Bowling isn’t just a hobby at 300 New York—it’s a vibrant social experience worthy of luxurious flourishes. That’s why cushioned lounge seats flank each of the 32 mood-lit lanes in the main concourse area. Each of these lanes faces a large screen that flashes music videos and tutorials on how to remove stuck fingers from bowling balls. Up in The Loft, bowlers can lounge and take in views of the concourse while sipping cocktails from the full-service bar. A dedicated wait staff connects them to offerings from the onsite bar and restaurant—an eatery known for serving dishes from executive chef Chad Bowser’s menu. Some of Chad’s creations include two-bite chicken or beef sliders and hand-battered fried calamari that can be paired with anything from beer to specialty martinis.
In 2007, the North Texas Event Center underwent a renovation that transformed a former call center into four fairytale ballrooms and a museum for classic cars. The gleaming Gull Wings, Alpha Romeos, and M6s catalyzed the project, as their owners sought a way to share their collections with the public. This desire dovetailed with the designs of city officials, who wanted to create an enduring cultural institution in Richardson and a way to see the cars without masquerading as stop signs. In order to realize this dream and reverse signs of aging in the 1980 building, contractors installed gleaming parquet floors valued at $2 million, and built out rooms with vaulted ceilings, broad stages, or bars. A crew of event planners oversees the chambers, which range from 1,883 to 14,000 square feet, and contain surprises such as 360 degrees of white drapes and a marble gazebo.
Indoor Safari Park embodies childhood dreams of the Serengeti with a varicolored landscape of tropical murals, plush jungle creatures, and both educational and entertaining activities. Cerebral toys teach little tykes the basics of numbers and colors, and wooden train sets review the basic origins of interstate commerce. Around the facility, mechanical elephants and zebras trot through a safe indoor jungle beneath giggling children and a kid-size, primary-colored train chugs to life around a palm-flanked track. On an obstacle-flecked mini-golf course, prehistoric creatures guard the borders of each pin and avoid the ball pits that colorfully resemble the meteorites of their ancestors' demise. Age limits become obsolete with a specific play area for toddlers, and a huge retail area generously yields gift ideas to stumped shoppers.
A coalition of ice arenas endorsed by the Dallas Stars, Dr Pepper StarCenters help nurture athletes of all ages and skill levels with activities on or off the ice. Dr Pepper StarCenters house NHL-regulation ice-hockey rinks that host hockey leagues for players of all ages, eradicating the need to play on dangerous frozen lakes dotted with irritable frozen geese. StarCenters' skate academies instill students with the fundamentals of ice hockey or figure skating, allowing them to progress to hockey leagues and local skating competitions if they choose. To warm up after laps around the Euless ice rink, skaters can check out the onsite baseball stadium, batting cages, soccer fields, and Texas Star Golf Course. All locations are open for birthday parties and special events; see each location's website for details.
Inside CooCoos, a spacious, color-splashed play area accommodates pintsize patrons with full-size servings of fun. Stretched across more than 20,000 square feet, the recently opened facility buzzes with the giggles and squeals emitted from kids as they scramble and spite gravity during birthday parties, field trips, and open-play sessions held Monday through Friday. A lineup of unique zones, such as those with UFO, jungle-course, and alligator themes, whisks adventurers to far-away worlds, and 3-D carpeting and black-light sections enable youngsters to accurately mimic their favorite Grateful Dead–concert moments. For an extra dose of amusement, guests can visit on Friday Night Fun Night, when 3-D glasses help to transform playtime into a multidimensional experience.