Local services for parents with onsite childcare


I took an exercise class at Dailey Method in Elmwood with my friend Lisa, who, it being summer, dragged her two sons along with her. Dailey Method has a childcare room with a babysitter or two, and when I asked the little dudes how they enjoyed their hour while Mom exercised, they reported on the paper airplanes they made and bragged about the fact that they were much bigger than the babies and toddlers in the room.  Score one for Dailey Method. Or perhaps, for Lisa, who was able to do something she wanted without arranging numerous hours of childcare, including paying for time during which she would have been driving.

So what other East Bay spots offer onsite childcare? This question came in from a reader and I thought you all could help me compile a list.

Here’s what I’ve got so far:

YMCA – Members can bring babies as young as six weeks to Childwatch while they work out — and shower!

Bar Method Berkeley – This fitness studio offers a specific type of fitness class in North Berkeley. The kids room is staffed and open MWF at 8:30 and TTh for the 9:45 and 11:00 classes.

Yogalayam – Where Berkeley meets Oakland on Alcatraz, this yoga studio offers postpartum yoga classes with a few baby whisperers on hand to soothe your baby during class. Overall the babies are coordinated into the class for about half the time.

Spruce Salon and Spa – In Rockridge, this spa got my attention by launching with onsite “kiddo care”. Usually $9/hour while moms get serviced, Mondays are “Mom’s Day Out” and Spruce offers an hour of free childcare during any treatment between 11 am and 5 pm.

Ironworks – For $5 per hour, members can leave their child 6 months to 6 years in a playroom decked out with toys, a tv, and a sitter. Call for details.

HackerMoms – Wanna make stuff? The HackerMoms space, in order to encourage women to continue creative pursuits after motherhood, has incorporated kids into the programming. See our previous post on Hacker Moms and check the details on their website. Fees apply for children 5 months and older. Kids 6 and up can just hang in the space free of charge, as long as it’s working out for everyone.

Now tell me your childcare secrets!

[photo courtesy HackerMoms]


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  1. says

    This location is a bit outside the typical oakland/berkeley geographical scope that you guys usually focus on, but I wanted to put in a plug for D’s Fitness in Castro Valley — this is a small gym for women only, with great group exercise classes and childcare that is included in the cost of a monthly membership.

  2. says

    How have I not heard of this Spruce Salon before!? I think I must try it! Does Ikea count as being a local service with childcare? I’ve never used it, but I’ve totally thought of dropping the kids off just to eat some meatballs in peace! Someone should totally create a restaurant where adults can have conversation and a leisurely meal, while the kids are having their own supervised restaurant experience and play time with responsible restaurant staff. Wouldn’t that be great!? Go to dinner with friends? Your kids get to hang out, get fed and you don’t have to deal with a sitter? Come on, someone has to invent this!

  3. Tosha Schore says

    Check out Bloom Retreat on South Mail in downtown Walnut Creek. Amazing services, including yoga, massage, psychotherapy, skincare…, plus a fabulous, affordable childcare. I live close by, but know lots of people who come through the tunnel (a whopping 20 min) to take advantage of all Bloom has to offer. http://www.bloomretreat.com. Oh, and with a membership, you can also just sit and work and drink tea, while your children are cared for!

  4. Cara says

    Woohoo Fit has child care for some classes.
    And, Rebecca, I was recently at Ikea and my daughter saw the child care on our way out and asked to go play — totally let her go in while I went upstairs with the sleeping baby in Moby and ate a piece of cake and then sat on the bench outside of child care, reading an ebook on my phone until she was ready to leave. Texted my husband “I am so coming to Ikea with a book when I need a break!”

  5. Alissa says

    I know its been said already, but I can’t say enough how much I LOVE The Dailey Method. Lots and lots of childcare for morning and afternoon classes (and Sat!)- but better yet, also one of the best workouts ever. Highly mom friendly – the Elmwood studio is owned by two moms who really get what momhood (and exercising during pregnancy) is all about (and Piedmont studio is also mom owned). Can’t say enough great things about them, and the results of the workout- strength/toning/tightening all over.