I’ve been to plenty of pubs and cafes that have a few games tucked away in the corner. However, I had never been to a dedicated game cafe until visiting The Ludoquist. What a treat it is for adults and children alike!
A board game cafe for children and adults
The Ludoquist, in Croydon, South London, has over 1400 board games available to play. These range from ‘very first games’ – which are suitable for ages 2 years up – and family games to solo games and the most strategical of board games.
For £5 per person (£2.50 for children up to 14) you can play as many games as you like for three hours or up to six hours if they have space. Whilst playing, you can enjoy great food and a wide range of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks.
Our experiences at Ludoquist game cafe
The Ludoquist is a great venue. It’s packed to the rafters with games yet retains a wonderful sense of brightness and spaciousness. The games are all really well arranged into categories and themes so it’s easy to both explore, and to hone in on exactly the type of games you want.
For our first visit we didn’t want to be too ambitious (and have to learn lots of new rules) so selected a different edition of Ticket to Ride, which is one of our favourite family board games. Their ‘Games Gurus’ are on hand to make suggestions if you do need them.
The game cafe menu
Before settling down to the game, we ordered our food and drinks. They have an impressive drinks menu, which includes the hip Dead Skull coffee brand and equally trendy hoogly tea. These sit alongside a wide variety of the usual soft drinks and more exotic smoothies and shakes. On the alcohol front, they have a range of beers, lager and cider on draft and in bottles/cans (including low alcohol and a specialised craft beer selection), a variety of wines and, the pièce de résistance, cocktails and the ‘Gin Palace.’ I couldn’t help myself and ordered an Espresso Martini, which was fabulous. The girls opted for an Oreo shake and Berry Go Round smoothies, which went down equally well. It’s table service but you can also go up to the bar.
On the food front, we had paninis, pizza and homemade sweet potato curry, all of which were great and reasonably priced. We also ordered bowls of Haribo and chocolate eggs to keep energy levels up during gameplay!
Let the games begin!
We set up the game whilst waiting for our food (which arrived promptly). Our table was spacious so we could play and eat at the same time. I found myself really immersed in the game as there were none of the usual distractions I get at home and the kids definitely loved playing in a different and funky environment. The staff were attentive and friendly and we had several more rounds of drinks while we played.
In an increasingly screen-orientated world, it was great to look round and see so many people enjoying the simple pleasure of board games.
It had been our intention to play more games, but our Ticket to Ride game was epic; so much so we came to the end of our time slot. Luckily, they were able to extend it for us. We can’t wait to come again and try out some more games. We would all thoroughly recommend.
What else you need to know
They have a special deal Monday-Friday until 5pm where you can play for £3 (£1.50 for children) each for up to 3 hours.
For evenings and weekends they highly recommend you book, which you can do here. For groups of over six you need to email: firstname.lastname@example.org .
You can also buy games in the cafe or from their online shop – https://www.theludoquist.com/collections/kids-games
Visit The Ludoquist website for more details.
As a Wordle addict, I was seriously impressed that ‘Chaser’ and quizzer Paul Sinha was talking to ITN about the word game from The Ludoquist 😀