Tag Archives: blacktown

Westpoint Blacktown (Level 4) – 17 Patrick Street, Blacktown NSW 2148

Overall: Has loads of potential but has been well let down.  Nappy change, feed, rest, play

Good Points: Easy to find. Auto slide push-button door. Separate nappy change bench and food prep bench. Disposable change mat liners. Separate sinks for nappy change bench and food prep bench. Nappy bins underneath change bench.  Microwave and bottle warmer. Soap at sinks. Feeding corner with armchair, side table, Play Panel and bench. Adult and child toilets.

Bad Points: No paper towel for drying hands. No curtains or door to feeding/rest area. Toilet paper is too high for little kids. Play Panel is missing a few pieces. Grubby, marked furniture. Chipped and dirty bench in feeding corner. No soap at nappy change bench

This was the first Parent Room we visited on our trip to Westpoint Blacktown. The centre has had alot of work done in recent years, and the Parent Rooms have definitely been improved. Sadly they’re still not exceptional. The website for Westpoint says its Parent Rooms are ‘five star’. They might look like it from the outside, but once inside where you can take a closer look……..they’re more average than anything else. I’d probably be nicer about this review if the centre hadn’t tried to make the rooms sound a whole lot better than they really are. But the hype just doesn’t match up with the real thing.

The best part of this Parent Room is it’s so easy to find. From the moment you arrive on Level 4, you just look for the signs and follow the arrows. Head down the hall between Max Brenner and Mad Mex, and on the left is the auto slide push-button door to the Parent Room. This is probably the most ‘five star’ the room gets. Inside the door the room looks promising, but within a couple of minutes the flaws just leap out!! Either that or I am just getting really really pedantic having seen so many bad rooms and not enough great ones.

This room has loads of potential and was probably great when first refurbed, but it’s just been neglected and treated badly. There’s a nappy change bench, with 2 change bays, bins under the bench, a sink in the  middle, and disposable change mat liners. This is good, but there isn’t any soap here or paper towel to dry your hands.

Opposite the change bench is the food prep area. This is pretty good, with a microwave and bottle warmer. It’s quite rare for a room to have both appliances. The sink is quite big, and there’s soap here plus a hand dryer.  The bench is marked and stained, and the hand dryer has had some lovely homemade etchings done to it.

The feeding corner is pretty crappy. There’s no curtain or door. Just a dirty filthy carpet with an old armchair, broken Play Panel and chipped furniture. It’s not a nice place to take time out with your little ones, and not even having a basic curtain just makes it a really uncomfortable place to be.

The toilets are alright. Don’t know how you’d go getting a double pram in here (thanks Ali :)). There’s a loo for kids and another for adults, with separate toilet paper rolls. The roll for the little loo is a bit out of reach, so kids may need some help. The sink is a little high for kids too, but at least the soap is at a decent kid-friendly height. Hate the hand dryer though. It’s just the right height for kids to stand under without realising it, and getting the life scared out of them when it starts up. Just save some power, Westpoint, and whack in some paper towels instead.

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.

Westpoint Blacktown (Level 2) – 17 Patrick Street, Blacktown NSW 2148

Overall: Overrated. Westpoint Blacktown website promotes its Parent Rooms as being ‘five star’, but it just a veneer and it’d be more accurate to say they are 2 – 3 star. Nappy change, feed, rest, play.

Good Points: Auto-slide push button frosted glass door. Spacious main room. Separate food prep bench with sink, soap, microwave, bottle warmer, and hand dryer. Wide change bench with two change bays, sink and soap dispenser in the middle. Disposable change mat liners. Nappy bins underneath the change bench. Two private feeding cubicles with Play Panels, curtains and armchairs. Adult and child size toilets, with locking door.

Bad Points: Dirty areas everywhere. Corners in entry way are very difficult for larger prams. Grubby main room. No paper towel for drying hands. Toilets used by people who aren’t with little children. Doors to nappy bins are unlocked. Play Panels are missing a few parts. Dirty armchairs and carpet. Curtains instead of doors to feeding cubicles. No side tables in feeding cubicles. Soiled toilet paper on floor in the toilets, no paper towel, and marked/stained fittings. Empty, broken and dangerous toilet paper unit for child toilet (exposed sharp metal teeth). Sink in toilet is too high for little children to reach.

I am getting a little wary with the statements businesses make on their websites about the quality of their Parent Rooms. It’s more than annoying when facilities are well below promoted expectations. And this is what I found during my recent trip to Westpoint Blacktown. 

What a huge let down!!! Westpoint Blacktown says on its website the Parent Rooms are ‘five star’. Well this accolade could only be for overrated, dirty, broken, basic facilities and nothing more. Westpoint needs to get a big fat reality check on what five star Parent Rooms are really like.

The Level 2 Parent Room is just down the corridor next to Big W. There are signs showing you where it is (one good thing). And the hallway leading to the room is wide enough for prams. The door is an auto-slide push-button frosted glass door, which seemed so promising! These doors make getting in and out of the room such a breeze. Inside the doorway, however, the room just goes downhill.

Immediately faced with a wall and a corner to walk around to get to the main area, I was very happy to be pram-free on this particular trip. I watched another mum leave the room later with a pram, and it took some shifting and shoving to get it around the corner and finally out the door again. Not fun!

The main room is pretty spacious and has undergone a makeover since my last visit about 12mth earlier. But it’s basically just a cover over the same crap that’s always been there. The nappy change bench is on the left side of the room. It’s wide, with two change bays, sink and soap dispenser in the middle. At either end of the bench mounted on the walls are rolls of paper to be used for lining the change bays, in case anyone has forgotten to bring change mats with them. Underneath the bench are nappy bins, but the doors to the bins are unlocked. This is not good enough, especially with curious little people about who like to open doors and see what’s inside them. Incredibly unsafe and unhygienic!!

I was happy to see a separate area for food prep. It has a sink, soap dispenser and hand dryer (but no paper towel!) plus microwave and bottle warmer. Now this is probably the only five star feature of the room. Having all these things in a parent room is, sadly, quite rare. But it’s not enough to make me want to spend any more time in here than is absolutely necessary. The rest of the room just doesn’t cut it.

On the right side of the room are two private feeding cubicles. Since my last visit, these have had a coat of paint…….and that’s about it. The carpets are still badly stained. The Play Panels are missing pieces. The armchairs are grubby. And the curtains……well little children still like to whip open curtains to see who is hiding behind it. Not a great experience if you’re a mum trying to feed a baby in private.

And then there’s the toilets. Just like my last visit, these ones are also visited by people who don’t have young children with them. If you don’t have little children with you, why come and use the toilet in the Parents Room? There were a few of us mums waiting with our children, desperately needing the toilet, while it was occupied with adults. This is just rude and not at all appropriate. How about these people help clean up the messes little ones end up making because they can’t get to the toilet in time? That might make them use the regular male/female toilets in future.

Looking at the pictures, I don’t think anyone who works for the centre cares at all about the state or use of the toilets. It’s just disgusting. Even early in the morning, there was soiled toilet paper on the floor. The fittings were marked and broken, and apart from the child size toilet, the rest of the room was not at all suited to small children. The sanitary bin was beginning to overflow. The toilet paper dispenser next to the child toilet was empty, broken and had exposed sharp metal teeth. Extremely dangerous!!
The sink is too high for little ones, and there’s no paper towel (again!!!). There is a hand dryer, but it’s at just the right height to scare the life out of little ones who happen to stand underneath it. Just don’t have one in the toilets! It’s not hygienic, so just get rid of it!

Phew, this one was actually a bit exhausting. I think tomorrow I need to write about a nice lovely parent room. The only challenge with that is finding one.