What with the competing demands of children, work, husbands, parents - you name it - sometimes mothers need a little break. And when better to take one than while the young 'uns are busy playing among themselves?

Former kindergarten teacher and mother-of-two Clare Benson, 42, has just opened a pre-kindergarten playhouse in Sai Kung for tots aged up to four years that features an added attraction for mums: there's a separate area in which they can sip coffee and shoot the breeze safe in the knowledge that little Boris and Delilah are well occupied.

"As a mum myself, I know how difficult it is to find a place to rest where your children can be free to move around," says Benson, whose playhouse features a sky-blue ceiling, grass-green floor and brightly coloured flowers on the walls. But while that all may sound par for the course, the room is otherwise a blank canvas for her patrons. "Free play" is Benson's rallying call, with the youngsters given age-appropriate toys and the free-dom to express themselves as they see fit. No interfering baby tutors here.

Also on the menu is baby massage, a practice that originated in India and incorporates elements of yoga and reflexology to meet a nipper's "needs for affection, attention and relaxation", according to Baby and Me Massage (www.babyandmemassagehk.com), with whom Benson is joining forces. Sadly there are no plans yet for mum massages.

The Sai Kung Playhouse is at 1/F, 11 Man Nin Street, Sai Kung, tel: 2792 5888; www.thesaikungplayhouse.com.