Creative space at Oli Oli

Have you discovered the new place in town that’s opening its doors this month. We managed to get a glimpse ahead and tried it out ….OMG this is something that we need in Dubai especially during those crazy hot days.

Let me tell you more…

What’s in the name?

Oli Oli translates to “joy” in Hawaiian, a dream that founders of Oli Oli visioned 2 yrs back and is finally come to fruition.
What’s Oli Oli about?

Every little details has been thought about like the addition of small colorful butterflies,bird houses, colorful pigeons and squirrels all thanks to Sneha Divias(CID’s 2017 Interior Designer of the Year) who poured her heart designing this place for kids.Oli Oli consist of 8 galleries and over 40 hands-on exhibits for your child to explore….

Now what are they hang on you’ll learn more

First stop-The Air gallery

You can explore how air works by making your own paper planes/rockets and launching them. Shooting a ball through a hoop with a wind canon or step into the hurricane booth and feel 110kph or just discovering the mystery of floating shapes on Bernoulli’s Blower. It’s a great way to explore aerodynamics. Lil knight was taken aback at first but then he saw how much fun it was he was thrilled to play on his own. I enjoyed the thrill of the hurricane and hooping booths.


Second stop -Cars and ramp gallery (first level) 

Who doesn’t love cars right? In this gallery kids can design and build their own cars to race using Lego blocks and jump over two big towering ramps with a slope and a round hoop.

What I really loved about this is that each child kept making modifications to their cars to make them perform better with excitement and the use of logic to analyze what went wrong and what changes can be made.

Lil Knight is too small to build his car so dad sat down and helped out. They made 3 versions and kept going till the car survived the track without breaking.

Third stop-Fort and den gallery (first level) 

I remember when we were kids we used chairs to hold our bed sheets up or the clothes peg to hang them so we could sneak under it and make our own creative space with pillows and cooking toys. When I walked in this gallery it brought back all those memories of imaginary play.

This space has ample of sheets and clothes pegs with tree house structures and cushions. Every wall had a hook or a hanger with hooks so the possibilities of what you wanted to do was infinite.

Fourth stop-Toddler corner

This corner has a book reading space, busy bottles filled with tassels and beads. A string of clothes drying, little trolleys to roll around, a space to grow and collect flowers and a climbing space with mirrors inside.

Lil Knight loved this space he removed the dried clothes from the string, read a book, played with puppets, sat with the busy bottles and played some music. He enjoyed putting the flowers in the garden and then removing them and placing them in his basket. Every little detail was so well thought of and engaging too.


Fifth stop-Future park gallery

It’s a space where play is taken to another dimension literally.


  • A Table where Little People live as a community, miniature characters projected onto a table. When left alone, the little people move around walking, jumping, sliding, hopping and generally paying little attention to the world outside. But when you place your hand on an object they notice and jump onto it. The actions of the tiny characters change in response to the shape and color of the objects, becoming more animated as you introduce more and more objects into their world.
  • Sketch Aquarium installation allows you to create drawings of sea creatures in 2D and watch them come to life into 3D in a virtual ocean. So Lil Knight picked his Shark coloring paper and dad picked jellyfish and I picked a turtle. We sat and colored it together using crayons at the create table. We then used the digital scanner and scanned our pictures and voila! we had our fish family become a part of the aquarium. You can even feed them by touching fish food bags on the screen!
  • Virtual city installation allows you to do the same as the aquarium but with vehicles including UFOs which is what Lil Knight colored and was thrilled when it became a part of the big projected city, which he could physically touch and it would speed up, or change direction. • Light Ball Orchestra consists of Beachball-sized globes of multicolored light and sound. Touch any ball to change the colour and sound of the balls around it, creating an electrifying, one-of-a-kind orchestra.Lil knight enjoyed pushing, bouncing and rolling the balls as they continuously changed color and sound.

 Sixth stop-Creative lab Here you can create, build, take apart and put back together. This was my favorite space especially cause they used simple and easily available resources to create a painting robot; yup you read right, and the art that kids created and the techniques that they learn were so fascinating. They even have sticks that formed 3D figures so you can take them apart and build whatever you like


Seventh stop-The most colorful piece of art at Oli Oli -Toshi’s Net


Seventh stop-The most colorful piece of art at Oli Oli -Toshi’s Net This was created by Toshiko Horiuchi MacAdam, a 77 year old Japanese artist by hand using knitting, crochet, and knot making techniques. She explains it as “The crochet forms resemble a mother’s womb. The soft, elastic surface is familiar to the child. The net membrane is sensitive to the child’s slightest movement capturing their energy and transmitting it back to them. The wave-like motion of the net connects them with other children and they stay together.”

Just looking at it makes you want to run right but wait, shoes off socks on. This was when Lil knight climbed through the maze finding his way to the top on his own jumped and didn’t want to come back down. Its colors and design is so inspiring, loved it.

With less than ten in the world, make sure you experience the one and only in the Middle East. Oh, it weighs only 800 kg and can hold 29 baby elephants.

Eight stop -Water gallery

It’s about splashing and experiencing water, whether it’s dancing in the rain, playing with a water vortex, firing ball cannon or washing a real car.

They have such lovely yellow raincoats with a hood so your child won’t get fully wet and a huge blower to dry them if they do. Perfect, so why not let them have fun and go crazy without worrying that they will slip.

Lil Knight loves playing with water, so we put on our rain coat and went charging to wash a big blue car; we sprayed it and wiped it and sprayed it again. We filled some more water at the water station with huge funnels and a glass wall with gears to move and make them roll by pouring water.

Last but not Least:

We spent more than 3 hours at Oli Oli ,Lil Knight didn’t want to leave instead he wanted to go back and build his car. Its such an overwhelming experience for a child and a family.We will definitely be going back for more.

Don’t forget to take extra clothes and extra socks.

Admission cost is 120AED Toddler is 60AED Addi tonal adult is 40AED

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