I know parents think they know it all when it comes to what makes a holiday resort kid-friendly, but I reckon the best way is to ask a kid, which is why I’m going to tell you what makes Novotel Phuket Surin Beach Resort cool for kids.
To start we were greeted with welcome drinks and a backpack full of goodies, including sunglasses and water pistols before being escorted to our room which was packed with even more welcome treats like chocolates, fresh drinking coconuts, a big cuddly bear for my sister and a family of towel elephants. But I couldn’t see beyond the in-room PlayStation. At least until mum opened the blinds to reveal the huge lagoon pool. It has two awesome slides and incredible pool activities like pool Olympics, overwater Muay Thai boxing and inflatable zorb water walking balls and a genius Popsicle Hotline where you can dial up a free popsicle, anytime of the day you like. There’s also a fun weekly foam party where they fill the pool with so much foam it feels like you’re in the world’s biggest bubble bath. And the pool is open until late, so even after dark you can splash and soak and play. And if you can tear yourself away from all the Novotel Phuket Surin fun, Surin Beach is just across the road.
But this hotel offers so much more than just great rooms, a beachfront location and an epic pool. The resort’s Siam Adventure Club is hosted by a squad of rangers who have to be the funeest people in the whole of Phuket. It’s an awesome program for kids that includes all kinds of awesome activities like umbrella painting and origami, movies and pool games. Plus, there are a stack of cool board games like Connect Four, Guess Who and Jenga at the Siam Adventure Club Tour Desk, where anyone crazy enough to want to actually leave this awesome place can organise tours of the island. Then there is the two-storey Kids World Kids club with indoor and outdoor games plus activities like Thai dancing and crafts, a playground with climbing structures and a slide, a ball pit for younger kids and a PlayStation 4 room, complete with bean bags.
One of my favourite activities in the Kids World Kids club was a Muay Thai Lesson. The resort’s instructor took us through our paces, teaching us how to punch with crosses, jabs and hooks, plus turning kicks. But wait, there’s more. There’s an in-house arcade with Mario Kart, Pacman and other cool video games. Once we’d totally nailed Mario Kart, there was also a mega ping pong table and a pool table. Plus, get this, there’s an in-house candy store with shelves full of every kind of lolly and chocolate imaginable.
I have to talk about the food because bad hotel food is a deal breaker for me. So, I am happy to say that the food at Novotel Surin Beach is amazing form morning until night. The breakfast buffet is good, with all the usual western dishes, mega platters of tropical fruit and some local dishes too. At lunch we ate poolside at Joe Kools. A Thai Green Curry was delish but so were the wood-fired pizzas. Dinner at Asia Alive rocked my tastebuds with creamy red duck curry, whole Thai-style spicy fish, and my new favourite dessert, mango sticky rice. I just wish they did deliveries… to Australia.
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