|Photo by Freeimages.com/Michael Brys|
By Sherelle Jacobs, The Daily Telegraph, March 14, 2016
The best kids' clubs at hotels around the world
Domes of Elounda, Crete, Greece
The Ark kids' club hosts a football school, golf academy, and dance school led by a Strictly Come Dancing Greece judge. There is even a pop-up Six Senses children’s spa. Several play areas, two pools and other activities including circus acting and mini Olympic games, also help to establish this place as one of the best options for children in Crete.
Iniala Beach House, Phuket, Thailand
Children can sleep over in the treehouse and cave-inspired adventure bedrooms in the kids' club at Iniala Beach House, which was crafted by children’s design guru Christopher Jones. The kiddies' hotel hosts a restaurant and even an ‘armory’ full of costumes to play dressing up.
Read the full review: Iniala Beach House
L’Apogée Courchevel, France
Is this the most stylish kids' club in the world? Even its name — Mini VIP 1850 — rings more like a vintage courvoisier or a Chelsea club night. The ‘smart camp’, designed by Sophie Jacqmin, a rising star in the hotel interior-design world, has a futuristic feel and its centrepiece is a massive yurt. The activities include magic tricks, chocolate making, jewellery design, as well as examining snowflakes and exploring the flora and fauna outside.
Marbella Club Hotel, Marbella, Spain
The roster of high-quality activities at the kids' club is always packed. Think gazpacho-making lessons with the head chef, flamenco classes, and an aroma workshop where children mash up herbs and flowers from the garden to make their own scent. There are also barbecues, open-air film nights and discos in the evenings.
Club Med Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
Perhaps the most striking offering is the Cirque du Soleil circus school which features a flying trapeze. The kids' club also organises tennis, football, sailing and windsurfing, as well as the opportunity for young’uns to take part in dancing shows. There are also on-the-beach film nights for teens.
Treasure Island Resort, Fiji
An intriguingly cultural offering that focuses on Fijian culture as well as fun. Activities include Lovo preparations (traditional feast cooking in the earth); Fijian language learning, meke performances (Fijian song and dance); and visits to local schools. There is also a big emphasis on the enjoying the wildlife — a popular kids’ club activity is feeding Hibiscus flowers to the rare Crested Iguanas (there are just 6,000 left in the world).
Princesa Yaiza, Lanzarote
The Kikoland Kids' Club is on an estate the size of two football pitches, complete with tennis courts, a football school, amphitheatre, climbing wall, basketball and beach volley courts, swimming pool and playhouses. Family suites also come with a kids’ mini-bar and Playstation.
Read the full review: Princess Yaiza
Shangri-La Barr Al Jissah, Muscat, Oman
The sprawling children’s area includes an Adventure Zone with a 20ft Demon Drop Slide, over-under hurdles and PlayStation 3s. There is also a lazy river, with inflatables, inspired by the falaj system that transported fresh water to isolated Omani villages. Not forgetting an aqua park, a splash pool, mini-golf, a games room with air hockey and electronic darts, and camel and pony rides.
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- Le Cannonier, Mauritius
The big attraction here is the building itself: an 18th-century former lighthouse, a location sure to set little imaginations crackling. The activity roster is always crammed — options include mask making, learning creole, archery and games in the children’s pool.
Four Seasons Maldives - Kuda Huraa & Landaa Giraavaru
The kids' clubs at these two resorts are actually a series of challenges inspired by the island wilderness. The Passport to Adventure series, for ages four to eight, features snorkel expeditions and wishing tree walks. The sequel to this — Mission (for children aged eight to 12) — is made up of 14 ‘objectives’ — from monitoring injured turtles to transplanting coral reefs.
Read the full review: Four Seasons Landaa Giraavaru
Thanda Private Game Reserve, KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa
Not so much a traditional kids' club as a unique junior rangers course that teaches younger visitors at this remote, luxury safari lodge the secrets of the savannah. They will learn about spotting and tracking game, identifying animal scents, and identifying birds and plants. They also get a junior ranger certificate.
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Hotel Cap du Eden Roc, Antibes, France
Tennis and theatre games, Olympics challenges, treasure hunts and nature workshops are just a few of the things on offer here. However, the most unique offering for children is the spa, which has a special treatment menu just for little people, including Pirates and Mermaids massages and Princess Nails treatments.
Read the full review: Hotel du Cap Eden Roc
Fregate Island, Seychelles
This private-island resort has a 'Kids Club Castaway’ experience; expect expeditions into parts of the Fregate Island 'jungle' that are out of bounds for adults, and home to giant tortoises and other curious species. The regular treasure hunts on the island's beaches offer further thrills.
Read the full review: Fregate Island
The Nam Hai Hoi An, Vietnam
There's a strong emphasis on activities designed to immerse children in the local culture here, which includes Vietnamese lessons, Hoi An lantern making and shell and coconut leaf art. Other activities include boat racing, yoga, and tending to the hotel’s herb and vegetable garden.
Sani Beach Hotel, Halkidiki, Greece
Activities on offer include swimming lessons and nature excursions. There are also pool games, picnics and parties. The offerings for older children include DJ classes, a dance academy doing everything from ballet to breakdancing, and a football academy.
Read the full review: Sani Beach Hotel
Forte Village Resort, Sardinia
The kids' club here is centred around a series of themed experiences. The Barbie VIP package includes a Barbie-inspired bedroom, Barbie goodies, a Barbie outfit design session, and learning to walk the runway. There’s also a Marvin the Magic academy, and other facilities in the kids' club ‘wonderland’ include a children’s mini-town complete with diner, a swimming laguna just for little people and an eco-inspired ‘Wonder Lab’.
Read the full review: Le Dune at Forte Village
By Sherelle Jacobs
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