Five Star Family Fun
As the cooler days close in, we’re here to help keep the horizons broad for even the littlest city slickers with next level accommodation options and seasonal CBD adventures to inspire a Melbourne bound family vacay…
Family city staycation, Next style…
Next Hotel Melbourne’s flexible rooms and suites can be configured to ensure a memorable stay for families.
If you’re with more junior travellers, opt for interconnecting rooms with twin King single beds adjoining the parents Next Level King Room; or discover the spacious Two Bedroom Suite for a more grown up family option.
Each provide a stylish home base for families on a city staycation, with boutique bed linen to sink into, premium amenities, your own espresso capsule coffee machine on hand plus a host of extra special touches on offer.
Parents will be spoilt with a bottle of Prosecco to enjoy, while children will be able to dig into a complimentary special kids mini-bar basket filled with treats on arrival.
For the younger children (12 and under), their room will be set up with a magical tepee on request, setting the tone for a stylish city stay that’s just as much about them.
Parent’s date night? La Madonna Restaurant and Bar is just downstairs, where you can relax over the Good Food Guide listed menu in the knowledge that the kids are catered for in safety and comfort: with smart TV, wifi, and special treats that include bottomless popcorn and choc-tops delivered to their room.
Next level fun indeed.
City discoveries the whole family will enjoy…
The Light Fantastic
This June, the spectacularly luminous Lightscape is making its Australian debut at the iconic Royal Botanic Gardens in Melbourne, after more than a decade in the UK. More than 100,000 tiny lights will light up trees, walkways and installations in the Gardens, with visitors winding their way through a spectacular 1.8km journey of light and sound that will thrill and delight. (June 24 – Sun Aug 7)
Next Tip: Pack extra layers for evening strolling as winter Melbourne temperatures drop fast after dark.
The National Gallery of Victoria (NGV) is currently playing host to Who Are You: Australian Portraiture in the Ian Potter Centre. It’s the largest exhibition of Australian portraiture ever mounted, with a diverse and sometimes unconventional collection across time and media, something to intrigue and entertain all ages. See if the little ones can spot Boris Cipusev’s Jeff the Wiggle. (until 21 Aug).
Little artisans will love wandering through pond[er], a body of pink water and native plant installation that invites reflection on our relationship with the environment. Wander through the interconnected walkways and platforms, and even step down and wade in the pink pond itself.
Next Tip: The insta-friendly pond isn’t camera friendly, so take care with the little ones and those selfies.
Immerse yourselves in few hours of history with a short stroll from the hotel to the spectacular Melbourne Museum – Australia’s largest public museum, with exhibitions to inspire kids and kids at heart from dinosaurs to the planets, from modern Australian history to traditional indigenous heritage.
Plan ahead and take advantage their program of workshops and exhibitions, such as the Open Horizons Exhibition (until 14 Aug) that takes visitors on a journey through Ancient Greece.
Next Tip: Grab and go lunch from the hotel’s Ingresso and enjoy a picnic lunch in the majestic, heritage listed Carlton Gardens pre or post museum visit. It’s home to tree lined avenues and the spectacular Royal Exhibition Building.
Talk To The Animals
From birdlife to big cats, there’s something for kids of all sizes at the Melbourne Zoo – Australia’s oldest zoo and also part of the world leading conservation organisation Zoos Victoria. Don’t miss the fun, informative keeper talks at intervals through the day, or our personal favourite, the butterfly enclosure, where visitors surround themselves with the magic of some 600 fluttering butterflies.
Next Tip: plan a Next level visit by pre-booking an up-close or behind the scenes animal encounter
In July, talented Spinifex Gum indigenous choir of women and girls from Far North Queensland and the Torres Strait, is joining with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra for a special series of concerts. The all-ages introduction to Spinifex Gum performance promises to disarm and uplift audiences of all ages.
If toddler sized outings are more your scene, take a look at the MSO hosted Jams for Juniors a way for children aged 0-5 and their adults to explore, play and join in as part of a practical 30 minute workshop. (18 Jun, 23 Jul, 27 Aug)
Next Tip: meander down the Southbank Promenade after your visit, coffee (or marshmallow hot chocolate) in hand as you venture back to Next Hotel Melbourne.
La Famiglia Sunday Lunching
No Melbourne staycation is complete without adding a memorable dining experience to the itinerary. Make time to feast over Italian classics with a twist at Good Food Guide listed restaurant, La Madonna. The special ‘La Famiglia’ Sunday lunch menu, created by chefs Danny Natoli and Adrian Li, was inspired by treasured memories of long, lazy family lunches with shared dishes enjoyed by multi generations. A relaxed dining experience, especially suited to the winter weather, book a table and settle in for a family feast. More here.
Next Tip: enjoy a light breakfast, and save room for a Sunday lunch instead.