Collabs Lifestyle Travel

Family Getaway at the Hyatt Regency Bellevue

Truth be told, I can’t really remember the last time we went on a family vacation! We used to do at least one big one a year plus a few road trips in between, but life has gotten soooooo busy with the house renovations and kids’ activities over the past few years that we’ve forgotten to do the most important thing – unwind and reconnect as a family away from home.

A couple weekends ago, we surprised the kids with a trip to Bellevue, WA! Our favourite place to stay in Bellevue is the Hyatt Regency Bellevue and has been for years. This trip was special though – we were FINALLY going to witness Snowflake Lane at the Bellevue Collection AND we were going to enjoy it with our family friends (and Jadon’s classmate!).

As always, the moment we stepped into the Hyatt Regency Bellevue it felt like home. The familiar surroundings, friendly smiles from the front desk staff and the stunning Christmas tree in the lobby – brightly lit during it’s annual tree lighting ceremony only an hour before our arrival – all filled my heart with so much joy knowing that we were going to be making many memories with our kids over the next two days that would be remembered for years to come.

Next it was time to quickly settle in, grab a quick dinner from the Regency Club (a must when traveling with young kids) and meet up with our friends for a quick drink. The kids ended up hanging out together until early in the morning – just chilling, watching movies and playing video games. That in itself brings a huge smile to my face knowing that I can give my kids the relationships with their friends and family that I didn’t have growing up.

The next morning we enjoyed the yummiest brunch at our favourite breakfast spot, Eques (conveniently located on the second floor of the hotel). I’m honestly not a huge fan of hotel food, but Eques is on another level! I’d seriously recommend everything on the menu, including the à la carte (buffet) which is what the kids ended up getting. My favourite is definitely the crab Benedict and I end up getting it every time we eat at Eques (you have to try it!).

Since we were also in town for #BlackFriday weekend, it only made sense to check out the deals and get a head start on our holiday shopping at The Bellevue Collection, which is conveniently attached to the hotel via a series of sky bridges. I can’t tell you how genius this is, especially for families with strollers and wheelchairs, or just families in general. You basically don’t have to venture outside in the cold if you don’t want to and parking is free on the weekends.

Then it was time to reserve our spots for Snowflake Lane, which starts at 7pm nightly until Christmas Eve. We were running a bit late and missed our chance at front row curb seats (we heard some people had started waiting at around 6:00 – 6:15pm), but that didn’t stop us from capturing the magic from the parade starting point:

Even though the crowds were insane (get there early!), it was so much fun to experience Snowflake Lane with our friends – complete with holiday themed floats, snow and Santa Clause, of course! I feel like a yearly tradition might be starting… 😉

Have you seen Snowflake Lane in person or are you thinking of going in the future? I’d love to hear about your experience in the comments!

xo, kristina

Disclaimer: All opinions in this post remain my own and do not reflect the views or opinions of The Hyatt Regency Bellevue and/or their affiliates. I received a complimentary stay at The Hyatt Regency Bellevue in order to complete this review.

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Celebrate Collabs Travel

Tenth Anniversary Celebration at the Hyatt Regency Bellevue

It’s been a while since hubby and I had been on a kid-free vacation, so last weekend I decided to surprise him with a night away in Bellevue, Washington to celebrate our TENTH anniversary. We typically don’t celebrate our wedding anniversary, as much as we do our dating anniversary (14.5 years sounds a lot more important than 10, no?), but I figured this one was too important to miss 😉

We used to visit this city frequently a few years ago and instantly fell in love. It’s almost like a home away from home for us – we’re fairly familiar with the city, but there’s always something new to discover.

When it came to start planning this “impromptu” weekend away, I knew we had to stay at our favourite Bellevue hotel – the Hyatt Regency Bellevue. Not only do we always feel at home at the Hyatt Regency, but it’s location is extremely convenient and houses all the amenities we could ever need. From the Regency Club, to its close proximity to shopping at The Bellevue Collection via connecting sky bridges, to its nightlife (there’s a lounge/club INSIDE the hotel + a slew of hip restaurants within walking distance), to its…well…convenient 24/7 restaurant that’s perfect for those late night eats (we still can’t believe that we JUST discovered this gem!).

Our day started off late as it normally does. Luckily, my amazing mother-in-law suggested the kids sleep over the night before, so all hubby and I had to do was sleep in (!), get ready and make our way across the border. It had been so long since we’ve been away (2.5 years to be exact!), which is insane for former frequent “border crossers” such as us.

Not much was planned except dinner reservations at a restaurant we fell in love with years ago – which turned out to be a bust (it must be under new ownership or something, and is not affiliated with the hotel, in case you were wondering) – but, as always, we made the best of it and just winged the entire night. I find that we always have the most fun when nothing is planned! We walked to The Bellevue Collection and shopped for a bit, and then ended up at Earls for late-night drinks after dinner. Everything is within walking distance to the hotel and, as an added bonus, parking is free on Friday & Saturday nights!

The night ended up back at the hotel where we popped another bottle of champagne (thanks to QFC + our late night Uber driver). Actually, back to Uber…it was our FIRST time taking an Uber haha. I should have documented the whole experience on my IG stories because it was abso-freakin-hilarious. We had no idea what we were doing…we crossed the street a few times and the driver couldn’t find us (hmm, I wonder why LOL). Then we got dinged for a “late” charge? Apparently the driver went to the hotel and not to where we actually were. Oops.

After a couple drinks, we made our way to Suite – a lounge inside the hotel – and danced the night away. We didn’t have any responsibilities the next day, so why not?!

The next morning was spent at Eques – the best brunch spot in Bellevue, in my opinion. Every time we’ve dined here, it’s been exquisite. They offer a full breakfast buffet, but I prefer to order off of their menu. You really can’t go wrong with root beer float waffles (it’s SO good), tiramisu pancakes or a crab benedict. I had every single one of the above (and maybe more, haha) and I can honestly say nothing ever disappoints at Eques. Their smoothies are also to die for and if you’re celebrating an anniversary like us, mention it to your server and they’ll whip up a special anniversary smoothie from their “secret menu” (pssst…it may just taste a lot like blackberry lemonade this summer ;)).

Before you head out, make sure you take a photo with the giant “30” in the lobby to help celebrate the Hyatt Regency Bellevue’s 30th anniversary from now until the end of May! Post the photo to your Instagram page with the hashtag #HRBelle30 + #sweepstakes. For full contest details, visit @hyattregencybellevue on IG.

Are you planning on staying at the Hyatt Regency Bellevue in the near future? I’d love to hear about your experience or past experiences in the comments below!

xo, kristina

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