Is a cruise a family friendly holiday? // On board the MSC Preziosa

The MSC Preziosa at sea

Last Wednesday the MSC Preziosa was in port in Southampton and thanks to Tots100 and the lovely people at MSC Cruises I was allowed on board along with 120 other bloggers! We were there for BlogCamp, a blogging event with a difference. Read more

Novotel Super Heroes Day

This weekend we were invited to Novotel Edinburgh Park for their Super Heroes Day. In addition to the Super Heroes activities on offer we were also given a chance to have lunch in the hotel lounge, and try out the swimming pool too.

Novotel Super Heroes Day #novotelheroes

Novotel Edinburgh Park is in a really convenient location if you are visiting Edinburgh but don’t want to stay in the city centre. It is right on the ring road, and next to a train station and tram stop so there are plenty of options for getting into the city or to the airport. There’s also lots of free parking at the hotel so you don’t have to worry about driving into the city centre and finding somewhere to park.

When we arrived at the Novotel we were shown to a quiet area of the bar where we could have lunch. A staff member brought us a high chair for Gabe and Toby enjoyed sitting up on the bench seats.

Gabe happy in his high chair

For lunch I ordered a chicken Caesar salad and Barry had a barbecue pulled chicken sandwich.

For Toby we ordered from the kids’ menu which was a very reasonable £4.95 for three courses and a drink.

Novotel Kids menu

He had a melon and fruit stack as a starter, and then chicken fingers and chips. I’d taken food with us for Gabe but he did have a bit of Toby’s melon and then chicken too.

Chicken fingers and chips

My Caesar salad was very tasty, and very big! There must have been two full chicken breasts in there!

Chicken Caesar salad

Barry enjoyed his pulled chicken sandwich too, which he had with a side of chips.

Toby eyeing up daddy's pulled chicken sandwich
Toby enjoyed his lunch too, although he did struggle a little bit with full size plates and cutlery.

Toby eating his melon with a big fork

Seeing as Toby’s meal came with a dessert we thought we might as well join him, well he wouldn’t want to eat dessert all by himself! Toby and I both had a chocolate brownie, his came with vanilla ice cream and mine with salted caramel ice cream.

Chocolate brownie with salted caramel ice cream

Barry had treacle tart with clotted cream. All our desserts were delicious, in fact my only slight complaint is that they took rather a long time to arrive.

Our whole lunch was lovely and the staff were very attentive and they were the same with everyone from what I saw so I don’t think we were getting any special treatment. I didn’t see any other children in the bar area while we were eating but there was plenty of space and nobody seemed to mind the boys exploring a bit while we were waiting for the desserts.

Post-lunch exploring

After lunch Toby and I took advantage of the hotel’s leisure facilities and went for a swim whilst Barry took Gabe for a push in the buggy so he could have a nap. Downstairs from the reception there is a small gym and a swimming pool.

Swimming pool at Novotel Edinburgh Park

The pool was lovely and warm and we had it almost to ourselves. Toby has been swimming a few times recently and he’s really starting to enjoy it – I must get him booked in for lessons after we move.

Toby ready for his swim at Novotel Edinburgh Park

We didn’t have too long for swimming as we were booked in for the Novotel Super Heroes Day at 3 pm. This was a free event with activities aimed at children aged 5-11 so although Toby was a bit young he was able to join in with most things with a bit of help! When we arrived Toby was given an activity booklet with stickers to collect from each of the five areas; Cookery Conquerors, Eco Warriors, Healthy Heroes, Chill Out Champions and Craft Captains. There were members of staff dressed in capes and masks in each area to help with the different activities.

Learning how to be a healthy hero

Toby is a Novotel Healthy Hero

I think Toby’s favourites were probably choosing the right foods to help different parts of the body in the Healthy Heroes area and sorting rubbish for recycling in the Eco Warriors game.

Sorting rubbish as a Novotel Eco Warrior

And Gabe enjoyed the Chill Out Champions area with daddy…

Gabe chilling out

Once he had collected all his stickers Toby posed with one of the Novotel Super Heroes – he decided he was going to be a bit shy about it though…

Toby was a bit shy about posing with a Novotel Super Hero

When it was time to leave Toby got a goody bag and a balloon to take with him. He had a fun afternoon of swimming and activities and was pretty tired on the drive home.

The Novotel Super Heroes Day takes place at 33 Novotel hotels throughout the UK and although most of the events have already taken place this year I would definitely keep a look out for next year’s Super Heroes Day if you have a Novotel near you. From what we saw of the hotel it definitely seemed to be very family friendly and I’d certainly consider booking a Novotel if I was looking for somewhere for a family break.

And I’ll just leave you with this – my favourite photo from the day…

Gabe the strong man

 

**We were provided with lunch and access to the leisure facilities at Novotel Edinburgh Park free of charge in exchange for this review. As always, all opinions are my own.