As my child gets older, I’m finding it harder and harder to find new activities that will keep her entertained. I’m always on the lookout for new weekend experiences the whole family can enjoy.
Recently, after a stay at Novotel Sydney Central, I’m come to realise how much staycations fit the bill. So, I was excited to check out Sydney Harbour Marriot’s M-Passport Family Package.
I quickly realised how incredibly central the hotel’s location was — right in the heart of Circular Quay. When we arrived late Saturday afternoon, the area was buzzing. There was a Whisk(e)y on The Rocks Festival happening across the road, which was fun to check out for a bit, but we realised very quickly everything we needed for the night was in the hotel.
At reception, check-in was so quick, which is ideal when travelling with a toddler in tow. Drinks were offered on arrival — a pleasant surprise that really made us feel like the staycation started right away.
When we got up to the room and opened the door, my daughter ran to the teepee set up with toys and fun activities laid out for her to play with. She was in heaven — and already feeling at home.
Throughout the whole stay, it was amazing to see how seamlessly the hotel ran the experience. They’d thought of everything. Everywhere we looked, there was something new to discover for the children, which helped take the pressure off Mum and Dad to keep up the entertainment.
My daughter played Hide and Seek in the teepee, decorated cupcakes and slept in a cot already set-up next to the bed. The bathroom was even stocked with kid-friendly bathroom toiletries and, for older kids, Jenga and Uno were laid out in the room.
For dinner, we headed down to the in-house restaurant Silvester’s, where we could watch the chefs in action from our table, which really added to the atmosphere.
Though it was a sophisticated, white tablecloth restaurant — basically, somewhere kids aren’t usually welcome — we loved that the staff brought out a highchair and kids’ cutlery set for our daughter to enjoy alongside us. The staff even gave our daughter colour-in sheets and pencils so we could finish our meal in peace.
Back in the room, my husband and I slipped into our plush white robes, made ourselves some espresso martinis and switched on a family movie we could all watch from bed. A truly luxurious night in.
After a little sleep-in — 9am — we woke up excited and immediately thinking of the breakfast buffet. For parents, a buffet is a godsend — what better way to ensure bubs gets a little bit of everything and even try some new foods?
I was a big fan of the DIY salmon and crème cheese bagels, while my husband enjoyed the omelette station and bub couldn’t get enough of the fresh fruit and toast.
If you’re a young family living in Sydney — or are even visiting from intrastate — I’d recommend this family package stay as a way to create new memories, both with your whole family and even between just you and your husband.
Carlino and her family stayed as a guest of Sydney Harbour Marriott.