We’re famous for the quality of the crèches and kids’ clubs offered in many of our chalet hotels and beach resorts. To give newcomers to our childcare a flavour of what to expect, we asked our sales advisers to share the questions most commonly asked by parents when booking.
• What qualifications do the nannies have?
Our essential requirements for our nannies are CACHE, NNEB, City & Guilds, BTEC National Diplomas or equivalent qualification, or two years’ experience in a childcare environment, good swimming ability, fluency in English and enhanced disclosure through the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS).
• What are the nanny: child ratios?
Toddler 1: 1:3
Toddler 2: 1:3 (ski), 1:4 (summer)
Juniors: n/a (ski), 1:12 (summer)
Kidz:1:6 (ski), 1:15 (summer)
Indy: n/a (ski), 1:20 (summer)
• What is available in resort for those travelling with babies?
Our beach resorts with a Baby or Toddler club have parents’ kitchens with microwaves, sterilisers, UHT whole milk, a kettle and a fridge, except for Levante Beach where the rooms have facilities and milk is available from the restaurants, reception, bars or childcare centre.
Not all ski chalet-hotels have a kitchen but there is always an area where parents can prepare feeds and wash bottles.
In our hotels with Baby Clubs, we loan baby baths and potties, highchairs and travel cots for under-2s, and bed guards and booster seats for ages 2+.
• What does the evening childcare consist of?
All resorts with childcare have a ‘sleepover’ drop-in evening service that allows parents a quiet dinner in the restaurant from 7.30 to 10.30pm (or until 11pm on dine-out nights). Under-3s need to be settled in cots/rest beds before parents leave the childcare centre; kids 3+ can enjoy storytelling and a movie until their bedtime as advised by parents.
In beach resorts, children booked into Junior Club (ages 6–9) have an hour of evening entertainment from 7.30pm, with games and quizzes, followed by a supervised movie. For those in Kidz Club (ages 10–13) and Indy Club, there’s evening entertainment, and in some resorts a supervised Kidz Club movie.
Beach resorts have kids’ high tea at 5.30pm (supervised by parents), and for children using the entertainment Kidz Club and Indy Club, supervised dinners at 7.30/7.45pm and 7.45/8pm respectively.
In ski resorts, there’s a supervised kids’ high tea at 5pm. For those in Kidz Club, there’s a supervised dinner at 7pm five nights a week during school holidays.
• Is there in-room babysitting for those who don’t want to use the evening crèche?
Yes, babysitting by Mark Warner nannies is available at extra charge, but it’s essential to book your slot(s) with the hotel childcare manager when you arrive to ensure you get the evening(s) you want.
• Is the childcare on-site at the chalet-hotels?
Our ski childcare is in-house. Ski lessons are given by our recommended ski school partners.
• What kind of activities do the children do?
In Baby Club, indoor and outdoor activities include hand-painting, bubble-play and beach trips (or walks in ski resorts).
In Toddler Club, the program might including treasure hunts, painting, play dough and construction, plus, in beach resorts, sandcastle-building, swimming, ice-cream trips and canoeing, and in ski resorts, snowman-building, sledging, cable-car rides and hot-chocolate trips.
Mini Club (ages 3–5) has a similar program, but in beach resorts, the kids spend more time on the waterfront – this is the age when they begin sailing. In ski resorts, children booked into this club may be signed up to morning ski school, as well as doing the same kind of activities as Toddler Club. They may also do swimming in Les Deux Alpes.
Junior Club (ages 6–9 in beach resorts) is essentially an introduction to the watersports program, with windsurfing and sailing lessons on alternate days, plus arts and crafts and quizzes. In Kidz Club (ages 10–13) and Indy Club (age 14–17) in our beach resorts, children are kept busy with a mainly waterfront- and activity-based program focused on sailing, windsurfing, canoeing and team games.
In Kidz Club in our ski resorts (ages 6–12), children may be booked into half- or full-day ski school, with other activities including quizzes, games, snowman-building and sledging, plus swimming in Les Deux Alpes.
• What age can children start specific activities?
Skiing lessons generally start at ages 4 and 5 (or from 3 in La Plagne). Our childcare staff will take them to and collect them from our recommended ski schools.
In sun resorts, children spend time at the beach from Toddler Club onwards – ages 1 and 2 are taken out for canoe rides, while ages 3–5 add sailing to the mix. Ages 6–9 have progressive watersports lessons, with the aim by the end of the week to be able to sail a boat.
Our beach resorts also have tennis lessons at extra charge for ages 3+.
• What do kids need to bring to crèche/kids’ club?
All children should bring a named bag for their belongings which must include a hat, swimwear or a ski suit, sunglasses and sunscreen (SPF 30+). In ski resorts, kids also need waterproof gloves.
For Baby Club, the list of essentials and desirables is as follows: nappies, nappy sacks, comforter, baby bottles, formula milk, wet wipes, bibs and a favourite toy. Many of these are available either on-site or in nearby shops. In beach resorts, also bring swim nappies and a buggy.
For toddlers, we require/suggest: nappies, nappy sacks, wet wipes, comforters, bottles/cups, a change of clothes, a favourite toy, and in beach resorts swim nappies and a T-shirt for the water.
For Mini Club in beach resorts, kids should bring a towel, a confidence jacket/swimming aid, a T-shirt for the water, and waterproof shoes (reef type). Those in Junior, Kidz and Indy clubs should add a UV top and shorts.
In ski resorts, children 3 and up need helmets, snowsuits, boots, sunglasses, a lift pass if booked into ski school, a snack, tissues, a hat, waterproof gloves, lip salve and pocket money for a drink.
Kids aged 3 and up also have swimming as an activity in Les Deux Alpes and need swimwear.
• Do you offer special needs childcare provision?
Mark Warner offers one-to-one childcare at the Levante Beach Resort, Lakitira Beach Resort and San Lucianu Beach Resort. As there are limited places, parents need to reserve one-to-one childcare at the time of booking. We can sometimes split mornings and afternoons.
Read more about child-friendly holidays with Mark Warner.