Chuck E. Cheese ditching buzzing lights, noisy coins for parent-friendly experience at Houston locations

HOUSTON — Chuck, is that you? The family fun center famous for its kaleidoscopic colors, buzzing machines and bright lights is debuting major renovations at a Houston location Thursday as part of a national rebranding effort.

Credit: CEC Entertainment

Chuck E. Cheese has been working the past few years to improve the customer experience for kids— and parents. In 2012, the company switch out its mascot’s fingerless gloves and backwards cap for a new outfit and a slimmer physic.

The latest redirection features more muted colors and modern decor. The Irvington-based company has also updated its furniture and menu, adding food more appetizing to adults such as house-made pizza, sandwiches and wraps.

“We wanted to use warm woods, neutral tones. And really for moms and dads, create an environment that competes with other restaurant choices that they have

during the week,” CEO Tom Leverton said in recent interview.

Credit: CEC Entertainment

A large percentage of Chuck E. Cheese’s current business comes from children’s birthday parties.

The company is also enforcing higher standards of cleanliness and an open kitchen design, which will hopefully contribute to a better dining experience.

The music will also be coming into 2018 along with a light-up dance floor and hourly live shows. The company has been phasing out its animatronic show since last year. In the arcade area, guests will be able to use Play Pass cards or unlimited-play bracelets, eliminating the need for tokens.

Don’t worry, the tickets are here to stay! As well as the prizes.

“Tickets are an essential part of the Chuck E. Cheese’s experience,” Leverton said. “For kids, there’s a lot of excitement when those tickets come out of the machine.”

All of Houston is invited to experience the renovations during a grand opening event at the Chuck E. Cheese at 146 FM 1960 on Sept. 27 from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.