a weekend away with the kids: staycity manchester

Last updated Aug 13, 2023

Why book a standard hotel when you can take over a whole apartment? Staycity is the perfect choice for families who want city-chic but don't want to pay city-chic prices. What's there? Conveniently located almost next door to Manchester Piccadilly train station, Staycity Manchester is more than just a bed to crash in for the night. Sleek and minimalist, these apartments offer guests a luxury home away from home.

At first glance, the grey monochrome decor is saved from drabness by pops of colour in the furnishings, while quirky art prints adorn the walls in the bedrooms and living areas. You'd be forgiven for thinking that a successful young creative had left the city for a little while and entrusted your family with their flat. As well as looking stylish, Staycity 'aparthotels' are fully equipped for everyday family life. You might be enjoying some time away from home, but if your little one was sick all down their front on the train journey, you might arrive in desperate need of a washing machine and dryer. Never fear - your apartment has both of these things. You'll just need to pop round the corner to the 24-hour Tesco for washing powder. Of course, you'll still enjoy all the regular hotel luxuries, such as free tea and coffee, shower gel and shampoo and wifi, but with so many added extras (not to mention all the extra space an apartment gives you over a hotel room):

  • 40" LED TV

  • Sofa beds in living area

  • Microwave oven

  • Electric cooker and hob

  • Fully stocked kitchen cupboards with pans, crockery and cutlery

  • Kitchen sink with washing up liquid

  • Large fridge

  • Washer/dryer

  • Ironing board and iron

  • Hairdryer

  • Dining table and chairs

  • Cot and highchair on request

  • Cafe on site serving tea, coffee, cakes and pastries

  • 24-hour reception

  • Luggage lockers (£2 per day)

getting there

Staycity is literally a minute's walk from Manchester Piccadilly station and is in sight as soon as you exit, so it's incredibly easy to find if you're travelling by train. If you're driving, there's an onsite car park costing £15 per day (as of June 2017).

what to see and do

Located in the heart of the bustling city of Manchester, the vibrant Piccadilly Gardens are only a few minutes walk away.

On sunny days, take a picnic, sit on the grass and take in the sounds of nearby buskers. Or put your kids in swimwear and let them run around chasing water from the fountains as it shoots up from the ground.

Every Thursday, Friday and Saturday, there's also a food market selling everything from traditional Manchester tarts to hot street food such as African dishes, pasta and ostrich burgers!

Walk on up Market Street and enjoy the eclectic mix of street performers before reaching the Arndale Centre with its 200 high street stores.

Do some window shopping in Michael Kors, Burberry or Ted Baker set against a backdrop of cool, laid-back street musicians on New Cathedral Street.

Take a seat in Exchange Square itself or in one of the many nearby pubs and enjoy the thriving city life by the cathedral. The cathedral itself is a beautiful building and the grounds offer a perfect place to relax and soak up the atmosphere by the river.

going out

If you're after something a little more edgy, the Northern Quarter is full of trendy bars and second-hand shops, where you might pick up a bargain or two.

It's also the hub for music and comedy entertainment of an evening, if you've got a babysitter and are looking for something a little bit different for date night with the other half.

Manchester is also served by a Metrolink tram service, which runs between the city centre to seven terminals located in various suburbs including Rochdale, Eccles, Altrincham and Bury.

With an off-peak family travelcard costing just £6.20 (based on 2 adults and up to 3 children) for unlimited travel for the day, it's very easy to get out of the city and see what the outskirts have to offer.

Piccadilly gardens

eating and drinking

You don't have to go far from Staycity to be within touching distance of all the essentials. Big chain restaurants such as Nando's, Caffe Nero, Subway and other fast food chains are all close by.

Of course with a fully-equipped kitchen, you don't even need to leave the apartment! Simply get some ingredients from the Sainsbury's Local or Tesco Express (both of which are round the corner) and whip up something yourself. Perfect if you don't feel like eating out after a busy day exploring the city.

when to go

Manchester is a busy city with plenty going on at all times of year. Staycity apartments offer both summer and winter weight bedding and extra blankets are in the wardrobe, if it's cold. As with any hotel, it's more pricey to go in the summer months, around Christmas and New Year and other peak times. However, it's a great place to stay all year round.

perfect for...

Staycity Manchester is perfect for pretty much everyone. With options ranging from 1 bed (sleeping up to 4), 2 bed (sleeping up to 5 or 6) and 3 bed (sleeping up to 8), it's an ideal base for either just a few of you or a larger family group.

Families with small children who like to run around will definitely appreciate the larger living space that's on offer with an apartment, compared to a single hotel room.

The trendy vibe of the apartment and central location also make it great for couples and solo travelers.

Originally published on Netmums.com