UFO-INSPIRED slides, dinosaur-shaped sheds at Sky Play by Kenneth Cobonpue are made of fiberglass and woven polyethylene strips the same material the industrial designer uses for his popular furniture.
Kenneth Cobonpue designs his first public playground
WITH an Alice in Wonderland theme that included flowers as tall as humans, playing card soldiers and performances by the Red Queen and an aproned Alice herself, SM Seaside City Cebu launched its Sky Park last Friday.
The playground in the al fresco area on third level has been open for close to a year but was only recently completed.
Award-winning industrial designer Kenneth Cobonpue was tapped by SM to plan and execute Sky Play, the third of its three playgrounds located next to each other. The total Sky Park area measures over 20,000 sq m, with Sky Play occupying 1,250 sq m.
Parents and grandparents accompanied their wards through the first two, Fun and Play, and Water Play before an actor dressed as the Mad Hatter led the opening of the “gate” to Sky Play.
“We approached Kenneth and asked him if he was willing to take on the project,” said Marissa Fernan, vice president of SM Prime Holdings. “Fortunately, we didn’t have a hard time convincing him.”
The boyish-looking Cobonpue, who was at the launch, said he was excited to do the project. “It’s the kid in me. I wanted to come up with a playground I could be excited about,” he told Lifestyle. “I also agreed to do the project because it would be my first playground. Anything that’s a first, I want to do.”
The result is a play area with dinosaur-shaped sheds and flying saucer-like slides. He used sturdy fiberglass for the slides, swings and ladders as well as loosely woven polyethylene strips, the same ones he uses for furniture. The woven strips provide shade but also let light and air through. There are benches on site, again made of fiberglass and woven synthetic strips.
Even the Sky Play ground was taken into consideration. Instead of cement or concrete, a durable synthetic material was used.
“People can hold their parties or events here at the Sky Park,” Fernan said. “We’ve waived any rental fees for the moment as long as they order their food from our tenants.”
The restaurants located across the hallway are home-grown Cebuano, including CNT and Ayer’s that serve lechon (roast suckling pig), Paolito’s which serves assorted seafood, and Casa Verde that is known for its baby back ribs served in a bucket. The latter has branched out to Manila, where it has branches at UP Town Center and Sikatuna Village in Quezon City, among other locations.