I love traveling with our kids. What I don’t love? Hotels that bill themselves as “family-friendly” when their idea of that is slapping a waterslide into their pool and having a crappy kids’ menu in their hotel restaurant. What is truly “family-friendly” is having enough space not to be on top of eachother, some privacy for mom and dad (Yes-I admit it. I like to have a private bedroom with my husband, whom I made those kids with…) and features that make life easier for a family on the road. After all, even mom and dad like to feel like they are on vacation too. So what is really refreshing is finding a hotel that caters to business travelers and stylish globetrotters that also manages to be really great for families.
Hotel Elan is unexpected delight of a hotel perfect for a family. We had the great joy of spending a night in one of their 2 bedroom suites on our latest road trip through Alberta and the Rockies. (Full disclosure, we got a promo room but I would have paid the very reasonable rate ($280-$380 varying with season and offer). The 1 bedroom and standard suites are even more reasonable.
The two bedroom suite is a self-contained efficiency apartment with two large bedrooms, each with their own TV (With Telus Optik on demand movies – we watched one for $6.50 – a far cry from the usual hotel movie gouging). There is free, dedicated wi-fi for each room and the hotel general areas – and a desk for two people to work with laptops if you need to get a little work done (or are a travel writer, for example). The long distance is free as well. The pictures are gorgeous but don’t give the stylishness of the place justice – great furnishings, beautiful linens on comfy beds with a selection of pillow types. The kitchen is tiny but does the trick for snacks or a quick stovetop dinner. The family room has a great sectional, large flat screen, dining space for 6 people and a great balcony where you can sit and have a glass of wine at night after the kiddies head to bed.
The bathroom is a thing of beauty and I giggled a little when I saw the Occitane toiletries, the deep soaker tub with LED lights for a chromatherapy soak, a separate WC for the toilet – which by the way, also lights up and has a heated seat. A large double shower and a vanity with room to put all your getting ready stuff make it truly user friendly.
If the stuff in the room doesn’t make you happy enough then think on this; convenient underground parking, steps away from the restaurant and shopping mecca street of 17 Ave and free breakfast every morning. And this isn’t sad bagels and a boiled egg breakfast. This is great pastries, cereal, fresh fruit, breakfast sandwiches, hash browns, sausage and protein bars and an apple to tuck in your bag for later. Proper breakfast.
We missed out on the “Appy Hour” which does adult bevvies and snacks on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays but we weren’t put out as we enjoyed a bottle of wine in our suite.
The staff was friendly and informative throughout our stay, recommending restaurants and the like. With or without kids this is a winner