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Can adults


children enjoy the same 5-star weekend in the city without a

meltdown? A Brisbane family takes the challenge


must confess that the thought of staying in a 5-star hotel with my two

young boys had filled me with fear rather than delight as I pondered

how staff at such a fine establishment would cope with Masters aged

10 and 4. While both my children are – by most standards – well

behaved, Master 10 can be a bit clumsy at times and Master 4, who

is known to go from pleasant to a sulking heap in 1.5 seconds, has a

tendency to get nude at inappropriate moments and a severe aversion to

wearing footwear of any kind.

Let’s just say, as a family with free-spirited young boys, we felt more

suited to the holiday park style of accommodation, but when we were

invited for a weekend break in the city I was willing to take the challenge.

Taking a two-day holiday in our own home town had never actually

occurred to us, indeed it’s only a 15-minute drive to the Marriott

Brisbane from our house, yet when we pulled up and the concierge

opened the car door I felt like we were in another city far away.

Master 10 was immediately impressed. “Does the Queen stay here?”

he asked. “What about the Prime Minister?” The concierge quietly

whispered into his ear as he whisked our bags away, “I don’t know about

that, but we’ve had at least one President stay with us”. That sealed the

deal for Master 10. If it was good enough for President Obama, who

stayed during G20, it was the coolest place on earth. Master 4, on the

other hand, couldn’t have cared less if President Obama himself had

appeared to take our baggage. He was, however, ecstatic that he was

allowed the very important job of pressing the elevator button, a role he

enthusiastically defended from anyone throughout our stay.

From the early check-in to settling into our room, the very efficient

and friendly staff made us all feel very welcome, from a glass of bubbles

for Mum and Dad at reception to the sweets discreetly passed to us from

one of the staff for the boys.

Once in our rooms (we had two, with an internal adjoining door)

Master 4 showed his appreciation of the massive king-size bed by

immediately running and doing a belly flop on the plump mattress.

Happiness for us was not having two children snoring in single beds

beside ours (or potentially in our bed), and the boys were excited to be in

their own room and monopolising the remote for their own TV.

We arrived in the early evening so we had a Marriott-style ‘night in’,

starting with pre-dinner canapés at the Executive Lounge on Level 26.

I was quite surprised at reception when we were invited to enjoy this

exclusive lounge and I thought the staff member had clearly lost her

mind when she said the invite included the children as well. I hopelessly


| BNE March/April 2015

Five star family getaway

High tea