After a hectic year of travel where we managed to squeeze in visits to 10 countries and around 15 interstate adventures, you might think the Eats Worlds would be happy with a bit of a stretch at home. Think again.
Our collective feet are as itchy as ever and the call of a hot hotel and a little frolicking on a sunny beach has been almost as deafening as the silence when we rattle our piggy bank to see how far our holiday funds will stretch. In fact, said piggy pretty much flipped us the proverbial bird when we even started thinking about a weekend away. Our plans were scuppered until, like a knight in shining boardies, The Sebel Manly Beach came to our rescue with the offer of an overnight stay.
Part of the Accor Vacation Club network, a holiday lifestyle program offering accommodation and travel options in a wide variety of holiday destinations across Australia, New Zealand and Indonesia, we’re not the only eager holiday makers that The Sebel Manly Beach has come to the rescue of.
Membership of the program is not only a great way for families to afford regular holidays but actively encourages them to go, offering a high degree of holiday flexibility in quality AccorHotels-standard accommodation for a fraction of the cost of owning a holiday home. Members receive an annual allocation of Première Points, the Club’s currency, which they can use to stay at their preferred Accor Vacation Club holiday locations at their preferred times.
The relaxed but super stylish Sebel Manly Beach hotel is one of Accor Vacation Club’s most popular destinations and with its funky tropical interiors, warm service and enviable location right on the beachfront at Manly, it’s no surprise.
The hotel is certainly a hit with Raffles and Sugarpuff. They are smitten as soon as they walk in to our room to be greeted with a huge welcome sign scrawled on the mirrors, the pineapple strewn décor and the beach balls, frisbees and chocolates waiting for them on the end of the bed.
Me? I’m just as excited by the huge amount of space in our one-bedroom apartment, and the awesome view from our balcony.
Even with the glorious gold and blue of Manly Beach at point blank range, the kids are insistant we road test the pool at The Sebel Manly Beach first. They splash, wallow and frolic in the refreshing water, playing dodge beach ball with each other’s heads before plonking themselves in the warmth of the Jacuzzi.
I swear they’d be happy to spend the rest of the day right where they are, but with a little coercion and the promise of ice cream, we manage to get them out and across the road to make the most of all that sunshine and sea.
They flit and frolic along the golden expanse of beach, clamber over rock pools, and fling themselves head first into the surf, their joy contagious.
As the sun starts to set it dawns on me that I have forgotten to bring towels to dry off my dripping wet children. But the Sebel Manly Beach, clearly used to air-headed guests like myself, are prepared for such eventualities and there’s a shelf full of clean towels waiting right inside the front door.
There’s also a refreshing water cooler and a big basket of beach goodies such as buckets, spades, snorkels and frisbees, that the kids make a mental note to raid later.
We’ve always said it’s the little things that matter when we stay in a hotel. But this hotel has so many little things that it’s making a very big impression.
Just a 30-minute ferry ride from the city, Manly, which has just been voted as having the best beach in Australia by the readers of TripAdvisor, has so much to offer visiting families. Along with weekend markets, a proliferation of playgrounds, dozens of great restaurants, safe swimming beaches and scenic nature walks, bike and rollerblade hire, there’s also the giant slides of Waterworks, which the kids are keen to take on. But on this occasion the kids are all about the sea and sand, and are happy dunking themselves in the waves, drying off only long enough to patronise the odd playground that dots the beachfront walk from Manly to Queenscliff.
They expend so much energy that after grabbing dinner at Salty Rooster, which just happens to be their favourite burger joint of all time, they both head straight to bed at the Sebel manly.
It doesn’t take long for them to fall into a deep sleep in their comfy beds.
They wake up ravenous so we head to breakfast at the fun and funky Manly Wine, located on the ground floor of the Sebel. The food is extraordinary and Raffles devours a stacked plate of avocado and ranch beans topped with poached eggs and hollandaise.
Sweet loving Sugarpuff on the other chooses to gobble down an enormous bowl of fresh fruit, yoghurt and real honeycomb.
We consider hiring bikes to explore further afield but the kids are more inclined to roller blade along the promenade, stopping for ice cream then kicking off their blades and throwing themselves headfirst back into those irresistible waves.
Weekends don’t get better, or come easier than one at the Sebel Manly Beach with kids, and our stay has us excited to explore some of the other accommodation options available in the Accor Vacation Club network.
Disclosure: We were kindly hosted by Accor Vacation Club and The Sebel Manly Beach but, like our opinions, all splashing, wallowing and frolicking is our own.