Montage Laguna Beach by Amie O'Shaughnessy of Ciao Bambino!
Montage Laguna Beach in Southern California offers exceptional amenities for every age in a spectacular oceanfront setting. It’s the ultimate family-friendly luxury hotel experience where no request goes unheeded, yet the atmosphere is relaxed enough that you don’t need to tiptoe around with your kids. Our son still raves about their camp-style kids’ club, Paintbox (ages 2-12), where he engaged in a non-stop array of creative fun and games.
Grand Wailea Resort by Nadia Carriere of Child Mode
Offering the perfect balance of luxury and family-friendliness, the Grand Wailea Resort makes it to the top of our favorite hotels for families. Not only do they provide exceptional customer service, they are also located on one of the most coveted beaches in Maui. Regardless of whether you are a single family looking for a getaway or if multi-generational family looking to vacation together, the Grand Wailea provides something special for everyone!
Hotel Lancelot by Mara Gorman of Mother of All Trips
I can’t think of a lovelier or more kid-appropriate place to stay in Rome than the Hotel Lancelot. The international staff is accommodating and friendly, you can ask for a portable crib, the breakfast spread can’t be beat, and the courtyard is a great place for you to enjoy a drink while the little ones play. And very best of all is the location: Just a few blocks from the Coliseum.
Embassy Suites Waikiki Beach Walk by Debbie Dubrow of Delicious Baby
On Oahu, many families head out of Honolulu to find space to spread out, but if the shopping, restaurants and glamour of Waikiki are a draw for you like they are for me, the Embassy Suites Waikiki Beach Walk is a great choice. Located just a block from the beach, this all suite hotel has all the services you'd expect (room service, a gym, business center, valet parking) plus an extra huge breakfast buffet, a rooftop pool, and lanai.
Four Seasons Resort Vail by Kara Williams of The Vacation Gals
At Four Seasons Resort Vail, full-day child care - in a brightly colored room near the extraordinary spa - is complimentary for guests. Plus, kids are welcomed with a little amenity - typically a stuffed animal and some sweet treats. Add in a huge outdoor pool that's open year-round, plus free dining for kids under 5 in the on-site restaurant Flame, and you've got quite the family-friendly property in the glorious Colorado mountains! This photo is of the outdoor pool and fireplace - robes and towels are in a "warmer" next to the fireplace, so you can get out of pool hot/tub in winter and snuggle into toastiness!
Great Wolf Lodge by Jessie Voigts of Wandering Educators
Great Wolf Lodge (Traverse City, MI) is our favorite because it's fun for the whole family. There's an indoor waterpark (especially wonderful during the cold Michigan winters). Great Wolf Lodge always has fun events - whether it is Snow Land in the winter, Howl-O-Ween in October, or other events year-round. There's a magical treasure game, MagiQuest - our daughter loves it (especially fighting the dragon at the end). There's a spa (two, actually - an Aveda spa for grownups and a kids spa, called Scoops), an arcade, a Kids Club where there are daily activities, and nightly bedtime stories down in the lobby by the animated clock. I love that we create family traditions, by heading there again and again. We love the friendly staff and the welcoming atmosphere.
The Plaza by Kim Marie Evans of The Luxury Travel Mom
The Plaza has re-opened as a hotel and it is as fabulous as ever. Located directly across from Central Park and boasting a Rolls Royce Phantom as the house car, it's the ultimate luxury get away for a family headed to New York City. Eloise now has her own themed room and menu, you can even bring your little dog if you choose. The concierge is well equipped to help snag tickets to Mary Poppins or Wicked and direct you to Serendipity for a world famous frozen hot chocolate. They'll even book a babysitter for the wee ones and a massage for mom at the Claudalie spa. Now that's a family vacation.
Rooms Deluxe Hostel by Heather Cowper of Heather on her Travels
Rooms Deluxe Hostel in Valencia, Spain is one of a new breed of hostel/hotel hybrid that are great for families. You get a suite hotel rooms with the benefit of a hostel style kitchen so you have the flexibility to cook your own meals, and there's free wifi so your teenagers can keep up with their friends on Facebook. We loved the fact that each of the rooms is decorated by a local artist with some wierd and wacky themes - we stayed in the Venice Room and the Bali Room. If you have younger children, check out the serviced holiday apartments that are on the floors above the hotel and would be ideal for families.
Westgate Park City Resort and Spa by Amy Whitley of Pit Stops for Kids
With three pools (including one indoor-outdoor number with a glass roof), children's programs, luxury suites with kitchens, playgrounds, and on-site dining all at the base of one of Park City's premiere ski resorts, we love Westgate Park City Resort and Spa in all seasons. Mountain bike, horseback ride, and visit the site of the Park City Olympics in summer, and ski and sled in winter!
JW Marriott San Antonio Hill Country Resort & Spa by Colleen Lanin of Travel Mamas
My family is gaga for the JW Marriott San Antonio Hill Country Resort & Spa for many reasons, but as hotel pool enthusiasts, the highlight is its River Bluff Water Experience - an on-site water park complete with a zero-entry pool, fountains, a winding lazy river, and water slides galore. After plenty of together-time in the water, a treasure map leads youngsters (ages 4+) to the Range Riders kids’ camp so parents can indulge in a massage at the heavenly Lantana Spa or play 18 holes on their PGA Tour Golf Course. It’s not just the amenities at this resort that make it stand out, it’s the warmth of the staff and the way we always felt cared for and comfortable here (no matter how noisy we were!).
Wigwam Motel by Glennia Campbell of The Silent I
If you'd like to get your kitsch on Route 66, stop by the Wigwam Motel in Holbrook, Arizona. The white, cone-shaped wigwams are actually cozy, comfortable rooms with TVs, a tiny bathroom, and a comfortable bed. Kids will love the round rooms and collection of vintage cars in the parking lot that give you the feeling of another time. The Cozy Cone Motel in the Disney-Pixar movie Cars was based on this authentic Route 66 motel.
Grand Hotel Villa Serbelloni by Holly Rosen Fink of The Culture Mom
We stayed at the Grand Hotel Villa Serbelloni when my daughter was 1-1/2 and the visit stands out as one of our favorite family travel experiences. The rooms were spacious and well equipped for a baby's visit, the pool was gorgeous and they had boat rides and all kind of organized activities for kids. It was a trip I'll never, ever forget.
Tyler Place Family Resort by Suzanne Rowan Kelleher of WeJustGotBack.com
My family's all-time favorite vacation spot is the Tyler Place Family Resort, a summer camp on the shores of Lake Champlain in northwestern Vermont. A week here delivers the perfect mix of family time, alone time, kid time, and couple time. The children's program and counselors are the best I've ever encountered: nine age-staggered groups for babies through teens, each with its own clubhouse and program of activities. Parents get plenty of their own fun, from kayak trips and sailing to pottery and yoga classes, plus wonderful meals and a cocktail hour every evening. Marvelous!
Clay Brook Residences by Dana Freeman of FindandGoSeek.net
"Be Better Here" isn’t just a tag line at Sugarbush. They really want you be the best you can be and have the best of everything while you are there. Being Better is not just about extravagance, not to say it isn’t luxurious, because the Clay Brook Residences are all that and more. It’s about how your experience at Sugarbush can be unique to you and your family’s needs. On and off the slopes our family loves to spend time here.
Posada Salentein by Michelle Duffy of Wandermom
The Posada Salentein is my new favorite location in Argentina. The vineyard had some truly excellent wines, a world-class restaurant and a stunning location in the foothills of the Andes. You won't want to leave, and, if you stay at the Posada you don't have to. The comfortable, spacious rooms are in a quiet location near the back of the vineyard property. The two-bedroom apartment is a wonderful hideaway for a family of four. Prices are all-inclusive of meals at the smaller, but just as excellent, restaurant within the Posada - and complimentary wine.
Smugglers' Notch by Mary Turner of Travel with Teens
Smugglers' Notch is a four-season resort that makes a major effort to offer day and evening programming for teens and tweens, as well as younger kids. Families can choose when to play together and when to split up. The area is small enough that teens can take off on their own, but big enough that they can always find a challenge. The resort offers a number of lodging options so each family can find something that works for their specific needs.
Ho'olei at Grand Wailea by Anne Taylor Hartzell of Hip Travel Mama
The Ho'olei Grand Wailea on Maui is one of HipTravelMama's favorite luxury hotels on Maui. Grand Wailea offers endless fun and entertainment for families with its endless aquatic playground, water slides, award-winning spa, and beachfront access. For large families, or families traveling together, stay at one of the luxury villas at Ho'olei to have all the comforts of a home with access to the Grand Wailea's pools and restaurants and full service luxury amenities.
Hotel Monaco Portland by Lora Shinn of Cascadia Kids
A teddy bear on the bed, kids' bathrobes in the closet, video games at the happy hour reception and (yes!) a separate room for mom and dad. The fun-loving, thoughtful touches at the Hotel Monaco Portland make this boutique stay one of our family's favorite destinations. P.S. The premium bedding was delightful for both sleeping and (cover your ears, hotel management) leaping.
The Peninsula New York by Elizabeth Thorp of Poshbrood
I just got back with the brood from The Peninsula Hotel New York. I mean, there's posh and then there's POSH. Think chauffeured Mini Coopers, Peninsula cupcakes, mini-Frette robes, activity packs, kids' menu, pool, babysitting, kids eat free on weekends! We're in love.
Affinia Shelburne by Carol Cain of New York City Mama
My favorite family-friendly hotel is any of the Affinia Hotels in NYC. I love them most because of their larger-than-average rooms, full kitchenettes, grocery service, and "Experience Packages" that can range from type of pillows to city tours.
Babington House by Courtney Adamo of Babyccino Kids
Our favourite is Babington House (in Somerset, England located about 2 hours outside of London). It's such a beautiful countryside hotel, and always such a wonderfully relaxing weekend. It's kid-friendly without being obnoxiously so - and somewhere fun for the kids and cool for the grown-ups.
Gaylord Opryland by Jody Halstead of Family Rambling
I'm going with Gaylord Opryland in Nashville, TN. It's an entire city under one roof; with shops and restaurants, gardens and fountains, 3 pools and even a river complete with river boat ride! In April Gaylord properties announced an alliance with DreamWorks; beginning in July more kid friendly activities will be taking place including character breakfasts and movie screenings.
Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge by Amy Querido of The Q Family Adventures Travel Blog
Our favorite is Disney's Animal Kingdom Adventure Lodge in Walt Disney World Resort Orlando, Florida. We love it for the fun, African safari inspired theme. There are many fun activities for kids like night time movies in the pool and night visions of the animals. The photo is of a friend we met outside our balcony.
The Fairmont Kea Lani by Lorainne Akemann of Keeps Me Smiling
The location, the spacious room, the pools, the proximity to the ocean, and the kids' club all contributed to a top-notch vacation for our family of 4 at The Fairmont Kea Lani in Maui, Hawaii. By using a few hours with the kids club in the morning, my husband and I were able to snorkel together and spend some time relaxing by the pool before we spent the afternoons on outings with the kids. Overall there was nothing I could have improved upon - Wailea is one of our favorite locations!
The Westin Kierland Resort & Spa by Sharlene Earnshaw of Trekaroo
The The Westin Kierland Resort & Spa in Scottsdale, Arizona is a kid-friendly paradise for many reasons. The pool area, with its water slides, lazy river, beach entry, and frequent organized activities coordinated by the resort's FUN team, is a desert dweller's paradise unto itself. Throw in golf, remote control car races, the Digital Kids Zone, s'mores by the fire, and free slumber parties at the Kids Club while mom and dad enjoy a nice adult meal at Deseo, and your family may never want to leave.
Smugglers' Notch by Traci Suppa of Go Big or Go Home
I have a mental checklist of what the perfect family-friendly property includes. Smugglers' Notch, or "Smuggs," in Jeffersonville, Vermont tickes off ALL the boxes. Roomy condos? Check. Supervised children's activities? Check. Pools with water park features? Check? Character meals, evening entertainment, and an on-site Ben & Jerry's? Check! Bonus: the state-of-the-art childcare center - Treasures - welcomes infants from 6 months old, allowing new parents downtime too.
JW Marriott Guanacaste Resort & Spa by Dana Rebmann of Ciao Bambino!
Two hours on a bumpy road is worth the pain when you can walk on the beach for even longer and never see another soul. The JW Marriott Guanacaste Resort & Spa is an immense property where you can take the family horseback riding on the beach, zipling or hunt for a turtle nest in the tropical bird and wildlife sanctuary. The fluffiest towels I’ve ever felt are within arms length, if you ever decide to get out of the largest infinity pool in Central America.
Pensione Accademia by Sonja Key of To Europe with Kids
I have a favorite kid-friendly hotel: Pensione Accademia Villa Maravege in Venice, Italy. The number one reason this hotel is so great for families is it's large private garden - a rarity in this busy bustling city. The junior suite which can accommodate a family of four opens up to a wide, shady brick patio where the kids can play. The hotel is centrally located, too.
Mena House Oberoi by Monique Rubin of Mo Travels
Presidents and heads of states have stayed here, so kid-friendly isn’t the first thing to come to mind when you think of Mena House Oberoi in Cairo, Egypt. But my children still talk about the friendly smile from “Pharaoh” at the hotel entrance, the hotel’s vast lobby and public areas, with its dark corners and secret nooks were perfect for their spy games, the room overlooking the pyramids of Giza, which my oldest daughter had just recently studied and the jasmine-scented garden where they did cartwheels and ran through the sprinklers to get some relief from the hot Cairo sun. Based on the glowing reviews from these experts, Mena House Oberoi is without a doubt one of my favorite kid-friendly hotels.
Bacara Resort & Spa by Jennifer Miner of The Vacation Gals
Bacara Resort & Spa is 10 minutes from Santa Barbara, giving this wonderfully family-friendly resort a sense of luxurious remoteness. Santa Barbara is incredibly accessible, of course, along with its renown shopping and fine dining. Bacara's 78 oceanside acres allow for lots of outdoor activities like whale watching, bike riding, and (most kids' favorite) running amok on the beach. The Bacara Kid's Club occupied children while parents visit the spa or golf course as well. Bacara is also pet-friendly; children won't have to miss their dogs while on a family vacation along the California coast.
Hotel Cipriani by Katrina Garnett of My Little Swans
Our son Alistair loved Hotel Cipriani in Venice so much, we are taking him back this summer. It is like an oasis for Ali. Between the café poolside and the pool, he was in heaven. I didn’t mind being there either. The photo says it all. Given how hot it gets in Venice, I cannot imagine a better place to be!
Franklyn D. Resort & Spa by Corinne McDermott of Have Baby Will Travel!
I adored the Franklyn D. Resort & Spa in Runaway Bay, Jamaica. Vacation Nannies and five star service in a resort so casual I rarely wore shoes. Lush vegetation, a calm baby-friendly beach, awesome jerk chicken, and symphonic tree frogs added to the appeal. Within two minutes of our arrival, both my kids were sunscreened, swimsuited and at the beach, meaning I could unpack in peace. My daughter constantly asks when we’ll be returning, and I’m asking myself the same thing!
Paradise Point Resort & Spa by Erica Dublin of See Jane Fly
At Paradise Point Resort & Spa in San Diego, Mom and Dad can pamper themselves at the spa, enjoy restful slumber in their own bedroom (connecting and adjoining rooms available), and sip cocktails from the peace and quiet of their own waterfront patio, while the kids are fast asleep in their own room. Tots love the five pools (some with baby wading areas), ducks and fish that roam the property, and sand and surf just steps away. Ready to venture out? Bring their look & feel books to life at the San Diego Zoo or Sea World. Both offer plenty for tiny explores to see and do. To make your trip even more relaxing, the property has bike rentals (ask for one with a baby seat), mom-approved cribs, and some of the nicest staff we’ve ever met. Where do I sign up?
Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort by Jennifer Close of Two Kids and a Map
The Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort is a luxurious resort on Florida’s Gulf Coast with family friendly amenities like kayak and bicycle rentals, zero entry pool, and beach access. We spent hours exploring Jolee Island, an island that has trails and play structures for children. There are accommodations to meet all family needs and budgets ranging from single family homes, condos, studios and villas throughout the 2,400 acre property. Our accommodation of choice is the Grand Sandestin which is only steps away from the Village of Baytowne Wharf, a family friendly hangout full of entertainment options, restaurants, and shops.
Little St. Simons Island by Sue Rodman of Field Trips with Sue
Little St. Simons Island is a private island along the Georgia coast and only accessible by boat. It's a nature lovers paradise. You're sure to see ghost crabs, armadillos, alligators and a variety of shore birds. The weekend we were there staff naturalists were putting oyster catcher chicks they had incubated back in their nest. My boys loved searching for sand dollars, wading in the tide pools and riding bikes on the seven miles of beach. There is even a marooned tugboat to investigate. We explored the marsh on our own skiff and fished from the doc next to an alligator! Planned activities and resources for your own activities are all included. Also included are three meals each day. Those meal often include fresh ingredients from the on-site garden and rival some of the best restaurants inland, but can also include mac and cheese for the picky child.
La Costa Resort and Spa by Debbie Kaplan of Frisco Kids and Jersey Kids
La Costa Resort and Spa in Carlsbad, California was the perfect spot to meet up with several other families. The kids loved the water slides and multiple pools (including the no-barrier entry pool with sand, and the water play area). We loved the spa, and the ability to book your kids at their cheery day care/camp. The hotel offers different fun activities, like making your own s'mores over a fire pit, and a reptile show. We had to pull them away to go to Legoland!
Hacienda San Lucas by Marina Villatoro of Travel Experta
Hacienda San Lucas, a family owned hacienda and farm, was lovingly renovated into one of the best boutique hotels in Copan. It overlooks the valley and the famous Copan Mayan Ruins. However, staying here is what really adds to the experience of the trip. The 8 room hotel has huge grounds to hike on that lead to a small ruins site. With a few dogs that my kids became instant best friends with we explored and explored. And when we arrived back to our room we had a refreshment waiting for my oldest son and 2 chilled beers for us to sip on while swinging in the hammocks. Service, great atmosphere and happy kids makes me a happy traveler!
Royal Sonesta Hotel Boston by Carolina Papa of Kids Go West
It's difficult to find hotels in big cities that will give traveling families a little bit of a breather from all the hustle and bustle. I found our stay at the Royal Sonesta Hotel Boston during a busy Fourth of July weekend, a pleasant surprise. The hotel is located on the Cambridge side of the Charles River, so it boasts gorgeous views of the Boston skyline and of the Fourth of July firework displays from its river front rooms. During the summer, the hotel offers a program with complimentary use of bicycles (kids' helmets available) to take a cruise on the bike path along the Charles River, free ice cream in the afternoons, and coupons for a free harbor boat tour. If that weren't enough, it has relaxing atrium-style pool for kids to unwind at after a day of city sightseeing.
Hotel Esencia by Anne Patrone of 500 Places with Kids
Hotel Esencia along the Mexican Riviera coast is a small, family-friendly, luxury hotel that my kids can't stop talking about. With a spa that offers mini-manicures and a "chocolate" bath for their younger guests to a world-class restaurant with cooking classes for kids, Hotel Esencia has something for every family. DVD players in each room along with a large library of family-friendly movies provide inside entertainment when the Yucatan sun gets too hot. A children's menu that allows kids to explore the region's cuisine while still offering comforting favorites is another plus. The best part of Hotel Esencia? From the busy Cancun-Tulum road, you'd never even know it existed!
Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagayo by Cristina Patel of Galavante
The Four Seasons Resort Costa Rica at Peninsula Papagayo is the "it" getaway for families with an adventurous spirit. My wildlife-crazed boys woke up to the guttural cries of howler monkeys and rubbed ankles with a family of coatis (the Brazilian aardvark) on their way to the pool. Zip-lining through forests and hiking a volcano will test any family's stamina, so the kids will appreciate the freshly baked snacks waiting in your room. Families with small children need not fear - the kids' club kept our boys entertained with tennis lessons and hermit crab expeditions. Make your vacation have a lasting impact on the little ones and the community by volunteering together at a school in a local village. The hotel's unique volunteer program is a great way to teach the kids the importance of giving back.
Bella Baita by Anna Godley of LoveBaby LoveTravel
Bella Baita in the Italian Alps is one place that I absolutely must go back to. While it doesn't market itself as accommodation particularly designed with families in mind, the owners are amongst the most friendly and welcoming people I have ever met and the food they prepare is out of this world. Bella Baita is for you if you love the outdoors and are looking for somewhere a bit different to visit with your family.