Empowering Solo Parent Travel with Delta Hotels by Marriott  

Solo Parent Travel – is this a niche? We’d like to make it so. Travelista’s Editor Jessica Ruth Gibson continues her new solo parent travel journey on a child-friendly hotel break with Delta Hotels by Marriott. 

Since becoming a solo parent to my five year old, I’ve come to an empowering realisation when it comes to family travel. And it’s this; you don’t need to be in a nuclear family format in order to travel with your children. So far I’ve independently taken my son to Bulgaria and Spain, but you don’t need to go that far to create a special parent and child adventure. Our last mother and son trip was for a weekend away at Delta Hotels by Marriott Preston. 

To celebrate the partnership between Illumination’s Migration movie and Delta Hotels by Marriott, we were invited to spend the weekend at their Preston hotel and experience the film-inspired activities and child-friendly features of the hotel.

This article has been written in partnership with Delta Hotels by Marriott. This is an honest review with all words being unique and that of the authors. 

Our Delta Hotels by Marriott Preston Review

First Impressions

After a two hour drive from York, my son and I arrived at Delta Hotels by Marriott Preston around 6pm on Friday night. There was a shared excitement to arrive and check into our new home for the weekend and I was looking forward to spending some quality time with my son away from the routines and chores of daily life. 

We received a warm welcome from the front desk and the Theo immediately noticed the presence of the Migration film characters around the reception area. Having seen Migration at the cinema the week before, we were already familiar with the film and its characters. We were swiftly checked-in and given key cards to our spacious family room. 

The family room had two double beds and all the modern amenities you’d expect from a good hotel including tea and coffee making facilities, hair dryer, ample wardrobe space and a spacious bathroom complete with bathtub (great for families with young kids). In addition, we received Mum and Son welcome drinks (a prosecco and a J20), a handwritten welcome note, a kid’s activity pack and a gorgeous leather vanity bag of ESPA products.

Family-Friendly Dining

After checking in we headed straight for dinner at The Cast Iron Grill, the hotel’s main restaurant. After dining at The Cast Iron Grill at Breadsall Priory (another hotel in the Delta Hotels by Marriott group), I already knew the food would be up to a good standard. The restaurant is spread across a formal dining area and a more informal bar area that has the feel of a gastro pub. However, the menu is the same across both settings. Children can dine in either setting but we opted to dine in the bar area which felt quite relaxed with TV screens showing sport and a bar area. 

We were quickly shown to our seats and given both the main menu and the kid’s menu, which had a great selection of child-friendly dishes with fresh veggie sides and desserts. I opted for the Cast Iron Burger (beef patty, crispy bacon, Cheddar cheese, smoky chipotle sauce and fries) on the first night and a roasted chicken dish on the second. Theo opted for Macaroni cheese with fresh veggies on the first night and fish and chips on the second night. The food was up to a brilliant standard and I’d rate the chips a 10/10! We couldn’t have asked for more. The service was very friendly, prompt and efficient and the staff understood the need for a fairly speedy dining experience with my 5 year old. 

Kids Activities: The Migration Movie Duck Hunt Challenge

After a comfortable night’s sleep, we were refreshed and ready to take on the hotel’s Duck Hunt Challenge, a special activity as part of their partnership with Illumination’s Migration movie. There were 30 character ducks hidden around the hotel for little guests to find, and once they find them all they win a little prize pack including a brilliant activity booklet, some bird food to use at a local nature reserve, a KitKat and their very own Gwen character duck. 

Following a tick sheet, my son loved exploring the hotel searching for all of the ducks. He was delighted by the prize he won which included a fantastic activity pack, some duck food to take to the local Brockholes nature reserve, a KitKat and his very own Migration character duck, otherwise known as ‘Gwen’.

A Day out at Blackpool Pleasure Beach

As part of our family weekend, I decided to book tickets for the season opening of Blackpool Pleasure Beach on 2nd March. If you’re wondering where to stay for a family weekend in Blackpool, Delta Hotels by Marriott Preston is a brilliant child-friendly option. Located 15 miles (a 21 minute drive) from Blackpool Pleasure Beach, you can enjoy the madness of Blackpool and then escape to a haven of calm at the hotel.

We had a great day out, but in true British fashion, the weather was not on our side. A combination of relentless rain and water rides meant that we both got absolutely drenched so we were ready to head back to the hotel mid-afternoon. After getting into some dry clothes, we went in search of coffee and cake. 

The Cast Iron Grill doesn’t have the option of fresh cakes per say, the friendly staff suggested choosing something off the desert menu alongside a coffee – no issue there! Theo chose a chocolate ice cream and I went for a sticky toffee pudding. The waiter really impressed me when he brought out my son’s hot chocolate, not realising it was for a child. Without hesitation, he took it away to make another one that would be more drinkable temperature for a child. I really appreciated that level of thought from the waiter and it meant we could enjoy our drinks and sweet treats together.

Long Stay Special Offer: Get 15% off standard rates when you stay three nights, 20% off when you stay between four and six nights, or 25% off when you stay seven nights or more.

The final aspect of the hotel we got to enjoy was the swimming pool, which families and children are allowed to use from 9am to 7pm on weekdays and 9am to 6pm on weekends.

The pool is a great facility and added bonus of the hotel. Whilst there are two adult swim lanes, a sign marked a dedicated zone for kids. This means little ones can let off some steam and have fun without disturbing other swimmers too much.

I also noticed that the female changing room had a playpen for babies and toddlers to sit in whilst parents got changed. All these little details make things so much easier for parents and are definitely appreciated. 

Room Servicing and Sustainability

The only thing that felt like a disappointment at the hotel was that our room had not been serviced when we retuned after the day out. When I queried this with the staff they explained that the Delta Hotels by Marriott policy is that they service the rooms on the third day of each stay. This is a tick in terms of sustainability, but I’d still have liked the existing bedding and towels to have been made up again for our second night and for some basic housekeeping to have been done e.g. replacement of used mugs and complimentary water. 

The Verdict

Our weekend stay at Delta Hotels by Marriott Preston felt so effortless and knowing that your child is welcome and catered for makes being away from home so much easier as a parent. The thoughtful touches and attention to detail didn’t go a miss. Every time we take a trip I feel my son gets that little bit more resilient, adaptable and independent so there will be plenty more trips like this to come. 

Migration-themed family stays and kids eat free offers are available to book in Delta Hotels by Marriott properties across the UK until 14th April. 

Parents – would you ever consider a solo parent trip away? We’d love to read your thoughts and opinions in the comments. 

Get more family friendly travel inspiration on Travelista.

Jessica Ruth Gibson is the Founder and Editor of Travelista and an award-winning travel content creator of 10 years. She lives in York, UK with her son and has travelled to over 50 countries; her favourites being Italy, Canada and Vietnam.


  • Not servicing the room under the guise of ‘sustainability’ is a big NO from me.

    • I know what you mean. I think it’s a shame as many guests will be staying just 1-2 nights and I feel part of the hotel experience is coming back to a ‘made up’ room. Regardless of whether the sheets or towels have been changed. That bit is much less important.

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