Mumsnet were invited to review a one night Family Adventure stay at Walton Hotel in Warwickshire this May. I went along with my hubbie and DS (2.9) who is a little younger than the target market.
Upon arrival I was surprised that the hotel wasn’t how it had appeared online, then it transpired that I had been looking at the “Walton Hall” information as opposed to the “Walton Hotel” information – one is a 16th Century building, one is newer, I believe built within the past 10 years. Mix-up aside, it was perfectly pleasant and the staff were extremely welcoming. If you’re looking for a historic hotel – just double check that you’ve booked the right Walton property!
The room had a large double bed and a z-bed for DS and your usual 4* room facilities. It was snug with the extra bed out (as is often the case) and you wouldn’t fit more than 2 children in here with you, but with 1 it was fine and this isn’t the type of break that you spend a lot of time in your room. Specific family rooms are not available, but interconnecting rooms are. You do pay extra for these though.
The family package is really targeted to children aged 5 – 12. We tried out those that were suitable for DS and took a nosey at the others. First off, inside 3 meeting rooms had been transformed into kids play rooms: one with soft play and arts and crafts (all suitable for toddlers) one with an x-box and various games, and one with table tennis and a few other indoor games. It did feel a little odd at first using a meeting room for a toddlers art and craft session and it was hard to shake that feeling that you were at work or on an away day, however DS loved them and it kept him busy for a fair few hours. Outside, there were some treasure trails, obstacle mini golf, big friendly golf (with Velcro targets and large balls) and a fun frisbee safari (although the wet weekend we arrived these were not all set up). We also had use of the hotel pool, which for a hotel pool was really lovely.
As part of the family package an in-room a treasure hunt had been set up for DS (featuring a real treasure chest!), which he loved and was a really nice touch. You also get a 2 course dinner in the hotel restaurant for adults and children, and breakfast. The food was great, really nice (portions a little small but I’m quite greedy!), probably the nicest lamb dish I’ve had at a hotel. The childrens menu was refreshingly free from burgers & chips, and DS’s fish pie was amazingly good.
The hotel is in a great location to visit Warwick, Stratford and Cadbury World. We visited Stratford and its butterfly farm with DS and plan to visit Warwick castle when he is a little older. It’s a great base from which to explore the local area.
Would I recommend this hotel? Firstly I think you really need to be 100% certain of where you’ve booked into and secondly traveling with more than one DC you would need to spend for interconnecting rooms, which could bump the price up significantly. That said, the staff were so welcoming, especially towards DS, facilities were good and the price is on a par with other 4* hotels offering family rooms in the region. Its location was fantastic for trips out and the addition of family activities worked well as a means to keep DS occupied for a few hours. The new package from Puma hotels certainly adds something to a break and I’d plump for them over another chain with lesser facilities.