To make traveling with kids just as much fun for mom and dad, it helps to rent a condo or a suite hotel so the kids get their own room (and TV) as do mom and dad. It's nice to have a hotel room with a balcony so you can spend a little quality time together once the tykes are snoozing. But it's better to have a separate room with a door that locks.
That's just one reason I like suite hotels like the extended stay Residence Inn for traveling with kids. At Residence Inn (where I have stayed both as a paying guest and as an invited guest at a blogger visit this summer), there are other great things that help hold down the cost of family travel, chief among them the wifi and free food.
The breakfast buffet at the Residence Inn Chicago Downtown/Magnificent Mile at 201 E. Walton Place was nothing short of a feast--eggs, waffles, fresh fruit, bacon, cereal, pastries, and more. The minute my kids became ravenous tweens, I understood the benefit of a free breakfast. The kind of breakfast we ate at Residence Inn would set me back $40 or more--likely much more at a restaurant near Michigan Avenue and Walton Place.
Even better, a couple of nights a week you can grab a free dinner as well at this hotel chain operated by Marriott. And the staff at the Chicago property was unfailingly helpful and cheery.
The hotel chain's bread-and-butter is extended stays for business people who are on long-term assignment. As such, its newest effort to make guests feel more at home uses Facebook to ask locals for their best tips to make visitors feel like a local. So add your Chicago favorites to the Residence Inn Thrival Guide on Facebook and add your recommendations to this travel like a local contest we're running on TravelingMom.com for a chance to win the 4-night stay. Then join us on Twitter for a #TMOM family travel themed chat on Monday at 8pm for three more chances to win 2-night stays.
Cindy Richards is the mom of two who gets her muse from traveling the world, usually with kids in tow. She also writes for TravelingMom.com, where she also serves as editor.
See more of Cindy's stories here.