RESORTS – © Elite Cruises
Merriam-Webster defines the term resort as “a place providing recreation and entertainment especially to vacationers.” The word can be used to describe any commercial establishment, town or place that attracts vacation visitors, and the main difference between a resort and a hotel is the amount of facilities available. Resort guests can enjoy almost everything they need in one convenient location, including food, lodging, activities and entertainment.
Relaxing in an all-inclusive, luxury or beach resort can be a great way to unwind and recharge your batteries. However, there are many other resort options you may never have considered. With so many amazing resorts worldwide, you’re sure to find one that suits your interest as well as your budget.
One of the most common and popular types of resort is the all-inclusive such as the Paradise Island Harbour Resort in the Bahamas or Cancun’s Beach Palace. Sandals, SuperClubs and Club Med were some of the first resorts to offer this type of all-in-one vacation. All-inclusive resorts typically charge one set price for lodging, as well as unlimited food, drink, tips, activities and entertainment. You end up paying one price to enjoy all you need for an entertaining vacation in one convenient location. All-inclusive vacation packages that also include hotel transfers and airfare are also very popular hassle-free choices with travelers of all ages.
Located directly on a major beach or in very close proximity to one, beach resorts such as the Dominic Republic’s Allegro Playa Dorado or the Exotic Caye Beach Resort in Belize are very popular. Most beach resorts offer guests many exciting water activities such as parasailing, tennis, horseback riding, beach volleyball, snorkeling, kayaking, scuba diving, windsurfing, boating or jet skiing. Certain resorts will also have a special on-site beach reserved specifically for guests.
If you love golfing, you should book your next vacation at a golf resort such as Canada’s Osprey Shores Golf Resort or the Lippia Hotel Golf Resort in Greece. These resorts have an on-site golf course or are located very close to at least one course. In addition to resort accommodations, many golf resorts include golf passes so guests can play a round or two for no additional charge. They may also include confirmed tees times, prepaid green fees and the use of golf carts.
Resorts such as Lady Elliot Island Resort in Australia or the South Pacific’s Bokissa Private Island Resort are located on an island. This enables guests to enjoy all kinds of activities such as fishing, parasailing, boating, scuba diving, swimming, snorkeling and other water sports.
Just as their name implies, lake resorts such as Little Rocky Lodge and Resort overlooking Lake Whitney in Texas or Thailand’s Green Lake Resort situated near the Doi Suthep Mountains are located directly on or near a lake. Guests can enjoy a wide range of water activities such as swimming, cruises, boating, fishing and water sports.
Expensive luxury vacation resorts such as Fiji’s Vatulele Island Resort or the Isla de sa Ferradura in Spain present the ultimate in luxury and comfort. Guests can enjoy fully-staffed premises with exciting daily activities, first-class amenities and services and the best cuisine anywhere. Luxury resorts are elite properties known for their exceptional customer service, hospitality and amenities. Most luxury resorts contain large, comfortable rooms where guests can enjoy everything from down-filled duvets and in-suite hot tubs to expensive marble bathrooms and huge plasma televisions.
Guests who stay at a mountain resort such as Canada’s Lake Louise Mountain Resort can often enjoy remarkable scenery and great hiking, swimming and sight seeing in the summers. Thanks to the convenient mountain access of international mountain resorts such as Borovets in Bulgaria, guests can also enjoy winter activities such as downhill and cross-country skiing, snowboarding, snowmobiling or even sleigh rides.
Resorts such as the Kempinski in Spain or the Belfast Dam Resort in South Africa normally allow cats and dogs to stay with their owners in the rooms. Certain resorts will restrict the size of the animal, but they give you an opportunity to share your vacation with your beloved four-legged friends. Some pet-friendly resorts will even include a special dog menu filled with tender morsels for your favorite pooch.
If you enjoy cross-country or downhill skiing, ice skating, snowboarding or snowmobiling, you should consider staying at a ski resort such as St. Moritz in Switzerland. Ski resorts such as Austria’s Saalbach-Hinterglemm often include exciting evening entertainment, warm hot tubs or even horse-drawn sled excursions.
For the ultimate in relaxation and pampering, book your next vacation at one of the renowned spa resorts such as Japan’s Gero Spa. Resorts such as the Kairali Ayurvedic Health Resort in India contain an on-site health or day spa where you can eliminate stress and tension, treat a variety of ailments, detoxify or rejuvenate your mind and your body. Guests can enjoy a soothing hot stone massage, pedicure, cellulite-reducing body wrap or a relaxing facial.
Theme Park Resorts
If you’re looking for a great family vacation, try booking a vacation at one of the thrilling theme park resorts! The most famous are the Walt Disney World Resorts located in cities such as Anaheim, Orlando in North America, as well as Tokyo, Paris and the latest Disneyland Resort in Hong Kong. Everyone can stay together in a luxury family-oriented hotel and then spend the day braving the rides, trying their luck at the midway, enjoying the food or having their photo taken with Mickey and friends.
Many travelers choose to escape the winter blues by traveling to tropical resorts such as the Grand Pineapple Beach Resort in Antigua. Located within tropical climates, resorts such as the Pansukian Tropical Resort in the Philippines attract sun seekers who enjoy water activities or just relaxing on a sandy white beach.
If you’re looking for something out of the ordinary, book a vacation at a historical resort such as the Historic Powhatan Resort – a 170-acre historical town in Colonial Willamsburg that has been restored to its original English condition. You can relax and learn a little about history at the same time. Some resorts are located in ancient castles such as the Luttrellstown Castle Resort in Ireland, at the site of famous battles or events or in a setting that recreates bygone eras. If you love history or want to see how your ancestors may have lived, historical resorts are a great choice.
Many people automatically think of beach or all-inclusive resorts when they think of vacations. However, heading to a dude ranch, also known as a guest ranch can be a great change of pace. There are many great choices in North America or international ranches such as the Estancia La Bamba in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Guests can ride horses, sleep in rustic cabins, enjoy hearty meals served from a chuck wagon or enjoy the beauty of the fresh air and remarkable scenery.
If you don’t have a traveling partner or are looking for romance, why not try a singles resort? Although some resorts cater only to singles, most offer special packages for singles or single-only weeks such as the Breezes Bahamas. You can spend your vacation getting to meet interesting men and women in one convenient and safe location. Who knows, you may end up meeting the love of your life!
Avid fishermen and nature lovers will enjoy a vacation at one of the world’s fishing resorts such as Singapore’s Bishan Fishing Resort or the fishing resort of Tandayapa in Ecuador. You can spend the day trying to reel in a wide variety of fish and relaxing in the tranquil setting, and then enjoying your catch during the evening meal!
For couples who want to enjoy a quiet, romantic vacation, a couples resort such as Fiji’s Vatulele Island Resort is the perfect choice. You won’t have to worry about being bothered by screaming children, and you can enjoy a wide variety of couples-oriented activities and entertainment options. A couples resort such as Jamaica’s Couples Sans Souci Resort & Spa is also a great place to spend your anniversary or honeymoon.
With so much attention focused on the environment and wildlife conservation, it’s no wonder ecotourism resorts such as Zambia’s Kaazmein Lodge & Resort are quickly gaining popularity. Guests can stay in environmentally-friendly resorts such as the Lapa Rios Resort in Costa Rica and enjoy exciting activities that focus on preserving the natural environment. Spend the day observing lions and giraffes in their natural habitat, exploring the rainforest or hiking pristine mountains.
A clothing-optional or nudist resort such as the Caliente Caribe in the Dominican Republic is definitely not for the timid or closed-minded individual. However, if you’re looking for adventure and a liberating vacation experience, try a clothing-optional resort such as the Club Orient in French St. Martin. Many resorts have private nude beaches reserved for guests where you can shed your clothing and your inhibitions.
If you’re looking for a little more peace and quiet, as well as amenities and activities geared for older individuals, adult-only resorts may be the perfect choice. Jamaica offers many such resorts including Couples, Superclubs, and Sandals. Because of the age restriction, guests of these resorts won’t have to deal with noisy children.
On the other side of the spectrum are the family resorts such as the Westin Turnberry Resort in Scotland. Their amenities and rooms are designed to accommodate children of all ages, and babysitting services are often included for a nominal fee. Most family resorts such as the Almond Village Beach Resort in Barbados also offer a wide range of supervised activities and programs designated for children of various age groups. Your entire family can spend quality time together while exploring activities suited for their particular age and interests.
If you enjoy traveling and gambling, why not book your next vacation at one of the world’s exciting casino resorts? Las Vegas has some of the most famous casino resorts where vacationers can enjoy almost every type of betting imaginable from blackjack, craps and poker to baccarat, slot machines and Keno. Monaco, France and Atlantic City also offer many great choices for casino resorts, as well as Australia – home to more than 400 racetracks and casinos! However, Macau has become the new gambling mecca with the recent opening of the Venetian Macau – the world’s largest casino. Who knows – you may get lucky at one of the resort’s casinos and win enough to pay for your entire vacation!
The cost of staying at a resort will vary greatly, depending on which one you choose. You can pay as low as $90 a night to stay at the Sea Wind Boracay Island resort in the Philippines or $95 a night at Bali’s Le Meridien Nirwana Golf & Spa Resort to as much as $47,000 per night to stay at Necker Island’s 26-person exclusive resort in the British Virgin Islands or $35,000 per day at the 10-bedroom Nygard Cay Beach Resort in the Bahamas!
However, you will often pay less than staying at a traditional hotel when you consider the convenience factor and extensive services and amenities. If you want to enjoy an even more cost-effective vacation, consider an all-inclusive resort. You’ll pay one price without having to pay extra for entertainment, activities, drinks, transportation and meals.
When you consider all of the additional amenities and entertainment options at many resorts, the cost is normally much less than staying at a traditional hotel. You won’t need to spend money paying for taxi fares to and from other sights, renting sports equipment or enjoying an exciting evening show. All-inclusive resorts can present an even more cost-effective vacation. You pay one set price for all the entertainment, activities, food and drink you can handle!
What could possibly be more convenient than paying one fee for almost everything on your trip except for souvenirs? Staying at an all-inclusive resort provides you with the opportunity to leave your cash at home and just enjoy your trip. Even if you don’t book an all-inclusive, resorts tend to offer you a much greater range of entertainment and activity options. This means you won’t have to waste time or money traveling back and forth to clubs, shops or spas. You can sit back, relax and enjoy everything you need in one convenient area.
Greater Selection of Activities & Programs
There is no limit to the variety and number of exciting programs and activities offered by the various resorts. Unlike traditional hotels, resorts often include complimentary entertainment that includes anything from children’s games and face-painting to theme parties, discos and comedy clubs. If you’re physically fit and prefer a more active vacation, you can engage in a game of tennis, a day of sailing, exciting water sports or a round of golf. For the ultimate in relaxation, resort guests can sun tan by the pool, enjoy the gentle breeze and their favorite book from a hammock or pamper themselves with a soothing massage at the resort spa. Many larger resorts also offer special activities geared to small children, teenagers, couples or seniors.
Most resorts offer first-class amenities that rival many comparably-priced hotels. You can soak in a marble tub overlooking the ocean, watch your favorite DVD in a large living room suite, work out at a fully-equipped gym, enjoy a tropical drink in a swim-up bar or relax on a private beach reserved only for resort guests. For the ultimate in luxury and pampering, world-class resorts are the way to go.
Resorts offer great value given all the amenities, entertainment options and activities available. However, many resorts will also offer special discounts or complimentary items or options to guests. These can include anything from free personalized excursions, bottles of wine, spa credits or babysitting to complimentary passes for local attractions, sports lessons, 24-hour concierge service or airport transfers. This adds even more value to an already cost-effective vacation experience.
Designed For Your Lifestyle & Interests
It doesn’t matter what type of lifestyle or interests you enjoy, you’re sure to find the perfect resort. Newlyweds can enjoy a romantic getaway at a couples-only resort, families can spend time together at a family-friendly resort or golfers can combine their favorite game with some relaxation at a golf resort. If you’re looking for that special someone, you can try your luck at a singles resort or do something positive for the environment by staying at an ecotourism resort.