Luxury Family Holidays Handpicked for Parents

Monthly Archives: September 2014

Heidi Klein with her daughter Maddie

Heidi Klein is infamous for her eponymous swimwear range worn by pretty much every major name in fashion and film. And her designs are set to be available for a younger market from next month when they expand into the arena of girls’ swimwear for ages 2 – 10. Expertly crafted, each story features a bespoke range of pretty swimwear in super soft UPF 50+ fabrics that block out 97% of the sun’s harmful rays, with coordinating dresses and rash vests to complement each story. Aside from her hugely successful label, Heidi has three children so we were thrilled she took some time out to tell a little more about what we can expect from her first children’s collection…..

Heidi Klein girl in pink swimwear

What made you decide to launch a children’s swimwear label?

I found it difficult to find beautiful swimwear for my little girl and wanted to create a line I knew she would love.

What was the inspiration behind the new collection for girls?

My little girl Madeleine. We have not started the boys collection yet; I’m still gathering inspiration for that.

Heidi Klein blue dress

Did your children help with the designs at all? Did you run everything by them to see what they thought?

Yes, I ran all the designs by Maddy and she loved them all.

Have you any plans to extend the collection in the future, either to make it bigger or to start designing for teenagers?

Yes. We will start creating a collection for boys soon, aged from 2-10 years of age. There will be new styles in the girls’ collection twice a year and we have a new line of adorable sandals, too.

Do you remember the swimwear you wore as a child? Can you describe it for us?

I had a red and white polka dot swimsuit with a little skirt; I loved it!

What are your earliest memories of travel as a child?

Jumping in the rock pools with my brothers on the beach in Scotland.

If you had to pick one favourite destination for your holidays as a family where it would be?

Portofino, Italy.

And aside from your own swimwear, what do you have to pack when travelling on holiday? Is there one item you can’t live without?

My beauty essentials are Crème de la Mer Face and Body Gradual Tan; Sisley Eau de champagne, and St Barth Roucou Tanning Oil for skin and hair. Other travel essentials are a notebook and pen, Todd’s sunglasses, a cashmere throw, and a Heidi Klein travel candle, all packed neatly in my treasured Birkin bag.

In a few words, what advice would you give to women when buying swimwear?

Find the right style to fit your body shape so that your swimwear fits you perfectly. This is really important. Make sure your swimwear provides enough support where you need it the most. Try on a selection of styles, such as a bandeau, d-g ring top, triangle top, and a control one piece, and see which one you feel most comfortable in. If you feel comfortable, you will feel gorgeous.

And can you tell us a little about the inspiration for the current womenswear range? Did it have any influence over the designs for the children’s swimwear or are they totally independent of each other?

They are really independent of each other in regards to design, fit and style. The inspiration for our womenswear collections each season come from listening to our customers in the stores, hearing what they like and don’t like, and designing styles with a nod to the current print trends. The classical nautical style is one of my favourite prints for swimwear, and so we have elaborated on this trend to come up with fresh designs each season. Our new Resort Summer 2015 collection presents a fresh and elegant take on texture with rich, understated fabrics blended with bold colour harmonies running across both swim and cover ups. With confident colours of neon yellow, bright red, deep coral, and hot fuchsia elegantly contrasted with vintage leopard, Ikat and mottled prints, my next collection is all about offering an effortlessly chic mix-and-match selection of beachwear.

The little ones may have only just gone back to school, but half term will be here in the blink of an eye and, in all honesty, I’m seriously missing Lola by day so counting down to it already. If you can’t be doing with jumping on planes after hours killing time (and spending a fortune) in duty free, Scotland’s iconic Gleneagles hotel is seriously worth considering.

Gleneagles exterior

Gleneagles this half term

Gleneagles is always family-friendly and well worth a look in at any time of year, but from October 11th to November 2nd this year the hotel is offering a host of amazing activities, specifically with kids in mind. So no matter what week you’re half term falls upon, this is a great option for a getaway that doesn’t require enormous travel. From falconry to horse riding, learning to train a gun dog to cycling, off-road safaris to junior golf lessons, there is something here for children of every age and interest. Very little ones can be entertained in the playroom should you wish, while teenagers have their own ‘Zone,’ which includes table football and karaoke. There will be Mini Athletics, Football Skills, Basketball Drills and Kids Zumba classes going on that will help children make friends while seriously wearing themselves out. And throughout those dates, activities are organised for children all day long so they needn’t have a quiet moment alone (unless they want one of course).

Gleneagles children

And for parents?

Set across 850 acres of stunning Scottish countryside, Gleneagles offers far more than the world class golf for which it’s associated. Should you want some activity of your own, there is an on-site equestrian centre, clay shooting options, endless walkways and bike trails, and, of course, seriously sensational golf. There is a whole host of things to do, including riding in a hot air balloon and off-road driving. If you’re erring on the relaxing side of things, you’ll find yourself at the service of one of the world’s few hotels considered a Luxury Spa “Resort.” Aside from the amazing Ayurvedic treatments, massages, and choices of holistic therapies on offer, the whole experience, from the moment you walk into the ESPA spa, is one of relaxation, tranquility and pampering.  

Gleneagles kids' car


There are lots of luxury family friendly accommodation options available: those with young children can arrive to cots or additional beds if needed, while those with older children should opt for the array of interconnecting rooms. There are no less than four restaurants to choose from at Gleneagles (one of which is Michelin-starred) so the dining options are immaculate and cater for even very fussy eaters. Children don’t have to order off the kids’ menus on offer in each restaurant if they don’t want to as the chefs will gladly create bespoke dishes based on their individual taste.

Gleneagles bedroom

Where is it?

Located in the very heart of Scotland, Gleneagles is near to Perth and Stirling. If you don’t fancy driving, it has it’s own train station just two minutes from its front doors; if you crave the fun of duty free and choose to fly, both Glasgow and Edinburgh airports are about a one hour drive away or, should you be one of the few with your own helicopter, arrangements can be made for them to land on the property. And once you’re there, you needn’t worry about having your car as the hotel offers a chauffeur service. I’m up for that. And the hot air balloon ride myself.

Gleneagles playroom


To book this hotel click here.

For other UK based hotels this half term, click here.


Ok, so let’s be honest. As much as we’re adoring all the pictures of kids in neatly-pressed uniform currently gracing friend’s Facebook pages (and no doubt we’ve put up a few of our own), and as lovely as it is to have some time to ourselves without thoughts of how to entertain them every day, many minds are wondering to half term already and what to do if a trip away is on the cards. We’ve had a glorious summer in this house, thanks in part to the fabulous weather we’ve enjoyed here at home, but late October is a different story. Forget beach walks here – if heat is what you’re after then you’re going to need to get on a plane, and one destination we can’t recommend highly enough is St. Barths. And, just to make things really enticing, there is a fabulous new opening on the island that month.

Hotel St Barth Isle de France sea view

Cheval Blanc St-Barth Isle de France

Located on Baie des Flamands – one of the island’s finest beaches – Cheval Blanc St-Barth Isle de France is relatively quaint with its 40 suites, bungalows and villas, but this is precisely what appeals. It’s not too big and full of people – it is tranquil, calm and very luxurious. What was Hotel Saint-Barth Isle de France, the stunning St. Barth’s property has been acquired by LVMH (which testifies to the level of excellence you can expect on arrival). After much redesign, the hotel will reopen this October as Cheval Blanc St-Barth Isle de France (consider yourself informed) and it’s guaranteed to be sumptuous, family-friendly, and full of wonderment for both parents and kids.

Now, if you have small children or you’re expecting and want somewhere lovely for next year, the summer is a better time to head to the island, because the temperatures aren’t quite so searing. Head there soon, however, and you can expect some serious heat, turquoise waters and balmy nights.

Hotel St Barth Isle de France beach

The Accommodation

The two-bedroom Fisherman’s Cottage is set in the beautiful tropical gardens of the hotel, making it an ideal island hideaway for families. With one king-size and two twin beds, there is room for everyone; doors open onto the living and kitchen areas, and there is a sheltered interior courtyard and outdoor garden where children can safely play.

For Them

The hotel’s immaculate seafront swimming pool will no doubt prove a pull, while the beautiful beach is going to be just as popular with its shallow, clear, turquoise water (far more relaxing for you, too). If your little ones are active they will adore the mix of kayaking, paddle boarding, windsurfing and catamaran excursions on offer. There is also horseback riding above the white sands of Gouverneur Beach for budding equestrians.

Hotel St Barth Isle de France swimming pool


For You

Like any thoughtful, family-friendly hotel, the Cheval Blanc St-Barth Isle de France offers a baby-sitting service so you can enjoy the evening beach club vibe of La Case de l’Isle, highly regarded for its elegant, light and colourful French cuisine (it has long been one of St Barth’s hottest dining destinations). And the spa? Well, it will be the only place to find Guerlain treatments in all of the Caribbean.

The four-treatment room Cheval Blanc Spa will offer signature treatments by the iconic Guerlain brand – the first of their kind in the Caribbean – and created exclusively for this hotel. Signature therapies will include St-Barth Solar Escape, a ritual that subtly combines the Terracotta range with Guerlain specialists’ know-how, offering a soothing escape for travel-weary skin. (A new Orchidée double treatment room and other novelties will follow when the hotel continues its extension throughout the 2015 – 2016 season, so you might want to book to come back again).

If you don’t want to be inside the spa by day you can also enjoy treatments from leading skin-care brands, Natura Bissé and Intraceuticals, in the serene garden setting of the main house.

Hotel St Barth Isle de France children

A Big Blue Day Out

And top of the hotel’s well-curated services has to be “Big Blue Escape.” Escorted by a Majordome, Cheval Blanc’s dedicated butler, you can spend a day aboard a 69′ yacht whose experienced Captain will unveil St Barts’ most gorgeous bays. There are lots of little surprises spread on board by their Majordome throughout the day, such as the Maison’s beach bag, complete with panama hats and matching fans, sun lotions and other treats. After exploring the marvels underwater, you will drop anchor in front of the pristine Saline Beach and enjoy a fresh lobster lunch. I know. It’s heaven sent. The rest of the afternoon can be spent swimming, sunbathing or indulging in an exclusive, onboard Guerlain spa ritual. One last cocktail and delicious amuse-bouches will be served while you enjoy the sunset, before being brought back to shore. Can we go now, please?

For more information click here.