Tag Archives: SW7

Victoria and Albert Museum Cafe, Cromwell Road, London

I had a morning off this week to go to the Grace Kelly exhibition at the V&A (which, incidently, I would highly recommend if you are a fan) with my friend Clementine.  Clem is a regular at the V&A with her two and a half year old and swears by the place as a great summer retreat with toddlers.

She’s got a point.  The indoor café has plenty of space and some great food (half price for children).  The nearby toilets are an absolute dream for baby changing: the ladies has a changing table, there is a dedicated separate baby changing cubicle and – amazingly – even the gents has a baby changing table.

If your tot isn’t ready for a whole meal there are certainly options which you could share.  Having recently seen a genius device called the wean machine it strikes me that this would be the perfect outing for it as you could order one dish and cleverly mash what you need for a child on solids but not ready for proper food.

The absolute cream on the cake in the summer is the Garden Café area.  Clem’s little girl adores the fountains which tots can play in.  We took Jack last summer and he too adored the fountains.  A great way for little ones to cool down – just remember a change of clothes!  If you can, go during the week when it is likely to be slightly quieter.

And Clem’s top tip? If your tot still has a nap, you can let them run around in the fountains till they flake out, then push them round the exhibition whilst they sleep soundly in the buggy and you get to take in a bit of culture in peace and quiet.  That, dear readers, seems like a win-win situation to me.

Rating:

Stylishness: 5/5 (It is a cultural paradise, for goodness’ sake…!)

Friendliness: 4/5

Feeding Facilities: 4/5

Changing Facilities: 5/5

Food: 4/5

Overall rating: 22/25   £-££

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Filed under £ - Cheap and cheerful, ££ - Mid price, Cafe, London, Outdoor area

Zuma, Knightsbridge, London

Zuma is buzzy with the kind of European crowd you really only find in Knightsbridge, so you’d be forgiven for thinking that they would also benefit from a European attitude to babies and children.

We went at a weekend lunch time, when the place was filled with a great deal of animal print, gold and expensive blond highlights.  We were seated on the outskirts of the room, possibly because the staff were being considerate of other diners as opposed to our particular convenience: an observation rather than a complaint since we were quite comfortable.

Jack was still breast and bottle feeding at the time, so the delights of the Japanese food were ours alone.  Our seating meant that it was easy to feed Jack discretely too.

But, oh my, the changing facilities were dire.   The ladies loo was way too small for a changing mat.  On my request for the disabled loo, I was shown to a toilet jam packed with piled up spare chairs.  There was just about room for me to get in and put a changing mat on top of one of the chairs.

To be fair, the waiter was almost embarrassingly apologetic.  Me, I was glad I just had a baby, who, if push came to shove, I would have braved changing on the tiny floor of the ladies loo.  Heaven knows what I would have done if I’d been disabled.

I do hope they’ve since remedied the situation because for the sheer fun of people watching, tasty food and proximity to Harvey Nichols it is a great place for lunch.

Rating:

Stylishness: 3/5

Friendliness: 4/5

Feeding Facilities: 4/5

Changing Facilities: 0/5

Food: 3/5

Overall rating: 14/25   ££

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Filed under £££ - expensive, London, Restaurant