When we were in the planning stages of the Granville Bambini Child Care Centre in West Edmonton, we knew that this was going to be unlike any other daycare in Alberta! Bambini Learning Group worked closely with interior architect, Alyssa Anselmo, to make Bambini spectacular. Alyssa lives in Sweden but travelled to Edmonton on a number of occasions to oversee this huge project. The results of her efforts have blown everyone away!

We’ve heard amazing feedback like:

“Places like this are going to change the way we are offered childcare here in Alberta. My honest opinion on this place is that I want to have more children just so I can send them here.”

“It’s intoxicating. Alluring. Hypnotically beautiful. There are playful surprises and enrapturing nooks and crannies throughout the centre.”

“Bambini is more than a place. It’s a feeling.”

As families have toured the new location, they’ve also had some wonderful questions about the design and the purpose of certain features. This article addresses assorted questions and gives some insight into Alyssa’s brilliant design for Granville Bambini.




Q – Why is there a lot of wood, stone, and concrete?

A – Bambini is a holistic early learning and care program which places a huge emphasis on nature. We want this feeling to be conveyed through our building design, furnishings, and toys.

Stones and woods are living, breathing materials that change according to environmental factors and lighting. Over time, these elements age, changing the way materials interact with the environment, thus having an impact on the way children grow within our environments.


Q – I noticed lots of track lighting. Why is this?

A – At Bambini, we feel adequate lighting is extremely important. Fluorescent lights are often invasive and distracting. We believe that by using track lighting and having ample natural light from large windows, children will be better able to learn, focus, and see their environment around them more clearly.

Often when people tour the centre, they mention the warm feeling in the space. A lot of this feeling comes from the type of lighting we chose for the rooms.


Q – Why does Bambini use neutral colours?

A – We provide a neutral environment so the children feel relaxed, calm, and comfortable. It enables children to stay centred and to engage in deeper levels of thinking, while also having fun during play.

Moreover, we aim to make Bambini feel beautiful and home-like. Poor use (or too much use) of colour can be overstimulating and stressful for children. Adults love beautiful environments, children deserve beautiful environments too!

Lastly, by providing a neutral backdrop, children have a blank canvas to work with. This gives them an opportunity to develop their own thoughts, reactions and concepts, without it directly being given to them. This approach to environmental design allows for more creative and nurturing opportunities for a developing mind, especially from a young age.


Q – How long did it take to complete Granville Bambini?

A – The Granville Bambini project took about two full years from start to finish.


Q – I’ve never seen a piazza in a child care centre before. What made you decide to include this feature in your centre?

A – Bambini is a Reggio-inspired, holistic child care centre. The piazza is modeled in the likeness of Italian piazzas in Italy that serve as the heart of the community. In Italy, piazzas are often the central meeting place for the village or town.

Our piazza serves as a central meeting place for the children and families of our program. It’s where the children enjoy activities such as yoga, meditation, relaxation exercises, music, and art experiences. Our families and the community use the piazza for parenting workshops, yoga, retreats, meetings, and so much more!

Two walls of the piazza are glass. The space was purposely designed this way so that it would make the space feel more inviting and open.


Q- Are the plants real?

A- Yes, the plants we have in our piazza and throughout the centre are real. As a holistic program, we see the value in having real, living things in our spaces. Plants are not only beautiful, but they are calming and help to clean the air.


Q- Most of the walls don’t go all the way up to the ceiling. Why is this?

A- We wanted the space to be very open and breathable. It’s very important in design that people don’t feel enclosed in spaces as this often leads to anxiety. An open feeling lessens feelings of anxiety.

It’s also a beautiful way to integrate all the rooms so it has more of a family-like feel. To hear others’ voices, laughter, and singing is comforting.


Q- Why do you have the long glass windows beside many of the rooms?

A- Much like the piazza, we wanted the rooms to feel warm, open, and inviting. This particular design element was extremely important to Alyssa, as she pictured children being able to independently see their parent arriving and/or departing from the room. The window that goes all the way to the floor permits even the smallest child the freedom to look out the window any time they wish.

Do you want to see and experience Bambini for yourself? If you haven’t booked a tour of our beautiful centre yet, do so soon, as spots are limited!

Granville Bambini was designed and photographed by Alyssa Anselmo.



Bambini Learning Group is a Reggio-inspired, holistic child care program located in Edmonton, Alberta. Their vision is to inspire families to live healthier, more meaningful lives. Through innovative, holistic, and supportive resources, Bambini is helping children live the authentic childhood they deserve. New locations coming soon! Contact Bambini for more information about their unique, holistic child care program at [email protected], or book a tour to see Bambini for yourself!



JENNIFER BLY is the Communications Consultant for Bambini Learning Group, a published author, and creator of The Deliberate Mom, a website full of parenting and homemaking inspiration. Jennifer has over 20 years of experience in the Early Childhood field. In addition, she holds a Bachelor of Applied Human Service Administration Degree with a specialization in Early Learning in Child Care.