So, hands up who spends hours (or days!) scouring Google each year in search of the ultimate family getaway? We hear you, it’s a can of worms – option anxiety to the max. You’re after something family orientated but relaxing. Boutique but packed with options and most importantly…luxury without compromising on bells and whistles for the kids. It’s your holiday too, after all.
Asia is the gateway to Australia and boasts a smattering of accommodation options that will tick ALL of your boxes (and the kids’)…even the boxes that weren’t on your radar. We’ve put together a list of our oh-so-luxurious favourites to make sure that YOU and the kids have an incredible (and relaxing) holiday.
Written by Jade Just – Contributing Travel Editor
Shangri-La Hotel, Singapore
Shangri-La Hotels embody luxury, which isn’t compromised by throwing in an array of kids-friendly features at its Singapore offering. It’s got all the trimmings (tennis courts, spa, fitness centre) not to mention a Michelin-star restaurant (Shang Palace) and it’s just a hop, skip and jump from Orchard Road’s shopping precinct. So, what’s in it for kids? Well, we’re glad you asked given it’s an extensive list! They’ve got an indoor play space, which includes a Toddler Zone (sand pits, mazes, swings and slides…it’s all there) plus super sweet themed family suites and deluxe family rooms. The family rooms can accommodate two adults and two kids (12 and under) – the real draw card are the whimsical kids spaces and beds – with five themes from Safari to Astronauts. Cute! The hotel also takes on board requests for ‘must haves’ such as sterilisers, high chairs, bath toys…so there’s more space in your case for shopping and less for clutter.
From approx $350 per night. Click here for more info.
Ubud, Bali, Indonesia
The word ‘stunning’ doesn’t cut it for this designer, loft-esque villa, which boasts expansive views of the surrounding rice paddies, a serene infinity pool with a jungle backdrop and a kitchen that belongs in an interior design mag. Although central Ubud is a short drive away it’s quiet, and ideal for a relaxing escape, with shopping and dining close-by. So what’s in it for the kids? Well, for starters there are resident bunnies to cuddle as well as a bunk bed, pool toys, game consoles and kid-friendly books. The stairs aren’t particularly suited to toddlers or babies but if you’ve got primary school aged kids or teenagers, the villa is an absolute gem. It sleeps up to eight guests so there’s room for the kids to bring a friend, or you can holiday with another family (or even the grandparents!).
From approx $250 per night. Click here for more info.
Kata Rocks, Phuket, Thailand
If you’re headed to Phuket it’s hard to look past the sleek luxury of Kata Rocks – complete with superyacht-inspired interiors, unobstructed views of the Andaman Sea and privacy to boot (there’s just 34 villas). It’s one of those jaw-droppers that halt you mid-scroll on instagram. Serious wow-factor in abundance. Now, we know kids can be damn fussy at the best of times so the Kids Club gets a big tick from us thanks to the kid-friendly menu. The Kids Club (for ages 4 – 12) is run by professionally trained staff and has a bunch of activities including fruit carving, Muay Thai boxing, candle making, face painting…the list goes on. Budding chefs and their parents can get hands-on at the Kata Rocks Thai Cooking School (there are morning or evening sessions), and you don’t even need to leave your villa – the cooking is done in your kitchen!
Prices: Starting from $1,445 (One bedroom Sky Pool Villa including breakfast for 2 guests). Starting from $2,020 (Two bedroom Sky Pool Villa including breakfast for 4 guests).
Click here for more info.
Ritz Carlton, Kyoto, Japan
Few resorts epitomise luxury quite like the world-class ‘Ritz-Carlton’ brand, and their Kyoto resort is truly the cream of the crop. Its location – perched on the Kamogawa River with the famous Higashiyama Mountains as a backdrop – is the perfect base to explore one of Japan’s most culinary-centric cities. For little ones, Ritz Kids provides loads of opportunities to have fun while learning about Japanese culture. Free of charge activities include a treasure hunt and balloon art and for families you can cycle around Kyoto or learn how to make origami or soap. Also on the freebies list is a special evening program where staff members take care of the kids (aged 4 – 12) while you enjoy dinner in one of the resort’s restaurants. It doesn’t get much better than that!
From approx $1,300 per night. Click here for more info.
Six Senses, Quing Cheng Mountain, China
This breathtaking resort holds the key to some serious bragging rights for adults and kids – the opportunity to jump on a tour to see giant pandas in all the flesh. Besides the panda-orientated tours, the resort caters for families in spades – there are multiple-room villas, a huge indoor pool as well as an in-house movie theatre and an organic garden. Not to be overlooked is the stunning misty mountain setting that envelopes the resort – you can reach the hotel’s vantage points on a pushbike (they’ve got a load of sizes to suit any age).
From approx $280 per night. Click here for more info.
Indochina Junk, Vietnam
We thought we’d chuck in a wildcard – one of the most amazing ways to experience Vietnam’s beautiful coastline. You can cruise on a beautifully detailed Junk with plenty of family-appeal from kayaking among the limestone outcrops to squid fishing off the back of the boat. There are numerous cruise options and boats to choose from – you can sail overnight or for a few nights, the choice is yours. Food wise, seafood lovers will be ecstatic but there are other options if fish and shell fish aren’t up your alley. It’s worth noting that sadly, a rapid influx of tourists has littered many of the waters in Vietnam but thankfully Indochina Junk has an environmental policy in place and their cruises favour the lesser-visited (and still idyllic) Bai Tu Long Bay.
From approx $320 pp for an overnight sail (includes meals). Click here for more info.