Bankstown NSW

Westpoint Blacktown (Level 3 Food Court) -17 Patrick Street, Blacktown NSW 2148

Overall: Better than Level 4. Good. Nappy change, rest, feed, play.

Good Points: Push-button auto-slide door. Private feeding cubicle with Play Panel. Separate bench for food prep, including sink and soap. Microwave and bottle warmer. Separate bench for nappy changes, including sink and soap. Disposable change mat liners. Nappy bins underneath change benches.

Bad Points: Doorway too narrow for double prams. No paper towels. Bland boring walls and ceiling. Curtain for privacy on feeding cubicle. Marked and worn fittings, paintwork and furniture.

After checking out the horrendous Parent Room on Level 4 at Westpoint Blacktown, I really didn’t have much hope at all for the Parent Rooms on the floors below. Thankfully I found that the Parent Room on Level 3 in the Food Court is loads better than Level 4. It’d want to be, that’s for sure. At the same time though, it still doesn’t get the ‘five star’ rating Westpoint reckons it should have. 

The Parent Room on Level 3 is pretty easy to find. Head to the food court (follow the signs hanging from the ceiling), and down the hallway next to Subway is the Parent Room. The sign on the wall says ‘Baby Change’. Easy! The push-button, auto slide door is always a great start, but it’s not the widest doorway and could be tough for a double pram.

The interior is immediately inviting, but that feeling really doesn’t last long. The room isn’t really well maintained and while it has some handy features it really misses out on some other things. A good thing is the private feeding cubicle, but it has some negatives. There’s only one cubicle, with two comfy club chairs, a side table, curtain for privacy and a Play Panel. Curtains are pretty standard in most Parent Rooms these days, but if a place is promoting ‘five star’ facilities, then there should be proper locking doors on the feeding cubicles. Unfortunately there aren’t any additional powerpoints in here for mums needing to express. Thumbs down 🙁

Back on the good side, there’s separate sinks for food prep and nappy changes. Yippee!!! This is a great feature of all the Parent Rooms reviewed at Westpoint. The nappy change sink is in the middle of the change bays, with a soap dispenser in arms reach. The food prep sink is on a separate bench with the microwave and bottle warmer. Having both a bottle warmer and microwave is pretty rare, giving this room another tick.

On the down side, for drying hands there’s only an automatic hand-dryer. Paper towel is much more hygienic and convenient. I’d like to see the hand-dryer removed and have paper towel units installed in its place. My little one hates the sound of hand dryers, and I’m guessing other kids have the same reaction too. So why not get rid of them? 

The nappy change bench has two change bays, with the sink smack in the middle of the bays. There’s a good amount of bench space on either side of the bays – perfect for keeping all your shopping and nappy bag off the floor. Disposable change mat liners are available from a pull-down unit attached to the wall (great if you’ve forgotten to bring a change mat like I have done on occasion, oops!). It’s a great space and the liners are a nice touch, but without paper towel for drying hands, or artworks/mobiles to distract little people while they’re being changed…….it’s just another regular change bench.

The toilets are pretty good. Cleaner and in better condition than what’s on Level 4 & 2. The door is lockable from the inside, there’s both adult and child size toilets, but the toilet paper roll is a little high for most little ones to reach. And again, for drying hands a hand-dryer is on the wall. Please, some paper towel!!! 

So the room is not awesome, but it’s definitely better than Level 4. I’d be happy enough to change nappies here and use the microwave or bottle warmer for heating up bubs food, but I wouldn’t be comfortable breastfeeding here. It just took the one time at Westpoint for a little kid to whip open the curtain when I was feeding my bub to be turned off curtained cubicles forever.

Bankstown NSW

Centro Bankstown, Level 2 (near RTA) – Rickard Rd, Stacey St, Bankstown NSW

Reviewed by B

Overall: Needs upgrading and cleaning real quick. Nappy change, feed, rest. Great parking for Parents with Prams.

Good Points: Parents with Prams parking spaces; Clearly sign posted Parent Rooms; Private feeding cubicles with lockable doors; Change bays in each feeding cubicle; Clean and working microwave; Big and little loo.

Bad Points: Overflowing nappy bins; Not very well cleaned; No paper towels; One sink for food prep and washing hands; Microwave next to main nappy change bench; Tired, worn out fittings and furniture; Open entrance to Parent Room.

Excellent parking for Parents with Prams – access via Stacey Street entrance

Wide car spaces for Parents with Prams

Bankstown is not one of our regular shopping haunts, mainly because it isn’t close to where we live. But I really do like it! I love the mish mash of cultures at Centro. From beautiful muslim women wearing the burqa, to me…white, short hair, singlet and jeans – all of us mums, regardless of outfit and nationality, shopping with our little ones. 
And of course, the shops and the Parent Rooms. Centro Bankstown has loads of Parent Rooms! I only checked out one on this visit, which needs a lot of work. But I have not yet come across a shopping centre with so many Parent Rooms. Very very happy.

First up, the Parents with Prams car parks. These were in the best possible position. On the top floor of the car park accessible from Stacey Street. The Parents with Prams car spaces are wide, well sign posted, and positioned right next to the entrance to the shopping centre. Perfect!! Just park, get yourself, bub and pram out of the car and walk right in – get on the travelator and head down to the shops.

Follow the signs – just near the RTA

And up the hallway you’ll find the Parents Room

The Parent Room reviewed on this visit is the one located near the RTA, in the older part of Centro. It’s easy to find, just follow the signs. Head down the hallway, turn left, and on the right is the Parent Room. 

The primary change bench – bin is overflowing!
In this room, there’s facilities for feeding, nappy changes and a bit of a rest. But it really does need  a bit of maintenance. I didn’t feel comfortable spending more than a couple of minutes here, and that’s because there isn’t an actual door to the room. I think many mums would prefer the added feeling of privacy of an actual door to the Parent Room.

The main part of the room has a single change bench. Underneath it is the nappy/rubbish bin, which was already overflowing and it was still the first half of the day. The two private feeding cubicles also have change benches (a nice touch!) but the bins in these were also overflowing.

Change bench in one of the feeding cubicles – bin overflowing here too!

The good thing in this Parent Room is the lockable doors on the feeding cubicles. While the feeling of privacy is gone in the main part of the room from the lack of a proper door, being able to lock the door of your feeding cubicle is comforting. There’s a comfy chair in each cubicle, and one in the main part of the Parent Room. I was happily surprised with this! Although like the rest of the room, they need a good clean. Good thing us parents usually have a stash of wipes on hand.

Lockable door to private feeding cubicle

Chair for feeding in each cubicle

For food prep, the clean and working microwave is mounted on the wall next to the main change bench. Hygiene not a huge concern here, by the looks. The only sink, soap and hand dryer is on a wall next to the toilets. I would think the microwave would be better positioned next to the sink. Or have the sink next to the change bench. But definitely not the microwave and change bench next to each other – not nice.

Clean and working microwave

The sink and toilets – just the one sink for food prep and hygiene

I do like the loos. There’s a big one and a little one, so little people can do what they need to without much assistance. There’s loads of space in the toilets. Definitely room for a decent size pram. And the door can be locked from the inside, which is a big plus.

Big and little loo

For a quick stop, this Parent Room is okay. I’m hoping the others in Centro are better than this one though. If you are heading to this room, make sure you have wipes, anti-bacterial gel for your hands, tissues, change mat, and also something to keep little ones entertained. And maybe nappy sacks too, because if the bins were this full during my visit and it wasn’t even midday…….I hate to think what the room is like by the end of the day.