Tim Cocker’s weekend getaway, with Marriott Bonvoy

Virgin Radio

15 Aug 2022, 13:02

Virgin Radio UK's Tim Cocker and his family on holiday in Edinburgh

A family break should be full of fun and adventure, plus - of course - some much-needed rest and relaxation. It shouldn’t be standing in airport queues for hours bickering with your loved ones. Swerve the stress by appreciating what’s right in front of you. Where better to make some memories than right on your doorstep? Now’s the time to Discover Your UK.

Hop on the train and in no time you’ll find yourself in a parallel universe surrounded by some of the world’s most beautiful scenery, the home of major attractions, the mother of all museums - The National Museum - cuisine, culture, iconic movie sites for Harry Potter, Outlander and so much more. The magical place? Edinburgh. 

Turn off your emails, mute your busy mind and make the most of your precious out-of-office family time. There’s something for everyone and every age. You can even bring the dog. 

Our Tim Cocker treated his family to an unforgettable visit to Edinburgh where they enjoyed some all-important quality time staying at the five-star luxury Marriott’s Sheraton Grand Hotel & Spa, Edinburgh located in the heart of the city. Just a stone’s throw away from the historic Old Town, the vibrant New Town and all the attractions, if you’re too tired to go sight-seeing, you can even see stunning views of Edinburgh Castle from some of the spacious rooms.

Tim said: “When you go and explore our little island you realise why people come from all around the world. It's a special place. Beautiful countryside, rugged coastlines, buzzing cities, incredible history. It's easy to take it for granted sometimes. I also have to say just getting on with enjoying your time and not having to waste any of it in a queue at an airport is a bonus!”

If exploring is your thing, take a climb to the top of ‘Arthur's Seat’ where the Cockers had a well-deserved picnic break at the top of the breathtaking Holyrood Park. And no, our DJ couldn’t get the name changed to ‘Tim’s Seat’.

Fancy putting your feet up? If, like Tim, you’re always on the go, it’s important to treat yourself to some downtime. The hotel’s leisure club, One Spa, is the perfect place for offering a fitness centre, poolside sauna and Thermal Suite. In fact, a dip in the 19m heated swimming pool was so relaxing, Tim’s wife couldn’t help but have a revitalising cat-nap on a lounger. For a man who makes his living talking, Tim was so zen after a visit to the rooftop Hydropool, you couldn’t get a word out of him. Well, it is Scotland’s most renowned urban thermal spa experience.

“We stole ourselves away for a couple of hours in the spa together. Staring up at the Edinburgh sky from the heated outdoor rooftop spa pool was a pretty idyllic way to start the weekend. The kids were happy sussing out all the TV channels in their room, so I don't think they missed us. Our lives can feel a hundred miles an hour sometimes so the chance to slow it all down and enjoy some time together, without a dishwasher or washing machine in sight, was just the tonic,” Tim said.

If you’re starving after a busy day taking in the acts on the Royal Mile, being scared silly at the Edinburgh Dungeon or going on a boat trip under the iconic Forth Rail Bridge (3 Bridge Tour), indulge in some delicious dishes at One Square Bar & Brasserie using the finest, freshest Scottish ingredients. Feeling thirsty? The Cockers enjoyed some family bonding taking part in the Ginnasium tasting experience, where Tim and his wife got to grips with over 120 different types of gins while the kids cracked into mocktails. 

A weekend visitor? Tuck into a famous One Square Sunday Lunch carvery with all the trimmings while being soothed by the resident jazz band, finished off with some mouth-watering desserts. If you’ve still got a sweet tooth, stop for cake at Mimi’s Bakehouse or indulge in some chocolate tasting and make your own bar at the Chocolatarium. 

The Cockers were savvy enough to sign up to the world’s leading hotel loyalty program, which includes over 45 destinations across the UK, from bustling cities to seaside towns to the sprawling countryside. And the best bit? It’s totally free. 

The loyalty program gives you access to amazing perks in the hotels and with partners – including free wifi, upgrades, memory-making experiences – plus you can earn points on stays and spend them on holidays in the UK and abroad. But for now, we’re more than happy holidaying in the UK, thanks. 

Watching the pennies? Then book midweek for even lower rates, plus attractions will be quieter too. Like the Cockers, families can enjoy great rates and get 50% off a second room with many offering kids under 12 to stay and eat for free. Now that’s something you don’t hear very often. 

Tim said about taking advantage of the half price second room: “The kids LOVED the hotel. It was the first time Louie, 14, and Connie, 13, had their own room on a trip and really enjoyed the independence - total control of bedtime and the TV remote! They particularly enjoyed Edinburgh because there was so much to do close to the hotel. Everything felt easy… which meant when our activities were done they could still get plenty of time in the pool.. .and tucking into the breakfast buffet!

“Seeing them happy and creating memories together makes everything worthwhile. It's what we work hard and make sacrifices for, right? Taking time to make memories together and share quality time is priceless.”

Take a leaf out of Tim’s travel book. Make more of your next getaway with Marriott Bonvoy – make it the UK.