Some hotels that don’t have the space are partnering with a local museum: Schoolchildren staying at the Wyndham Grand Clearwater Beach can complete their schoolwork at the nearby Clearwater Marine Aquarium Education Center, in a socially distanced setting, and then can participate in tours and activities with a marine biologist there. Stays include two spa treatments for the parents and start around $479 per night.
Technology offerings are expanding too. At the Domio extended stay hotels, with locations in Chicago, Miami, Nashville and New Orleans, guests can make use of laptop-expansion kits, which include a monitor, keyboard, mouse and power strip. The equipment is free to borrow for guests who book directly through the hotel website.
Existing amenities, new names
Hotels are also marketing existing offerings with language meant to catch a parent’s eye. The “Teach by the Beach” package at The Shores Resort and Spa in Daytona Beach, Fla., highlights learning “the physics of waves” at surfing class, biology lessons viewing birds at a nearby nature preserve and history with “a touch of PE” as children climb the local lighthouse. Midweek rates start at about $170. San Diego Mission Bay Resort’s “Recess at the Pool” package includes S’mores and rental bikes with midweek rates starting at $205.
Earlier this year, Kimberly Bolan, a 51-year-old waxing-center franchisee, had planned a short getaway alone with her husband from their home outside of Memphis to the Casa Marina resort in Key West, Fl. But when school for the couple’s three children, ages 13 to 19, went online, the couple decided to take them along. Casa Marina, part of the Waldorf Astoria Resorts brand, offered a “Home School Package” with tickets to local museums and a bottle of wine for “the teachers.” Prices start at about $475 per night, with a four-night minimum.
Their eighth grader, Gabriela Bolan, brought a five-day homework packet and “got started on the plane,” she said, so she would have more time for fun. The teens interspersed swimming and fishing with Zoom classes and work on schoolwork packets.
“It’s a new world and I feel like we should take advantage of it,” Ms. Bolan said.
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