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Wednesday, 5 November 2014

The Wave Hotel: Britain's 6th best family-friendly hotel

We have just returned from the most fantastic 4 night family break at The Wave Hotel which is located in Butlin's Bognor Regis. It has just been voted as the 6th best family friendly hotel in Britain by The Independent newspaper and I was keen to see if it deserved this title. As a family we have stayed in all sorts of accommodation from budget hotels to 5* resorts. Caravan's, wigwams, tipi's, yurts, chalets, bell tents we've tried them all so I was interested to see how The Wave Hotel would compare and what it would offer us as a family.


Check in

Check in was smooth - we were able to leave our car at the hotel doors while we unloaded our cases and then hubby parked our car in the secure car park. We were given two keycards for our interconnecting rooms, signed a quick form and that was it we were on our way.

Rooms

We were staying in dolphin interconnecting rooms. There was more than enough room for the 5 of us. There was one double room, two under-water themed bunk rooms, a twin room and two bathrooms. Our children ADORED their bedrooms. They had their own tv's at the bottom of their bunks and special blue lighting.






The bathroom's were lovely and clean with a powerful shower and the tub was big enough for multiple children to enjoy a bubble bath at once.




The double bed was super comfy and the tv's in every bedroom were state of the art - you could link up your own devices including USB sticks and ipods and could even hire cables from reception if you'd forgotten yours.




We used the twin room as our dressing room - hairdryers were provided. The bedroom's are extremely well equipped with mini fridges, kettles, tea tray, safe, iron and ironing board.



We had two balconies (fitted with child locks) with wonderful views out to sea and across the site.



Fabulous amenities for families

In the hotel foyer there is a huge games zone open 10am-9pm. There are energetic staff on hand to help you get to grips with games. There are Macs, Wii's, Nintendo's, X Box's, handheld consoles......anything you could imagine. There is a cafe/bar next door which is a genius idea! We enjoyed the odd glass of wine in peace to wind down after a full on day while the children played in the games room. A win-win situation. There were special tournaments you could get involved with throughout the day too.



Another little feature I liked in The Wave hotel was that between 6:30pm and 11pm you could buy a bottle of wine to take to your room and they would throw in free nibbles and milk and cookies for the kids. How good is that! The staff even warmed the milk up for us. This was perfect for us when we were exhausted on the last evening so just stayed out for the early tots disco before heading back to our room for an early night.



Breakfast

Breakfast at the Wave Hotel was taken in the Deck restaurant (we booked premium hotel dining and this was included). The Deck is buffet style and served from 8am-11am. We used to fill up at about 9am and skip lunch which was great. The buffet was very family friendly - children had their own special trays with compartments and their own buffet which was lowered so they could help themselves. 

Every morning we helped ourself to cereal, yoghurt and fruit followed by a cooked breakfast (or pancakes for the children) and finished with croissants, pastries and toast. All washed down with unlimited coffee and fresh juice. The restaurant is huge so it does get loud at times however the buffet stations are extremely well stocked and they never ran out of anything during our visits.



Babies are extremely well catered for - there is a baby room in the Deck restaurant which is stocked with highchairs, bottle warmers, baby cutlery and bowls, wipes, bibs, microwaves and rows and rows of heinz baby food for you to help yourself to. I have yet to experience anywhere that caters for babies in this way before! Fantastic.

Evening meals

As part of the premium hotel dining package you can dine at any restaurant within the Butlin's site. You are automatically allocated a buffet style restaurant (ours was the deck) however you can book any other restaurant at reception. I have nothing against buffet-style restaurants however if we are offered an a la carte choice I will always take this. I like ordering from a menu and not having to visit a buffet station multiple times with various children. I just find it a lot less stressful and it feels more special dining in a proper restaurant. 

Pork Pie at Turner's

With this in mind, we visited an a la carte restaurant every night (a little greedy I know!). The process was very simple - you make your reservations at the hotel reception in the morning and they give you a voucher that can be used at your allocated restaurant after 4pm that day. Adults can spend up to £13 each, children £6.50 and under 5's £3.25. You can of course top this up with your own money. Vouchers can not be used to pay for drinks.

Burger at The Diner

I have blogged separately about our favourite restaurants where you can view menu's and prices but it's fair to say I was BLOWN AWAY with the quality of the food available and could not believe you could eat this well at Butlin's as part of your pre-paid dining package. I think our favourite place was definitely The Diner - the staff were so friendly, the food was amazing and there are a few surprises too. The restaurant is designed to replicate a 50's style diner and it is a truly immersive experience.

Steak at The Beachcomber Inn

Service

The staff at The Wave Hotel go out of their way to help you - nothing is ever a problem. We were a little early to make restaurant reservations one morning but this was absolutely not a problem - rather than asking us to return later, the receptionist took our details, made the reservations for us then left us a voicemail when it was all booked and left our dining voucher's in our room for our return. Definitely 5* service! 



There were lots of little extra's in our hotel room too - daily maid service meant that our bed's were freshly made every day, our towels were replaced and our amenity kit topped up. They left us a little towel animal every day on our bed too which was a lovely touch.

I loved how you can hire kindles and DVD's from the hotel reception and the whole hotel has FREE WI FI which is a huge selling point to me.

Conclusion

The Wave Hotel is most definitely the most family-friendly hotel we have ever stayed in. They have absolutely thought of everything that both a child and parent could need. This review hasn't even mentioned any of the fab entertainment that is also included in your Butlin's break including a free fairground, star shows and an amazing splashworld swimming pool and so much more.  

If you'd like to find out more about The Wave Hotel, you can order a Butlin's brochure here.

We are Butlin's Ambassador's and enjoyed a complimentary short break at Butlin's in return for an honest review. 

Family Fever
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8 comments

  1. Wow, the kids bedrooms look amazing. I've never really considered Butlins, but it's possibly an option for the future xx

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  2. This looks absolutely fantastic! Butlins really must have changed, I remember going once when I was young and it was awful.

    Cat x

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  3. The kids bedrooms look amazing and so does the food, I'm really surprised! Much better quality than I would have expected.

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  4. What an amazing hotel - totally geared up for families and small children. The food looks pretty good too! Thanks for linking up with #TriedTested

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  5. I love themed hotels, and this one looks amazing! Food sounds great too. I can see why it's been voted one of the best #triedtested

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  6. That looks and sound such an amazing place to stay! I love the look of the themed rooms and the food sounds fantastic!

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  7. Wow - the whole thing sounds so well thought out. As a Mum of three myself the interconnecting rooms are really appealing & I know Ben and Chloe would love the theme!
    Thanks for linking up wtih #TriedTested this week x

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  8. Wow we love it here, we got chance to review this Hotel earlier this year and had an amazing time :)

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I always love reading your thoughts and comments - Sam x

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