Skatelab is not just a skatepark, it’s a homage to all things skateboarding. From the second you walk through the door you are surrounded by hundreds maybe thousand of previously thrashed decks that fill every available space on the walls and ceiling. Each deck representing a small piece of some skater’s journey… and also the broader story if skateboarding itself. Very inspiring and that’s just the hallway! keep walking and you arrive at an epic warehouse filled to the brim with awesomeness.
The park itself is broken up into 3 main areas; The small room, The big room and outdoor minis. The small room features a smattering of 3-5ft transitions and banks around the perimeter (including an epic vert wall ride) that all circle around a central flat that is littered with movable rails and boxes. At the far end there’s also a pyramid funbox that has a bunch of rails and ledges to slide and grind. This area has more of a street feel to it and the slick surfaces (painted blue) are fast and well maintained.
The main (big) room is immediately recognisable as its been featured in movies, commercials and even has it’s own TechDeck set! but its not for the feint at heart. A series of larger banks, roll-ins and transitions all perfectly positioned and lightning fast make up the main arena. The far end is home to a cracking pool-style bowl with beautiful transitions that start at 5ft in the shallow and hit 7-8ft in the deep. Rounding it all off is a monster wall ride that slingshots back down into the main arena and links it all up beautifully. Again the surfaces are impeccable and all the lips and coping are well looked after.
Head outside and you’ll find a couple of wooden mini’s. The day we were there only the small one was open, it’s about 2-half feet tall and its perfect for younger skaters just learning the basics of transition skateboarding. The surface and coping were a tad worn but that only added to the experience. It reminded me of some of the backyard mini’s I skated back in the day. The large coping is very forgiving so it’s great for learning those early lip tricks and rock-to-fakie’s
But wait, there’s more! Upstairs you’ll also find the Skateboarding Hall of Fame which has a mind blowing collection of skateboarding artefacts that capture the history of Skateboarding. Everything from early home made decks, toys and shoes through to trophies and used pro-decks from some of the greatest.
Apart from being a mecca for skateboarding there is also a pro-shop here that has all the supplies you’d need if something went wrong and the staff here are wonderfully helpful and happy to share a story or two about the Skatelab journey. There’s plenty of free parking, free Wi-fi and a well positioned lounge area for relaxing that all add up to make this one of the best skateparks we’ve been to. A must see!