trvljunkiefamily's Passport


Member since:
21 March 2011

Icon_superoo_orangeSuperoo '12, '13, '14, '16

Icon_pictureBeen to 269 Attractions
Icon_star208 Reviews
Icon_star1108 First to Review
Icon_camera2858 Photos
Icon_thumbsup46 Helpful Votes
About Me & My Family

We are a family of 4 (one 2 year old and a 4 month old) that loves to travel and explore. Our goal this year is to do one family fun activity a month. I'm here to share our findings.
Our Family's Travel Personality
adventurous, curious, rowdy, relaxed, energetic, easy_going, scheduled
We Just Got Back From
Indianapolis, Indiana
Our Favorite Vacation Spot
A Place We'd Love To Visit
Favorite Vacation Memory
Honeymoon with the hubs in Hawaii; proposal in France
Worst Travel Moment With My Kids:
Our ER visit for my toddler ;(
Websites I Like:
For more detailed reviews and pics:

Reviews & Photos

208 Reviews

February 29 2016
0 families found this helpful
Le Meridien Chicago - Oakbrook Center | kids travel, kids activities
Le Meridien Chicago - Oakbrook Center
2100 Spring Road,
Oak Brook, Illinois
"Great hotel with an awesome spa"
Our recent travels brought us to Le Meridien Chicago - Oakbrook Center. We've never been to a Le Meridien property before and was pleasantly surprised.

Location: The hotel is located in the affluent suburb of Oak Brook, and the only hotel on the grounds of Oakbrook Center, the fabulous outdoor shopping mall. Just cross the parking lot and you're there.

Hotel: Parking is free and plentiful. Valet parking is available (but no reason you would need it). When we first walked in, we were greeted by the very friendly front desk staff. I couldn't help notice the colorful mural along the wall. A perfect spot for Instagram pictures, I might add.

Service/Staff: We were greeted with a warm welcome from the front desk and delicious Chicago Mix popcorn. I also had the pleasure of meeting the general manager, Frank, and he went above and beyond by bringing our family cookies, milk, and their famous eclairs.

Room: We stayed in a double guest bedroom and found that the rooms were spacious enough for the kids to play around. I absolutely loved the local Chicago art in the room. Their love of Chicago was also seen in the bathroom with the cool Ferris wheel wallpaper. Another great perk staying at Le Meridien Chicago Oakbrook is complimentary access to the Elmhurst Art Museum.

Unfortunately, the hotel doesn't have a pool. A bummer for the kids but they were kept pretty busy in the room. There is also a mid-size fitness room located on the 10th floor. The hotel offers free wi-fi for Starwood members (free to join). We were happy to find that guests were able to borrow DVD players - a must for our movie-loving family.

The highlight of the stay was no doubt having my very own private spa suite with heated tile bed, deep soaking tub, and steam shower. Pure heaven!

We had Club lounge access and had to pass through their tapas restaurant, El Tapeo. It seemed kind of odd to be passing through the restaurant to reach the Club Lounge, but in doing so the opportunity to scope out the food being served. It looked delicious! But it seemed like it would be best enjoyed by adults-only. Or really behaved kids. Their lounge/hub Longitude 87 seemed like a great place to grab tea and their popular eclair - a must try in my opinion.

Bottom line:
While not exactly the most family-friendly hotel, we still enjoyed our stay at Le Meridien and would recommend it to anybody looking for a great hotel with close access to shopping and an excuse to get pampered.

Disclosure: This review is based on a complimentary stay at the Le Meridien Chicago Oakbrook Center. I received no other compensation and the opinions I express are entirely my own.
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
View 3 photos
November 28 2015
1 family found this helpful
St. Nick's Restaurant | kids travel, kids activities
St. Nick's Restaurant
91 W. Christmas Blvd.,
Santa Claus,
"Decent buffet, great place to see Santa"
Located at Santa's Lodge, St. Nick's Lodge was a decent place to grab dinner, but the true fun was gettig to see Santa!

The Fun:
We visited during Santa's Christmas Celebration and noticed the big man himself was going to be visiting during dinner time. The food was setup buffet style and we did have plenty to choose from, especially when it came to dessert. The best part was getting hot chocolate. The kids were surprised to have Santa stop by and say hi. We then had a chance to say hi to him personally later on during the night after reading a Christmas story.

Bottom Line: Seeing Santa is awesome, but getting a chance to chat with him both during dinner AND also afterwards in Santa's sleigh was indeed memorable.
October 16 2015
0 families found this helpful
The Langham Chicago | kids travel, kids activities
The Langham Chicago
330 North Wabash Avenue,
Chicago, Illinois
"Family friendly luxury at its finest"
After seeing this hotel as #1 hotel on Tripadvisor, I just had to see it for myself. It's luxury at its finest, and family-friendly to boot!

Located in downtown Chicago right by the Chicago River, the Langham Chicago was just a short walk to the main shopping hub, the Mag Mile AND also State Street's shopping. Other cultural attractions such as Millenium Park and the Art Institute isn't too far away either.


From the moment we walked in, we were treated to a five-star experience. People were friendly and unpretentios. Art lovers will appreciate the mix of art located throughout by famous artists and budding artists. We were happy to hear that they had a pool. The twinkling lights above the pool added to the cool factor. While the kids enjoyed swimming around, I visited the spa room and absolutely loved having access to the steam room and relaxation room.


We fell in love with our luxurious king size room with separate living room with sleeper sofa. It was hard to tear us away from the beds as they were super comfortable . The master bathroom had marble strewn about complete with Chuan Spa toiletries. We loved having the oversized tub and separate shower.

Our room had access to the private Langham Club Lounge - well worth it in my opinion! Not only did we get a private checkin, but we had complimentary breakfast with hold and cold foods, hor deuvres, afternoon tea. All of this was enough to satisfy our bellies.In fact, we didn't really need to go out to eat.


The Langham offers tons for kids including a kids backpack with signature plaid teddy bear upon check-in. The kids absolutely loved having access to a kids' playroom, and found everything to keep our kids busy -- tons of toys, puzzles, coloring books, Lincoln Logs, chalkboard and dry erase wall, video games, rocking horses. It was especially convenient having a bathroom with changing table and stool for the sink. Had we discovered this sooner, we could have stayed here the entire day. What would make this room even better? A couch so that mom or dad can relax as well! Another pretty fun feature is their cinema suite with theater style seats and kid-friendly movies.


They have a Mediterannean restaurant, Travelle, and also Pavilion that serves tea during the afternoon, and becomes an ice cream parlour in the evening. We did take advantage of having dessert one evening and was spoiled with huge sundaes with homemade ice cream. Definitely a must try for ice cream lovers!


What a fantastic stay for both parents and kids. The Langham definitely tops our list for favorite hotels in Chicago. If you're looking to be pampered, make Langham the top of your list.
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
View 7 photos
October 06 2015
1 family found this helpful
SpringHill Suites by Marriott Cheyenne | kids travel, kids activities
SpringHill Suites by Marriott Cheyenne
416 W Fox Farm Rd,
Cheyenne, Wyoming
"Comfortable stay"
Our travels brought us to Cheyenne for an overnight stay, and we were happy to stay at SpringHill Suites again. Perfect for families!

We had a comfortable night's stay in a double queen suite. It was spacious enough for our family of five with a sleeper sofa, desk, sink area with mini fridge and microwave. As minor as it may seem, one of our favorite aspects of our room included the dimmer above our beds. It made for the perfect night light. As a tech-lovin' family, one problem that we've encountered at other hotels was not enough plugs and outlets. Not so at this hotel. We were happy to find extra plugs located right on the nightstands. The bathroom was just the right size and having Paul Mitchell toiletries was a plus.

Although we didn't get a chance to use it, there was a pool and hot tub. Fitness lovers would appreciate the fitness room open 24 hours. High speed internet is free, as well as the breakfast though it was only available until 9:00 -a.m. which was a bit inconvenient for us late risers.

Bottom Line:
We've grown to love the Springhill Suites brand, and the Cheyenne location didn't disappoint. If we are ever in the area again, I wouldn't hesitate to stay here again, but possibly wake up a little earlier for breakfast.

Disclosure: This is based on a complimentary stay at the Springhill Suites Cheyenne. I received no other compensation besides the hotel stay. The hotel did not state any requirements that I express a particular point of view. All opinions are my own.
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
View 7 photos
October 01 2015
1 family found this helpful
Residence Inn by Marriott Billings | kids travel, kids activities
Residence Inn by Marriott Billings
956 S 25th St W,
Billings, Montana
"Fantastic customer service in a wonderful hotel"
Our epic road trip included a stopover in Billings, Montana where we stayed at a Residence Inn for the first time. We were very happy with our stay and would have liked to stay longer.

Located in Billings, Montana and down the street from shopping centers and restaurants. Plenty of parking is available.

Before stepping foot in the lobby, I noticed the basketball court (a first for us) and the fire roaring from the fire pit. What a great way for guests to feel at home! Once I entered the lobby, I noticed the comfortable modern decor with a hint of a western theme going on. Not to mention the wall decals with catch phrases like "Chillax" placed throughout the lobby to make you feel comfortable. Very cool!

It felt like we were at home in our suite. The big plus about the room was the kitchenette complete with anything families would need - stainless steel appliances including a full-size fridge, dishwasher, microwave, and electric stove. The cabinets were fully stocked with plates, pots, and utensils. There was even a small table with two chairs. Everything a family could need!

We had a great night's sleep in their very comfortable bed. The sitting area had a pretty comfy sleeper sofa, along with ample of room for the kids to play. While there was only one television in the room, it was strategically placed between the bedroom and living area and could be swiveled. Not a huge deal at all for our family, but could pose a problem if sharing a TV is not an option. The bathtub and toilet are located in a separate room from the sink and mirror to provide privacy.

Out of all the hotels we stayed at during our trip, this one had the most welcoming staff with friendly "hellos" whenever we passed by. The staff at breakfast were especially friendly and seemed to chat with everyone. Very nice to see!

We did laundry here ($1.50) and found it pretty easy to use, and conveniently located right next to the fitness center and pool. High speed internet is free, as well as the breakfast. Breakfast included typical continental breakfast fare including a few hot foods.

Bottom Line:
Although we were here for only one night, we were very impressed with what the Residence Hill Billings had to offer. We wouldn't hesitate to come back if our travels brought us back to Billings.

Disclosure: This is based on a complimentary stay at Residence Inn Billings. I received no other compensation besides the hotel stay. The hotel did not state any requirements that I express a particular point of view. All opinions are my own.
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
kids travel, kids activities
View 6 photos