All-inclusive in Jamaica
THE Beaches Resort in Negril, located on Jamaica’s famous Seven Mile Beach, has it all — five-star luxury for exhausted new parents and a host of experts on hand to tend to the baby. While mum and dad are just chilling in the spa, or mustering the energy to do some of the many water sports or activities, the on-site nannies — all members of the International Nanny Association — are on hand. Luxurious, climate-controlled nurseries in the infant camps are filled with cots, pushchairs, highchairs, rocking chairs and everything a little one could ever need, and are open from 9am until 9pm. From £4,038 for five nights, all inclusive (excluding flights), beaches.co.uk
Arrival kits in Andalusia
The new Tiny Tots Programme at Andalusia’s family-owned Marbella Club, a wellness-focused beach resort, provides parents of children under five with thoughtful perks. Cleverest is the option to preorder personalised ‘arrival kits’ of baby essentials so that you can travel more lightly. Welcome gifts for juniors include personalised hooded bath towels and colouring books, plus there’s complimentary access to the gazpacho-making kids’ club and two hours of free babysitting.
Accommodation is in a whitewashed two-bed villa whose Tick Tock Turtle clocks help young’uns wake up in the ideal part of their sleep cycle. And they help you make it out in time to go horse riding or on mountain drives. From £2,385 for four nights’ B&B for families of three, incl transfers and golf-course access, marbellaclub.com
By the beach in Greece
There are various reasons why parents love the aptly named Princess Resort. Firstly, it occupies the best beach on the Greek island of Skiathos: a long, lounger-dotted cove suiting sandcastle-building. Then there’s the complimentary ‘creche club’, whose activities range from drawing to craft-making. Next up are the high chairs and children’s menus in the main taverna restaurant, which is always open. You’ve also got a shallow pool for juniors, a small outdoor play area and staff who are endlessly friendly to guests of all ages. Finally, there are the recently renovated family rooms, which boast ample space and garden access (read: no stairs). Babysitting is also available for times when adults feel like a spa treatment or ‘YOGAqua’ class. A family room (two adults, one baby) starts at £292pn B&B, santikoscollection.com
Babes in Bahrain
Recently opened in Manama, the capital of the Middle Eastern island kingdom of Bahrain, The Merchant House allows guests aged six and under to stay, and eat, for free — yes, for free. Other perks include spacious suites and proximity to the local souk, whose exotic fragrances and colours should silence any crying fits. A member of Small Luxury Hotels of the World, The Merchant House is also packed with funky Bahraini artwork and contains a large rooftop pool-restaurant.
Those suites have open-plan kitchen, dining and sitting areas, with room for prams. Travel in November to March to avoid summer’s oppressive heat. Suites for parents and a child start at £234pn B&B, campbellgrayhotels.com
Swiss wellness for mother and baby
In Switzerland, between the mighty Alps and Lake Geneva, the tranquil Evian Resort offers Baby & Mother Stays that utilise its spa. Open to couples with nippers aged from four to ten months, the two-night breaks deliver a daily baby massage and Aqua Baby session and a tailored massage, body and face ritual, plus a manicure for mum. Gentle stretching and pilates classes can also be arranged, and programmes devised for partners. Accommodation is at the resort’s lakeside, the five-star Hôtel Royal, which has a golf course. Nearby spa town Evian-les-Bains is famed for its thermal baths. A three-night, half-board stay starts at £2,415 for two parents and a littl’un, evianresort.com
Self-catering in sleepy Sussex
Red-bricked and creeper-covered, Poppets Cottage (pictured above) is as cute as its name suggests. It’s also as tot-friendly, with a cot available and a peaceful Sussex village (Buxted) setting promising privacy. Part of a former convent, the one-bedroom cottage oozes vintage style — open fire, wood floors, vaulted ceilings and a country kitchen. Its full-size bath is heaven for tired parents. Outside is the owners’ garden, roamed by clucking chickens, a chummy cockapoo and two cats. Buxted has a farm shop for picnics in the surrounding Weald countryside. Three nights at Poppets Cottage start at £379, classic.co.uk