Once upon a time, discovering new breakfast and brunch places on vacation was a fun thing to do. Now, travelling with a baby and a pre-schooler, breakfast is about what’s most familiar and least painful to our wallets. I knew a big help for our road trip was to book hotels that included free breakfast.

Most chains, like Days Inn or Comfort Inn, offer a small breakfast bar with cereals, toast, some fruit, mediocre coffee and juices. That’s more than enough to appease three-year-olds, plus provide a mini cereal box or banana to stash away for snacks later on.

Hotel breakfast

We were served well for breakfasts at the Lakeview Signature Inn Calgary Airport. We booked there because every room has a small kitchenette, plus the free morning meal and a pool downstairs. The free cookies at the reception desk didn’t hurt either.

A few things set Lakeview’s free breakfast apart from the others. For one, it includes hot food, like eggs and sausages, along with the standard cereal, bagels and pastries. There’s even a hot waffle maker with batter already portioned out in cups. I loved that.

Secondly, because it caters to business travellers who stay there for weeks at a time, the hotel changes up what is offered at the free breakfast, instead of the same boring items every day. (It also offers grocery delivery service.)

Hotel breakfast

Third, the friendly staff cleared away plates quickly so there was always a place to sit. Some hotel breakfast areas have little to no seating area. Lakeview has a long communal table with lots of smaller tables around, in a brightly lit and welcoming front space.

The breakfast won’t win any outstanding culinary awards, but it’s an excellent amenity for families on road trips.

Lakeview Signature Inn Calgary Airport, 2622-39th Ave. NE, Calgary.