London’s hotels are falling over themselves to make tots welcome during the current summer holidays. Special promotions to attract families can be found all over the capital, but below I’ve listed my favourite four:
Kiddies’ Cinema at Rubens at the Palace Hotel
Throughout August, the Rubens at the Palace Hotel is transforming one of its conference suites into a complimentary mini cinema especially for its younger guests. They’ll be showing family favourites daily, with films like Shrek, The Little Mermaid and Toy Story for the little ones shown at 4pm.
The 7pm slot will be dedicated to bigger kids with movies such as The Princess Diaries, School of Rock, Freaky Friday and Harry Potter. There are even snacks to accompany their film (well, who can watch a movie without popcorn?) – all guests are treated to a carton of juice, box of popcorn and sweets or an ice lolly. This is the first initiative of the hotel’s new Director of Fun and Adventure, who’s also providing every young guest with a rucksack and packed lunch to sustain them on a day’s sightseeing!
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Winnie the Pooh Playroom at the Athenaeum
We’ve talked before about how family-friendly (and granny-friendly) the Athenaeum hotel is, but they’re really excelling themselves this summer with the opening of a Winnie the Pooh-themed playroom. Designed by the team at Disney, it’s a veritable treasure trove for WTP lovers, filled with toys, musical instruments, colouring sets and LEGO, with the hotel’s watchful nanny on hand to play. If your little ones tire of playing with their favourite characters in the Hundred Acre Wood (and that’s a big if!), you can take to nearby Hyde Park or Green Park with one of the hotel’s Winnie The Pooh picnic hampers, packed with mouth-watering treats like honey roasted ham sandwiches and honey cheesecake.
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Mini afternoon tea at the Royal Horseguards
Until September 15 you can treat your kids to a very special afternoon at the swanky Royal Horseguards Hotel. In an effort to offer something a little different to parents desperate for summer holiday filling activities, the hotel has come up with a mini afternoon tea – something the whole family can enjoy. Mum and dad get to indulge in a traditional high tea while the kids can swap play-time tea parties for the real thing. The ‘grown-up’ menu includes crust-less sandwiches, fairy cakes, shortbread and scones, with a choice of tea, fruit juice or babyccino (frothed milk, served like a coffee) – all any aspiring little lady or gent could wish for.
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Unforgettable Family Affair at Brown’s Hotel
It’s a family af-fair, it’s a family af-fair… Right, well, before I digress into singing catchy 70s funk it’s probably best to tell you about the final kiddies’ deal. Historic Brown’s Hotel in the heart of Mayfair – close to family-friendly museums, shops and attractions – is laying on an Unforgettable Family Affair package. Morning, noon and night, your little ones will be treated like royalty – from their own Welcome Pack on arrival to a registration card asking what time they’d like their milk and cookies before bed!
Each younger visitor also gets a copy of Rudyard Kipling’s Jungle Book (which he wrote whilst staying in the hotel), sweet treats and junior bath time accessories, plus themed bed linen, dressing gowns and slippers to use during their stay. And teenagers aren’t overlooked either – they get to use the hotel’s games (Wii, X-box 360, Play Station 2 & 3), iPod docking stations, DVD players and content-protected internet.
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It looks like kids really are getting to run riot at London hotels this summer!
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Photo credits: Rubens at the Palace Hotel, Athenaeum Hotel, Royal Horseguards Hotel, Browns Hotel