A Look Into the Design Behind Cayton Children’s Museum at Santa Monica Place

Photo provided by Cayton Children’s Museum

The much-anticipated Cayton Children’s Museum will open this weekend (June 30th, 2019) in it’s new home at Santa Monica Place. The bright and colorful museum is designed “for children, youth, and families to practice being their best selves through immersive play.” The 21,000 square foot space is the redesigned and reimagined, led by Cayton CEO and founder Esther Netter. 

Photo provided by Cayton Children’s Museum

This “please touch” museum is the result of the hard work and creativity made possible by a village of experts. Part of that team is Greg Nelson, nationally-recognized experiential branding pioneer and founder of one of LA’s most respected design firms, Altitude Design Office

Cayton Children’s Museum’s mission coincides with Altitude Design Office’s belief that “Spaces and places are powerful communicators that should be designed with intent and inspiration.” The shared vision, open communication, and focused collaboration with the client is what Nelson enjoyed most about this project. 

Photo provided by Cayton Children’s Museum

The 18-month collaboration was a joint effort with the museum director, educational team, architects, and other designers to transform the space into a fun, active, and comprehensive experience that celebrates inclusivity and instills social responsibility through the act of play for children. 

Altitude Design Office designed the branding, signage, wayfinding and experiential graphics for the museum. The colorful theme and palette represents a better world, inclusion on all levels – ages, life backgrounds, and more. Everything at Cayton Children’s Museum was designed to expand one’s imagination, to so no visit is the same. 

Photo provided by Cayton Children’s Museum

Greg Nelson specializes in wayfinding, which helps people find their way in unfamiliar surroundings. Signs and spaces at Cayton Children’s Museum use unique terminology, such as “nurture room” for the nursing room, and the “Generosity Garden” celebrates museum donors. The expressive typography and bold colors are strategic in placement and intention, allowing children and their caretakers to forge a positive and familiar relationship with the space. 

Visit Cayton Children’s Museum and open your mind to the wonder and play that awaits! 

Cayton Children’s Museum


Greg Nelson and Altitude Design Office

Greg Nelson and his award-winning firm, Altitude Design Office have made their mark across the country, infusing brand, culture, and identity into physical spaces. Recent work includes the Indigo Hotel and A+D Museum in Downtown L.A.


This is an informational post for Cayton Children’s Museum and Altitude Design Office


I am a new mom to a baby girl. I live in West Los Angeles. This blog is about my experiences as a new mom and navigating my way through kid-friendly L.A.

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