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It’s a Family Affair

If you want to attract families, you need to commit to making parents’ life as easy as possible and offer thoughtful amenities that preempt needs.

Help with logistics – if station transfers are offered, ensure you have clean car seats in every size and style for parents to choose in advance. Provide bulky accessories so parents can pack light. Good quality travel cots are a must, but sterilisers, nappy bins, baby baths, bottle warmers and changing tables will also help parents out. If your style of hotel warrants it, a bottle sterilising and warming service could be offered. Confirm parent’s requests more than once in writing for peace of mind, with the final confirmation the day before check-in. This is a good opportunity to ask about any last-minute requests or changes.

Family rooms, interconnecting rooms and suites are great, but be sure to add thoughtful touches to make the stay extra special. Make a cosy reading area with a play mat, books and soft toys. Make up the cot with the special care you would a normal bed, adding a dressing gown, towel and bubble bath for baby. Add wipes and nappy bags to the toiletries selection, and pop some age-appropriate children’s snacks to the mini bar. Add relevant information to in-room literature, such as family dining options, facilities, services and recommended days out for guests with children.

Provide Ofsted-approved childcare with recent reviews for parents to look through, and a baby listening service. Some hotels offer early nanny pickups so parents can have a lie in and a morning in the spa. For parents who prefer not to use childcare, enhance the room service options for post bedtime dining. Offer special post-natal treatments, fitness classes and solo activities so parents can swap.

Consider new parents with tiny babies enjoying their first stay away from home, and what they might value, such as fully qualified baby swim teachers, family photo sessions and baby sensory. For older kids, big garden games, forest school, treasure hunts and craft sessions could be introduced.

If you have adult bikes, provide some in smaller sizes along with trikes and chariots for toddlers. Apply branding wherever you can – an Instagram post provides UGC! Create a safe play area in a comfortable lounge where parents can enjoy coffee or a drink in a nice environment while the little ones play.

Chargable extras could include a bedtime bookshop and a toy menu addition to room service.

If your vibe is more adults-only, you could avoid alienating regulars by launching ‘family weeks’ for guests with young children. Coincide these exclusive dates with school holiday periods and put on special events and activities to entertain little ones while parents relax.

Contact Hannah

If you are looking to develop an existing or brand new hotel concept,
guest experience or creative strategy, I’d love to help.

Email

hannah@hotelpalette.com

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