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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.
Resorts with Over The Water Bungalows, Water Parks & More
El Dorado Maroma on Mexico's Riviera Maya has overwater bungalows with glass windows set into the floors and access to the ocean via a ladder; they also come with private infinity pools. Sandals has installed overwater bungalows at three of its properties: Sandals Royal Caribbean Resort and Sandals South Coast in Jamaica and Sandals Grande St. Lucian in St. Lucia.
Love the thought of lounging by your own private pool? In Playa del Carmen, Mexico, all accommodations at Banyan Tree Mayakoba have private pools, as do the 41 villas at the boutique Viceroy Riviera Maya.
On-site water parks add to the fun at Hilton Rose Hall Resort and Sunscape Splash Montego Bay in Jamaica and Atlantis Paradise Island in the Bahamas (Atlantis also has a marine habitat with more than 50,000 aquatic animals).
You'll find kid-sized aqua parks at Iberostar Rose Hall Suites in Jamaica, Crown Paradise Club Puerto Vallarta on Mexico's Pacific coast, Iberostar Paraiso Maya on Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula, Barcelo Bavaro Palace in the Dominican Republic and Grand Palladium Jamaica and neighboring Grand Palladium Lady Hamilton in Jamaica (Grand Palladium Jamaica also claims to have the largest pool on the island).
Guests can swim in a cenote -- a natural underground spring -- at Sandos Caracol Eco Resort, a Playa del Carmen property set amid jungles, mangroves, beachfront and its own impressive water park. Moon Palace Cancun has aFlowRider surfing simulator among its amenities.
Many of our tropical resorts have swim-up bars in their pools, but the Hotel Riu Palace Riviera Maya near Playa del Carmen expanded the concept by adding nooks with partially submerged built-in seats and cocktail tables to its 13,500-square-foot pool.
Hard Rock Hotels in Mexico and the Dominican Republic offer The Sound of Your Stay. It's a free program of musical amenities: You can borrow a Fender guitar, along with a pocket amp and headphones (in-room video lessons are available), or turn your room into your own private club with DJ equipment.
How about taking in the views from a private rooftop terrace? High-end rooms at Grand Palladium Bavaro Suites in the Dominican Republic have rooftop terraces with Jacuzzis and Bali beds. The Excellence Group resorts in Mexico, Jamaica and the Dominican Republic also have accommodations with private rooftop lounge areas and pools.
The reef at Anse Chastanet Resort in St. Lucia starts just 10 yards from the water's edge, offering snorkelers and divers an amazing array of marine life in 20 to 140 feet of calm, clear ocean. More than 150 species of fish have been counted here.
CHIC Punta Cana by Royalton Luxury Resorts in the Dominican Republic and Royal Hideaway Playacar in Playa del Carmen, Mexico, offer a chef's table experience, where dishes are prepared in front of a limited number of guests. Royal Hideaway Playacar also holds a weekly dinner theater show in its Club Royale.