|Sandals Barbados is a new couples-only resort in St. Lawrence that has inventive accommodations spanning across three villages: Ocean Village, Crystal Lagoon Village and Caribbean Village.|
Luxury all-inclusives are rolling out at a pace never seen before. How should you decide which ones are right for your A-listers? Here’s our view.
Sandals Barbados is one of the three new Sandals Resorts International hotels, along with the swanky Sandals LaSource Grenada and the tastefully re-branded Sandals Ochi Beach Resort (formerly known as Sandals Grande Riviera), that has basically transformed the brand into a haven for younger, seasoned travelers who are looking for unspoiled islands, more luxury and fewer buffet lines.
The most sought-after accommodations here are the Crystal Lagoon Swim-Up Suites and the Ocean Village Suites, which offer the best views. Specifically, the most requested rooms are the Crystal Lagoon One Bedroom Butler Suite with Balcony Tranquility Soaking Tub and the Ocean Village Beachfront One Bedroom Butler Suite with Balcony Tranquility Soaking Tub. As the names indicate, both of these rooms come with dedicated butler service. Hint: VIPs staying in any butler-level room get private, luxury transfers to and from the airport.
Nice Touch: Located on the first floor of the Crystal Lagoon Village, the Crystal Lagoon One Bedroom Butler Suite with Balcony Tranquility Soaking Tub offers a patio complete with a circular tub and direct access to the beautiful crystal lagoon. Located on the east and west-end of the exclusive Ocean Village, the Ocean Village Beachfront One Bedroom Butler Suite with Balcony Tranquility Soaking Tub offers a private balcony showcasing a soaking tub, chaise lounges and views of the Caribbean Sea. Bonus: Both Suites include an iPod docking station, fully stocked in-room bar, and his and hers plush robes.
Luxury travel advisors looking to further customize their VIP’s vacation at Sandals Barbados should reach out to Ginelle Bell ([email protected]), sales manager.
Guests can explore an array of cuisine with 11 unique dining concepts such as Caribbean seafood, regional Italian, French-style patisserie Café de Paris, Soy Sushi Bar, Butch’s Chophouse (a New York-style steakhouse) and Bombay Club (Sandals’ first ever Indian restaurant).
For special dining arrangements, reach out to Frederico Moreira ([email protected]), food and beverage director.
|Dreams Las Mareas Costa Rica’s Preferred Club Junior Suite Ocean View has a furnished terrace with a hot tub.|
Note: Non-guests of the hotel need to purchase a day or night pass to the resort in order to dine at any of the on-property restaurants. Hint: The most popular restaurant is Butch’s Chophouse. It is recommended to make reservations at the time of booking.
For those looking to do some shopping on the island, shopping tours can be booked at the property through Island Routes. Contact Simone Skinner ([email protected]), destination manager for Island Routes, to get the scoop on what’s available.
Josef Zellner ([email protected]) is the general manager of the resort and can be contacted if an A-lister needs some TLC.
Dreams Las Mareas Costa Rica
Already a provider of all-inclusive service throughout the Caribbean and Mexico, AMResorts made its first move to Latin America with the opening of the family-friendly Dreams Las Mareas Costa Rica.
Here, there are eight restaurants, including the elegant El Patio, which serves Mexican fare, and Himitsu, which serves Asian cuisine. Note: No reservations are required at the restaurants.
Tell VIPs looking to tie the knot about the Dreams Ultimate Wedding Package that includes a choice of one Swedish massage for two, one European facial for two or one glow body scrub for two; hairstyling and makeup application for one member of the wedding couple for the day of the ceremony; and a 15 percent discount on all spa treatments.
The most popular rooms at the resort are the Preferred Club suites. Of these, we say the best is the Preferred Club Master Suite Oceanfront, thanks to its hot tub on the terrace. The suite comes with a dining room for up to four people, a double vanity bathroom and Preferred Club privileges. Those perks include concierge service, access to a private lounge, upgraded minibar service, a pillow menu and free, in-room internet access. Advisors should reach out to Rocio Rossainz ([email protected]), director of sales, to get the skinny on other details.
|The 16,600-square-foot spa offers facilities that include 10 luxury cabins, a bridal suite and a hydrotherapy area.|
The 16,600-square-foot spa also offers treatments for children, including the popular Strawberry Hydrating Facial and the Chocolate and Mint Exfoliation. Luxury travel advisors looking to book a spa treatment should reach out to Lorena Herrera ([email protected]), spa manager.
Advisors looking to make any special requests for VIPs should reach out to Francisco Garcia ([email protected]), general manager.
Generations Riviera Maya by Karisma
Karisma Hotels and Resorts rolled out its new luxury, family-friendly, all-inclusive brand, Generations, in style last year with the debut of Generations Riviera Maya in Mexico.
That resort’s Gourmet Beachfront Tower was unveiled last fall, with four beachfront restaurants and lounges, the Eko Kids Club and a Sky Terrace. Nice Touch: Generations Riviera Maya also recently debuted The Greatest Escape Game by Athens Clue. The game offers two unique challenges for groups, where two to five guests of all ages are tasked with solving a mystery and escaping from the locked room in only 45 minutes. Guests will work together to solve logic puzzles and use the clues they are provided to decipher numeric, word, and key locks in order to escape before time is up.
Generations Riviera Maya has 144 all-suite (one-, two- and three-bedroom) oceanfront accommodations — the largest in the Riviera Maya at 1,200 square feet — with swim up infinity suites, as well as the signature Gourmet Inclusive experience.
Traveling with a few folks? One-bedroom suites here can hold four; two bedroom suites have an occupancy of eight people and three-bedroom suites can sleep 12 people. Hint: All of the resorts’ suites have oceanfront views but the rooms at floors four and five have unobstructed views. Note: All rooms have butler service as well as personal beach butlers for both adults and children.
The Naay Spa offers a Beachfront Sky Massage, where VIPs receive their treatment in total privacy on the beach on a beautifully designed, raised palapa, indigenous to the area, surrounded by nothing but ocean and air.
Generations Riviera Maya is home to the largest and tallest Sky Wedding location — overlooking nothing but the azure sea and sky — with other locations including a seaside chapel, as well as beach and garden wedding gazebos. Tip: As part of the Memorable Moments Signature Wedding Collection, brides are invited to choose from one of the following collections: Coastal Bliss, Vintage Elegance, Pure Glamour, Sophisticated Soiree, Majestic Flair and Colonial Charm.
|Generations Riviera Maya has 144 all-suite oceanfront accommodations. Seen here is the view from the Oceanfront Luxury Jacuzzi Suite.|
Luxury travel advisors who need help picking a wedding collection should contact Howard Ruiz ([email protected]), head butler at Generations Riviera Maya.
Hint: Celebrations at Generations Riviera Maya by Karisma is a year-long event where special VIP guests are immersed in the perfect atmosphere for milestone events, birthdays for all ages and celebrity style vacations. The all-new VIP Celebration Vacation Packages have two options: “The Best Birthday EVER” and “Star For A Day.” Each package can be customized to fit all ages and are complimentary for guests when they book a two-bedroom suite for five nights or longer during the month of their birthday.
The Eko Kids Clubs has supervised activities for kids aged four to 12 years with an environment-friendly twist. Each Kids Club includes a movie area, craft station, cooking station, library, gaming consoles and more. Little Eko Chefs, a class offered every weekday at the Kids Eko Kitchen, presents foodie families with fun facts, interactive techniques and easy to replicate recipes.
Nice Touch: For infants and toddlers, Baby Beach Lounges complete with toys will provide a shady respite from the sun. For babies, Pack & Play features freshly pureed baby food served on pint-sized china, baby-sized plush robes, strollers, cribs, in-room playpens, bottle warmers and bottle sterilizers, baby monitors, refrigerators for medicine, bath toys, and more.
Luxury travel advisors should reach out to Barbara Espinosa ([email protected]), sales programs and training manager, if their clients’ stay needs some extra attention.