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Here are some suggested organisations that offer expert advice on SN.

Anyone got any experience of SN children and Mark Warner Holidays?

(18 Posts)
Merlot Fri 21-Jan-05 14:35:25

Cant find anything on the thread about holidays with children and SN's, but just wondered whether anyone had a view on Mark Warner?

They say they welcome children with SN's and as ds2's SN's aren't too apparent at this stage (apart from the fact that he might be more at home in a baby creche than a toddler one), I was toying with the idea of a MW break. I have never done a MW holiday before so would be grateful for anyone's views

DecafArabica Fri 21-Jan-05 14:49:54

I can tell you about MW in Corsica as we went there last year, but not from a SN perspective, I'm afraid.

Merlot Fri 21-Jan-05 14:51:08

Decafaribica. I'd love to hear your views on Mark Warner generally . Is the childcare good?

Grommit Fri 21-Jan-05 14:52:09

Merlot - sorry don't want to hijack your thread but I am interested in MW Corsica if DecafArabica can elaborate (or i can start a new thread?)

Blossomhill Fri 21-Jan-05 19:11:51

Very interesting Merlot. Found this link to Mark Warner and it mentions special needs! HTH
I shall be watching this thread as it sounds ideal.

happymerryberries Fri 21-Jan-05 19:24:48

Not MW, but Sunsail. When we went to Bodrum 3 years ago the nursery had one child with DS. They had no problems and the little boy seemed to have a wonderful time, and did my ds.

Yurtgirl Fri 21-Jan-05 19:34:52

Message withdrawn

Merlot Fri 21-Jan-05 20:02:14

thanks happyberries - will look up sunsail now

Not so good about Markwarner then?

I guess I ought to trawl the archived Mark Warner threads to see what I can glean. Thanks for the tip off yurt

happymerryberries Fri 21-Jan-05 20:06:34

I wnet to MW and I must say that at that time the child care was very good, but this was 6 years ago. I can't comment on what it is like now.

The one thing that I would say about both MW and sunsail is that for the older children, it is realy only good if your child is a natural 'joiner in-er' IYSWIM. Ds had a great time in the nursery, but dd (like me if I am being honest) hates most sports and physical activities. So she didn't have such a good time. That wasn't a reflection of the kids club, just the fact that dd like her mum would rather read a book about sailing than go and do it

Yurtgirl Fri 21-Jan-05 20:17:08

Message withdrawn

DecafArabica Sat 22-Jan-05 18:09:17

Here's the review I wrote for a magazine last year. There wasn't space to add that, although I felt the creche was really well run, DS refused to go after day one! So he joined in with us doing yoga, aerobics etc. I felt Corsica itself was a really interesting and beautiful place but the MW resort was like being on an out-of-town conference campus. But, I don't like organised holidays (or watersports) anyway so I am not a typical MW customer--wouldn't have chosen it if I'd been a genuine paying punter. Nearly everyone we talked to (and their kids) loved it and quite a few loved it so much they went straight to the on-site booking office and booked for the same week this year!

Mark Warner San Lucianu, Morani Plage, Corsica

What’s it all about?
I understood why Mark Warner holidays are so popular on the morning of our second day, whilst I was lying flat on my back and my husband was panting away next to me. It’s amazing what couples can get up to when they know their three year-old’s being safely cared for in the on-site ‘mini-club’; in our case, of course, it was an aerobics class under the eucalyptus trees, although it could equally have been a diving course, a tennis lesson or beginners’ windsurfing, before reuniting with our little lad for lunch. In the afternoon, more supervised play for him, a manicure in the excellent in-house Viva salon (they do hair, too) for me and a stroll along the sandy beach (we spotted wild fennel, rosemary and broom growing along the coastline) for him. Bliss!

So how good is the childcare?
A team of English-speaking, fully qualified and genuinely enthusiastic nannies look after young holidaymakers aged from four months to 13 years, for up to 7 hours per day (older teenagers organise themselves in the ‘Indy’ club). The dedicated childcare building is scrubbed spotless every evening and boasts cool, spacious indoor playrooms imaginatively equipped with everything from baby bouncers to bikes—essential when August temperatures regularly exceed 30 degrees C. There’s also a widescreen TV for the nightly showings of kids’ vids and a basic kitchen equipped with microwave, fridge and sterilizers.

And what are the rooms like?
You don’t come on a holiday like this for five-star luxury: air conditioning is provided, but don’t expect freebie smellies, mini-bars or televisions. Standard rooms have own bathroom and separate toilet, twin beds for you and a put-you-up in the corner for junior(s). A limited number of suites are available, but be warned—they sell out fast!

What’s for dinner?
You can tell the hotel restaurant’s experienced with children—their evening meals are served before 6pm, pasta toppings are optional, sausages are always on the menu and yoghurt comes without ‘bits’. Dinners for adults and children like ours who refuse to bed down until late, drew mainly from a generic Mediterranean menu: salade Nicoise, ratatouille, cannelloni stuffed with goats’ cheese, fish baked with olive oil and fennel, accompanied by locally sourced wines. If your child (like ours did a couple of times) needs dinner at 7pm when the kitchen’s closed, Pizzeria U Catagnu is within easy walking distance along the main road—try the pizza Marguerite, baked in a wood-fired oven, for Euro 7.50.

Out and about
To get a flavour of the real Corsica, take a 45 minute local bus trip to Bastia, It’s the second biggest city on the island, but you wouldn’t know it from the picturesque, unspoilt old port, which dates from medieval times and is overlooked by a spectacular hillside park, scented by laurel and pine trees. Keep climbing upwards to the Citadelle, a spectacular feat of 15th-century architecture which protected the inhabitants from invaders by enclosing them within hefty ramparts.

Let’s go!
A week’s stay at San Lucianu in August costs £994 per adult; children aged 2-12 years sharing a room with their parents pay £596; this includes all meals, transfers, most sporting activities, including aerobics, hiking, windsurfing, tennis and sailing, evening entertainments and membership of kids’ clubs, including baby listening service. Scuba diving, sailing courses and water-skiing are available at extra cost. Call 0870 7704222 or visit www.markwarner.co.uk

Merlot Sat 22-Jan-05 22:08:45

Thanks Decafaribica

Dh and I went to Corsica for our honeymoon - tis truly a beautiful place

You've confirmed my initial thoughts about MW perhaps being too organised for us, but have to say the idea of lots of childcare does sound v.appealing!

sinclair Mon 24-Jan-05 21:57:36

MW got in trouble a couple of years ago - maybe 3 or 4 come to think of it - for refusing to admit a child with SN - DS I am almost certain - into their childcare club. It made a huge splash at the time (clearly tho not so huge as to actully leave full details in my head - sorry) but I remmeber about it as one of our mates with a DD with DS wrote to complain. Sounds like they have changed their policies which is great, but I would probably double check that when I booked to avoid disappointment as the onsite childcare is one of the huge advantages.

woollyboots Mon 24-Jan-05 22:19:22

Merlot, We went to Sunsail Galini and Vounaki and thoroughly enjoyed it. Our son has downs syndrome and they were more than happy to have him in the kids club- he almost had a one to one carer. They even prebooked us into the first row row of seats for our flights. This was a couple of years ago- he was 1 1/2 and 2 1/2 when we went. Our other children loved it too- and so did we! Hope this helps.

chonky Tue 25-Jan-05 10:56:43

Merlot - I've been on Sunsail holidays too and can really recommend them.
This was pre-dd, so I can't comment on the childcare bit unfortunately. We're thinking of going this year, so it's really good to hear others experiences. Do you sail or windsurf (just being nosey )?

annh Wed 26-Jan-05 14:59:09

We "did" MW 3 years ago, also in Corsica and would recommend the childcare. The kids club is in a huge, separate builing with large rooms for the different age groups and lots of toys and craft activities. The ratio when we were there was absolutely fine and all the carers were NNEB qualified. The standards of care were certainly better than the kids clubs at club Med.

Prettybird Wed 26-Jan-05 15:32:55

My best freind swears by MW holidays. She has 4 kids, from 14 - 6, the youngest one with special needs.

Her needs are not severe, but enough to have a full time assistant at school (at least she did in reception - I'm not sure if she still does). She has a few physical probelms and is a bit behind intellectually but is a sociable wee girl.

They were skiing over Christmas with MW - this they put her in to a "younger" group and didn't even think about letting her try skiing (she has coordination difficulities, hip problems and hypermobility of her joints) and she had a great time.

She's trying to persuade me to come on an MW holiday with them in future - but I'm not into that level of organisation. ALlthough we did have a great time on a dinghy sailing holiday with Neilson and they were great with ds.

Merlot Wed 26-Jan-05 21:04:14

V.Interesting everybody - thanks for sharing all your experiences .

Have decided not to go down the MW route as ds1, who is NT and nearly 8, has said that he doesn't want to do the kids club bit. Opting for a quiet spot in Greece (janinlondon's recommendation )

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