

The per person cost starts at $27.90 per child (for the 'One Star Party Package') or go the next level up for one game of laser tag and one round of bowling (the 'Two Star Party Package', at $33.90 per child). If you’ve got about 15 kids as we did that’ll easily take you to around two hours of fun, and I think this is the best option.

Or go to the $39.90 per child for some extras including a lolly caddy for the party guests.

What I also love is that Zone Bowling also offer a special needs friendly version of their bowling games, so that kids with autism for example have dimmed lights and no music and a more comfy, non sensory overload experience. As mamma to my son with mild autism, this is great to know (although he did very well with his own birthday party).

Want something a bit less kiddie style? Ask your party planner for a teen style party that is less structured and has them feel more independent! So clever! See more info here: https://www.zonebowling.com/birthday-parties/teens

Party options are all here:

And it’s very likely your questions will be answered here:


More reasons I love Zone Bowling Parties?

You can customise it to suit your needs, the whole booking and planning process is super easy, and possibly the best part of all? The kids go nuts and you don’t clean up AT ALL! Yay!

I can’t recommend this whole experience enough!

If you’re lucky enough to book the whole thing at the Liverpool Zone Bowling venue rest assured you’ll be completely looked after. That feeling of no stress at all is quite addictive!

Got more questions? You can go the live chat option!

Oh, and finally... imagine all this but an adult version for you and your buddies, which includes a fully stocked bar? Believe it! More info here: https://www.zonebowling.com/birthday-parties/adults

Ready to book?

Call 1300 368 067 and you will be directed to the ZONE BOWLING Customer Contact Centre.

Sunday 22 December 2019

West HQ Official Opening: Red Carpet and Keith Urban review

The OFFICIAL opening of Sydney's newest arts and cultural jewel happened on Saturday 21 December - Sydney Coliseum - and Josie's Juice, as a bone fide Western Suburbs residing girl all my life, and with my love of and background in entertainment journalism, I was thrilled to cover this event, staged at the newly launched West HQ.

The red carpet to officially launch Sydney Coliseum, housed inside West HQ, was an important part of the culmination of this behemoth building, a decade in the planning.

For more on the venue, see my previous post too!

The event was attended by:

Ross Greenwood and his wife Tanya

Ron Wilson and his wife

The Hon Governor Margaret Beazley and her daughter Lauren Sullivan

Richard Errington CEO - the brains behind Sydney Coliseum (all hail Richard!)

James Errington (Richard's son)

Jasmine Rae

Sami Lukas

Anna Chuang and Miranda Crow 

Blacktown mayor Tony Bleasdale and his wife Nina 

Steven Bali and Anne 

Kristelle Vicary, and

Sharonne McVeay

The LEGEND that is Paula Duncan also attended, the Aussie stalwart of TV

Ex Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and his wife Lucy 

And more!

Now... Keith Urban.

There really are no words.

While mega fans knew and sang along to every word, even those who didn't know much about the country music genre were completely and utterly engaged, enthralled, enamoured, and entertained.

This man is a musical genius.

From his incredible vocal range and flawless voice, to his off the charts guitar skills (swapping out guitars throughout the show, and giving one lucky person - during each show, we're know for sure! - was given his autographed guitar), to his natural affinity with the large, fun, connected, yet intimate crowd... Keith Urban is king!

If you ever get the chance to see Keith in concert, take it immediately.


It's THAT good. Even a sold out show feels intimate thanks to clever architecture and seating plan and superior acoustics.

Scan the site now, see what you like, and book a show.

Other attractions to seeing a show at this venue is free parking, and a plethora of food choices pre show (get there over an hour in advance as it gets super busy).

For more info on West HQ, GO HERE.

For more on Sydney Coliseum, GO HERE.