Local community gets behind struggling kids play centre

The Gold Coast community is banding around a local playcentre which is in danger of closing down.

For years Smileez in Parkwood has been a go-to for mums and dads with young kids full of energy.

Over the past 12 months new owners transformed the indoor playhouse, but over the traditionally busy summer holidays were forced to close their doors.


Co-owner Stephanie told myGC that shortly after taking over the lease they discovered the air-conditioning system was not up to the job of cooling the large, open space.

“It became so hot inside that it wasn’t safe for the kids to play,” said Stephanie.

She claims one child had to be hospitalised for heat-related illness after attending Smileez.

“His mother phoned me the next day to say they had to take him to hospital,” Stephanie said. “That really got me.

“Our main purpose is for kids to have fun, not be in danger.”

With safety a major concern they made the decision to close the doors.  The business then had no cashflow and in-turn has fallen into arrears with their rent payments.

The air-conditioning is now working, and the centre has re-opened, but the owners are thousands of dollars behind in rent, and face being locked out of the premises this Friday.

As a result, they’ve halved the admission price to $5 (until March 2) and Stephanie says they’ll “go down with all the lights on and the music blaring”.

And it seems the Gold Coast community is behind them, with a Facebook post being shared by local parents and plenty pledging to get there this week and show their support.

“We do hope to stay open past Friday, but can’t be certain”.

The owners of Smileez are currently engaged in legal proceedings with their landlord and real estate agent, which was contacted by myGC but declined to comment on the case.