Children’s parties and workshops in Antibes with Accent Party

Where to go for children’s parties and workshops in Antibes

There are numerous holiday programmes for children of school age, and museums often schedule workshops during the year but there is a lack of venues for families on the French Riviera who may need a space for children’s parties or organised activities.

Accent Party, located in Antibes, is filling this gap in the market by offering a venue of 80m2 for children’s parties and arts and crafts workshops.

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What Accent Party offers

  • A safe, clean venue for children’s parties including themed decorations, activities, music, toys to play with, dress-up costumes, balloons and options for cake and bon bons.

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  • Themes they can arrange include Star Wars, Pricesse Sofia,  Violetta etc and if you have a particular theme in mind you are welcome to discuss it with the owner who is very approachable and open to suggestions.

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  • A microwave for reheating baby food, and a high chair
  • Onsite toilet facilities
  • Baby change table
  • Tea and coffee facilities and armchairs so parents can relax during kids parties

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  • There is ample carparking on the street, and as the venue is situated at the end of an industrial road there is no road noise or bypass traffic
  • Holiday workshops – demand is high so book in advance – include decorating crayon pots, making puzzles etc

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  • New loyalty programme* where each child receives loyalty points to be redeemed in the future on reductions in hireage for parties or a free creative workshop *conditions apply

For more information, prices and bookings visit them at www.accentparty.fr

Like them on Facebook: Accent Party

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Activities – ANTIBES (Déantibulations, 12-15 June 2014)

The 11th year of Déantibulations is being held in the streets of Antibes from 12 June – 15 June 2014, and I highly recommended it for family entertainment.

Déantibulations Festival - Spectacles de rue (poster from acla.com)

Déantibulations Festival – Spectacles de rue (poster from acla.com)

Organised by the Association Culture Loisirs Antibes (A.C.L.A), this series of free events includes over 20 public displays of theatre, fireworks, dance, circus acts including acrobatics and trapeze, mime, music including Brazilian percussion and reggae, and comedy.

I like the idea of the Caravaning Club – a mini show with pianist and singer held in the space of a caravan for just 16 spectators.

Download the festival programme here with information on dates and locations deantibulations-programme2014

Most of the shows are being held in Antibes Old Town in areas with flat, paved ground so they are accessible for families with baby strollers/buggies, and also persons with reduced mobility.

Accessible toilets are located near plage Gravette, an automated pay-toilet on rue Lacan (opposite L’Appart Thé), and at Café Félix near the port.

Activities – ANTIBES (Royal Kids, indoor play centre)

A new indoor play centre opened in February 2014 in Antibes, which has been very welcome to residents and tourists in the area after the closure of the Boomiland indoor play centre in Mougins.

First impressions are that the centre is well lit, organised and clean. Staff that work there are friendly and helpful.

Children must wear socks to use the play equipment.

The centre has 2 large party rooms available for hire for birthdays with different options (‘formules’) available, priced from €13 per child upwards. The party options include mornings, afternoons and a Friday early evening session. There must be a minimum of 8 children attending, and birthday party rooms must be reserved in advance. Dependent on which option is purchased, Royal Kids supplies unlimited access to the play equipment, birthday certificate, birthday cake, drinks and entertainment from Léon, the dragon mascot. (Note: you can not bring your own birthday cake, food or drinks). For party guests, there is a cloakroom at the centre entrance with storage boxes for shoes and gifts, and children attending the party receive a bright-coloured top to wear for the duration of the party.

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For patrons with babies, there are high chairs with safety belts to use.

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Royal Kids has clean, accessible toilets onsite – 2 each in the ladies and mens toilets, with a designated disabled access toilet in both the mens and the ladies bathroom. There are step stools for kids to reach the basins to wash hands, and the ladies bathroom also has a baby changing table.

Onsite attractions include:

– Ball pits, soft play climbing, mini football, basketball, slides, climbing frames, giant Lego building area

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– A disco room with continuous music playing, mirror ball, lights

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– Coin-operated machines/games including air hockey, football, motorised cars, vending machines with toys

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There is a snack restaurant onsite with many tables and chairs serving a range of hot and cold drinks, ice creams, paninis, crêpes etc.

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Royal Kids is an accessible play centre with 2 designated mobility carpark spaces nearby to the entrance, flat ground to the entrance and no stairs inside the centre (excluding climbing frames). There is a designated disabled access toilet in both the men’s and the ladies bathroom, and there is ample room for baby strollers/buggies.

Access:

By car: Royal Kids is located at 172 avenue Weisweiller, 06600 Antibes.

If arriving from the A8 highway, take exit 44 towards Antibes/Juan les Pins and at the third roundabout (with McDonalds/SFR/Renault/Quick) turn right onto avenue Weisweiller (the road with the ‘Quick’ fast food restaurant).

If driving from Antibes/Juan les Pins, continue up the Route de Grasse to the roundabout with McDonalds/SFR/Renault/Quick and turn onto avenue Weisweiller (the road with the ‘Quick’ fast food restaurant).

There is a free onsite carpark (14 spaces including 2 designated mobility spaces) accessed by the first road on the right-hand side Voie Tripoli. Also, ample carparking can be found on Voie Bertrand le Bon as Royal Kids is located in an industrial area.

Public transport: Royal Kids can be accessed by bus number 6 from Antibes and there is a stop ‘Foyer P. Merli’ on avenue Weisweiller that is 2 minutes walk from Royal Kids. Find the timetable at www.envibus.fr. There are no trains that travel here.

Opening hours:

Open 10am-7pm: Every Wednesday, every Saturday, every Sunday, bank holidays, every day during school holidays

Open 4pm-7pm: Friday evenings only

Prices (correct at Wednesday 09 April 2014 but subject to change)

Adults: One or two accompanying adults are free of charge; €2 each for third adult or more

Children 4 years upwards: €10 each (or buy a ‘Royal Pass’ 10 entries for €80)

Children under 4 years: €6 each (or ‘Royal Pass’ 10 entries for €50)

Group discounts available on discussion with Royal Kids

For more information on party pricing or descriptions, visit their website www.royalkids.fr

 

Activities/Sightseeing – ANTIBES (Pain, Amour & Chocolat, 14-16 February 2014)

Pain, Amour et Chocolat – or Bread, love and chocolate – may seem like an odd choice of name for a festival for non-French people however these three things are very important in France.

phoca_thumb_l_Prodotti_esposti_2013%2025This local festival held in Antibes on the weekend of Valentines Day (14 February) has a theme based around love, and the market stalls sell products including confectionery, gifts such as ceramics and jewellery, bread, pâtisseries, chocolate and conserves.

 

phoca_thumb_l_Prodotti_esposti_2013%207This year’s programme also includes Italian marching bands, circus parades through the streets of old Antibes, workshops for children (designing chocolates and pizza making), a fashion show of hairstyles themed around love, a perfume-making workshop and an archery game with a prize to win a dinner for two at a local restaurant.

phoca_thumb_l_Prodotti_esposti_2013%2021What: Pain, Amour & Chocolat festival

When: 14-16 February 2014 from 10am-7pm

Where:  place Nationale, Antibes

Free entry (excluding purchases of any products !)

Tips:  Unfortunately, Antibes old town is not the best town for free street parking, but you can locate pay-per-hour carparking at various locations. The nearest pay-per-hour carparking facility is at Parking la Poste (avenue Paul Doumer), or the new underground parking at Antibes port but be aware pay-per-hour parking is pricey – around €6 for two hours.  Both carparking facilities are less than 5 minutes walk to the festival on flat, paved surfaces.  The closest accessible toilets to the festival are located at Hotel le Cameo on place Nationale, Café brasserie Le Vieil Antibes (rue Thuret) which is next to the fountain beside the festival, or automated public pay toilets are on rue Lacan opposite Appart’the (known locally as ‘The Tearooms’).

Eat and drink – ANTIBES (La Caravane Passe)

My mother always told me ‘Trust your instincts’ and when I walked into La Caravane Passe I knew this was one of those places I was happy to find.

My blog is aimed at families who travel with baby buggies/strollers (and also wheelchair bound travellers) who need accessible restaurants however for this review I am going against the grain and reviewing a nice cafeteria that is not wholly accessible as it is a great find.

You could quite easily miss La Caravane Passe if you visit Antibes as it is not on the tourist track – it is however only a few minutes walk from the centre of the old town and is situated on rue Vauban, a through road between the La Famiglia restaurant and Don Camillos pizza restaurant.

At first glance you think you have entered an Aladdin’s cave – a wonderful array of items are displayed in the front of the shop such as exotic silks, woven fabrics, fragrant candles, crockery, cushions, distressed wooden furniture and lamps.

Photo reprinted courtesy of LaCaravanePasse.net

Photo reprinted courtesy of LaCaravanePasse.net

But my review is based on what is found at the back of this treasure trove – a secret garden, or salon de thé to be precise.  What a lovely little spot to enjoy a range of coffees (un café for €1,50), specialty teas (they have a ‘house’ specialty tea with 5-spice, cloves, ginger and cinnamon) or artisanal icecream.  It is also very quiet noise-wise and was shaded on the day I visited which offered relief from a hot day in Antibes old town heaving with summertime tourists.

Photo reprinted courtesy of LaCaravanePasse.net

Photo reprinted courtesy of LaCaravanePasse.net

The garden is reached via a set of steps (4 or 5 steps, I forgot to count!) so this is why it is not accessible with wheels – though the shop itself is.  Families with children at walking age, or travellers with reduced mobility who can manage a few steps will be fine. There is a toilet onsite that is accessed through the small workshop by the salon de thé counter; the door is a single-frame and not very wide so you can’t fit a baby buggy in but you can park it outside in the shop.

I will be returning to La Caravane Passe – I’m glad I found it and trusted my instincts to wander inside. My mum would be proud and I’ll bring her here next time she visits us.

La Caravane Passe, 37 rue Vauban, 06600 Antibes

Opening hours:  All day Tuesday-Saturday  (closed during lunch time)

 

 

Sightseeing – ANTIBES (Traditional festivals 20 and 21 July)

This coming weekend there are two local traditional festivals to attend. One is held in a small commune in Antibes old town; the other in a local suburb of greater Antibes so they will both be community-based but have different feels. My pick is to visit the Fontonne festival on the Saturday as it is more family-friendy, then for a more adult-orientated event wander past the grand ball in Safranier on Saturday night. Sunday event programme as per below.

FÊTE DE LA SAINTE MARIE-MADELEINE

This free annual festival was reignited after the end of the first world war when local gardeners felt there was peace and they should have a reason to celebrate and share in a day of feasting. They chose Marie-Madeleine as the patron of gardeners, and the statue lies in the local church all year until the time of festivities (the actual date is 22 July but it is celebrated on the preceding weekend) when it is displayed in front of the church as a boat where local gardeners give flowers as offerings.
Here is the programme for this weekend, festivities take place at place Jean Aude in quarter Fontonne, Antibes:
Saturday 20 July
9am: Treasure hunt by teams from the local area.
10am: Competition of the best ‘pan bagnat’ on the coast. Display of old motorbikes and tours of the square in sidecar or on Harley motorbikes. Pony rides for children. I have been trying to find out if the sidecar/Harley/ponyrides are at cost to no avail so expect that you have to pay a small fee.
2pm: Pétanque competition
4pm: Jimmys Band from Nice
6pm: Prizegiving for the treasure hunt, aperitif, folk dances and music from a Portugese folk group, dinner and dance.
Sunday 21 July
10am: Mass at St-Joseph church
11am: Distribution of roses from Antibes growers
11.15am: Procession through the local streets with folk group
12pm: A shared drink with festival goers

FÊTE DU SAFRANIER
I have been trying to source the history behind this festival but have not had much luck. Perhaps it is just a party for the sake of it! anyhow, if I do find out the background for these celebrations and the significance of the date I will blog it. Anyhow, here is the programme, all festivities held in the square by the tavern in Safranier:
Saturday 20 July
10pm: Grand ball – music, dancing, drinking (free for music and dancing but buy your own drinks from the tavern – I also recall locals bought their own wine along and no one seemed to care)
Sunday 21 July
12pm: Apéritif for all attendees
7pm: Degustation of the famous pesto soup
Note: Sunday is at cost and tickets can be purchased at the time of event

Bonne fêtes!

Sightseeing – GOLFE JUAN / ANTIBES / JUAN LES PINS (Tuk Tuk Azur)

One of the first things I did as a tourist in Antibes was jump aboard ‘Le Petit Train’ – the little white tourist train that winds it’s way from Antibes old town along the remparts to Juan les Pins.  The journey takes roughly 20 minutes oneway and is full of photo opportunities, especially as it travels along the Antibes remparts beside Plage Gravette.  My son loves it!

Another great family experience if you are after something different is to take a trip onboard one of the new Tuk Tuks I have spotted around town.  More inclined to be seen as a common mode of transport in Asia, the Tuk Tuks in Antibes are the first electric Tuk Tuks to operate here in the south of France.  Because they are electric, they are environmentally friendly and present no harm to the environment with zero emissions.  Also, you won’t need to worry about finding a carpark space!

The Tuk Tuks have 3-seats or 6-seats and pricing is based on ‘zones’ including Antibes, Juan les Pins and Golfe Juan.  They are a unique way to see the local area and customised tours or event transport can be arranged.

For further information or to make a booking visit www.tuktukazur.com or phone/SMS: +33 (0) 627 02 65 01 (English/French spoken)