Swissotel Sydney - A Kids Retreat

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Eight days in Sydney Australia and friends were questioning us, "Eight days? What are you going to do in Sydney for eight whole days? That sounds like a lot and it's not even family-friendly like Perth!"

Oh it seems like Sydney needs to change the mindsets of Singaporean travellers and I shall do just that to bring justice to the place.

The list of attractions for kids in Sydney is EXTENSIVE! I would give a WOO-HOO on the Fun-O-Meter for all that it has to offer - museums, zoos, aquarium, farms and more. Oh sure, Ewan and Faye had a lot of fun at the beach and couldn't stop licking sinful ice-creams; but when they saw the bedroom they were going to spend their nights in at Swissôtel Sydney, all I got was, "When are we going back to the hotel mommy? Why do we need to see kangaroos! Can we go back now pleassse?"

We were at Taronga Zoo mind you! The famous 101 year old city zoo of Sydney with over 4000 animals to see and my kids were bugging us to return to the hotel because it was more attractive to them. 

Now you cannot blame them because just look at this sight! I had my hands full when we were being roomed in. Otherwise, I would have captured their expressions on video because the squeals were really intense!

Ewan and Faye knew exactly which bed was meant for them. I was thankful the bedsheets were clearly denoted by Robots and Rockets vs Woodlands. That meant NO FIGHTING and I was relieved.

There were so many toys in the room for imaginative play and they could change a different sleeping buddy for each night! Faye found Nemo on her brother's bed and sneakily moved it to her own. Do you remember? Nemo found his daddy in Sydney Harbour? We recounted Finding Nemo to the kids and they were stoked to learn that they were holidaying in Sydney itself where Nemo was!

At the foot of their respective Extra Long Double Bed [it was indeed a big bed which could fit an adult and child at any one time], sat the most adorable hedgehog beanbag. I had the urge to pack one home! They spent lots of time sitting on Mister Hedgehog as they laughed with Sid and Manfred of Ice Age 2 on the tele.

The best kind of play they indulged themselves in was the Wii games. We tried Super Mario but it was too difficult for our three and five year old to grasp and so they spent hours at end playing virtual bowling, archery and basketball! The bedroom was always filled with laughters and tantrums kicked in whenever we told them it was time to take a break. The outbursts did not last for too long though because they could easily move on to their tent or play table for storybooks!

By the window, sat a table for two where colouring activities, board games, toys and books catering to the ages of our children were laid. Oh! There were also two frisbees which we brought to Hyde Park to play.

They were in heaven.

Did you notice that tent? I was ready to let them take their afternoon naps in there if they wanted!

If you think the set up stops at the bedroom, look again!

This time, I was the one squealing when I walked into their bathroom. The details were amazing! As a butler myself when I was with Raffles Hotel Singapore, never had we decorated a room like that to welcome little ones into our hotel. As a parent today, I appreciate details like that.

The bathroom mats weren't just plain ol' luxurious whites! They were colourful in pinks and blues. There were two step stools in there - one for the toilet and the other for the sink. Bath towels were coloured in orange, pink, green and blue with creamy body soap for kids shaped like an Australian Saltwater Crocodile! Of course the children chose that soap over my two-in-one liquid soap that I brought along on this trip.

The best way to get some peace from a day's work is to run a bath for the kids and have them contained as long as possible. They were treated with so many bath toys, I had to bribe them out of the tub with chocolates!

Although I did not notice any bedroom slippers for the children [it should be somewhere], the mini bathrobes were really cute. It kept them warm from the cold outside. It was winter by the way!

Like all minibars, this one is chargeable too but the items placed in there with the kids in mind made me smile.

I love this initiative set out by the Swissôtel team by giving each child a Passport and a Sydney Map. It was fun bringing the children around the hotel chatting up with the staff at the Front Office, Concierge, Housekeeping and two Bistros.

How To Play?

Hey Kids

Throughout your stay with us here at our beautiful hotel, you have a little game to play. Every time you see a Swissôtel Sydney worker from each department, you have to ask them "Can I please have a stamp?"

Your goal is to collect a stamp from our team members and once you have collected all 5 stamps, take your passport to Front Desk to collect your prize!

Good Luck!

And so we did. The children won themselves a milkshake and ice-cream!

I love the explanations written of each department in the card and read it to Ewan and Faye with pride. Every person working in a hotel makes a difference in your stay and they should be appreciated as who they are.

Example: Housekeeping - Now listen in, these people will be your best friends throughout your stay. Imagine not having to do ANY chores while staying at Swissôtel Sydney? Sounds like a dream doesn't it? Well guess what - your dreams are REAL! When you are out during the day, these verrrrry special people pop into your room and clean it up for you! While you are on holiday, you don't have to take the bed - HOW AWESOME IS THAT? Make sure you say THANKS!

Well, that is exactly how I feel about staying in a hotel. No More Chores! Yippee!

The children's bedroom [Swiss Advantage Room] adjoins to our Executive Suite, giving us a total of 80 square meters of space.

We enjoyed the expanse of our room and especially the privacy to catch the latest blockbuster on TV. The renovated Executive Suite boasts a separate living room, one King bed with 300 count Frette linen, a spacious bathroom with separate bath and shower room.

Staying in the suite also allows us to enjoy access to the Executive Club lounge which includes gourmet buffet breakfast, afternoon tea and pre-dinner drinks and evening canapés in private.

A restaurant on Level 8 where we had our breakfast.

I didn't think much of it really because well, how different can it be from other hotels? Bacon, eggs and possibly fried noodles.

Then I saw Faye squatting down in one corner making her breakfast choices rather seriously. "Should I take Apple Juice or Mixed Fruit Juice?"

WHAT? There's a kiddy breakfast corner placed at the perfect height for little ones to pick out their breakfasts? I had to run back to my table to grab the camera!

With free access to the lounge, we had to give it a try. Children are not allowed in some club lounges but here at Swissôtel Sydney, they are! We love the quiet and club lounges are more private than the main bistro.

However, I must say, somethings got to give. There is no children's section at the Club Lounge and the spread is much small, although still gourmet.

Take your pick when you are there but I would guess your kids would love Just Pure Bistro a lot more.

Swissôtel Sydney is extremely well-located. It is situated above one of Australia’s most iconic department stores and centrally positioned amongst Sydney’s prime tourist, shopping and entertainment districts.

This luxurious five-star hotel is also within easy reach of the Sydney Harbour Bridge which we walked to on a daily basis with the children. They didn't complain walking four traffic lights from the hotel to Darling Harbour. So I guess, that's really doable. Hyde Park is mere five minutes walk away and Circular Quay is 20 minutes away. With the traffic and high parking charges, it is best to commute by foot.

There is also an underground walkway conveniently connects the hotel to Sydney’s railway hub at Town Hall station.

The only problem [or not a problem at all since there is valet service] is that there is no driveway to the hotel. We drove and had to wait for an available lot in front of Swissôtel Sydney to unload our bags when we arrived. It was nerve-wrecking given the traffic conditions but we managed. There was a need to inform the concierge 20 minutes in advance should we need the car. The reason why I say it is probably best to go by foot around Sydney centre if not driving out for a road trip.

You may make your Kids Room Reservation here and did I mention kids eat free at breakfasts with every paying adult? You can also book two regular connecting rooms [not necessarily a Swiss Advantage Room and  Executive Suite like ours] and have the hotel informed that you will be bringing your children on this holiday for the special room setup.

Check Availability and Rates here. Note that rate fluctuates season to season. It can be AUD200 per night or AUD500 per night depending on demand and occupancy rate for the same room.

Our little Travel companions 
July 2017 - Ewan at 5 years old and Faye at 3 years old 


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