Boutique-hotel experts Mr & Mrs Smith know a thing or two about stylish sleepovers, so we asked them to pick five cracking Easter breaks for families, where there’s no need to compromise on design even if you’ve got children in tow. For five of their favourites, read on…
DESERT DREAMING IN ABU DHABI
Anantara Qasr Al Sarab Desert Resort, Abu Dhabi, UAE
Staying here en famille is all about the pool, a huge, infinity-edged freeform number. The summer heat can be searing, so add an extra lounger-bound siesta to your routine. Start early mornings with a camel trek or perhaps a two-hour guided walk, then give tweens and teens a thrill with the hotel’s 4WD desert safaris. For date night, book an English-speaking babysitter and enjoy a seductive four-course champagne dinner in a torch-lit, cushion-filled Bedouin tent.
CULTURE AND COMMUNITY IN CAMBODIA
Shinta Mani Club, Siem Reap, Cambodia
Adventuring your way around Angkor Wat, learning about the temples on a tailored tours, should entrance even the most determinedly unimpressed teens. And if you fancy getting even more education, sign up for one of the community programmes organised by the Shinta Mani Foundation and connect with Cambodian culture during the four-day, three-night Discover Community package. And it’s not all lessons, either: you’ll love Shinta Mani Club’s stylish sophistication, dining on delicious Khmer tasting menus and soothing the day away with a healing stone massage at the spa.
CHOCOHOLICS EASTER IN MALDIVES
Soneva Fushi Resort, Maldives
Find your barefoot bliss on the white-powder beaches of this private Maldivian island, or spend your days snorkelling the mesmerising reef (and for more aquatic adventures, grown ups and kids alike can check into the resort’s diving school). While the reef life and the rustic villas will inspire your inner Robinson Crusoe, Fiona Sciloti will bring out the chocolatier in you: this Easter, Fiona will run chocolate making classes for guests of all ages. If that’s not enough to satisfy sweet tooths, perhaps the 60 flavours at the resort’s ice-creamery will suffice?
GLAMP UNDER THE STARS IN AUSTRALIA
Paperbark Camp, Jervis Bay, Australia
Paperbark is the stuff of children’s dreams, with kookaburras, kangaroos and other native beasties to spot from your tent. Active little ‘uns will love the free guest bikes for trail rides, easy walks on forest tracks from the camp, and canoeing and swimming in Currambene Creek and Jervis Bay. Ocean snorkelling sessions await, too, or perhaps relaxing beach time and picnics are more your speed… Postcard-pretty Jervis Bay nearby promises clear waters and expanses of sandcastle-worthy white beach.
MARRAKECH MARKET TREASURE HUNT
Jnane Tamsna, Marrakech, Morocco
Beyond the Medina walls of Marrakech you’ll find the decidedly family-friendly Jnane Tamsna’s riad-style suites, tennis court and spa treatment rooms (dotted across the hotel’s nine gorgeous acres of palm-dotted tranquillity). On site, indulge in cookery lessons, camel rides, and circus-skill classes. Meanwhile, back in the Medina the bustling souk’s rainbow-hued treasures and jaw-droppingly exquisite mosques are an eye-opening treat for families.
Mr & Mrs Smith gets you the best rates, guaranteed, as well as a little something extra on arrival at every hotel. To book, call the Smith24 team toll free at 800 905 326 or visit mrandmrssmith.com