Review // Seaside Apartments at Buklins, Skegness

On our recent trip to Butlins in Skegness, we had the pleasure of staying in a Seaside Apartment which was so beautiful and well equipped that I felt it deserved a blog post all of its own! Located in the heart of the resort and just a short walk to pretty much everything, these recently refurbished apartments are the perfect base for making the most of your time in Butlins.

 

The seaside apartments are inspired by the nostalgia of the British seaside and the interiors are bright, colourful and cheerful. Inside you’ll find a spacious open plan living/dining/kitchen space complete with cosy L-shaped sofa and all over you’ll find quirky nods towards our love for the British seaside; a pin the tail on the donkey game, ice cream cushions and fluffy cloud shaped lights. Sleeping up to four people in two bedrooms and with a choice of either a balcony or patio, the seaside apartments are just perfect for small families.
Let’s have a look around!
The open plan living, dining and kitchen space was definitely our favourite part of the apartment. It was cosy, comfortable and spacious. French windows offered plenty of natural light and these opened out onto a balcony area complete with table and chairs, perfect for outdoor dining had the weather been better (it was freezing, boo!).
We loved snuggling up on the sofa each evening, planning our activities for the following day. Kiddo loved the large television and we loved the addition of USB charging points, good lighting and ample heating. No detail left out!
The kitchen area is well equipped and has everything you need to make meals from the comfort of your apartment. As you can see below, there is a microwave, fridge, kettle and toaster. The cupboards also contain all the crockery, cooking equipment and cutlery that you’d expect from self catering accommodation.
We purchased the premium dining plan for our stay in Butlins so we didn’t have chance to use the kitchen properly but we loved the fact that our tea and coffee supply was kept fully topped up throughout our stay. It’s worth knowing that housekeeping and towels are included in the price of a stay in a Seaside Apartment as it’s something that you’d normally have to pay extra for.
Here’s that pin the tail on the donkey game…..
….So cute!
The two bedrooms were both spotlessly clean, comfortable and cosy. Again, the interiors were bright and cheerful but both rooms were also super relaxing and not at all overwhelming with their decor…. just perfect for a peaceful nights sleep!
The double bedroom came with two bedside tables, cosy wall lights and an open storage system with mounted television, a safe to store your valuables, hangers and a built-in dressing table. Also, plug sockets beside the bed…. this pleased me no end!
The little dressing table with overhead lighting was a winner for me. The natural light pouring through the window next to it meant that it was a lovely place to get ready each morning!
A hairdryer is also included and yes, it was a good one! I find it such a disappointment when you stay somewhere and the hairdryer they offer is substandard….. It’s one of my pet hates for sure!
I just wanted to share a photograph of the blinds (which are the same in both bedrooms). Not only were they super cute, they also blocked out the light meaning that we didn’t wake too early and were child friendly too. No dangerous cords dangling around!
The twin bedroom was just across the hallway and had the cutest pink cloud shaped nighlight on the wall. Perfect for children who do not like to sleep in complete darkness! The layout in here was similar to the double bedroom although there was no TV in this room. Again, child friendly touches such as plug socket covers and heating that could be switched off at the wall were included meaning that bedtime was safe, comfortable and cosy for little ones.
I must say that all of the beds were super comfortable, we all slept really well during our time here!
The bathroom in the seaside apartment is a small but perfectly curated space. There is an enclosed shower cubicle, large mirror, heated towel rail and a step stool for children. Also in here was a clothes drying rack which was super for drying out our swimming stuff!
The bathroom was spotlessly clean and housekeeping came daily to freshen up towels, etc. The little bag of toiletries was a nice little touch that we took so the swimming pool and used throughout our break. Antibacterial hand gel was included in this set too which was super! If you know me then you’ll know how obsessed I am with hand gels!
Outside of the apartment we were lucky to have a beautiful little playground with swings, slide and seesaw pretty much right outside the door. This really impressed kiddo and we loved the fact that Lagoon bay (the area in which the Seaside Apartments are) was super pretty to potter around. Such an amazing location, nothing seemed to be more than a couple of minutes walk away. I’d definitely recommend booking one of these apartments if you are staying with small children!
Overall we were really impressed with our stay in a Seaside Apartment at Butlins, Skegness. My only complaint really is that we heard a lot of noise from the people staying next door (screaming babies mostly!) throughout the duration of our stay. Other than that though, our accommodation was absolutely perfect in providing everything that we needed for a fun and relaxing stay. We had such a fantastic time and I would not hesitate in booking a Seaside Apartment again next time!

Our ‘Just For Tots’ Break at Butlins, Skegness

If you mentioned the word “Butlins” to me a few years ago, the first few words that would immediately pop into my head would include Redcoats, the seaside, cabaret shows and knobbly knee competitions. I’ll be honest with you, it’s not a holiday destination I have previously had on my radar.
Over the past year or two though, some of the amazing bloggers that I follow have been taking their families on trips to Butlins and sharing their experiences. I instantly became intrigued! Their trips looked like so much fun and photographs of the accommodation looked stunning.
I had been aware of the Butlins ‘just for tots’ breaks for a while and after reading so many positive reviews from other bloggers, we decided to take the plunge and book our first Butlins break in April 2017.
The ‘just for tots’ breaks are a relatively recent addition to the Butlins calendar, offered on select dates throughout the year. These breaks have been specially designed for families with children aged 5 and under and are the perfect way for little ones to enjoy everything that Butlins has to offer. From a jam-packed entertainment programme featuring beloved children’s TV characters to tailored dining, no detail has been left out when it comes to creating a holiday that perfectly fits around the schedule of a young child.
We stayed in a newly refurbished Seaside Apartment which was the perfect base for our break. Located at the heart of the resort, we could pop to the Skyline pavilion in less than a minute and we were not far at all from anything. I’m going to be sharing a full review of our accommodation soon so keep your eyes peeled for that one!

 

I’m amazed that there was so much to do during our time in Butlins…. we literally didn’t leave the resort all week. On arrival we were handed an entertainment schedule and a booklet detailing everything that was included in the price of our stay. Let me tell you, we absolutely loved sitting down each evening and highlighting all the things we wanted to do the following day….. from football coaching to play-doh sessions, messy play, shows, swimming and so much more!
I am so excited to share a few highlights from our break with you today. Here are our top five things that we loved about our ‘just for tots’ break at Butlins, Skegness.
Dining
Firstly, food. You know me, I love my food! We purchased the Premium Dining option when we booked our trip and this gave us a buffet breakfast and evening dinner at a premium restaurant for each morning and night of our stay. I can’t rate our dining experience enough, it far exceeded my expectations! Each morning we were greeted by the friendliest staff and for the children there was always a character waiting to greet them. Kiddo loved meeting Mr Bump and giving Dipsy from the Teletubbies a cuddle before breakfast. Such a magical experience for her!
The range of food available for both breakfast and evening dinner was amazing. My husband was a huge fan of the made to order breakfast sandwiches whilst I tried to work my way through the rest of the buffet. Each evening there was a different theme along with all the usual favourites… there was a Mexican night and an Italian, both of which were complete winners with us!
When it comes to little ones though, we really loved the fact that no detail was left out when it came to dining. High chairs and child friendly cutlery were available, kiddo was given crayons and puzzles each time we dined and there was always a huge range of food for children. Yep, even Ella’s Kitchen meals and plenty of fresh fruit! Kiddo loved being able to select her own food and she ate very well throughout our stay. She was particularly fond of the desserts but no surprises there!
When it came to lunch time, we were usually still pretty fully from breakfast though I just wanted to give Soho Coffee (you’ll find it inside the Pavilion) a special mention because their freshly made sandwiches, jacket potatoes and soups were to die for. We visited every day as I soon became ridiculously obsessed with their beetroot humus, avocado and feta baguettes. Fresh, handmade and absolutely delicious!
Entertainment
Butlins is famous for it’s entertainment and I can now fully appreciate the reason for this. It’s blummin’ fantastic! There was always something on, from shows to pantomime to sports classes and much more. Kiddo fell head over heels for the Skyline Gang who performed three shows throughout the week; “A Pirate’s Adventure”, “Carnival Crazy” and “It’s Magic”. These shows were perfect fun for little ones and were complete with juggling, magic, comedy and of course, plenty of catchy songs!
We tried to see as much as possible throughout our stay and this was made easy with the repeated entertainment schedule. We saw the Teletubbies, the Mr Men, Danger Mouse, Billie & Bonnie and the fabulous Whittington Rocks panto (definitely one for the adults too…. absolutely hilarious!). The highlight of the week for kiddo though was potentially the Mister Maker show, one of her TV favourites! Getting the opportunity to meet him after the show was a really special moment for her, especially as he really took his time with all of the children. No part of our break felt rushed, something we really loved about Butlins.
Throughout each show in the pavilion, the Redcoats were always sitting with children and encouraging them to join in. They were so friendly, enthusiastic and professional in their approach… I can see why they are such an asset for Butlins!

 

 

 

 

Outdoor fun
Outside of the Skyline Pavilion (the main activity hub), there is a whole heap of things to do outdoors. The weather was admittedly absolutely freezing during our trip (where on earth did spring go?!) so this is somewhere we’d love to spend more time when we return to Butlins! We loved the fairground. All of the rides are included in the price of our stay so it was lovely letting kiddo go on whatever rides she wanted, as many times as she wanted without having to say ‘no’!
She also loved the various outdoor playgrounds. Immediately outside of our apartment was a little park complete with swings, slide and seesaw. Little things like this really impressed kiddo and she often played in the park just before bed (“Park in the dark!”…. one of her favourite things!). Something she obviously doesn’t normally have the chance to do, eh?!

 

 

 

Learning, confidence and creativity

Kiddo’s confidence really shined during our break in Butlins. There were so many opportunities for her to be creative, learn new things or make new friends. It fills my heart with cheer to see her playing so independently, discovering new things and making use of opportunities available. I can tell you, she blummin’ loved the Tots Disco each evening. She was a fan of the Little Library, a cosy quiet space crammed full of exciting books to read. Also a favourite was the Littlemagictrain show which made use of role-play, storylines and fun music to unleash that imagination. We loved how well thought out the schedule was for little ones, it was so inspiring for them! There was always something new and exciting to try out.
Splash Waterworld

 

Finally, I wanted to mention the swimming pool. Splash Waterworld is potentially one of the best swimming pools we have been to with kiddo, it’s the perfect place for little ones to build confidence in the water! The pool opens from 9am and the morning session is “quiet time” where the bigger rides are switched off and the pool is quieter…. just right for a relaxing swim!
There are opportunities here for swimming lessons (£5pp) but as kiddo is already quite confident in the water, we loved spending time exploring everything the water park has to offer which includes everything from raft rides to little boats and a lovely lazy river (my fav!).
We had such an incredible time and the experience for kiddo was truly magical. I can’t believe we didn’t discover Butlins sooner!

How To Make A Cosy Home

There is currently a big fuss about minimalist homes. It’s great to cut out the clutter and make a space that’s viable for both living and working in and honestly, you can be both minimalistic and cosy without having to scrimp on letting your style and personality shine through! With this in mind, let’s have a look at how we can get a cosy home…
Look at lighting
Lighting sets the mood, and so you want something that is interchangeable with the brightness or that you can save to switch on later in the day. The more harsh the light is, the less it feels like you can spend a long time in a room – it becomes too clinical. Set some dimmer lamps around the room to really begin to make it into a cosy haven.
Bring in the blankets
No matter if you’re chilling on your bed, on a sofa or out in the garden on a summer night, blankets are always a welcome addition for when a cool breeze hits us. Blankets help us to settle down and become snug. They also offer a great chance to snuggle up next to someone, plus can offer more decoration to a room. What’s not to love about them?
Make sure you’re properly heated
Don’t just think about how many radiators you’ve got in your house, but rather whether they’re the right size for the room and where they’re placed. If you’ve got any furniture in the way of the radiators that is blocking the heat from moving around the room freely, think about how you can rearrange the room to prevent this from happening. You can keep your bathroom warm with a towel radiator, which will also help with making your towels softer and something to look forward to when you’re getting out of the bath or shower. During the summer months you may not need to switch on the heating at all, but the sun warms up rooms quicker than you’d think.
Think underfoot
The main source of heat loss on the human body is from your head, but think about how much of a difference it makes when you’ve got something on your feet to keep them warm. Instead of constantly going round in slippers or socks (or slipper-socks, let’s cut out the middleman here), consider purchasing a good quality rug or investing in a carpet if you don’t have one already. It can really help to bring a room together, but also adds such a cosy feel to whatever room that it’s becoming an addition to.
Pad your life away
Cushions, pillows, throws, blankets – all together, they can create some of the comfiest situations known to man. Go as wild as you want to when collecting them. They’re the most well-known secret for a true cosy home!

Less But Better // My Latest Homeware Addition

In my quest for a more minimal and simple lifestyle, I am certainly now more selective around the items I bring into my home. I’m a big fan of ‘buy me once’ products; quality items that are built to last. It’s an idea I’ve really latched on to over the last few years as I have come to realise it makes absolutely no sense to buy cheap items that don’t last again and again. Quality, durability and sustainability are where it’s at for me now! And it’s not just good for me either, it’s beneficial for the environment too. The less things I buy, the less ends up being wasted or going to landfill!

I’m really trying to be more conscious of what comes into my home and put a little more thought into my buying rather than making impulse purchases in high street shops (which do serve their purpose, don’t get me wrong…. I love a bargain! I’m just practising a little more restraint when I hit the homeware aisles!).

But with all this said, I still love my home interiors. I love bedding, I love candles and I love a good cushion! Less but better is my motto and it’s one that I now try and stick to when making purchases. I can still enjoy these things just as long as my purchases are considered and will have a place or purpose in our home!

I wanted to share my latest addition to our home as it comes from a new-to-me company called Banbayu. If you have not come across this wonderful new shopping destination before then let me tell you a little more!
Banbayu offer a touch of ethically-sourced luxury for the home which has evolved from a devotion of exploring our planet. They sell an exquisite collection of authentic homewares, lighting and even jewellery from some of the world’s most diverse and remote cultures. Every piece is handmade and verified for cultural and ecological sustainability and they are also passionate about supporting different cultures and environments through charitable donations and ethical sourcing.You can find out more about the founders of Banbayu here. Their brand ideas are super admirable and their range of products is not incredibly vast but their selection is impeccable!
Browsing through their website, I was initially drawn to their range of handmade vases decorated with circus inspired art. They are just my kind of thing! One offs, such beautiful original pieces. And then I saw the range of cushions made by Jules Pansu in Paris, France. Jules Pansu have been weaving textile tapestries and wall art since 1878 and are still going strong today. The designs feature the work of some of the most influential artists of the 20th century, namely Miró and Picasso. I have a certain admiration for the work of these artists after studying art and working in various art galleries over the years. I just knew I had to have one of these cushions in my home!
After much deliberation, I went for the 2+5=7 design by Miró. The image has been licensed by the Miró foundation and has been brought to life in a unique and beautiful way for use in the home. It literally transforms your home into a sort of art gallery. There’s no reason  as to why art should be restricted to being hung on walls! The colours are spot on for our living room and the contemporary design is a little nod to my artistic background. Honestly, I just love this cushion! It’s bold, bright and full of character.
The cushion retails for £85.00 at Banbayu which is pricey, I’ll admit. You can really see the work that has gone into making this item though, different weaving techniques have been used to carefully recreate identical paint colours and Miró’s painting strokes. The reverse of the cushion is a plain black cotton fabric, a lovely contrast to the bold and bright image on the front. Also, there’s a concealed zip which makes for a neat, well though out design that is easy to remove should you need to wash it. It’s plump, pert and well made…. just what I like in a cushion. You can just tell that it’s certainly going to be one that will keep it’s shape and last for years!

 

The cushion has certainly become a talking point when guests come to our house. They like to try and work out what the image is, what it means. My 3 year old daughter has decided that sometimes it is a face and sometimes it is a beach with the moon shining down. She loves to tell people her thoughts. This is what I love about art; it makes you question things, it creates dialogues.

 

I am so pleased with this new addition to our home. What do you think? Have you heard of Banbayu before? Pop over to their website to see their full range of cushions, home interiors, lighting and more! 

Attic Plans// An Office Space Wishlist

So, let’s talk about work space. If you work from home, it can often be super tempting to get comfy on your favourite sofa and use your lap as a desk. A sofa desk if you will! I know I do it, far too often! It’s a huge distraction for me though as I always end up switching the TV on in the background or doing anything other than ‘work’. It’s also not very practical!
This year I’m working on our attic room with the intention of creating some kind of work space/play room hybrid. Somewhere I can actually do work without distraction and somewhere kiddo can play freely. It’s a lovely spacious room with plenty of light and it is completely my intention to make the best of this space!
I’ve talked about my plans for the play room side of our attic and so today, I wanted to update you with a bit of a wish list for things I’d like to see in the office/work space side of the room.
The first thing to think about when it comes to this room is blinds. I know I’ve said this more than once before but our attic room gets insufferably hot in the summer months so blackout blinds that provide effective heat and light control are an essential when it comes to planning our attic space. VELUX Blinds have a super range of blinds including a 2-in-1 VELUX blackout and awning blind which looks perfect for our needs. The awning blind cuts out the direct rays from the sun and reduces heat by up to 90% which is just what we need! The blinds come in a range of colour options too so there’ll definitely be one that we can all agree on. I like the monochrome graphic pattern best, just saying!

Next, a proper desk. We currently have our old dining table up there that I use as a desk although it’s far too tall and just not practical! I’m such a fan of functional furniture and I’ll happily pay for timeless pieces that are built to last. I have my eye on this Ebbe Gehl for John Lewis Mira Desk & Filing Cabinet combo, it’s just spot on in every sense. I love those rounded corners, the functionality, the storage space! It’s perfect.

…. And you can’t have a nice desk without a nice chair! Made do a lovely selection of stylish but comfortable looking chairs. I’m having a hard time picking out just one that I like so here are three. Which do you like best?

Finally, lighting. A good desk lamp is also going to be an essential item on my list. I’m one of those people that likes to have lights on to work, especially when it comes to packing up parcels. This glass shade marble table lamp from Oliver Bonas is one that I am definitely lusting after at the moment. It’s simple yet stylish…. just my kinda thing!
This is a collaborative post but all thoughts and words are my own.

New Additions to Our I-Spy Book Collection

We have quite a few exciting holidays lined up over the next few months and one of the things I love doing for kiddo is putting together a little travel bag for her packed full of goodies to keep her entertained on those long journeys and during the evenings after busy days exploring. I make one for every trip and they are always very much appreciated by her!
I plan on sharing a post or a video soon on some of the things I like to include in her travel bag but as an idea, there’ll be everything from a copy of her favourite magazine to small toys, her favourite snacks and small books.
You might remember that we’re a huge fan of i-SPY books in our house so including a couple of these in her bag is always a must-do nowadays!
We acquired a few new i-SPY books recently and i’m so excited to share our latest finds on my blog today. The three new copies I will be packing for our next holidays are “Flags“, “Wild Flowers” and “At the Seaside“.

 

The range of titles that are currently available to by from i-SPY is rapidly growing, surely a testament to their success! The latest titles include “Zoo“, “Cool Cars“, “At the Museum“, “I-Spy something beginning with….“, and “In the street“.
I love that these books are so well illustrated and are such a joy to collect. I know I’ve said this before but in a world that is constantly dominated by technology, I’m such a fan of any tool that will help children engage and interact with the world around them.

 

You might fondly remember the i-SPY books from your childhood but for those who are new to the books, the objective is simple and so much fun! Simply work your way through the book, spotting items and collecting points along the way. Once you have scored yourself 1000 points, you can pop over to the i-SPY website to apply for a certificate and a badge that will be posted out to you in the mail. It’s good old fashioned fun and we love it!

 

At the Seaside” is a brilliant new addition to our collection. Perfect for British seaside holidays, this book is crammed full of exciting things to spot! From ships and rock pools to paddling dogs and the Blackpool Tower, this book firmly encourages children to explore the outdoors in such a fun and interactive way!

 

Wild Flowers” is the perfect title for us at the moment. Kiddo is so interested in plants and flowers, continuously asking their names when we’re out walking. This book is colour coded, so it’s super easy to narrow down the flower once it has been spotted. It also contains flowers and plants that grow in cities, woods, ponds and in the countryside…. perfect for taking absolutely anywhere you might spot wild flowers!

 

Finally, we have a bit of a flag obsession at the moment so “Flags” is another title that is just spot on for kiddo’s travel bag. She loves spotting flags when we are out and about and this book will help us identify some of the more tricky flags we come across now and again!
Alongside each flag you’ll find important facts listed such as the capital, language spoken, currency, population and size. Such a fun way to get to know our world a little bit better! I just know that kiddo is going to love this one!
Are your children a fan of i-SPY books? Did you collect these books when you were younger? Let me know in a comment below!
Take a look at the i-SPY website to discover the full range of titles in this fantastic collection!
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