“I can’t believe my kid is.. (insert age here)” says every parent with each birthday that passes. Alas I feel the same way. Leo’s second birthday snuck up on us and I flew into panic mode.
Anyone who lives in Winnipeg can attest that winter birthdays are tough especially for little ones. Our winters are brutal and unpredictable, therefore to plan an outdoor party for a young child is difficult. The options we were left with were indoor play parks, a sports themed birthday or a pool party. Recently we took a trip to Florida, where we discovered how much Leo loved swimming, BINGO pool party it is.
- there has to be a party room or rest area
- A pool comfortable enough for children that span ages 1-8
- An area for the parents to hang out
- a fun pool that could distract the kids for hours
I really wasn’t happy with any of the regular pool options because it didn’t feel special. After talking to a friend, she recommended Victoria Inn Hotel. Boy oh boy was I blown away! I immediately gravitated to the theme rooms, which basically combined two hotel rooms, one a regular suite and the other beautifully redone to match a child’s imagination. From a choice of 5 theme rooms, I picked the arctic or what I like to call the “Journey to Churchill room”.
The Children’s section had 2 bunk beds, a bathroom and a tv. The walls were beautifully painted with arctic scenes that showcased so many of Canada’s wildlife. Leo particularly loved the seals and the bears. Quickly after the kids arrived we head down the Dino beach waterpark. The water park featured a beach walk in, which was perfect for our little ones, and 3 different slides for kids of all ages to enjoy. The water itself was actually lukewarm, thank goodness, I was so worried it would be chilly like our regular recreational pools. We swam for a few hours, then took a break, headed up to the room to eat some pizza and cut cake. The room gave the children a well needed cool down period, to fuel up for another round of swimming.
After opening a few gifts, hydrating and fuelling up the kids, we sent them back down to the pool. Did I mention how amazing pool parties are to tire out your kid??
After the kiddies left and Leo fell asleep, the real staycation began for Rudy and I. We grabbed some take away from Chicago Joe’s, my recommendation is the Cajun Chicken Fettuccine Alfredo, cracked a chilled bottle of champagne we stored in the fridge and vegged out on the big luxurious bed. Chicago Joe’s is convienently next to the main entrance, with a menu to fit every meal. If you are just looking for a night cap, check out the sports bar and try your luck on the VLTs.
As an avid traveller, I always rate hotels based on three things: location, amenities and cleanliness. The hotel is located conveniently close to the Winnipeg airport, accessible to all areas of the city and a perfect spot for the families when you have a layover. The amenities were perfect, the killer pool, the theme room and the in house restaurant (no need to leave the hotel). Last but not least, the cleanliness was on point. I always do a spot check when I enter a room, and every corner of that place was spotless. Despite the mounds of people in and out of the pool area, the pool was very clean. No gross moss on the walls, no overpowering chlorine smell and the clean towel stand was always full. Our experience with Victoria Inn, definitely lead us to believe the hotel holds itself to a high standard that is maintained through each one of its many faces.
**The Victoria Inn did end up sponsoring our evening at the hotel, but the views expressed in this article are mine and not supervised by the Hotel in any capacity.**