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All-Inclusive Resorts by Brand:
Palace resorts are alluring, beachfront retreats located along Mexico's Riviera Maya, in or near the coastal towns of Cancun, Playa del Carmen and Cozumel. In Cancun, Le Blanc Spa Resort is kids-free while Sun Palace and Isla Mujeres Palace are specifically geared toward couples.
Iberostar offers numerous options in the Dominican Republic and Mexico, plus three resorts in Jamaica. They provide relaxing atmospheres in well-preserved natural settings, with spacious pools, lush gardens and sandy beaches. In some locations, several Iberostar hotels are in one complex, and guests have exchange privileges at neighboring properties.
Hard Rock Hotels brings its unique brand of entertainment and hospitality to its all-inclusive resorts in Mexico, Panama and the Dominican Republic. Among the included features is "The Sound of Your Stay," which provides musical amenities like in-room DJ equipment, the loan of a Fender guitar and free downloadable playlists. They welcome guests of all ages, but the Hard Rock Hotel Riviera Maya has a kids-free section called Heaven, with separate pools and beach.
Hyatt recently entered the all-inclusive market with two new, distinct brands: Hyatt Ziva, for vacationers of all ages, and Hyatt Zilara, which provides kids-free environments. Three new Hyatt all-inclusives are scheduled to open in Jamaica and Mexico this November and December.
Palladium was founded more than 40 years ago. Its brands include the Grand Palladium properties in the Caribbean and Mexico, with pools, spa treatments, age-appropriate kids' activities and restaurants from Spanish to Brazilian to Italian. The Royal Suites by Palladium are kids-free retreats with an intimate ambience and personalized butler service complemented by full access to the services, dining venues, bars and activities of the adjacent Grand Palladium resorts.
Occidental is comprised of three distinct brands: Allegro, Grand and Royal Hideaway. Allegro Resorts in Costa Rica and Mexico are moderately priced, with upbeat moods and a broad array of daytime activities followed by lively nighttime entertainment. Occidental Grand Resorts in Aruba, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic and Mexico are a notch above. Dining options are more upscale and varied, and some accommodations feature the additional perks of the Royal Club, such as private check-in and an exclusive restaurant and lounge. Occidental also operates the Royal Hideaway Playacar in Mexico's Riviera Maya; it has six restaurants, a dinner theater, spa, six pools and a kids-free atmosphere.
Riu has dozens of all-inclusive options, mostly in the Dominican Republic, Jamaica and Mexico, plus two options each in Costa Rica and Aruba and one property each in the Bahamas, Panama and St. Martin. Often three or four Riu properties are located in one large complex, where guests enjoy exchange privileges at the sister resorts.
Karisma has all-inclusive resorts along Mexico's Riviera Maya and in Negril, Jamaica. It includes four kids-free El Dorado resorts and four family-friendly Azul properties. Azul Fives is a nice option for large family groups, with one-, two- and three-bedroom suites with fully equipped kitchens. The Generations Resorts feature all-suite accommodations (including two- and three-bedroom options) and butler service.
Three of our Excellence properties in Mexico and the Dominican Republic offer an elegant, kids-free atmosphere. Each has a multitude of restaurants, bars and lounges, plus 24-hour room service. In March 2015, the company will open its newest resort in the Cancun area, Finest Playa Mujeres, which will have the same upscale experience as other Excellence properties but will be geared to guests of all ages: families with young kids, couples, multigenerational groups and friends traveling together. Excellence also offers The Beloved Hotel Playa Mujeres, a 109-room, family-friendly option north of Cancun.
The Sandos hotels in Mexico provide guests with an array of diversions, from water sports and tennis to a daily activities program and live entertainment at night. Its Sandos Caracol Eco Experience Resort in Playa del Carmen emphasizes Mayan culture and the natural surroundings of mangroves and jungle (you might spot a macaw or spider monkey).
Oasis Resorts in Cancun and Tulum offer value-packed vacations. Most Oasis properties are great for families, while one is kids-free. Each hotel offers multiple restaurants, bars and activities.
The all-inclusive properties of Melia Hotels International are found in the Bahamas, Dominican Republic and Mexico. The company operates three brands, and all properties are rated 4 to 5 stars. The Paradisus hotels feature all-suite accommodations and include Royal Service rooms with butler service and additional amenities. Melia resorts offer a well-rounded tropical escape with a variety of restaurants, bars, water sports, pools and kids' programs. Meanwhile, ME Cancun is a stylish, contemporary spot offering exciting nightlife and a sophisticated ambience.
Club Med is a pioneer in the all-inclusive resort industry. Of the 11 Club Med properties we represent, one -- Club Med Turkoise in the Turks and Caicos -- offers a kids-free setting. Club Med also has the only all-inclusive resort in the U.S., Club Med Sandpiper Bay in Port St. Lucie, FL.
Barcelo has all-inclusive resorts in Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic and Mexico. One is kids-free -- Barcelo Bavaro Beach in Punta Cana at the eastern tip of the Dominican Republic.
Dreams resorts are family-friendly getaways in the Dominican Republic, Costa Rica, Mexico and St. Thomas in the U.S. Virgin Islands. The Explorer's Club for young guests ages 3 to 12 has weekly beach campouts and sand castle competitions, and the Dominican Republic properties have Core Zone Teens Clubs.
Secrets provides upscale, kids-free experiences in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic; Montego Bay, Jamaica; and on both coasts of Mexico. They offer elegant decor, multiple restaurants and lounges and 24-hour room service.
If you're seeking an intimate, couples-only atmosphere, check out the Sandals resorts in Antigua, the Bahamas, Barbados, Grenada, Jamaica and St. Lucia, or the four Couples resorts, all in Jamaica.
Finally, families might consider a vacation at Beaches in Jamaica or Turks and Caicos, where younger guests can participate in supervised, age-appropriate programs at the Kids Camp -- like Sesame Street-themed activities and treasure hunts for little ones, or glass-bottom boat rides and beach volleyball for tweens. Teens can try out the Xbox Play Lounge or Scratch DJ Academy.
Top 10 Resorts in Jamaica
Jamaica is edged by pristine beaches and crowned by mountains that run across the center of the island. Most of the main tourist areas are situated along the reef-protected shores of the north coast. Our best-sellers are located around Ocho Rios, Negril and Montego Bay, called MoBay locally. Top activities in Jamaica include gliding down the Martha Brae River on a long bamboo raft, exploring the subterranean Green Grotto Caves near Runaway Bay and splashing in Dunn's River Falls, a series of terraced cascades and lagoons. Five championship courses attract golfers to MoBay.
Below are brief descriptions of the resorts. Each one is all-inclusive, which means that meals, all beverages, activities, entertainment and some water sports are covered in the upfront rate.
Grand Palladium Jamaica Resort and Spa -- Five pools (including a kids-free pool) and a beautiful beach beckon guests to unwind at this 4-star property in Montego Bay. It shares facilities with neighboring Grand Palladium Lady Hamilton Resort & Spa, which means vacationers have access to more than two dozen bars and restaurants, water sports from kayaking to windsurfing, poolside games and evening entertainment. During your stay, relax in the first-class Spa & Wellness Center or enjoy a round of golf at the championship course.
Holiday Inn Sunspree Resort Montego Bay -- This 3-star property is very family-friendly. The youth staff at the KidSpree Vacation Club organizes activities for ages 6 months to 3 years, ages 4 to 7 and ages 8 to 12. KidSuites feature a partially separated section for your young travelers, with bunk beds and a child's desk or play table; this provides children with their own space and gives parents a bit of privacy. The buffet restaurant includes a kids' corner and pizza bar. Additional dining venues include the Kenko Japanese restaurant and Sorrento, which offers fine dining with ocean views.
ClubHotel Riu Ocho Rios -- Thick woods and waterfalls embrace ClubHotel Riu Ocho Rios, which has carved out a spot on the shores of Mammee Bay. Guests have access to two swimming pools, a solarium terrace, a lovely beach, a wellness center and buffet and themed restaurants. Rooms at the 3-star property are equipped with minibars and liquor dispensers.
Sunset Beach Resort, Spa and Waterpark -- The staff schedules hourly activities at this 3-star retreat at Montego Bay. Children ages 2 to 12 have their own diversions at Club Mongoose, while older kids can hang out at the Pirates' Cove Teen Center. Soak in a beachfront hot tub, stroll the tropical gardens, sit down to afternoon tea or treat yourself to a few hours of pampering at the spa. Nighttime brings a variety of entertainment -- dance in the Tamarind Lounge or join the beach party, for example. Six bars, several restaurants, four tennis courts, three pools and a water park round out the on-site amenities.
Hotel Riu Montego Bay -- This 3.5-star escape is only about two miles from the airport, so you can be relaxing on its tranquil beach not long after your plane lands. Sip on tropical drinks at the swim-up bar, join a volleyball match or sample the treatments at the Renova Spa. The resort's staff organizes daytime activities as well as nighttime entertainment. Buffet dining is supplemented by three reservations-required specialty restaurants: Little Italy, Kalu for Asian fare and the poolside Mahoe Bay grill.
ClubHotel Riu Negril -- Windsurfing, kayaking, snorkeling and sailing, as well as a daily entertainment program and supervised children's activities for ages 4 to 7 and 8 to 12, are part of the all-inclusive offerings at this 4-star spot. For dining options, choose from buffets with on-the-spot cooking stations or among three a la carte restaurants. Hit the tennis courts or the gym, unwind in the sauna or stretch out on a beach lounger under a rustling palm tree.
Secrets St. James Montego Bay -- This 5-star resort is situated on a half-mile stretch of sand and features all-suite accommodations decorated in British colonial style. The property offers a kids-free setting and shares a common area known as The Promenade with its sister resort, Secrets Wild Orchid. The Promenade has seven restaurants as well as bars and lounges. Activities and amenities include dance and cooking classes, tennis and basketball courts, a batting cage, jogging trail, gaming lounge and entertainment in an open-air theater. The 15,000-square-foot spa provides hydrotherapy and dozens of pampering treatments, like massages for two near the surf.
Hilton Rose Hall Resort and Spa -- This 4.5-star resort is set on the grounds of the historic Rose Hall Plantation at Montego Bay. It is home to the Sugar Mill Falls Water Park, which claims to be the largest water park in Jamaica, with a 280-foot waterslide, three terraced pools, a lazy river, lagoons, cascading falls and a children's section. Lounge in a cabana by the oceanfront main pool, swim in turquoise waters or book a massage at the Soothe Spa. Robert Von Hagge designed the resort's championship Cinnamon Hill Golf Course.
Iberostar Grand Hotel Rose Hall -- This 5-star resort is one of Iberostar's Grand Collection hotels, which are exclusive to guests ages 18 and up. Vacationers will find all-suite accommodations, personalized service and 24-hour gourmet dining. Each suite has a private balcony or terrace and comes with a butler. Two buffets are supplemented by 24-hour room service and four specialty restaurants. Guests can fill their days with kayaking and snorkeling excursions, yoga and Pilates classes, dance lessons, tennis and more. The property is about 14 miles from Montego Bay.
Couples Swept Away Negril -- This 5-star retreat just for couples ramps up the romance on Jamaica's sparkling Seven Mile Beach. Rooms are outfitted in island-style cedar furnishings, white linen and plantation shutters. Sea kayaks, snorkeling gear and sailboats are available for guests to use, and a large fitness complex boasts 10 tennis courts, squash and racquetball facilities, a gym and a 25-meter lap pool. You can take a complimentary catamaran cruise, and daily free scuba excursions are provided to certified divers.