If you are a parent, then you know that any vacation you go on where there is a pool at the hotel you stay at is bound to be a success. It doesn't really matter if the weather is good or bad, the outings fun or not. If you can count on a nice indoor pool, your kids will be happy for hours and hours. After all these years, one hotel chain finally caught on to the simplicity of that idea. Instead of placing your hotel near vacation destinations, make the in-house pool attraction so great that people come to stay with you for that reason alone. This is how the Great Wolf Lodge was born.
For my birthday, I decided to take my family up to the Grand Mound, Washington version of Great Wolf Lodge. It is one of 12 located in North America. The lodge forces you to stay there in order to partake in their water park. They create a fun, if expensive, all inclusive family friendly environment to roam your whole stay in your bathing suit. They have a wave pool, basketball pools, obstacle courses, baby areas, three story water extravaganza fort along with water slides and four rides that tower 5 stories above the floor. We had a fun, if exhausting trip. Unfortunately, Mrs. Zimba broke her toe exiting the Howling Tornado ride the first day, but she was a trooper and watched the kids and I tear it up.
Some quick observations of hers from the sidelines:
- Even with hundreds of people in the facility, she didn't see one bathing suit duplicated
- Obesity is very much an issue in America, even in the young
- Even with the high expense, water parks are a draw to all ethnicities, with one Indian grandmother doing all the rides in 3 piece full arm/leg length sari coverings.
- Lastly, even with my packing an extra 12 lbs these days, Mr. Zimba still cuts a decent figure amongst the dads of America.