Over the last several years, Board Game Cafes have begun popping up all over the place, giving the family game ritual a new venue. Late to the party, as always, my family just hit up one of these cafes in Calgary, in honour of my husband’s birthday. My husband and kids love to pull out one of our many games and have a good old-fashioned game night, complete with long discussions (you know what that is code for) over what game to play, incessant humming, and my favourite, sibling rivalry as everyone gets louder and more vehement.
Strangely, I often have something I simply MUST work on, whenever the word “game” gets mentioned. The laundry never looked so appealing.
The idea of a game board cafe, however, was very interesting to me, and it was the perfect activity for our Saturday afternoon. Located on a busy street in Kensington, The Hexagon Board Game Cafe has only been around for a few years. The concept is simple: check in, buy a drink, and play one (or more) of their over 600 games. It costs $2.50 per hour, per person, and it’s a perfect chance to try out a game you’re interested in, without having to purchase it. The Cafe also has games to purchase, if you find something you love.
The Hexagon Cafe is not huge but it does have a number of tables of various sizes. Our family of 5 was seated at one of the larger tables and we could have easily squeezed in a few more people. With coffees and sodas, we were ready to choose our game. To my relief, the “discussion” about which game to play was abbreviated, which was surprising, really, considering the dizzying number of choices. There were tons of kid-friendly games, from Candyland to Jenga to Clue. There were also card games. My daughter loves Ticket to Ride, and there were several versions of the game that she had never heard about, and has now added to her Christmas list. (Maybe I’ll just get her a gift card to HXGN. My games cupboard is already overflowing.) Of course, most of the games were completely new to me and many caused much excitement in the kids.
We stayed for two hours and tried a new version of Codenames, a game we already knew how to play, and then took the time to learn two more family games. All the games were a success, with raised voices only starting to creep in at the end when things got more intense.
The Cafe was a thoroughly pleasant way to spend an afternoon. As it included sodas for a treat and screen-free family time that didn’t break the bank, we decided that we all won this round.
HXGN Board Game Cafe:
Although we do our best to provide you with accurate information, all event details are subject to change. Please contact the facility to avoid disappointment.