Category Archives: North Ryde

Cox’s Road Shopping Centre – 203-211 Cox’s Rd, North Ryde, NSW 2113

Overall: Creepy. Basic. Nappy change, feed, rest, toilet.

Good Points: Clean change table. Nappy disposal bins. Sink, soap and hand dryer. Separate toilet with sink and soap. Chair for feeding. Ramp access to shopping centre. Undercover parking.

Bad Points: No signs for baby change facilities until you find the door yourself. Narrow hallway. Door to parent room doesn’t lock. Creepy blue lighting (it’s meant to prevent junkies from using the room, as the colour makes it tough to find a vein). No paper towel.

We were in North Ryde today, and didn’t feel like heading home just yet. We’ve been to Macquarie Centre a squillion times and have sussed out all the parent rooms there, plus we didn’t feel like battling for a carpark and so on. Instead we ended up at Cox’s Road.

There’s quite a few shops down here, and it’s a nice break from Mac Centre for people working in the area. Since we hadn’t checked out any parent rooms here yet, we thought we’d do it today. First stop, the Cox’s Road Shopping Centre.

It’s a nice little place, with just one floor of shops, all accessible from the street or by ramp from the undercover car park. There’s an IGA, florist, chemist, butcher, deli etc…all the stores you’d expect to find in a little shopping complex. These things are good, but our mission is finding the parent rooms or baby change area.

We found the hallway to the toilets, between the chemist and the deli. The sign only shows the male and female symbol. Before this parent room adventure we would have assumed that meant there wasn’t a parent room or baby change table down the hall, and would have left it at that. We’ve learnt to not believe what the signs say, alot of the time, and to go and check it out for ourselves……just in case. Ta dah!!! We found a parent room.

To get to the parent room, head to the end of the wide hallway, turn left (the only way you can go) and head down the narrow hallway to the door at the very end. You can’t miss it, it says ‘PARENT ROO’. The ‘M’ has done a bunk.

The narrow hallway and misspelt sign did not fill us with much enthusiasm, and we were not surprised at what we found on the other side of the door. Oh my goodness, the bright blue light inside the parent room is freaky!!!!! It’s like the old blue light at the butchers, ┬áback in the olden days, but it fills the entire room!! It’s definitely weird, and doesn’t exude a feeling of comfort at all.

The door to the parent room doesn’t lock, which is a minus. The blue lighting gives off creepy, interrogating feeling. Maybe it’s to make people get in and out of there as quickly as possible! There is a wall mounted fold out baby change table, plus a couple of nappy bins. The sink and soap are close by and there’s a single chair which can be used for resting shopping or for sitting down while feeding babies. Still the whole bit of not being able to lock the door while feeding, is a bit creepy.

On the far wall of the parent room is the door to the toilets. This door locks from the inside, but you’re not going to be wanting to feed your baby in there. Anyway, it too is filled with that odd blue lighting. It does, however, have it’s own sink, soap and hand dryer, so that’s something.

At the end of the day, there is a parent room here. You’ll probably only want to be in here super quick, because it’s not at all a comfy place to be in. You might not be able to get a pram down the hall and through the door way either. But if you do need to do a nappy change, or feed in privacy (and don’t mind the blue lighting) then head here.

I know!!! The blue lighting is like what you see in solariums!! Maybe it doubles as a tanning room! Just trying to come up with reasons for it, that’s all. Oh!! We just heard that the lighting apparently is a deterrent to junkies using the room. It’s meant to make it difficult to find a vein. So there you go.

Check out the gallery anyway, and make up your own mind.



*UPDATE* Macquarie Centre, North Ryde, Adds Pram-Friendly Cubicles

Hi everybody,

Since we’d covered all the parent rooms and baby change areas at Macquarie some time ago, I didn’t expect to find anything more that would be pram-friendly.

A week or more ago, I had a nice surprise! Taking my little one to the bathroom, I found the toilets on Level 4 (near City Beach & ProfessioNAIL) have been renovated. Inside the female toilets, at the far end, there is a large cubicle sign-posted as being pram-friendly. Hooray!! This is fantastic!

Sometimes it’s just mum who needs to go to the loo, and not the little ones. Usually the regular toilets are way too small to fit a pram, leaving parents having to keep the cubicle door open to keep an eye on bub, or having to use disabled toilets. Adding a pram-friendly cubicle in the regular toilets is fantastic.

Have you come across any pram-friendly toilet cubicles when you’ve been out with your little ones?


Macquarie Centre, Level 1 (follow the Toilets sign), Cnr Herring & Waterloo Rds North Ryde NSW

Reviewed by C

Overall: It’s new and clean and tidy, but that might be because no-one knows it’s there. Nappy change, feed, rest and ‘play’ – the play area is pretty poor, just a glass-walled holding pen really. Although it looks like there may be a television on it’s way?

Good Points: It’s new, clean, tidy and quiet. On the same floor as the kids clothing stores and indoor playground – finally! Adult and child size toilets, with auto-slide push-button door. Three nice private feeding cubicles with armchair and table in each. Two change bays with a sink in between the bays, and bins underneath the bench. Separate food prep area with working microwave, filtered (?) water and sink. Armchairs next to the ‘play’ area so you can have a rest while your little one…well…..hangs out in the play area.

Bad Points: There aren’t any extra powerpoints. The Toilets sign hanging outside in the shops does not say there is also a Parent Room down there. The play area is seriously crap – yep, it’s clean and new, but it’s just a glass-walled, sectioned off section of the room. It looks like there may be a television going into the wall cavity, but I guess we’ll have to wait and see.

Just follow the Toilets sign – the Parent Room is down the corridor on the left

Finally!!! There is now a Parent Room on the ground floor/Level 1 of Macquarie Centre. This is a big deal because this is the floor where all the kids clothing stores are, and also where the indoor kids playground is located. So if there’s going to be a Parent Room anywhere in the centre, this is the floor it has to be on. And now it’s arrived. Yay!!

However, you wouldn’t know it was there unless you’d been on the lookout for it for sometime. Why is this? Well, you wouldn’t know there’s one on this floor because the Toilets sign doesn’t say there is also a Parent Room down the corridor. Not very helpful, is it? Noooooo. But now everyone will know, so go and check it out!

Push the big green button and go on in

So now you know there’s a Parent Room on Level 1, and it’s down the corridor where the Toilets are, head down there and you’ll find it on the left side of the hall. My favourite auto-slide, push-button door is big enough to fit a pram through but not so sure about a side-by-side pram – that could be a bit of a tight squeeze.

Great push-button, auto-slide door access to the toilet

Adult and child size toilets

This room is really a nice new facility, although it is missing a few important features (like extra powerpoints, hand-towel dispenser, something for kids to do in the play area). But overall, it’s nice and clean and quiet.
The toilets are really pretty great. The doorway is the best part. It’s a big frosted, auto-slide, push-button door! Seriously, this is a great feature and will greatly reduce the risk of germs being transferred (you can bump the button with your hip to open and close the door). Also, when the toilet is occupied, a little light comes on the outside panel letting anyone know it’s currently in use. Great feature!
Inside there are two toilets – one for adults and one for children. It’s a good size room, definitely capable of having a pram in there. There’s just the one sink though, so little ones may need help reaching the taps and soap.

The work-in-progress holding cell/play area

Three comfortable private feeding cubicles

The colours in this Parent Room are pretty nice. I love the whole nature feel of greens and browns. To me it’s very calming and soothing. Something mums and bubs need when they’re out shopping for sure.

The big let down in this room is the play area. I think it’s pretty generous of me to call it a play area, and I reckon you’ll agree when you go and see it for yourself (or even if you just check out the above photo). 
Right now it’s just a section of the room fenced off with glass fencing. That’s it. Oh hold on, there is carpet with round green circles on it – wow, big deal. I’d feel really slack putting my little one in here. It looks like a little holding cell. You’d think there’d at least be a single wall-mounted activity centre, or maybe even some animal caricatures on the walls. But no, not here. Although on this particular visit it looks like there may be a television being mounted in the wall cavity. That’s what I’m hoping is happening anyway. Otherwise, BYO entertainment/toys….or just take the kids up the the indoor playground outside Shoes & Sox.

The private feeding cubicles are pretty okay. Again they’re clean and new and are big enough to take a pram. Each one has an armchair and little table, and privacy is provided by a curtain at the front of each. Unfortunately for any mums needing to use an electric pump, there aren’t any powerpoints in the cubicles. So you’ll need to bring batteries with you instead. Just something to note.

Two change bays

Separate food prep area with it’s own sink

This part I really do like. Separate areas for nappy change and food prep. And you know what the best part is? There are separate sinks for each area. Yay!!!! It bugs me no end when there is only one sink for both food prep and nappy changes, so having two sinks (one in each area) is just fabulous.

The change area is pretty good. There’s two change bays in the bench, and the sink and soap are between the two bays. There was a small pile of papertowels at the back of the bench, so hopefully there will be an actual wall mounted paper towel dispenser in the not too distant future. May be it will appear at the same time as the television?
Anyway, the bench is a good height and not too deep so I’d say most adults would be able to change their little ones without too much hassle. The nappy bins are underneath the bench in pull-out drawers. Very handy, but I reckon it could get awful stinky in this Parent Room after a few hours. The drawers have the top section open, so you can just toss the nappy in without having to pull out the drawer if you don’t want to. But being an open top means the smell will travel. Hopefully this Parent Room will get more regular cleaning services than some of the others in the centre.

The food prep area is pretty good too. I know I’ve already said it but having it separate to the nappy change area is such a big deal. I love it! The microwave is clean and works well. The sink also has a filtered water tap which is a nice touch. 

Basically, this is the nicest Parent Room in all of Macquarie Centre. You may not have know it was there before, but now that you do know about it….go and check it out! It’s clean, new and quiet. Although now that the word is out…….it may not be so quiet anymore hahaha. Just let me know when the wall cavity in the kids holding pen gets something in it – if it’s not a television, it better be something else pretty darn good.