By: Nadia Brophy
If you’ve been searching for some encouragement, inspiration or simply a reason to crack a smile, you won’t have to look too far - an art exhibit jam-packed with joy has arrived in Toronto with the mission to brighten your day as much as possible.
Welcome to Happy Place, an immersive, world-touring pop-up experience that encourages your inner child to come out to play. The 20,000 square-foot exhibition features 13 interactive multi-sensory rooms that will get you dancing among confetti, diving into a massive ball pit, munching on sweet treats and capturing the perfect Instagram photo-op with its brightly-coloured installations.
The exhibit began its international tour in Los Angeles where it gained widespread success, attracting over 100,000 guests to the unparalleled experience. Now in its third stop, Happy Place looks to bring some joy to the lives of Canadians, and we’ve got you the inside look at the most cheerful place in the city.
Bubble gum delicious, bubble gum delight
Right off the bat, Happy Place knows just how to rope you in - especially if you’ve got a sweet tooth. Your journey into this land of glee begins with all things sugar - a food station selling elaborate treats and two massive stilettos made of bubble gum balls. And if that wasn’t enough, your perfect Instagram shot can be captured under a feature wall of bubble gum machines, towering over you in all its tasty goodness.
A room full of dangling yellow carnations immerses you in a floral wonderland. It wouldn’t be a happy place if it didn’t surround its guests in the signature colour known to evoke feelings of optimism, happiness and energy.
There’s more than meets the eye
This one’s a secret, all is not quite as it seems…
Rub a dub dub
Yes, you do get to do some lounging during your visit. While some might prefer a nice lit candle and a bath bomb, Happy Place likes to step it up a notch with hundreds of rubber ducks and a tub filled to the brim with yellow balls.
Is there anything more fun, celebratory and exciting than confetti? How about being able to live out your childlike desires of tossing it in the air and rolling around in it? You’ll rarely have an excuse to do so, but at Happy Place, you’re encouraged to let loose and transcend the norms of adulthood.
Fresh and Fun
There’s nothing quite as satisfying as the smell of freshly baked cookies. That’s right; this next room features a giant, interactive chocolate chip cookie that smells just like the moment you first enter a bakery and take in the decadent fragrance of your favourite chocolatey treat. Upon leaving the room, you are met with a kind baker who hands you a cup of mini chocolate chip cookies to ensure your experience hits all the multi-sensory marks.
XOXO, Happy Place
Love makes the world go ‘round, doesn’t it? If that’s the truth, then it must be celebrated, and Happy Place does just that.
Last, but certainly not least
The last room in the exhibition leads you to all kinds of fun and memorable experiences. From dancing among flying confetti inside a massive wind dome to soaring into a bright yellow ball pit, you won’t forget all the energy-filled activities you participated in. Speaking of energy, if all that fun wore you out and you’re desperate for a boost, make sure to visit the Sweet Tooth Shack just up the stairs from the ball pit, where you can indulge in a variety of sugary snacks. Your taste buds, like all your other senses, will surely be thanking you after your Happy Place experience.
Yes, Happy Place, I think we’ve become well acquainted, especially when a picture like this ends up on your friend’s phone after it got lost in the ball pit.
Happy Place Toronto can be visited until Jan. 1, 2019 at the Harbourfront Centre.
All images were taken by Nadia Brophy.