Dear Mummy, we were treated like stars at Hollywood Bowl recently and had the ultimate bowling experience when we visited their new VIP lanes last week. My folks love the thrill and excitement of bowling and when they first started dating (back in the day!) they used to go every Friday night to the alleys. Since I came along they haven’t been as much, however the opportunity came up to review a VIP lane in Basingstoke and they jumped at the chance.
They have never seen anything like this swish lane and there are four at our local bowling alley. Prices start at £4.89 per game and if you book online you can get three games for £10.99. You can bowl on a VIP lane from as little as £1 extra per person per game or £3 extra per person when upgrading your unlimited bowling package! Hollywood bowl are part of AMF Bowling so we expected quality lanes, shoes and balls and we weren’t disappointed. We were warmly greeted by staff and shown to our private, roped off lane. Inside were leather sofas, our own call bell for the hostess and new balls. With thick plush red curtains, a sleek centre console, funky coloured pins and a member of staff on hand to grab us drinks and food we didn’t need to queue at the bar or at the diner for food.
My daddy had bowled in a couple of competitions but he’s a couple of years out of practice, however he thought there wasn’t enough room to get a good walk up on the lanes. We liked the discreet storage area for our belongings however it did encroach on the bowling lane length, so we had to push it back slightly to get a good run up. Maybe some under the seat storage would have solved this problem.
We found ourselves looking around the VIP lane spotting little quirky elements on the wall shelves, like old Hollywood photos, replica awards and 1950’s glamour everywhere. Each lane is overlooked by a Hollywood legend; from Marilyn Monroe to Han Solo, Audrey Hepburn to Elvis. It has a very vintage feel about it and this continues outside the lane as well at Hollywood bowl. From the 1950s style American Diner to the Pool Hall and the Games Arcade it’s not just all about the bowling, it’s a great place to hang out as well.
We enjoyed our lunch in one of the booths at the Diner, but we could have had it at our VIP lane too, but there just wasn’t space on the small table, especially as another group had joined the opposite lane and we had to share the table. For larger parties you would definitely need some more table space. It would have been nice to have a partition for smaller parties but we suppose that if you are booking one of these lanes the likelihood is that you’d take both lanes for a larger group.
The food was good and if you like hotdogs then this place is for you as my mummy had The Boulevard Hotdog and it was the best she’d ever tasted. There were healthy lite bites such as chicken and bacon salads to delicious favourites like burgers and pasta, there’s plenty to tempt those taste buds and keep every appetite happy. My daddy enjoyed nachos, especially the salsa sauce and I munched down on a mini hot dog from the kids menu which has the usual favourites like burgers and chips. We enjoyed milkshakes and cocktails, while Grandma sampled the barista style coffee and a chicken burger & salad which was tasty.
Watch us bowl on the lane and see inside Hollywood Bowl
These VIP lanes would be perfect for date nights as they are very cool and give you just enough privacy, perfect for special occasions like birthdays or works do’s and staff have no problem dressing them up for you. We even saw a kiddies birthday party happening next door. They are lovely shiny new lanes and we really hope people respect these lanes and keep them looking smart.
We were super impressed with the VIP experience and the service from Basingstoke Hollywood Bowl and even though they were busy they couldn’t do enough to accommodate our every need. Perhaps an extra pair of hands on the front desk or a concierge might be an idea to help with queues?! We overheard other customers thanking the team at the desk for a great couple of hours so clearly we weren’t alone in our appreciation. We could have spent longer at the alley playing at the arcades and on the rides while watching the other bowlers. There is something therapeutic about bowling and releasing some of the energy we had on pins. It feels that in today’s entertainment market facilities like this are dying out but it was great to see a busy, thriving centre with everything to offer all ages.
What do you think of these VIP lanes? Would you book?
Love Bella x
Disclaimer: We were offered a VIP experience at Hollywood Bowl Basingstoke in return for an honest review. All thoughts and photos are our own.
38 thoughts on “New VIP lanes at Hollywood Bowl”
We haven’t been bowling in a long time, but my Daughter had one of her birthday parties at a Hollywood bowl and I would have booked VIP for this, and would think about it if we went again x
Hollywood Bowl looks like so much fun! I would love to have a birthday party there! Seems like a lot to do with such a perfect area to have fun!
All that great detail about the lanes and food but what is missing is the most important: Who won the bowling games???
My Grandma won the bowling! She was celebrating on the video! 😉 x She’s pretty nifty at it!
How awesome does the VIP lanes sound, I went to the Basingstoke Hollywood Bowl not long ago and they were so lovely in there.
I’ve not been bowling in such a long time! The VIP lanes sound awesome that hot dog looks delicous i definitely think I need to drag my hubby out for a bowling date night.
Ooh I didn’t know they had VIP lanes now! We love Hollywood bowl and would definitely get a VIP bowl, how special!
My this takes me back! It has been so long since I have been bowling but I always loved to play even though I was not very good LOL! Looks like you had a fun time x
I love bowling. The vip lanes look great. Will have to try them out
Oh wow how swanky! This would be the perfect way to go bowling on a first date or to celebrate a birthday! xxx
Hi, I haven’t been bowling’s for a while, the VIP lane looks like great fun #twinklytuesday
Oh I’ve not been bowling for years. This looks like a lot of fun and a really good idea for a work night out *messaging colleagues immediately* #twinklytuesday
Oh what fun, do you know I don’t think I’ve ever taken my kids bowling. I’m sure they would adore this. #twinklytuesday
Wow this looks so much fun, perfect for a birthday or special occasion.
I’ve seen the VIP lanes in Hollywood Bowl but never really thought about using them but a great idea for a bit more privacy x
I have only been bowling a couple of times and I wish my experience would have been as cool as yours. The vip lanes look really fun and it doesn’t cost a fortune either to play!
Looks like so much fun, the decorations look fab and so does the food!
I love the VIP lanes experience makes for a much more enhanced and private experience x
I’m actually a tenpin bowler (I play a lot of county and tournaments and things) and the lanes look great. It would be good for families to enjoy a day out x
Woweee! That’s fantastic! We’ve never met a semi-pro bowler x it’s a great activity. We can see why you love it so much x
Ooh I’d love to try out the new VIP lanes! I’ve really gotten into bowling lately, it’s a great group activity 🙂
This looks like so much fun, I love going bowling but haven’t been for ages!
I love the idea of VIP lanes!! No queueing for food and drink sounds divine!
This looks great! My OH is really into bowling so he in particular would love this, especially the VIP treatment.
It looks good but I like to watch others when bowling. I think this would be great for birthday parties though x
I love a good evening at the bowling alley! Unfortunately the one near my is a bit run down now, it needs sprucing up for sure!
The VIP lanes experience sounds like so much fun! I haven’t been bowling for so long now!
Ha, I’ve seen these. Even been on them a few times. They are great for birthday parties!
I love the picture of you both with the milkshakes – I’d love to go bowling there it looks fab. Su #TwinklyTuesday
I always thought this would be such a fun way to spend a birthday. I love bowling.
One of my first proper dates with my wife was bowling. It’s a bit of a trip for us – no bowling in Ceredigion!
My folks love bowling and miss their date nights! Hopefully this will rekindle the bowling bug 🙂
It’s been ages since I went bowling and this looks like great fun x
weve actually been here and we loved the experience also as a family its a great day of fun , the foods also awesome
Hollywood Bowl is fun and the VIP experience looks like so much fun!
Oooo those nachos in the back of the hotdog shot look good! I haven’t been bowling in years and I don’t know why cause it’s so much fun!
That looks really cool! I wish I could just go bowling alone and didn’t need to try and beg people to come with #foreveralone
We were only talking today about the fact that Zach would probably love a good bowling session now! We love it ourselves and this looks fab! Thanks for linking up with #TwinklyTuesday