Travelling brings families and friends closer together – very close – as anyone travelling with small kids, a multigenerational family, a couple whose circadian rhythm opposes yours or a partner that brings their work with them, will attest. Sharing accommodations at the best of times isn’t easy. When everyone is off their schedule and personal space is at a premium, one hotel room is not always ideal.
Teens who are enjoying their first tastes of independence may want to stay up a little later than mom and dad. They can’t go unsupervised for a wild night on the town while you catch your ZZZ’s, but having their own room where they can play video games and watch movies while munching popcorn (and then sleep in while you enjoy a leisurely brunch or room service) saves everyone’s sanity.
Grandparents have their own agenda too. They may want to catch a few attractions or social events on their own. Or they may wish to retire earlier (or later) than the rest of the family. Having their own space to come and go on their schedule, without waking up the family, is important.
Many young couples think it’s fun to travel with friends, and it can be! But don’t underestimate the destructive power of a night owl couple versus the early bird couple in one room; or worse, the social couple that brings the party home versus the private couple that was looking forward to a quiet glass of wine on the balcony.
Thankfully, there are options.
You don’t have to live in fear of sleepless nights when travelling with an extended, blended or multi-generational family, and you don’t have to give up your need to sleep in, be a night owl, or a workaholic when travelling with other adults. What you need is a suite.
In hotels, suites come in a few different configurations: typically, two standard hotel rooms with an adjoining door, an apartment style suite with separate bedrooms, or a one-bedroom suite with a couch in the living room that transforms into a bed. These options allow groups to have space and privacy they need while staying on budget.
But it doesn’t stop there!
Bed and breakfasts (B&B) have suites too. In fact, this is a preferred method of accommodations for many families with young children. Depending on the B&B you choose, you could have an entire floor and two separate bathrooms to yourselves, rooms on two different levels (great for teens) but under the same roof, or even a nursery that adjoins to a private room for mom and dad.
Where to Find Suite Deals
Most major hotel brands have suites. Simply search the room options after you have selected your city and days of travel. For example, a stay in Calgary’s Fairmont Palliser’s one-bedroom king suite is around $377/night, and that includes breakfast. On the higher end, Palliser’s ornate luxury suite with a fireplace, two bathrooms and a kitchenette is closer to $2k/night. Pricey? Perhaps, but remember, when travelling with a group, everyone can split the bill.
The Fairmont is an example of a luxury brand. Mid-priced hotels have suites too. The Travelodge’s Wyndham’s one king, one queen sofa bed family suite with kitchenette starts at $130-$251+/night in greater Edmonton.
Jasper, Alberta, one of the most sought-after travel destinations in Canada, has many B&Bs that are close to skiing, hiking and the amenities of the town, including the Austrian Haven. This B&B boasts a family suite that includes a living room, dining area, kitchenette and two queen beds for $229/night.
As you can see, suites can fit nicely into your travel budget.
Save Your Sanity
The next time you travel with a group, check out a suite so you can build memories and bond with friends and family, but have your personal space too.