This is a sponsored post. I received a free media stay weekend in exchange for sharing my family's experience. #TravelBuf
Let's face it. Vacations are loads of fun, but sometimes our bank accounts aren't loaded with the funds to fulfill our wanderlust needs. Life is just too darn expensive sometimes to splurge on that airline ticket to the tropics.
Far too often, we tend to overlook the fun in our very own backyards! Just because Disney isn't in your family's budget this year, doesn't mean you can't book a weekend of family fun just a few miles away from your very own home!
What if I told you fun awaits you and the kiddos at the Walden Galleria?
That giant mall right off of 90 that you pass every time you're heading to the airport! Jam freakn packed with entertainment for the whole family. Whether you're 9 or 99, there is fun for all. The best part of all? You can totally turn that day trip to the mall into a Staycation since fabulous accommodations await you right across the street!
Let me tell you why your family needs a Walden Galleria Staycation stat!
Buffalo New York’s largest destination for shopping, dining, and entertainment! With an impressive mix of over 200 retail stores, there is something for everyone at Walden Galleria! You’ll find favorites like Sephora, Apple, Pink, Pottery Barn, Macy's, Michael Kors and H&M.
WNY weather can be pretty funky. 90 one day, blizzarding the next! Regardless of what it looks like outside, it’s always a fabulous day at Walden Galleria! So take your mind off that awful weather and shop to you drop!
Journey into Billy's Rainforest for a one-of-a-kind adventure! Its massive Play Arena is the home of wildly twisting slides, a toddler area and more!
The best part of all? You're kiddo can play until they are beat. You can then leave to do some shopping & since you are still rockin that all-day wrist band on your arm.... That's right, take the kiddos back in for one last hoorah before you leave the mall to make sure they are officially zonked so they pass out and sleep thorough the night!
3. Eat Drink Play at Dave & Busters
Play the newest arcade games, enjoy chef-crafted creations, sip innovative cocktails & watch your favorite sports team in the sports bar that crushes the competition!
Dave & Busters has been a family favorite for years! Hubby can shoot hoops while watching hoops on the big screens, my daughter can play all the arcade games she wants & I can indulge in some delicious food and cocktails since I'm not that into games what so ever! My all time favorite dish? The Teriyaki Sirloin. It's a Dave & Busters "faves"and once you enjoy it for yourself, you will totally see why! It is the only thing you will ever see me order.
4. Build a Bear
Bring your little loved one to Build-A-Bear for an experience that they are sure to remember! Build-A-Bear Workshop actively works to bring the Teddy Bear to life and give children an unforgettable furry friend. At Build-A-Bear, children can custom build, name and accessorize their stuffed animal and leave with a new best friend. Nothing says it better than the smile they will have on their face when they're done.
We like to call Build-A-Bear, Build-A-Pony since every time we hit up Build-A-Bear, my daughter chooses to build a pony! Safe to say all kiddos have the best time at Build-A-Bear. How can they not when they are building their own, custom toy?
5. Brunch at Bar Louie
Experience your local bar with handcrafted martinis, cocktails and a scratch kitchen during happy hour,late night or brunch!
Brunch is my favorite meal of the week! Hello mimosas! Bar Louie just happens to have a delicious one, along with other delicious treats such as lettuce Wraps, burgers, even a special brunch menu on Saturday & Sundays to go along with their already yummy menu!
6. Family Movie Night
Don't get Regal Cinemas confused with your average theater, their stadium seating ensures there's not a bad seat in the house when it comes time to watch your favorite actors and actresses. You no longer need to worry about the extremely tall man sitting in front of you, or if you are that extremely tall man, don't worry about not having room for your legs...there is plenty of it!
Nothing better than a movie night! Check out the latest flicks while lounging in comfort after a day of shopping at the Walden Gallaria.
7. Snacks at the Cheesecake Factory
Beginning as a small family bakery, The Cheesecake Factory has shown immense growth since the original slice of cheesecake. There with over 200 menu items made from scratch everyday and 30 scrumptious flavors of cheesecake!
After a long day of shopping and playing at Billy Beez, I'm sure you will want to pick up a snack to enjoy later in the evening! Cheesecake Factory has your midnight snacking needs covered with slices of cheesecake you can purchase by the slice. Can we say yum?!
8. Chocolate Covered Strawberries at Melting Pot
The Melting Pot is the premier fondue restaurant with more than 125 locations in North America, Southeast Asia and the Middle East. Come out for date night, or bring the family for a unique dining experience like no other!
Who wouldn't want to snack on some yummy chocolate covered strawberries after a day trecking the mall? Strawberries not your fancy? Don't worry! You can dip a variety of desserts into your melted chocolate such as rice krispy teats & brownies!!! Definitely a dessert experience the family will never forget!
9.Unwind at the Home2Suites
(Directly across the street!!!!)
Discover a home on the road at Home2 Suites by Hilton conveniently located across the street from all the fun at the Galleria Mall. So after you spent your day shopping until you dropped, you can retire to a fabulous suite right across the street ;-)
This very colorful, all-suite hotel also offers a shuttle service to any location within 1.5 miles of the hotel. So you can park your vehicle for the weekend at the hotel and take the shuttle back and forth to the mall to avoid the headache of searching for that parking spot. Home2 Suites by Hilton also has 24/7 shuttle service to the Buffalo Airport and Depew Train Station. They want to take all the transportation stresses away from you during your stay!
Feel at home, in Buffalo. Home2 flexible suites include a living area for entertaining or throwing 30th birthday parties like we did for my hubby. Full kitchens with dishwashers, microwaves, and refrigerators for drinkie and snackie purposes! You can also watch all the cartoons your kiddos desire on the 42-inch flat-screen HDTV and post all those staycation photos on Facebook with free WiFi.
You and the family can also take a dip in the indoor saline pool! We love it when hotels up north have indoor pools since you can't predict the weather in these parts! It's rather relaxing and such a stress reliever when you realize your trip doesn't depend on the weather mans forecast!
As fabulous as the pool is, it does get crowded at night! I think everyone has the idea, shop all day and swim all night, so be prepared for lots of kids! The positive is if your kiddo is an only child like mine, they will have new friends to play with!
You can also unwind on the patio which has an awesome fire pit and then grill some steaks on the Weber barbeque grill. The fire pit and patio were the selling points to me when it came to this specific property! Nothing better than relaxing next to a fire with a glass of wine in your hand after a busy day!
Need to burn off those calories after eating your way through the Walden Gallaria? You can get your fitness on at the Spin2Cycle gym!
Enjoy a free breakfast at the Inspired Table™ while charging your smartphone in the relaxed, modern Oasis!! I love it when hotels offer FREE hot breakfast! It's always a perk when booking a hotel & Home2 Suites offers a decent hot breakfast with premade breakfast sandwiches, make your own waffles, cereals, yogurts, even fruits!
So if you're craving that dream vacation, but your wallet is saying no! Maybe a staycation to the Walden Gallaria is exactly what you need!!! Eat, drink, play, shop, swim & relax! Your kids will thank you for it!
CourtneyLynne is former model turned mommy & wifey! When not blogging all things foodie, fashion, travel, mom life & straight up fabulousness to the masses, she can be found chasing her toddler around in 6in stilettos & laughing at her own jokes her glass of wine told her to tell.