We found that several destinations might score well in terms of romance, but are not always so welcoming to youngsters.Much of baby/child friendliness (or the lack thereof) begins with the attitude of the management, marketing, sales, and public relations personnel, which funnels down into the staff and into the development of childrens programs, amenities and safety features which are highlighted on the site.
Taking kids to a resort or restaurant that does not possess a hospitable attitude towards them can be a regrettable experience. We hope to spare you from accidentally stumbling into an awkward vacation situation because we have checked it out ahead for you!
Many of the features of a child-friendly resort are also appropriate for persons using wheelchairs or who are mobility-challenged, since my scoring system includes items such as wide elevators and ramps. In determining which resorts were baby/child friendly, I used the following list of criteria:
- For babies and toddlers: Cribs that meet safety standards--in good condition.
- Child/baby safety-proofing kits offered upon arrival.
- Ramps available for pushing babies and toddlers in stroller.
- Automatic doors.
- Elevators large enough to accommodate stroller.
- Hotel entrance within close proximity of parking or valet
- Pedestrian walkways free from hazards such as racing golf carts or flying golf balls.
- Are pets allowed? If so, are restrictions in place for them so that they cannot accidentally harm babies or young children?
- Absence of boisterous patrons. Nightclub on the premises?
- Staff walking, driving vehicles, pushing carts at a safe rate.
- Sidewalks/ramps blocked. Passageways clear of debris (i.e. trays, garden trimmings, trash cans, service carts).
- For school-aged kids and older:Diverse activities at the resort: pool, tennis, ping pong, arcade on property, bike rentals, etc.
- Kid's menu in the restaurant: foods that are not too fancy for them.
- Nearby attractions outside of the resort: amusement parks, beaches, or other interesting activities.
- On-Demand movies.
- Board games available.
- Secure balconies with kid-safe railings.
- Resort located away from busy streets and traffic.
- Childrens programsactivities for youngsters.
- Bonded baby-sitting services.
- Room baby-proofed by staff.
- For babies and tots:Spaciousness of the roomnot cramped for baby and baby necessities.
- Bathroom spacelarge counter and tub space for washing baby.
- Lobby, lounge, and gathering areas within the resort offer space to sit comfortably while accommodating stroller.
- Room provides comfortable places (chairs, loveseats, couches, etc.) for holding, nursing and/or feeding baby.
- Soundproof or semi-soundproof walls that buffer babys cries or toddler tantrums.
- Lobby bathrooms provide changing tables.
- Close proximity of hotel to other activities or town. Is the hotel close enough that parents can push baby into town or nearby activities without the car?
- Room service availability, providing ability to eat in room with baby or kids at any hour if necessary.
- For school-aged kids and older: Diverse activities at the resort--pool, tennis, ping pong, arcade on property, kid's club with activities, etc.
- A Kid's menu available in the restaurant and in room-service: basic foods that are not too fancy for their tastebuds.
- Nearby attractions surrounding the resort: an amusement park, beach, shopping, or other interesting activities.
- On-Demand movies.
- Board games available in the room or from the front desk.
- Refrigerator in room for sodas, leftovers from the restaurant, cold water, etc.
- Music available in room (CD players, radio, etc.).
- Laundry room or service available in hotel for dirty baby or childrens clothes.
- Pool for children with attending lifeguard.