Traveling with baby can be exciting… and exhausting. While an essential part of your vacation might be spending quality time with your significant other or relaxing with a good book on the beach, these simple luxuries can be impossible with infants in tow. Luckily, many resorts make this fantasy a reality, offering personal nannies, nanny services or childcare programs specifically geared for babies. Many resorts also offer special amenities for infants, such as baby food and even Diaper Genies. Read on to see our top picks for resort nannies and special perks for infants and start planning your next baby-friendly vacation.
Franklyn D. Resort & Spa in Jamaica rises above the others for one clear reason: each family receives a complimentary, personal "Vacation Nanny" for the entire length of their stay. These nannies have the best training -- they are mothers themselves -- and they are professionally trained and CPR-certified. Many guests readily trust them and include them in family activities. Nannies can accompany you on excursions or babysit the kids anywhere on the intimate resort, including the beach. Nannies typically work from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., providing all manner of help from diaper changes to babysitting. After hours, families can hire their nanny for evening childcare at only $7 per hour. It doesn't hurt that the FDR is an all-inclusive property, covering everything from meals to beverages (including alcohol) to airport transfers.
Club Med provides special perks for kids at all resorts. Offerings include Baby Club Med (extra fee applies), available to little ones between 4 months and 2 years of age. At Club Med Cancun Yucatan, Baby Club Med is housed in a small building that includes a play room, nap room, outdoor jungle gym and shaded baby pool. The resort also provides an eating station just for infants, complete with a pureed, featured food of the day, plus milk, formula, snacks and all the necessities with which to eat them -- bowls, bibs and highchairs.
Bonus: Club Med Cancun Yucatan has Family Suites (introduced in 2014), with room for up to six guests.
Tyler Place Family Resort in Vermont is a great resort for infants, offering programs for babies from newborn to 30 months. Caregivers and Parents' Helpers support families and help kids experience indoor and outdoor activities. Morning and evening programs for little ones -- newborn to 12 months, 12 to 18 months and 18 to 30 months -- take place at the Infant Center. This center is chock-full of music, singing, dancing, storytelling, puppets, tumbling mats and coloring. The fun continues outside with strolls around the resort, playing imaginary games with water cans, pots and cardboard boxes. During most summer weeks, families are provided with a Parents' Helper for the duration of their stay. Parents' Helpers are trained in basic First Aid, safety procedures and child development issues, and assist on a one-on-one basis with in-room babysitting and companionship, so parents can enjoy an evening out.
Beaches Turks & Caicos is a mecca for all things family fun, infants included. The popular resort provides a special nursery for babies, equipped with highchairs, rocking chairs, cribs and best of all -- friendly, certified nannies! Plus, little ones light up with joy when they spot their friends from "Sesame Street." Sesame Workshop partners with Beaches Resorts to provide character parades, interactions, shows and themed activities.
On Mexico's Riviera Maya, Azul Beach Hotel is a good choice for families with infants. The resort provides a playhouse for children between 4 months and 6 years in age. Youngsters must be accompanied by an adult, which makes the facility a nice place to relax with themed activities, books and games when it's time for a break from the sun. The resort also provides a separate kids' pool.
Cotton Bay Village
St. Lucia's Cotton Bay Village provides Montessori-certified nannies for two hours a day -- for free! Additional nanny services are available upon request for an extra charge. The Hummingbird Kids' Club is also open daily for children ages 6 months to 3 years old. Summer activities are planned in the "Going Bananas Fun" program. Family packages are typically offered, allowing children to eat for free, and providing educational tours to area attractions. One of the nicest draws of Cotton Bay is its luxurious villas, complete with separate rooms for parents and children, not to mention living rooms, dining rooms and kitchens.
Visiting the Big Apple with a baby? Consider a stay at the The James New York. The deluxe hotel provides baby bathtubs, cribs, bike seats, jogging strollers and Diaper Genies. It also provides complimentary pajama sets by Paul Frank. The James New York features Family Suites (two connecting rooms) with free Wi-Fi, as well.