How to Travel with Your Kids on a Business Trip

family on business tripBring your Kids with You on Your Next Business Trip

If you are a frequent business traveler, it can be tough being away from your family. You may think that combining business and quality family time isn’t possible, but we beg to differ. Bringing your kids along with you on your business trip can be a great way to spend time with your family. Here are some suggestions to see if a family-meets-business trip is for you.

Talk to your Company

You’ll want to check in with your company and make sure they approve the idea first. Some business trips may not be ideal for bringing your family so you’ll want to know all the details. For instance, how long your meetings will be and what events you may be required to attend. You may also be able to ask your family to join you at a later time if it is an extended trip and the main events will take part in the first half of your trip leaving some time for leisure at the end. Tip: Check space for an additional room if you are undecided if your family will join you later.

Know What to Expect

You’ll want to set expectations with your family before your set out on your business trip. Inform your kids on how long it will take to arrive at the destination, what they will do during the trip, and what time of day you will be available to spend time with them. Put time aside specifically to spend with your children and/or spouse so you can give them your undivided attention.

Bring Along Your Spouse

Bringing along your spouse can be a great mini-getaway for two. Book a spa appointment or activity (ie wine tour, golf) for your spouse so he/she can relax while you attend meetings. Having the support of your spouse on a business trip is an added bonus if you have kids since it also takes care of any extra babysitting expenses. While you have to attend to your business obligations, you still will get to see your family before you head out or later on in the day. This way, your kids will know you’re not too far away.

Traveling with children on a business trip can be a blessing if you plan ahead. As a frequent traveler it can be hard to say goodbye to the kids and spouse so often, so why not plan to take them with you and have a mini-cation while you are away on business.

These tips should be a good place to start to see if a business mini-cation is for you and your family.

Have you had a great business mini-cation with your spouse or kids?

Profiled: Bourbon Street Grill in Vernon

Keeping it Casual in Vernon

If you’re visiting Vernon, heading to the Bourbon Street Grill is a must. Located in our Prestige Hotel Vernon location, the Bourbon Street Grill is a casual locale with a Creole twist.

Bourbon Street Grill at the Prestige Hotel Vernon

Owned and operated by Rick Riechelt, who has been working in the bar and restaurant industry for over thirty years, the Bourbon Street Grill is a popular destination for locals and out of town guests. The delicious menu was created by Chef Inna, who won the IPE Iron Chef challenge this past summer.

Recently, a new menu called the PURE menu was introduced. This menu features wild, sustainable food from all over B.C. You can order feature items such s Venison Osso Bucco, an Heirloom Baby Kale Honey Roasted Rhubarb and Goat Cheese Salad, a Pheasant and Ostrich duo, plus many more delicious items. At Pres

tige, we are all about local cooking and we keep up-to-date in the latest lifestyle trends. To find out more, you can read our past blog post about Healthy Living.

Another way Bourbon Street Grill stands out from other restaurants is through its passion for live entertainment. Providing a venue for talented musicians, the restaurant often hosts special events. On April 11, 2014, Bourbon Street Grill hosted an event called A Special Evening of Music which featured artists Jodi Pederson, Lance Carr, Naked Ghosts, the Les Copeland Band, and Special Guest, MC Kevin Rothwell. This event was a fun and memorable night for all who attended.

When you visit Bourbon Street Grill, live music enhances your dining ex

perience and makes for a great night out. Follow Bourbon Street Grill on Facebook for news on special events and for a regular music fix, Les Copeland and Cameron Ward play every Thursday night at the restaurant.

Prestige is proud to have such a unique and innovative restaurant in its

midst. Whether you’re in Vernon on business or for pleasure, the Bourbon Street Grill is a stop you won’t want to miss.

What is your favourite menu item from the Bourbon Street Grill? Share your best eats with us in our comments section.

Bourbon Street Grill Vernon

Make a Hotel Room Feel Like Home

hotel roomPersonalize Your Hotel Room for a More Comfortable Stay

No matter how long your travels are, you’ll want your stay to be comfortable. A hotel room can be a nice escape from your ordinary life, but you can also give it that homey feel. Here are some tips to Make a Hotel Room Feel Like Home.

Take Time to Unpack

Unpacking your bag can make a room feel less chaotic. Be sure to hang up your clothes or fold them into a drawer. Organizing your luggage will help you unwind and relax, and it will help make deciding what you wear on your trip much easier.

Make it Personal

Your favourite music or scent can make your hotel room feel that much more like home. Bring your iPod or music device with all your best tunes – it will make your surroundings a relaxing place to be. When it comes to smell, you can bring freshly washed clothes, scented oils, or spray your go-to perfume. The familiarity of the scent and music will make you feel more at home.

Other ways you can make a hotel room more personal is by bringing some mementos with you. If you don’t have the space to bring large items, you can bring a framed photo of your loved ones, or some smaller souvenir that reminds you of home. Adding some items unique to you can be a great way to make a hotel room feel warm and cozy.

Spoil Yourself

Hotels have lots of extras that can make your stay relaxing. Take advantage of the services hotels offer, whether it is another blanket or fresh flowers to brighten a room. A hotel’s job is to make your stay the best it can be, so don’t be afraid to ask about what extras they offer.

How would you make a hotel room more comfortable? Leave your suggestions below in our comments section.

Want more hotel tips? Check out our blog last week on How to Pack for One Week in a Carry on Bag.

Prestige Hosts Word on the Lake Festival in Salmon Arm

Prestige Celebrates Writers in Salmon Arm and the BC Community

This May, Prestige Hotels & Resorts is excited to be hosting a unique event at our Salmon Arm hotel. This event is the Word on the Lake Festival for Writers, which will be taking place from May 16-18. Sessions will include skill enhancing workshops and presenters in a Q & A style forum. Presenters include renowned Canadian authors Carmen Aguirre, Gail Anderson-Dargatz, Ann Eriksson, David Essig, Diana Gabaldon, Gary Geddes, C.C. Humphreys, Shelagh Jamieson, Ursula Maxwell-Lewis, Carolyn Swayze, and Howard White. If you’re a writer interested in this event, this is one you won’t want to miss.

About the Shuswap Association of Writers

Founding their organization in 2004, the Shuswap Association of Writers based in Salmon Arm near the shores of the stunning Shuswap Lake, created the Word on the Lake Festival to celebrate writers in the community. They have now expanded to offer other events throughout the year to support BC’s writers. Their main philosophy is to provide events that enrich the BC Interior’s cultural life, especially when it comes to the written or spoken arts.

Come Join Us at the Word on the Lake Festival for Writers in Salmon Arm

For an itinerary of the weekend, visit the Festival and Workshop Schedule page on the Shuswap Association of Writers website. Here, you can find a detailed explanation of all the workshops occurring over the weekend.

Registration for online or in person is already open to the public. Early registration online will close at midnight on April 25th, and mail early registration must be postmarked no later than April 25th. Registering online will not be available after midnight on May 13, and mail registration must be postmarked no later than May 13th. However, if you don’t meet those dates, there will be walk in registration available on site.

Where to Stay

The most convenient place to stay while attending the Word on the Lake Festival is on site at the Prestige Harbourfront Resort. Rooms start from $129.95 per night for two people. Contact us to reserve your room at this exclusive rate at 250.833.5800 or email us at SalmonArm@PrestigeHotels.ca.

How to Pack for One Week in a Carry On Bag

Traveling Light with a Carry On Bag

Too much baggage can weigh you down when you’re traveling. In some cases, you have to pay more for a heavy bag, wait longer in line at baggage claim, and toting around a bulky bag can be a hassle in itself. There’s no doubt about it: packing light is the way to go. That’s where one carry on bag can come in handy. If you pack everything in a single carry on for one week, your travels will be that much more comfortable and convenient.

Here are some methods on “How to Pack for One Week in a Single Carry On Bag.”

Check Carry On Size Restrictions

Be sure to check your airline’s website and see what carry on size restrictions they have. If you are rushed for time or forget this task, then here is a general rule of thumb:

• A 9 x 22 x 14 inch bag generally is allowed on a flight
• Some great carry on bags to travel with include a convertible bag, a small rolling bag, or a backpack (this all depends on your personal preference)

Organize / Plan
Lay out everything you’re planning to take, and then decide what is most essential to bring. Leaving unneeded items behind is key – if necessary, you can buy anything you left behind on your travels.
Use the Roll Method

Instead of folding your clothes, roll it in your carry on bag instead. This method is a compact way of packing.

Travel-Size Toiletries

Leave your big bottles at home, and bring travel-size toiletries with you. Not only do they save space, but you are only allowed to bring 100 ml of liquid when you choose to carry on your baggage.

Leave a little Room for Souvenirs

If you want to bring back any gifts for yourself of others, you’ll want to make sure there is enough space in your bag. Leave some room for any souvenirs you could collect on your travels.

For more details on traveling lightly, especially in different types of situations, read the Independent Traveler’s: The Carry-On Challenge.

Do you have any other tips for traveling light? Feel free to leave your ideas in our comments section or on our Facebook page.

Fun and Free Things to do in Sooke

Sooke Potholes

The Sooke Potholes are a popular and free option when you come and visit Sooke for your next vacation.

Visit Sooke on your Next Vacation

Now that spring is in the air, our Oceanfront Resort in Sooke is the perfect destination for your next trip. Located in the adventure capital of the South Island, Sooke offers spectacular views of the oceans and mountains and is located only an hour away from Victoria, BC.

If you’re on a budget, there are plenty of fun and free things to do in Sooke. Here are a few ideas.

Whiffin Spit

If you enjoy a great hike and scenic views, then Whiffin Spit Park is the place for you. Whiffin Spit park is a natural sandy breakwater, located south of Sooke and at the end of Whiffin Spit Road (just off of the main Sooke Road). Whiffin Spit Park features a lengthy but incredible walk to the light house. You’ll want to bring a light jacket because this hike will be worth your while.

French Beach Provincial Park

Now that spring has arrived, you’ll want to get to the beach as soon as you can. One of the more popular spots for families and beach goers is French Beach Provincial Park. This park offers a gorgeous sand and pebble beach with picnic tables so you can pack your own lunch and take it with you. This spot is a local favourite, and is only about 20 minutes from Sooke. If you decide to hit up this beach in the summer, go early. The parking lot usually gets filled up by 10 am.

East Sooke Regional Park

A popular destination for hiking and swimming, East Sooke Regional Park is an explorer’s dream. This park features coves, farm, and trails, and its main attraction: The Sooke Potholes. Here, you can swim in the pools that were formed by the river rocks at the Potholes. East Sooke Regional Park is a great place to go for the day, especially when the weather is nice.

For more information, visit the Discover Sooke website for more ideas on what you can do when you visit this destination.

Is Sooke one of your top getaways? Tell us about your favourite spot in our comments section.  

 

Profiled: Heather Bodnarchuk in Salmon Arm

Since working with Prestige for four years, Heather Bodnarchuk has led the Salmon Arm team by example with her active lifestyle and positive attitude. She works her hardest every day to heather in salmon armmake sure our guests get the Prestige royal treatment.

How long have you been a member of the Prestige family?
I started with the company in 2010 and now am the General  Manager of the Prestige Harbourfront Resort in Salmon Arm.

What do you do for fun?
I love being outdoors and spending time with my family, preferably together. In the summer we are biking, hiking and swimming in the areas around the Shuswap and Rocky Mountains. In the winter, we are skiing in all forms including cross country, ski touring (backcountry) and alpine.

What are your best-kept Salmon Arm secrets?
I love having a Shuswap Day – a good morning bike ride on one of the awesome super smooth single track trails like the Epic Larch Hills Traverse or the Salty Dog Race Course (www.shuswaptrailalliance.com). Afterwards, a cool swim at Canoe Beach followed by a long nap and a “farm to table” dinner made from ingredients bought at the many local markets (http://shuswaptourism.ca/do/food-wine-farms).

The winter is just as much fun in the Shuswap. I love taking my son to Larch Hills for a little cross country outing, a warm up and hot chocolate in the larch hills ski chalet (www.skilarchhills.ca) followed dinner out at Heidi’s Wine Bistro where we can get our fill of homemade Spaetzle and Schnitzel.

Best experience you’ve had working in hotels?
I love the people. I have the opportunity to meet and work with such a diverse group of people. I find that I am inspired by their stories every day. I am pretty lucky to work around many amazing people.

 

Winter Traveling in British Columbia

Traveling in the winter may seem like a pain to some, but there are things you can do to ensure your travel goes as smoothly as possible. Here are some tips on winter traveling in British Columbia.

Check Road Conditions

Before you head out, you’ll want to check the road conditions. A great resource with up-to-date information on routes and real time video feeds is DriveBC.com. If the weather is not safe to drive, then you can consider traveling another time or finding an alternative way of getting to your destination. If you are driving in snowy conditions, make sure you check out ICBC’s page  for tips on winter driving and rules on which routes require winter tires.

Book Your Stay in Advance

Don’t leave your planning until the very last minute. You’ll want to book your stay in advance so you don’t have to worry about finding accommodation once your arrive in town.

Leave Earlier

Leaving earlier is a good way to ensure you have lots of time to reach your destination. It gives you more time so you can easily reduce your speed and following distance, and it is most likely that you will be driving during daylight. This is a much safer option when you are traveling in the wintertime.

Check in with Someone

Every time you stop by a major center or are taking a break, it’s a good idea to check in with someone just so they know that you are safe. Being more diligent in the winter makes for safer travel and alleviates any worry for those who are waiting for you to arrive.

Call ahead

As locals, the Guest Service Agents at our hotels can assist you finding out current conditions and advising the most direct route to the hotel. We want every guest to have a safe drive and welcome any questions while you are in transit.

Stay Fit During the Holidays

The holidays can be a tough time to stay fit. With all the delicious food around and the hustle and bustle of the holiday, it can be difficult to make time for your workout regime. Here are some great ways to stay fit during the holidays.

Eat Fresh and Local

The holidays are always a time for feasting, but why not cook some of your meals using fresh and local ingredients? Local foods not only taste better, but are the healthiest option for anyone’s lifestyle.

Keep up with your Workouts

Just because it’s the holidays, it doesn’t mean you have to give up your workout routine. Be sure to fit in time for that run or trip to the gym – it will help you keep off those holiday pounds. If you’re traveling for the holidays, our athletic clubs at our Prestige locations are a great way to stay fit this winter.

Enjoy Outdoor Winter Activities

The winter offers an amazing amount of outdoor activities. Why not stay in shape and have fun doing it? Whether you want to ski, snowboard, go sledding or cross country skiing, these activities are fun to do in groups and will keep you fit during the holidays.

British Columbia offers amazing regions to really enjoy the winter session and stay active. You can find out more about this in our Winter Escapes blog post from last week.

At Prestige Hotels & Resorts, we wish you the best during the holidays this year and hope to see you at one of our locations very soon!

 

Top Five Ways To Celebrate Your Team

It has been a long year, and now is the perfect time to recognize the people that keep your workplace going. Here are five ways to celebrate your team this year.

Praise your team

If your employees or co-workers are doing a great job, let them know. Praise them for the things they’ve done well, and identify their actions that you found admirable.

Make a Gesture

Get to know your coworker’s interests, and once in a while, present them with a small gift. Whether it’s a cup of coffee or a great get-away, surprising your coworker with a gift will make their day. Spread the spirit of the season when you involve the whole team in an office Secret Santa with gag gifts. The sillier the gifts, the more entertaining and fun for your team.

Show Interest

Ask your team members about their life, whether it is their family, their hobbies, or how they spent their weekend. Your sincere interest in their lives causes people to feel cared about and valued.

Provide Opportunity

Reward hard work and dedication with an opportunity to represent your organization at a special event or professional meetings. Representing your entire team carries a lot of value for an employee. There is a level of trust that you imbue with the employee and at the same time, they have a chance to gain knowledge about your industry for personal and professional development.

Throw an Office Party

A great way to show appreciation and say thank you for your team’s hard work is by throwing a fun party. A more polite and gracious workplace is one appreciated by all, and a party is a great way to celebrate a year of achievements and hard work. Whether you are an experience event planner or planning your first party, we can help.

This year make your office party a one-stop-shop when you celebrate with Prestige. It’s a great opportunity to make your office party a great mini- retreat whether it be in Sooke, Salmon Arm, or Cranbrook. Book your celebration at any location by contacting us directly.

Enjoy the best of the holidays and have fun celebrating your entire team.