London lifestyle & travels with kids and babies
One of Muscat’s latest 5 star hotel addition, Kempinski spoils with grand sleek design, Arabic influences and European sophistication, fab cuisine and great wine. Fabulous day trips Muscat are within easy reach and Kempinski Muscat with kids is a delight; somehow the hotel caters to perfection to business clients, high profile political ViPs, single and family travellers, an almost impossible mission.
A certain 5 years old was difficult to be extracted out of their kids club – there’s a very cool soft play area, an array of activities and even kids brunches and parties at weekend. Muscat with kids in here means being spoilt at a very different level – just by the beach; with an infinity pool and sun-beds service for lunches, cocktails and snacks; separate dedicated kids swimming pool; playground outside by the kids club; and even bowling !
We found it the perfect place to relax and recharge batteries. We took late delightful breakfasts by the terrace or inside at the Kitchen – a delightful multi-cultural affair with everything from Swiss cheeses and deli meats to Anglo-style eggs to Levantine hummus and flatbread to Indian vegetable curries and rice; amazing freshly bespoke freshly squeezed juice and anything one could possibly dream for pastry – turn up hungry and sample most, it’s uniformly delicious !
We’d spend the mornings between the infinity pool and the beach – a very light late lunch and cocktails. There’s tea and piano by another stunning lobby – a delightful affair on weekend afternoons.
And for dinners one is spoilt for choice between 10 separate food and beverage outlets – from classic Middle Eastern and Western-style cuisine at The Kitchen, to modern takes on Indian food at Bukhara, vibrant Thai street food at Soi Soi, and deli treats at Cafe One.
Our family room was comfy, spacious and impeccably designed. The balcony was huge and overlooking the adults only pool. The bathtub and bathroom beautiful and inviting.
But what what we loved the most was Kempinski staff. Their hospitality, attention to detail, their engagement was purely outstanding. By far one the warmest and most professional hospitality we’ve ever experienced in 20+ years of luxurious travels – from the lobby manager who produced plates of strawberries for our toddler (who cheekily started eating the ones meant to be served with champagne to our neighbours); to guest and restaurant managers coming our way to greet us, to play with the kids, to help; to spa personnel.
Such a beautiful international melting pot, friendly and dedicated – we’d say the greatest asset of this stunning brand new hotel and Kempinski visionary project.
Kempinski Hotel makes the perfect stay for foodies, late night arrivals and early flights (being he best of hotels near Muscat airport), city breaks but also the perfect pied a terre for adventurous Oman holidays. It can’t be a coincidence we met up friends in here with their kids and families joining from various European corners!
A whole host of leisure activities can be easily organised – from dolphin watching sailing trips, to swimming with turtles; to dune bashing nearby for sunset; to full day trips to Wadi Shab; stunning canyons and challenging Via Ferratta at Jebel Akhdar; to diving, windsurfing, wakeboarding; kayaking or stand up paddle board closer to Kempinski hotel Muscat; Oman’s only PGA-standard golf course designed by Greg Norman, walks around the 400-berth Marina; tours of the Sultan Qaboos Grand Mosque to walks around the souq.
For an overview of our 10 days self drive Oman itinerary head here. Our favourites which could be easily organised as day trips from Muscat and Kempinski hotel:
(i) Al Hajar mountains Oman and stunning ridges -a jaw dropping surprise with views that lured my mind so much that I found myself climbing Via Ferratta – an adrenalin fuelled mad 2 hours, parallel to steep slopes, with the steel cable as an only semblance of some safety. Combine it with late lunch at Alila, exploring the hotel stunning grounds and sipping a cocktail sitting by the stunning infinity pool and watching the sunset to head back after to Kempinski Hotel Muscat (2 hours drive each way).
(ii). Dolphin watching and swimming with turtles. We loved the setting of Al Kieran bay : bare mountains and crystal turquoise waters, filled with dolphins, huge green turtles and colourful fish. In 20+ years of extensive snorkelling and diving, we rarely came across such magic! Kempinski hotel Muscat concierge is well placed to advise best combination between sailing and driving.
(iii) Wadi Bani Khalid, with its unexpected lush greens, palm trees and blue crystal pools desert dream like. It has been our favourite Wadi on this trip with the kids – easily accessible from the parking, manicured and clean, relatively easy to swim in the natural blue pools kids included. There’s lunch on the site including delicious barbecued meats and vegetables. 3pm is a great time to head to Wahiba Sands to soak in the Dali-esque lanscapes and Red sanded dunes at sunset. One can climb, dune bash in a 4×4 or try the old fashioned camel ride. You can stay for dinner or spend the night t the Arabian Oryx Camp, or head back to the stunning base of Kempinski hotel Muscat (2 hours of driving each way). Kempinski Hotel Muscat and their concierge can surely suggest a much longer list, these have just been our highlights and suggested day trips from Muscat.
Many thanks again to Kempinski Hotel Muscat for the media discount and looking after us so well! We are very looking forward to discovering more of the visionary Kempinski hotels in the Middle East region soon !