The Lamaze Play House Gym is an adorable play mat/activity gym that is covered with colorful babies and animals in a playhouse environment. The mat is stocked with color and large prints that appealed to our little testers. The mat is double sided for twice the play time fun and includes 6 hanging toys including a girl doll, boy doll, green crinkle rectangle toy, yellow square rattle toy, red circle squeaky toy and a large tummy time mirror. It also comes with a bright rainbow colored arch that has loops for the toys to hang from. Besides the safety tummy time mirror, the toys are all very soft and squishy.
The main attraction of the Play House Gym for our little testers was the baby activated sun. Our baby testers absolutely LOVED it! It’s a large star-shaped sun that plays music and lights up which is perfect for visual tracking. The sun plays 5 songs in sequence, while the lights (face of the sun) dance to the beat of the music. The best thing about the sun is that it is removable so that you can move it around the gym or remove it completely to take with you. Our baby tester loved it so much that we attached it to his car seat and stroller when we went out and about.
The sun has two music modes: baby activated or continuous play. In “baby activated mode” after one complete song plays, the toy is idle until jiggled. Motion re-activates the toy and plays the next song in the sequence until the toy is turned off. In “parent activated mode”, the sun plays 5 songs in sequence, while lights dance to the beat of the music. After 5 minutes of play, the sun goes into sleep mode until the sun is turned off and back on again. While the babies love the music and lights of the sun, the parents love the fact that there are two volumes on the music – low and high. The only thing we would change about the sun would be to give it an option to just play the lights without the music when a little quiet time is needed.
The Lamaze Play House Gym grows with your baby in three different stages. It transforms with each stage of baby’s development to provide more ways to play and gives the gym a longer life than your typical activity mat. From 0 – 6 months, Stage 1 is Lay and Play and Tummy Time. Lay and Play is similar to a typical activity mat with an arch of toys but this one has two soft side walls. The mat transforms to Tummy Time by folding up one of the open sides of the mat to form a short little wall. There are three loops on the top of the wall to hang the toys and mirror for tummy time fun. The tummy time mirror is a big hit with our little testers because babies love to look at themselves. From 6+ months, all you have to do is remove the toy bar and fold out the mat completely flat to transform it into Stage 2: Sit and Play. It allows your baby a clean, colorful place to do just want the name says – sit and play. Around 9+ months, the mat folds into a wedge-shaped play house for peek-a-boo and matching games. There are three different colored shapes on one side of the wedge that correspond with the three hanging toys for matching play. On the other side is a cute scene of the front of a house with a crinkle door that opens to reveal a cute little family for peek-a-boo play.
Finally, the mat wipes clean, is machine washable and folds up for easy storage and portability. The only thing we think it is missing is a variety of textures we are used to seeing on playmats. Overall, we love the Lamaze Play House Gym because it is cute and fun to look at, has a longer life than normal activity mats with versatile ways of play and the sun is a big hit with our babies! The Lamaze Play House Gym retails for $79.99, which is a bit expensive, but around the average of playmats/gyms these days.