* I was invited to Players Bingo and given food & drink for free through Love Pop Ups – London, but rest assured, all words and opinions are my own 🙂
When you hear the word bingo you most likely think of a big, dreary room full of blue rinses & hearing aids, but Players Bingo have come to change that!
You’ll find Players at the reputable Mecca Bingo Hall in Camden. They’ve kept the decor retro with a modern vibe, featuring lots of glitter, and bright neon lights. You enter through a bingo ball curtain into the glam looking bar, where you’ll find a fun cocktail list. My favourites included the Blue Rinse, which is basically a blue pina colada with an added dollop of vanilla ice cream on top, and the #playerslounge, made up of vodka, pomegranate & soda. You can also order food from the counter on the other side of the room. Each month they have a different pop-up restaurant offering a couple of their best dishes. May’s foodie take-over was Eat Meat Cheese Repeat who have brought along 3 burgers to try from. I went for the Stairway To Heaven, a no frills grilled halloumi burger with lettuce, tomato & mayo in a soft brioche bun. Simple, but delicious! We also shared some sweet potato fries and BBQ sticky wings, which are scrumptiously sticky, so I’d recommend scoffing these before the games begin!
It was finally time to head into the main bingo hall to grab our seats! The tables come in 4s but the dividers between them are small enough to still make it intimate if you’ve got a big group. The game itself sticks to the same rules we all know, with the numbered balls being jumbled up inside a big clear ball and dropping out one at a time. You then use your dabber to highlight the number on your bingo card. Easy peasy! Players though, have got a fun & energetic host to call out the numbers, and bring a bit of banter to the audience. There’s also another added bonus of a live band!! They bust out some instrumental tunes whilst the host calls out the bingo balls, changing for certain numbers. For example when the number 17 was called they started playing Abba’s Dancing Queen and everyone exploded into song. ‘Knock at the door – number 4’ was followed by Knocking On Heaven’s Door, there was Blondie’s One Way Or Another for the number 1, and Nine To Five by Dolly Parton for both numbers 9 and 5.
There are 3 games in total over the course of the night. For each game there are 3 winners. The first is for 1 line with the winner getting £20, second prize is £30, and the award for a full house (3 consecutive lines) is £50 AND one of the big prizes! Our night had a fridge freezer, mountain bike, and 2 person kayak up for grabs. Players happens every Thursday and Saturday, with tickets priced at £12, which works out to 4 quid per game. We went on a Thursday. The room was about half full, but this made it a bit more competitive as there was more chance of winning against less people! Unfortunately we weren’t one of the lucky winners that night, but we still had a lot of fun!