I was contacted recently to ask if I would like to contribute to the Millennium Hotels Guide to Manchester. I decided that I would like to share our secret of how to grab a quiet breakfast while your kids are looked after in a safe, fun environment.
We have two preschoolers, so rarely venture into the City Centre these days. We tend to go to the Trafford Centre instead. (It’s a 10 minute drive away from the hotel). The Trafford Centre has a huge range of shops, but there is much more on offer than that. The free parking is a major reason for visiting, as is the huge range of child friendly activities and dozens of restaurants.
We have two children very close in age, and babysitters are few and far between as a result. This means hubby and I struggle to get much child free time. One of the ways we do manage to grab a bit of time together is by using the creche in the Trafford Centre. They offer 1-1 support for children with Special Needs as well (Sam has autism, so this is a HUGE PLUS for us). I have blogged about this service before – you can read that post HERE.
Once you arrive at the creche, you answer lots of questions about your child, and then your child(ren) go off to play. All staff are police checked and the service is OFSTED registered. They give you a pager so they can reach you if there’s an emergency and tell you to wear it around your neck. You are given a time to collect your child(ren) and then you’re free to explore the Trafford Centre. The creche accepts children aged from 2-9 years, and it gets full quickly. There is a buggy park, and you pay when you pick your children up. You can phone ahead to book a special needs slot, but it is first come first served for children who do not require this service.
Our children are almost 3 and almost 4 now. Both of them love it in there. Syd (almost 3) tells us what they have both been up to and the staff give us a full account as well, when we collect them. Last Saturday, we dropped the kids off there to play at 10am before heading over to Giraffe for a peaceful breakfast.
Before we had the kids, we used to eat here a lot. It was quiet when we arrived just after 10am, but did get busy quite quickly. Hubby had studied the menu well in advance and had already decided he wanted to order the No Bun Falafel from the burger menu. The waiter informed him that unfortunately it wasn’t available until midday, so Hubby opted for the omelette and a Giddy Giraffe smoothie instead. I went for the Veggie Brunch and a caramel latte. I’ve been vegetarian for over 14 years now, and I am always very excited by the sound of a cooked Veggie breakfast – It didn’t disappoint!
The service was great – personal enough but without loads of chit-chat. Our food arrived about 15 minutes after we ordered it. I enjoyed mine immensely, although some butter for my toast would have made it perfect. The poached eggs were cooked to perfection and the sausages were delicious. Hubby said his omelette was nice, but the cold side salad made the entire thing kind of tepid at best – not what he was expecting at all. The drinks were delicious, and the environment was fab.
I’d say it’s a good place to go for breakfast if any of your party have special dietary requirements – There were Veggie and Gluten free options available, and the allergy information was very clear on the menu. I am already looking forward to going back soon for the blueberry pancakes!
If you’re staying in or around Manchester, it’s well worth a visit to the Trafford Centre – and Giraffe!
This is not a sponsored post. We received a complimentary meal at Giraffe in exchange for this post – I paid for using the creche service.