| Everyday Luxury Travel Italy

Sonnwies – A Beautiful child-friendly ski hotel in the Dolomites

After the success of taking Oscar skiing earlier this year we were excited to take him again. Mr S is a really keen skier and and absolutely loved seeing Oscar on his skis and taking to it all so well! In my original research I had found a family-friendly hotel called Sonnwies, which also ticked all the boxes for our stay. I had been torn between Moargut and Sonnwies for our trip back in February but Moargut won out at that time but I was still very keen to try Sonnwies! My sister was also wanting to book a ski trip having never been herself or her boys. February half term seemed inordinately expensive both for hotel and flights so we took the decision to make this one a festive December break. If you’re also looking to book a family ski trip I really recommend taking a look at the December holidays as the popularity of the February holidays really pushes the price up.
Our families were both super excited for the trip and I was especially excited that I wouldn’t be pregnant this time as I was when we went to Moargut. Bring on the wine, rare meat and fun in the snow (in that order!).

What is Sonnwies Dolomites?

Like Moargut, Sonnwies is a ‘Kinderhotel’ meaning everything is orientated around family and children and generally having happy kids (and parents!). The idea of a Kinderhotel may make you think primary colours and plastic toys everywhere but Sonnies is nothing of the sort. Think tasting menus juxtaposed with pizza nights… adults only spas coexisting with an indoor water park! The idea of Sonnwies is that all the family are taken care of not just the kids. It’s no surprise that this family-centric hotel is family run too and the owners were always around chatting to guests.

Located in South Tyrol, near the Dolomites, its a short flight into Innsbruck and an hour and a half drive to Sonnwies meaning the travel time is child friendly too! The hotel itself has it’s own organic farm and animals so our  city kids could experience nature first hand! Of course we were there in the Winter to make full use of the onsite ski school but beautiful summer holidays are possible there too.

Our Room and the Interiors at Sonnwies 

Sonnwies offers different types of family rooms which are comfortable, stylish and practical. It was only our third time sharing a hotel room as a family of three and we’ve already realised the importance of having separate spaces – something that Sonnwies have thought through. We opted for a Family Suite Nature Superior which has two rooms including a small living area.
The furnishings are made with beautiful natural, local materials such as spruce and stone pine and have a lovely welcoming feel.
The children’s bunk is beautiful and has a sliding door to separate off the two areas. I will say our room at Moargut worked better for us as the bedroom was separate from the living space whereas at Sonnwies, the master bedroom is combined with the living area so there is less of a separation. We did love the fact that there was loads of storage and plenty of space for us all to have our distinct areas. Very important with all that bulky ski stuff!

The hotel provided a cot for Noah and can supply basically any baby stuff you need such as nappy bins, changing table, buggies and back packs!
The bathroom had the most amazing shower but there was no bath which can be slightly awkward with children and I did find myself just bathing Noah in the sink.

We had a gorgeous terrace with a view of the mountains and seating for both adults and children.
The relatively bijou hotel boasts modern, clean interiors with an Alpine twist. It’s pleasing to anyone’s eye but there is fun for children around every corner such as Photo Booth, a colouring table, rocking horses and all you can eat ice cream!


At reception they can help with anything you need, booking skiing, transfers and rental items. There’s also a gorgeous shop selling practical ski and baby bits but also beautiful Scandi style toys and clothes for kids. And some beautiful pieces for adults too.

Design is simple but the proximity too and the beauty nature is highlighted and celebrated.    

Child Care at Sonnwies

One of the most amazing things about Sonnwies is the levels of childcare and the fact that the childcare is completely included in the price of the stay even childcare for babies! At the heart of the hotel is the 1,200 sqm kids club called Ferdi’s World – named for the hotels pony Mascot who is often present around the hotel. Ferdi often comes to dinner and leads the kids down to Kinderclub for a mini disco while adults eat!

Inside is the most beautiful Montessori style play area for children from 0 – 14 which includes a role play home space, soft play, table tennis, climbing wall, extra large Lego bricks and more! A large indoor sports hall is perfect for teens with the option to play football, basketball, handball etc. There is a playground and garden directly accessible from the kids club with apparatus for bigger and smaller kids.
The staff are absolutely amazing and Oscar and his cousin Jackson just loved the kids club. You don’t need to book slots, you can take your children whenever they want to go and they will call you to pick them up if they need. Older children are allowed to come and go as they please with different coloured wrist bands designating the amount of ‘freedom’ the child is allowed. Open from 9am to 9pm they really have you covered if you want some time for skiing, using the spa or an adults dinner, they can even take the children to lunch for you while you ski. There’s a full timetable of activities for both indoor and outdoor play which the children can dip into as much as they like and parents can experience too. Activities are mostly nature themed and make full use of the beautiful grounds of Sonnwies! We loved the fact that our city kids got the chance to churn their own butter!
For babies there’s a ball pit and baby gym among other appropriate baby toys. In Ferdi’s World. The staff are just amazing and you can entrust your smallest one from as young as 14 days old. I felt very safe about leaving Noah at the creche and it was actually ideal as I could watch Oscar ski and easily pop back to see Noah and breast feed.

FYI there are slightly less hours of baby care as the creche is closed for a few hours of the day.

Experiences / Activities

Children couldn’t possibly get bored at Sonnwies. One of the main activities is skiing and the children’s ski school which is directly onsite. Children’s skiing is available for 2.5 years old (private lessons only for ages up to 3 years) and then the ski school covers older children. There is a learner slope with a magic carpet plus more advanced slopes as the children improve. Oscar and his cousins had the opportunity to ski every day and they had a brilliant time!

Adults and more advanced skiers can take a bus to the Plose area and easily come back if the kids club call. There is a full ski rental service on site covering all your needs. There are also several other winter sports available; sledding and tobogganing can be done at the hotel and there’s even an ice rink for skating.
Outside of the winter sports there’s also a farm at Sonnwies with sheep, pigs, chicken, rabbits even alpacas! One of Oscar and Jacskon’s favourite activities was pony riding! Children can also come along and groom and clean the ponies when they wish as well as other animal / nature themed activities such as feeding animals, finding eggs, cooking and planting. They can also explore the hotel’s culinary garden which provides fresh ingredients for the hotel’s restaurant.

Another key activity at Sonnwies is swimming, which the boys enjoyed everyday. The Sonnwies Water Worlds are intended for the enjoyment of both adults and children and included four family pools varying in depth with three indoor and one outdoor. The shallow baby pool was heated to 35 degrees and was the perfect place for Noah’s first swim! There are was even the cinema in the pool, which is the first I’ve ever seen. The kids very much enjoyed the 70 metre tire slide and the 20 metre wave slide. There was even a sauna cave!  
Adjacent to the Waterworld is the spa which is has an adults only area but also provides spa treatments for children! It includes flower steam bath, Tyrolean sweat room, crowbar bath, experience showers, ice fountain, sunbathing area relaxation room and solarium. Spa and beauty treatments are often inspired by nature and many are designed with parents and pregnant women in mind.

Food 

Food is included in the cost of Sonnwies and it is great value for money! Though it means you will have all your meals in the hotel but honestly I now find this so much easier than booking restaurants and heading out. Each family is allocated a table in the restaurant and this is where you have all your meals, again it just makes everything easier. But Sonnwies doesn’t just want things to be easy, they want things to be good so with that in mind there is a clear divide between the culinary offerings for children and parents.

Breakfast is a buffet plus you can order a la carte from the menu with lots of different egg options. For lunch, the buffet is provided for kids and there’s was always an option of pasta a la minute. For the adults (and kids if they wanted) there was a choice of two dishes served at the table usually a lighter one or a more substantial one. However, there was always the option to order burgers, schnitzel, fries and anything else for fussy kids (though there was an extra cost for ordering a la carte).

Our dinners were an absolute highlight and every night there was a five course tasting menu. Sonnwies offers three different strands of cuisine;  alpine, mediterranean or vegan and guests are welcome to mix and match from these cuisine strands to create their own menu. The food is truly excellent, many ingredients being taken from the organic farm
Alongside the tasting menu runs the buffet with options for kids (pizza night being the favourite!) and always a salad bar and bread selection. There’s even a cheese room which you can pop to if you can still fit in more food! And a wine room! Once again there are a la carte options available every night at an extra cost. If parents want to have dinner to themselves, kids can have a quick buffet meal and head to the kids club where they can join Ferdi the pony for a disco!

You’ll never go hungry at Sonnwies, if you miss breakfast there’s a croissant and fruit buffet in the lounge. Plus my sister and my favourite time of day… at about 3pm they’d lay out a mini buffet of cheese, meats and cake. Wine and cheese o’clock became a daily thing while Mr S skiied and the kids were at kids club! There’s tea, coffee, soft drinks available complimentary all day, frozen yogurt and ice cream from midday and always a big plate of cookies on the reception desk.

Babies are well catered for too. On the buffet there is a selection of baby food both jars and fresh as well as different formula milks. There was a high chair provided for Noah as well as a bib and baby bowl!

Final Thoughts 

Needless to say we LOVED Sonnwies! It was definitely a case of happy kids, happy parents! A few people asked me on Instagram whether I preferred Moargut or Sonnwies and I will say the two concepts are very similar, near identical. Both are Kinderhotels with all inclusive food and childcare with a tasting menu concept for adults and buffet for kids. Both provided a wide variety of activities and included an animal and organic farm plus had multiple swimming pools for kids. Moargut was a slightly bigger hotel and had more outdoor play space for children, plus our room was a bit better. Sonnwies excelled in the food side of things and offered three strands of cuisine whereas Moargut only had one. Sonnwies had a great ski school for kids and multiple slopes at the ski school whereas Moargut only had one but Moargut was better for adults to ski as the slopes were further away at Sonnwies and a bit easy for Mr S who ended up going even further afield. Swings and roundabouts really!

Great for Kids

Endless activities, they’ll never get bored! Especially with the skiing.

Great food both for adventurous and fussy eaters. Plus fresh food for babies.

Incredible kids club with brilliant staff.

Great for Parents

High end cuisine plus cheese room and great wine selection.

Adults only spa, inspired by nature

Beautiful stylish interiors. Kids amenities are elegantly integrated.