FX Excursions

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Family-Friendly 5-Stars

by Carley Wade

Jun 18, 2018

© Martinmark | Dreamstime.com


Who says you have to skimp on luxury when traveling with the kids? Plenty of 5-star hotels have something for Mom and Dad (spas and golf, anyone?), to outdoor adventures — with included babysitting — so everybody gets what they want.


Sure, Disney may be nearby, but what about the wonder of the Great Outdoors? The Ritz-Carlton’s renowned for its immersive, property-specific kids activities, and the Orlando hotel includes plenty of eco-friendly tours. There’s a kids club, fishing lessons and opportunities to explore via kayak 500 acres at the head of the Everglades’ wetlands, ponds and cypress trees. In Naples, the 5-star Grand Beach Resort (formerly a Waldorf Astoria) includes access to one of the state’s best beaches and a 100-foot waterslide.


Its prime location makes The Peninsula a top choice for just about everyone (not just those with strollers), but you may not want to leave with the Stokke baby products, along with a stunning Sunday brunch that caters to kids with special tables. Kids get the Keys to the City, which includes access to the Navy Pier Ferris wheel.


Our 50th state is surely one of the most quintessential family vacations, and there’s no shortage of luxury options here. Check out the newer Four Season Oahu. You’ll enjoy beachfront water sports, cribs for kids and a club for the tweens, all next to the edge of a lagoon. On Maui, Montage Kapulua Bay features large suites with private verandas and kitchens. The 9,000-square-foot spa has an infinity pool and menus for children and teens.


The parents can feast at Nobu while the kids spend time at the 14,000-square-foot kids club at Atlantis on Paradise Island. There’s a game room and chocolate-making classes for sweet treats after kid-centric dinners. It’s not all sitting back and lazing — don’t forget the water slides and shark tank here.


Get your hands wet at Sea Island, where you can paddle-board through salt flats alongside dolphins, kids can get naturalist training at Camp Cloister and everybody wins at family bingo night. At Lake Oconee, The Ritz-Carlton Reynolds, the indoor spa swimming pool has daily family swim time in the afternoon, and there’s a separate children’s swimming area with water features and special restrooms. Segway tours, horseback riding and other half- and full-day kids camp activities abound like scavenger hunts and biking, with themed Friday and Saturday kids nights out.


Dreaming of a romantic Italian holiday? The J.W. Marriott Venice Resort & Spa includes a teen club and family pool — difficult to find in this city — plus classes on gondola steering and mask-making.


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