Dining with kids in hotels- what are your options?

The Milelion does not have children. This is not his fault. Rather, it is the women who are wrong. However, other Milelion readers have been able to procreate, and that’s totally cool with The Milelion. He bears them no ill will, so long as their progeny don’t end up seated near him on an aircraft.

If you have kids, you might be wondering what your options are when it comes to hotel dining. If you’re going to stay at a Starwood property, you might want to know that Starwood has what’s called a “Kids Pass” which allows parents to pay a flat daily rate for their kids (aged 12 and below) to get all you can eat dining throughout the duration of the stay.

The fine print-

  • If you buy the Kids Pass, you need to buy it for the entire duration of your stay (it’s charged on a daily basis). You can buy it after your stay has started, but need to participate till the day you check out. You can’t pick and choose particular days to do the Kids Pass
  • To use the Kids Pass for meals, the adult accompanying the child also needs to buy an item (some places say main course, others only say “an item”). If the kid is only having a drink, the adult needs to be present but doesn’t need to order anything

What this is, in reality, is a sneaky way of locking in additional revenue because properties are banking on the fact the parent is locked in for hotel dining as well. Add that to the fact that you can’t pick and choose particular days to do the Kids Pass, and you might be wondering why this is a good deal.

Well, it’s not going to make sense in all situations, but it could make sense when you’re staying at a resort where outside dining options are limited because the resort is cut off from the rest of the world.

The magic question is how much does it cost? It varies from resort to resort. SPG provides a list of participating resorts where you can buy a Kids Pass, but advises you to contact individual properties to get pricing. So I did. I emailed every single one of those properties just so you don’t have to. Here’s the ones that responded within 24 hours (I’ll keep adding to this list as responses come in)

Property City Charge/Day (Local) Charge/Day (SGD)
Westin Shimei Bay Resort Hainan Free with paying parent $0
Sheraton Hua Hin Hua Hin 300 THB $12
Le Meridien She Shan Shanghai 66 RMB $14
Sheraton Grand Guangzhou Huadu Guangzhou 69 RMB $14
Sheraton Fiji Resort Nadi FJ$20 $14
Sheraton Samui Koh Samui THB 353 $14
Sheraton Shenzhou Penisula Hainan US$10 $15
Laguna Nusa Dua Bali US$10 $15
Le Meridien Angkor Siem Reap US$10 $15
Sheraton Nha Trang Hotel & Spa Nha Trang US$10 $15
St Regis Bali Bali US$10 $15
Sheraton Bali Kuta Bali IDR 150,000 $16
Le Meridien Bali Jimbaran Bali IDR 150000 $16
Sheraton Bailuhu Resort Huizhou CNY 88 $18
St Regis Langkawi Langkawi 60 MYR $19
Westin Siray Bay Resort Phuket THB 500 $20
Westin Resort Bali Bali US$15 $22
Westin Resort Nusa Dua Bali US$15 $22
Sheraton Rhodes Resort Rhodes 15 EUR $23
Naka Island Phuket 600 THB $24
St Regis Sanya Yalong Bay Resort Hainan CNY 117 $24
Westin Miyako Kyoto Kyoto JPY 2000 $25
Westin Resort & Spa, Whistler Whistler CAD 25 $27
Andaman Luxury Collection Langkawi 90 MYR $29
Sheraton Grand Rio Hotel Rio US$20 $29
Sheraton Maui Maui US$20 $29
Schloss Fuschl Salzburg 20 EUR $30
Sheraton Mallorca Arabella Mallorca 20 EUR $30
Sheraton Grand Mirage Resort Gold Coast AUD 30 $31
Sheraton Mirage Port Douglas Port Douglas AUD 30 $31
Sheraton Iguazu Resort Puerto Iguazu US$22 $32
St Regis Abu Dhabi Abu Dhabi AED 90 $35
Le Meridien Phuket Beach Phuket 890 THB $36
Westin Dubai Mina Seyahi Dubai AED 100 $39
Westin Mission Hills Resort Rancho Mirage US$29 $42
Le Meridien Fisherman’s Cove Seychelles EUR 30 $46
St Regis Saadiyat Island Abu Dhabi AED 120 $47
St Regis Doha Doha QR 150 $60
Trump Turnberry Turnberry GBP 40 $71

It seems like in general, you can get good value at properties in Asia. Of course without visiting the properties I can’t tell you anything about the quality of the food, but if you’re willing to lock yourself into hotel dining in a place like Nusa Dua in Bali (which, let’s face it, doesn’t have an awful lot going on around it) being able feed your kid at all the St Regis restaurants for S$15 a day is a pretty sweet deal. You’re going to want to think strategically about this- how many meals will you be eating in the hotel? Outside of the hotel? Will buying this plan make you feel obliged to eat in the hotel instead of heading out?

Your travels might not involve Starwood properties, so you should know that many other hotel chains offer “kids eat free” type dealies. These sometimes involve booking a special rate, but there are also situations where it’s as simple as showing up at the hotel restaurant and getting a free kid’s meal whenever the adult orders something.

Here are some examples you might find useful. You should definitely check with individual properties when booking, however, as there may be differences among properties in the same brand

  • Holiday Inn– Kids 12 and under eat free at any Holiday Inn restaurant worldwide when accompanied by a paying adult
  • Marriott– Special family rates can be booked that provide Kids Eat Free privileges at restaurants
  • Hilton- Particular properties offer special family rates including Kids Eat Free privileges

 

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