Maid service – When your on vacation you want to be on vacation from everything. Work, the grind of daily life AND cleaning. When you stay in a hotel, you have daily maid service. You leave for the day, get back and voila! The beds are made, the floors vacuumed, bathroom clean and sparkly. You don't have to worry about anything. And some hotels even offer laundry service, which is super if you're on vacation for a couple of weeks.
Fresh towels – When you family needs something – fresh towels, an extra pillow, a late night snack – you don't have to lift a finger, except to call down to the front desk. You can step out of parent mode and truly relax while away from home.
Centrally located – Most hotels are centrally located so that you're close to everything that you want to be close to: restaurants, shopping, attractions, museums, theatre, etc. This is especially true if you're vacationing in a larger urban center. You'll be within walking distance of pretty much everything that you need or want to be by. This gives you more time to enjoy things and less time traveling. Not to mention the money you'll save on transportation.
Save $ - Yes, you can save money by staying in a hotel! During the summer months some hotel chains will offer mega deals to entice travellers to stay with them. Once such deal is stay two nights, and you will earn a free night. You can also collect points that you can cash in for a free night.
Larger space – When you stay in a rental home, you're renting the whole house, not just one room. So you get the full kitchen, living room and outdoor space. This can really make your vacation seem more homey and if you happen to hit some bad weather that forces you to stay indoors, the added space won't make it seem like family members are crawling over each other.
Make your own food – With the full kitchen you won't have to eat out for every meal. This means that you'll save money and also be able to serve your kids their favorites. If you don't feel like cooking while on vacation (and who could blame you) you can always opt for premade salads, sandwiches and other goodies at the local grocery store.
Privacy – Because you're renting the whole house, you won't have to worry about bumping into strangers in the hall or on the elevators. You'll have more privacy and you'll really be able to let your hair down and relax. You can also have the TV as loud as you want and the kids can make a real ruckus without the worry of disturbing the folks in the next room.
Separate bedrooms – With a rental, odds are that you and your spouse won't need to share a room with any of the kids. Also, the kids will probably get their own room. If you are vacationing for a couple of weeks, this can be important. With separate bedrooms everyone gets alone time and no one feels like they HAVE to spend time with each other. With kids this can stop a lot of fighting.
As you can see, there are advantages to stay in a hotel and there are advantages to staying in a rental home. They key is to pick the right one for you. So, where do you prefer to stay when away from home? Why?