1. Jumby Bay, A Rosewood Resort – Antigua
Kids will be in heaven at this Caribbean island paradise. As well as the exhaustingly exhilarating fun on offer via the Rose Buds kids’ programme – think sailing, kayaking, snorkelling, and general tropical frolicking – there’s also a junior spa menu on offer, plus activities to keep teens happy (from mocktail mixology to mixed volleyball). On top of all this, the resort’s fantastic Hawksbill Turtle Experience allows children to get involved with conservation efforts, observing a turtle nesting on the beach and helping release the hatchlings into the ocean.
2. Verdura Resort – Sicily, Italy
This seaside Sicilian resort caters to all age groups with truly thoughtful, “happy holiday vibes” touches – from a teddy turndown service plus milk and cookies, or baby and kids’ bath amenities and robes, to children’s menus and a special breakfast corner. The new Verduland kids’ club tops it all off, with beautifully designed playground, children’s pool and indoor play areas and a mind-boggling host of activities to suit all ages and tastes, from cooking lessons to junior sports academies; astronomy to talent shows. There’s also a teen programme featuring yoga, boot camp sessions and cooking classes.
3. Le Portetta – Courchevel, France
Ski holidays with kids can be…intense. So it’s important to choose wisely. Le Portetta is a top-notch ski-in, ski-out resort in Courchevel Moriond 1650, boasting a Scott Dunn Mini Explorers kids’ club. Run by fully qualified nannies, children aged four months to seven years can enjoy a daily programme including anything from making snow globes to tobogganing and enjoying mountainside crepes in between. Pick-up services from ski school and afternoon naps round out the service perfectly.
4. One&Only Palmilla – Los Cabos, Mexico
This luxury resort group certainly knows how to run an exceptional kids’ club (see, for example, their Wolgan Rangers programme in Australia), and this one carries on the grand tradition. One&Only Palmilla’s newly redesigned and expanded, complimentary KidsOnly Club boasts an overachiever’s array of fun-filled pursuits: from yoga to volleyball; learning how to make anything from sushi to indulgent desserts, or even taking tips from the resort’s golf pros (additional cost). At this rate, Mum and Dad will never need to leave that new, ultra-luxurious Villa One they’ve had their eyes on…a win-win situation, really.
5. Marbella Club Hotel –Spain
A blend of inimitable old-world seaside glam and modern luxury – even when it comes to the kids’ club – Marbella Club Hotel is where renowned Madrid designers Minimec have created a sprawling holiday paradise guaranteed to keep kids (aged four to 14) happy. From whipping up fresh gazpacho to playing in the music room; from pottery to dance or splashing about in the kid-friendly lagoon under the watchful eye of qualified teachers,you’ll be hard-pressed to drag them away.
6. Jumeirah Messilah Beach Hotel & Spa – Kuwait
As the summer sun hangs overhead, there’s still plenty to keep kids engaged at Jumeirah Messilah Beach Hotel & Spa, with a dedicated “Scene Club” for teens and a private cinema showing the latest movie releases and cartoons. The host of indoor entertainment includes consoles and video games, as well as new board games and more active and social child-friendly games with qualified staff. Summer might slow down the activity level, but the little ones can cool down outside with the ultra-fun “Splash Pool” playground, and if parents want to ensure those little arms and legs to keep moving some more, then why not encourage the kids to try Yoga for Kids with the hotel’s new wellness instructor, taking place on Thursdays and Fridays?
7. Kandima Maldives
Mum and dad will think they’ve landed in paradise and Kandiland, the island’s kids’ club, is sure to be an equal hit for the little ones. Not only are the grounds bedecked with fun things to do (a pirate ship wet area with slides, tunnels and water canons; a water-play zone with water shoots, misted hoops, a sprinkler pad, and an in-ground trampoline, climbing domes, a sand pit, climbing wall and more), the activities have to be among the most comprehensive and creative we’ve seen, with art attack challenges, rock painting and kite making – kids can even learn how to become a marine biologist for a day, helping to plant coral. There are seashell and crab hunts, mini Zumba classes and mini Kandiland Olympics, while local culture is weaved throughout; kids can learn Maldivian songs and dance, or even the local lingo, with Dhiveni lessons. For parents who want to stop by to say hi to the kids, there’s even a hang out area with drinks and snacks. Better still – the club will even collect your children from the villa and drop them off at dinner for you, saving you from running around between snorkelling or spa sessions.