Spring Break 2016

Wow, it’s been two years since we spent Spring Break at Azul Beach Resort.  This was our first trip as  Exotic Traveler Members and we brought another family of friends.  We have since been to the partner property Nickelodeon Punta Cana which I reviewed in a previous post.   Both were great family vacations however if I were choosing between the two, I would go back to  Azul Beach Resort in Riviera Maya.  Let me tell you why this is our #1 pick for a family vacation.

The Karisma brand of resorts makes an effort to create the perfect mix of adult luxury amenities and accommodations for kids.  Azul Beach Resort is the essence of this theme.  Crystal clear blue water, an easy to navigate layout and amenities galore.  How could you not have a great vacay?  At the time of our visit, Misha was 2 years old, Giana was 5 and our friends brought a 4-year-old.  All three girls had the time of their lives.

Kid’s Amenities and Character Experiences

What this brand of resorts does well makes it easy for parents to travel light.  They provide around the clock entertainment for kids.  Moms and dads can sit back on the beach with a novel while their kids soak up the sun, dig in the sand and splash in the kid’s pool.  This resort is not as spread out as some resorts that we have stayed at.  They provide strollers for your use, pack and plays, highchairs and even baby monitors.

We opted for swim-up suites a couple doors down from our friends and the girls spent a lot of time swimming back and forth from our pools which were right next to the Chil restaurant.  When Misha napped we could crack the patio door and still have water play for the older kids.  The wait staff circled around and brought us piña coladas/strawberry daiquiris to our personal lagoon.  How Laufty!

Characters can be found easily throughout the day and give performances at night.  Unlike Disney World, you don’t have to walk miles to find them or wait in long lines.  Giving your kids the character experience without the exhaustion.  If you are doing Disney see my post on how to save your wallet while your there.

Gourmet All Inclusive!

People’s biggest complaints when it comes to all-inclusive traveling is bad food.  The idea of serving food in bulk on buffets and cutting corners.  I will say, there is more waste that happens when everything is included. Travelers feel a bit more comfortable ordering more food than they need, sipping on a drink and letting the ice water it down and then walking away.  You don’t have to force your kid to finish every meal because you’re not paying a la carte or tipping the server.  The food at Azul was above average and actually quite impressive!

The kids loved the Scoops Ice Cream Shop for an afternoon cool down or after-dinner treat.  Not being a sushi fanatic, we don’t know all the tasty rolls to order.  The sushi river at Tainan, had a rotating table with different rolls you could grab and try.  Also note worthy the chicken wings at Blue and the wraps at Chil.  We were hired a nanny one evening to take the kids to dinner and the nightly show.   During that time we dined with our friends on a double date.  The Nanny rate was $20 an hour, split between two couples, a steal for a date night in the Caribbean.  Here is a break down of our impressions, we always give you the extraordinary and the unfortunate aspects of our visit.


All-Inclusive Resort Review Azul Beach Resort:

The Extraordinary:

  • Karisma brand takes pride in the presentation and the grounds are impeccable.
  • The resort rooms were very clean.
  • Nickelodeon Kids Club provided water activity sessions, face painting, and manicures.
  • Breeze kids club accommodates teens 13-17 yrs old.
  • Nannies create a perfectly balanced vacation for families.  We got to soak up the sun and swim with our kids and still enjoyed a dinner date.
  • On the beach, there are cabanas that can be reserved, with outdoor beds.  Our daughters checked out free sand toys to play with at the beach.
  • The staff was incredibly nice and accommodating!
  • Nickelodeon Characters are readily available.
  • Top shelf margaritas at Agavaro Tequila Lounge

Travel Tip:  If your willing to purchase upgraded wine bottles you can ask for a private dining room.

Exotic Member Benefits:

  • Private free transfer from the airport.
  • Choice of essential oil scent for the room and pillow firmness.
  • Free candlelit dinner on the beach.
  • Delicious member’s dinner on the beach with live music.
  • Personal Butler to attend to our needs
  • Our friends whom we booked a room for under our membership got the same benefits as us.
  • Pre-selected bottles of liquors in the room (nice extra amenity although ours were a little mixed up).
  • All dinner reservations made for us by Butler, he also coordinated all our nights out with the nanny.
  • Beach cabanas were reserved for us.
  • Automatically reprice your booking if the price changes.
  • When we stayed at the Azul resort, our kids received coloring sheets and crayons at the restaurants.


The Unfortunate:

  • If you are an exotic member the swim-up suite isn’t available in the presidential classification.
  • If you don’t book a presidential room you don’t get all of the exotic benefits.
  • You need to reserve your nanny 24-hours in advance.
  • For the regular wine drinkers, the wine isn’t super impressive.  Wine connoisseurs should be prepared to buy upgraded wines.
  • We paid for the character breakfast before we arrived.  During the week prior to the breakfast, we encountered characters around the resort.  I would not have paid extra for the experience had I known how accessible they were.
  • In order for our guests to receive our discounts, we had to carry their charges, nanny, scuba diving, and spa on our tab.  At check out, there were some billing errors that we had to have corrected.



Azul Beach Resort review wrap-up!

Mexico is having a rough patch of bad news.  Violence and tainted alcohol recently hit headlines which created apprehension for travelers.  I am hoping they find a resolution to those issues because our last two vacations to Mexico were outstanding.  If you are traveling to Mexico in the current climate please read the Mexico Travel Advisory.

Reclining on a beach chair and watching my husband and kids play in the ocean puts me in a warm dream state.  Azul Riveria Maya has great food, strong drinks, and accommodations for children of all ages.










Travel Like Us

If you would like to travel in style like us exotic travelers, call or email my friend Edmundo Livera at Exotic Travelers 800-355-0886.   Tell him you know Dione Laufenberg and he will give you our member pricing and benefits on your next trip.  You will have to agree to listen to the member presentation and you must be married or living with a partner for 2 years to qualify.