As the rise of all-inclusive resorts continues, Joanna Booth checks out some great packages for clients watching the pennies – and some luxury alternatives for those who can afford to push the boat out
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Crystal Cove, St James
The combination of an excellent deal and the extensive refurbishment of this four-star property means clients can afford to feel like they’re splurging in Barbados without remortgaging the house.
It’s great value for money, especially for families, with a whole host of land and watersports included, as well as a kids’ club and complimentary water taxis to the other west coast hotels owned by the Elegant Hotels group, which are part of the hotel’s dine-around programme. Deluxe touches include Beach Ambassadors, who bring refreshments to your sunlounger.
Sample package: Caribtours offers seven nights between May 1 and June 30 from £1,460 (saving £325) including flights and transfers, when booked by April 30.
Book it:caribtours.co.uk, 020 7751 0660
St Raphael Resort, Limassol
On the outskirts of Limassol, this five-star is in a tranquil location next to a chic yacht marina. Planet Holidays recommends the recently-built executive wing’s family rooms, which can accommodate up to two adults and three kids.
All rooms are generous in size, and clients of all ages will enjoy the two pools and lovely terraces and gardens. The all-inclusive package covers all but one of the six restaurants, and plenty of activities on land and water, including windsurfing, canoeing, snorkelling and introductory scuba lessons.
Sample package: Planet Holidays offers seven nights from £3,375 for two adults and two children, departing Gatwick on May 4 and including private transfers.
Book it:planet-holidays.co.uk, 0871 871 2234
Jaz Belvedere, Sharm el-Sheikh
This luxe-for-less option is a fairly reserved splurge: the solid four-star has direct and exclusive access to Montaza Beach, 12 miles from Sharm town centre. Rooms are large, with clean, understated decor and touches of Arabian architecture.
Meals are buffets, and snacks, afternoon tea and ice-cream are on offer too. There’s an entertainment programme, plus activities including tennis, archery, table tennis, beach volleyball and football. There’s a kids’ club, and a diving school.
Sample package: Hayes & Jarvis offers seven nights from £735 including Thomson flights from Gatwick, departing May 5.
Book it:hayesandjarvis.com, 0871 200 2211
Round Hill, Montego Bay
This isn’t the kind of resort you might expect to offer all-inclusive – an elegant boutique set in a private cove, it was once a private haven that played host to icons such as Grace Kelly, Jackie Kennedy and Liz Taylor.
There are 27 villas and 36 Oceanfront rooms, designed by Ralph Lauren, with stone floors and mahogany four-posters. The chef cooks fresh, local produce, and the entertainment includes bonfire beach buffets, cabaret and cocktail parties. There’s a wide range of watersports, tennis, a fitness centre and a kids’ club, plus a spa in a restored 18th-century plantation house.
Sample package: Seasons offers seven nights for the price of four (saving £540) on a Platinum all-inclusive plan (which includes meals and afternoon tea, champagne and fruit platter on arrival, drinks, room service and a raft ride on the river), from £2,165, including flights and transfers between April 27 and August 31.
Book it:seasons.co.uk, 01244 206000
Zoëtry Paraiso de la Bonita, Riviera Maya
There are no standard rooms here – it’s luxurious, all-suite accommodation all the way at this member of Leading Small Hotels of the World. Decorated along six themes – Balinese, Oriental, Caribbean, Indian, Mediterranean and African – all suites have sunken marble baths and Bulgari toiletries.
There are four à la carte restaurants, including Mexican, sushi and pan-Asian choices. The Endless Privileges all-inclusive package includes a huge range of extras: clients can enjoy unlimited cocktails, a daily bottle of champagne, fruit basket and afternoon tea, complimentary laundry service and worldwide calls, a sunset catamaran sail, and a range of spa benefits including a wellness consultation, a skin analysis, a thalasso experience, and access to sauna, steam room and Jacuzzis, and a gym.
Sample package: Caribtours offers seven nights in an oceanfront one-bedroom suite from £1,699 including flights and transfers.
Book it:caribtours.co.uk, 020 7751 0660
Sandos San Blas Reserva Ambiental, Tenerife
Set on a beach in a nature reserve, Sandos San Blas Reserva Ambiental provides the opposite of the stereotypical, cheap-and-cheerful Tenerife beach break. It’s one for relaxation, not partying, and is well suited to families as well as couples.
Spread over a huge area and with eight swimming pools, every guest is sure to find a corner to themselves. As well as the beach, there’s a sailing lake, access to two nearby golf courses, a gym and spa, plus sports that are covered by the all-inclusive plan, including climbing, aqua-gym, pilates and beach volleyball.
The food gets positive reviews, with most meals taken in the large buffet, and one meal per stay at the Asian restaurant – both venues overlooking the sea.
Sample package: Youhotels.com offers seven nights from £431 in May, excluding flights.
Book it:Youhotels.com, 0871 426 1681
Xanadu Island, Turgutreis
Xanadu Island sits on its own private peninsula, so guests enjoy a real sense of exclusivity. The five-star, all-suite property is built on a grand scale, from the large rooms to the gargantuan buffet in the main restaurant, although the all-inclusive plan allows guests to dine in the Asian à la carte, or order from the 24-hour room service menu.
Activities are myriad, including tennis, beach volleyball, yoga and bowling, and in the evenings guests can see shows in the hotel’s own amphitheatre.
Sample package: Sovereign Luxury Travel offers seven nights from £1,089 on June 13, including flights from Gatwick and transfers.
Book it:sovereign.com, 0844 415 1936
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