Reach the Kids, Hook the Parents

by Sonja van den Bosch

Reach the Kids, Hook the Parents

Earlier this year, we went on a much-needed family holiday to Fiji. My personal travel manager Ric Pattaro TravelManagers, who is absolutely fantastic (but this is a story for another time) recommended the Shangri La resort to us, as it apparently has the most fantastic kids club. I didn’t realise how great it was for us as parents, until we got to experience it.

From the moment we walked into the resort, it was all about the kids. At check-in they looked at them, asked for their names and within an hour almost all staff in the resort knew their names.

Everyone is extremely friendly and waving and saying bula all the time, you can’t not enjoy this .

After we had some lunch, we went to the kids club and my kids didn’t really wanted to stay, but after a very friendly Fijian staff member told them that she would paint a snake on their arm if they would come back tomorrow, they couldn’t wait to go there the next day.

The first night we experienced the kids buffet, which is a dinner completely catered to kids. My kids were overwhelmed by the amount of deserts to choose from and loved that they could share their meal with other kids in the resort.

After dinner it was time for the night kids club, offering great activities like frog hunting, crab races, limbo dancing combined with a movie and staying up late. Which kid wouldn’t enjoy this? Arjen and I couldn’t believe our luck that we were able to go out for a quiet grown-up dinner the first night we arrived. This pattern would go on for the rest of the holidays. During the day we would either have fun with the kids by the pool, or they would be having fun in kids club and we would be relaxing… and at night they would have their dinner and then go off with their friends for a night of adventures and a movie.

During one of our nice adults only dinners, Arjen and I were discussing this kids friendly concept and both agreed that it was the most relaxing holiday for parents. The kids are completely catered for and are loving every moment of the holiday and because of this, you as a parent feel completely relaxed and can enjoy some much needed alone time as well. The Fijian people are so warm and lovely, which makes your holiday extra special.

During the last day of our holiday the staff at the kids club asked us to fill out a ‘this person has gone the extra mile’ form and they said it would really help them. Of course I had seen these forms laying around all week, but had been a bit lazy to fill one out, but after this request, I immediately grabbed my pen and wrote a very nice note about them. They also told my children that they have to keep asking their parents to come back to Fiji for our next holiday. It is an extremely smart way to hook the parents by reaching the kids, as of course my kids have been bugging us on a regular basis about when will be the next time we go back to Fiji. The Fijians have turned my kids from clients into raving fans and because of this I have become a raving fan myself and are telling all my friends with kids to go to the Shangri La resort in Fiji. And what can be more powerful than word of mouth advertising? If you want to find out more about the Shangri La resort in Fiji, visit


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