Along with a good location and an affordable price, family-friendly hotels offer space, services, and amenities that traveling parents and their children seek. These 10 hotel chains offer that and more.
Along with a good location and an affordable price, family-friendly hotels offer space, services, and amenities that traveling parents and their children seek. Families prefer rooms with ample counter space (to lay out the children’s clothes), extra seating, and when possible, a separate sleeping area for kids. A free breakfast adds convenience as well as saves time and money. Welcome gifts for kids and baby essentials are always bonuses.
Parents Magazine, after reviewing more than 60 hotel chains, came up with the top five properties in budget and mid-range properties, which will be featured in the November 2015 issue.
Parents Magazine’s Top Five Budget Chains
1. Residence Inn. The smallest room at 450-square-feet measure 20% larger than other chain’s comparable rooms. A full-size refrigerator, dishwasher, oven and microwave come standard. About 60% of the 650+ locations have been recently renovated or are new. At the Monday and Wednesday night Mix programs, families can join other guests in special programs that may include sampling food truck fare or BBQ.
Hyatt Place(pictured). Privacy is possible as a floor-to-ceiling divider separates the adult sleeping area from the sitting area that has a pull-out sofa, a television and a mini-fridge. The free breakfast buffet includes healthy options such as yogurt, fruit, and oatmeal. More than 75% of the 215 US properties are new or renovated in the last three years.
3. SpringHill Suites. The living space comes with a microwave, mini-fridge, couch and a television plus a floor-to-ceiling privacy wall between it and the adult sleeping area. The free breakfast features a yogurt and toppings bar plus fruit. At many of the 300 US locations, parents can relax at lobby bars.
4. Hilton Garden Inn. The redesigned rooms have more counter space, charging stations and seating. Coffee lovers like the Keurig pod coffeemakers. By downloading the HHonors app, you can check-in and select your room at the 560 locations.
5. Wingate by Wyndham. Good pricing adds to the appeal of this 150+ location chain where basic rates can start at $100 per night and a free breakfast is included. Wyndham Rewards’ frequent stay program offers free nights but also discounts on rates.
Parents Magazine’s Top Five Mid-Range Chains
1. Embassy Suites Hotel by Hilton. At this all-suite property, the comfortable living area comes with a sleeper sofa for kids, a television, and kitchenette. A door separates this sitting area from the parents’ bedroom which also has its own television. All 225 locations feature cooked-to-order breakfasts so fussy kids can request their favorite omelets. At the nightly receptions, adults can drink beer or wine and kids can have juice or milk.
. Loews, at most of its 23 locations, works hard to give guests a sense of place. That starts with locally inspired gifts such as a cowboy hat and toy guitar in Nashville or a plush flamingo and the book
in Miami. Loews’ partnerships add to the fun. Properties in Orlando offer early admission to Universal Orlando. In San Diego, the hotel’s farm school helps kids care for animals and grow vegetables. Along with children’s menus, some hotels feature “Precocious Plates,” offering kid-sized portions of local fare such as pan-seared grouper in St. Pete Beach.
2. Loews Hotels & ResortsGood Night Miami
3. Omni Hotels & Resorts. At check-in children receive a backpack with crayons and memory games and families receive a code good for a free Snapfish photo book of their trip. Restored historic resorts, each with their own charm and activities, are a significant portion of Omni’s 45 properties.
4. Hyatt House. At this extended stay brand with 62 locations, both studio and two bedroom suites come with kitchens, full-size refrigerators, microwaves, ovens, cookware, plates, and utensils. Many properties offer complimentary shuttle service within a five-mile radius.
5. Sheraton Hotels & Resorts. Typically less costly than Westin and Aloft, its Starwood siblings, Sheraton, with 187 locations, offers such Starwood features as an all-inclusive dining program for kids, Sweet Sleeper beds and kid-pleasing pools.