In February half term, my family and I stayed at the wonderful Trefeddian Hotel in Aberdovey, in the heart of Snowdonia National Park. My husband, Ed, found the hotel on Tripadvisor, recommended as a great place for families. It can be difficult to find good hotel accommodation for a family of 5, so we were pleasantly surprised that the hotel has a range of rooms suitable for families.
We booked a superior double room, which we were assured was easily big enough for a family of 5. The room was huge and everyone had a proper bed (rather than a camp bed) and there was still plenty of space for us to move around and plonk our (many) bags. We even had a little living area where we could sit and have a cup of tea.
The hotel is immaculate with great facilities, having recently been refurbished. There are 3 sitting rooms downstairs (including an adult-only lounge, into which Ed and I would stare wistfully at people quietly enjoying their books with a nice cup of tea!), a bar and 3 different games rooms complete with air hockey table, tennis table, pool and snooker. There is a lounge with toys and climbing equipment for smaller children, and a tv room (although we never saw the tv on, and the children were having way too good a time playing with their new friends to bother with tv).
The location is stunning, with amazing views from the hotel over the beach at Aberdovey. Access to the beach is easy and quick, with a path down from the hotel directly to the sand dunes. You have to cross Aberdovey golf course to get to the dunes and beach, and we had to hear Ed’s memories of the time he aced the 9th hole 15 years ago each time we crossed it.
Aberdovey beach is wonderful – a huge expanse of sand which was virtually deserted every time we went (well, it was February I guess, and quite often raining). Aberdovey village is a 15 minute walk, with some charming little shops and cafes. We’d brought our crabbing nets and spent a happy couple of hours dangling our lines over the jetty in the village. There’s a little playground just behind the hotel, and a tennis court.
Further afield, there are loads of places to explore. The hotel has lots of recommendations for walks of various lengths, and for days out in the local area. We resisted the kids’ desperate pleas to just stay in the hotel all weekend, playing games and swimming, and headed up in the pouring rain to Corris Craft Centre, which is a collection of craft studios about 20 minutes’ drive from the hotel. King Arthur’s Labyrinth and the slate mine were closed, so we had a wander around the studios and the children did some chocolate making (and quite a bit of chocolate eating) and watched some candle making.
One of the best things about the hotel for us was the pool. We spent 2 hours each day playing in the pool (and had it entirely to ourselves on two occasions). The pool is big enough to have a proper swim in, which I did each morning to work up an appetite for the 4 course breakfast included in the price of the room.
The food and restaurant was another highlight for all of us. Our children absolutely love being able to help themselves at hotel breakfasts, and breakfast at the Trefeddian was declared the best ever! Each day, they somehow managed to put away fruit salad and yoghurt, croissants, the most delicious porridge, a cooked breakfast and some toast!! The service was terrific – our waitress, Emma, could not do enough for us and was lovely with the kids. In fact, every member of staff we came across was cheerful and extremely helpful.
The price of the room also included a 5 course dinner each evening, which the children were welcome to have (or they could have ‘kids’ tea’ between 5 and 5.45pm.). We all had the 5 course dinner in the hotel. There was a good choice of different starters, mains and desserts, and the menu changed each night. The food was delicious and very quick to arrive, which is always appreciated when eating with children!! We had a lovely time trying to work out which of the 4 sets of cutlery to use for each course, and as guests are assigned a table for the whole of their stay, we got to know our nearest dining neighbours. The restaurant felt really welcoming for children and the other guests didn’t seem to mind that there were quite a few kids down at dinner. The hotel operates a baby-listening service for those with young children who want to put the kids to bed and then have a grown up dinner.
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