Newest Review: ... You know the sort - where all the chavs hang out. There is also a medium sized bar with an adjoining 'restaurant' that serves burgers... more
LA Bowl, Bowl like you're in LA.
La Bowl (Ryde, Isle of Wight)
Member Name: adambrown400
La Bowl (Ryde, Isle of Wight)
Advantages: The chance to bowl on the IOW
Disadvantages: Poor decor
For those who live or who are familiar to the Island will know LA Bowl well, for those that don't, here is a brief summary. The Island is still quite backward in many respects, we still don not have a decent 'venue' for live music and up until recently we did not have a bowling alley. In fact many now will say that LA Bowl doesn't really cut the mustard.
Situated on the seafront at Ryde is the Pavillion, an ageing dance hall that has been 'tastefully' remodelled into a bowling alley. That was several years ago now and the place is a bit rough around the edges.
As you walk into the Pavillion you are greeted with a selection of loud video games with an air hockey table. You know the sort - where all the chavs hang out. There is also a medium sized bar with an adjoining 'restaurant' that serves burgers and chips. The actual bowling is situated at the back of the pavilion.
One thing you are unlikely to forget is the quality of the decor. I don't think it has changed since opening in the early 90's. Theres ripped carpets, flaky paintwork and chipped balls (ooo er!). Only the shoes have been updated, as even up until recently the shoes looked like they just hopped off the set of 'Oliver Twist'.
The toilets are also a state and are crying out for work, but then they are used a lot by passing chavs who use the front foyer of the pavilion as a place to 'hang loose'.
That said, I do use the bowling alley at least every six months and it is cool place to go. As a teacher, I sometimes see the kids from school there a lot who love to shout 'MR BROWN!' at the tops of their voices, but it shows that people like going there. It obviously makes money as it always seems to be quite busy.
I've also been quite a few times with work, and the management puts on a buffet dinner and two games of bowling for everyone, and that usually works out at around a tenner, which I think is good value. Although, if you are on holiday and are used tor local megaplex cinema with bowling and bars, the LA Bowl may seem quite quaint.
The bowling experience is similar to other bowling alleys on the 'mainland', your usual alley with a collection of assorted weighted balls. The lanes are well kept, and if you want, or are disabled, then you can use the barriers or ball stabilisers.
If you really want, you can make a night of it as there is the 'Balcony', the town's local night spot. I'm sure The Balcony needs another review of its own, just to say it's the cause of a number of amusing incidents over the years - especially with tomflint and 'jjjj' being regular users.
On the whole, LA Bowl is good fun and a decent venue, its just a shame they haven't tarted it up recently, as its looking quite drab. I think someone needs to buy the place and strip it out totally and replace the ageing decor with some more modern furniture an amenities, as it looks a little bit like the inside of the The Brittas Empre.
Summary: A good venue in need of some modernisation.
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