Plenty, if not most, pubs and clubs now include a kid’s play area, but Sporties at Kareela Golf have taken their kids zone to a whole new level.

Called ‘Down by the River” it’s a completely themed, immersive experience with no expense spared when it comes to having an eye for detail.  Inspired by the golf courses’ gum tree lined, riverside location, the concept was created by Moorebank Sports Club CEO Tracey Lentell in partnership with her interior designer.

A sense of theatre is created from the moment you step through the barn doors, guarded by a life-size pig, and enter a world where “Tom Sawyer” meets “Home Among the Gum Trees” – a magic space filled with birds and animals and delightful surprises wherever you look.

Sporties at Moorebank took over Kareela Golf Club in December last year and Ms Lentell said that they have worked hard in that time to re-engage the club with the community.  They recognised there was a dominant family demographic in the area which was largely underserviced.

Sporties have invested in providing a great food offering in its Cove Restaurant that is now attracting plenty of locals, whether golfers or no.  With the fully supervised ‘Down by the River’ kids’ zone, parents can relax and enjoy their meals overlooking the lush grounds, safe in the knowledge that their kids are being supervised and having fun.

Targeted at children 3 to 12, ‘Down by the River’ provides a unique experience that will have kids clambering to come back again and again – and as most parents (and marketers) know, there is nothing like pester power!

It took just 4 weeks to strip out what was once the old board Room and turn the space into a child’s haven complete with a chill out reading zone disguised as a chook house, Xbox, PlayStation and iPads suspended from trees or perched on a log, toys, puzzles, dress-ups and creative spaces. Even all the trees and logs used in the space were crafted from gums cut down on the golf course.



Just like many clubs have raised the bar with their food and beverage offerings in recent times – think Nu Bambu at Canterbury Hurlstone Park RSL, District 8 at Cabra Vale Diggers, The Fernery at the Mosman Club and The Greens at North Sydney to name just a few – ‘Down by the River’ is bound to set a new benchmark for kids play areas in hospitality venues.

It’s certainly a busy time for Sporties with not only a mini makeover happening for the dining and lounge area of Kareela Golf, but Sporties at Moorebank has also started a major refurbishment this week that is due for competition just prior to the Melbourne Cup.