Let The Kids Have Fun (Safely) While You Sip Margaritas.
With winter just around the corner, what better time to head out on a nice warm vacation. The catch? You want it to be a special family gathering where everyone has fun - from the littles to the grandparents. And you'd like some downtime to relax in peace. Enter Generations, a gourmet all-inclusive resort recently opened by Miami-based Karisma Resorts. I had high hopes.
As we approached Generations Riviera Maya, a small coati (think a beautiful raccoon) greeted us by the roadside treeline poking for food, as the sounds of spider monkeys filled the treetops. With only a 25-minute ride towards Playa Del Carmen from Cancun airport, it is nestled on its own beach, far away from the hustle and bustle of Cancun. Catering to families with children, you can bring the grandparents along as well and everyone will have a great time - as family fun is what Generations specializes in.
No kid could be impervious to the kids-only activities Generations has lined up. The Eko Kids Club offers supervised activities so parents can run off and play by themselves, and the kids lounge boasts a kiddie pool (where they can relax on their own mini chaise-lounges under matching umbrellas for their smaller size. Cute does not even describe it! The shallow pool is safe, and there activities like ping-pong and basketball. The adults have similar options: With everything from beach water-sports to nightly live entertainment, there are plenty of adult activities. If you're like me, any guest over 18 can enjoy full privileges at Karisma's El Dorado Casitas Royale, their adults-only property located right next door. Featuring a more traditional thatched-roof cabana theme versus Generations's modern take on the all-inclusive hotel, this is place for the more middle-aged and kid-free adults to relax in with water running everywhere and private splash pools outside your room.
Generations's onsite restaurants have a culinary deliciousness that anyone can appreciate, from the wonderful and delicious pork belly (cooked to tender perfection), to a buttery filet mignon that my knife fell right through, and even the pureed sweet potatoes that were mouth-watering. Trust me when I say I am not a fan of sweet potatoes, but these were amazing! My only recommendation is to include more local Mexican fare, especially in their Chef's Market, which hosts breakfast and lunch over amazing views of the ocean with both indoor and beautiful outdoor seating along a pier that extends to the water's edge surrounded by glass walls.
Speaking of ocean, just outside the oceanfront rooms is a "wading/lap" pool running the length of each building. Just slide open your own private glass door, and climb right in from your own balcony.
What they do right is grow almost all their own organic vegetables a 70,000-square-foot greenhouse that produces more than 12 tons of fresh veggies and spices per month for all their Riviera Maya resorts. From chili peppers to tomatoes to even mint, you healthy eaters (and eco-types) will appreciate such forward thinking from a resort brand of the future. Even the roof is lined with solar panels. Karisma gets it.
The free WiFi even works out at the pool and beach, but I suggest you leave work behind and relax.
If you just want to unwind at the Naaya spa, you will love the services that include hydrotherapy, herbal therapy, facials, body treatments, and reflexology to a nearly infinite variety of massage treatments and even a romantic oceanfront couples massage. And the first I've heard at any resort, they offer spa services for children ages 4-12. Guests can use the spa services and facilities of neighboring El Dorado Casitas Royale hotel just a three-minute golf cart ride away that runs till 11pm, and if you are planning a wedding, their Royale resort next door has an entire floor dedicated to the bride (and bridesmaids) with six rooms with multiple makeup stations, an in-room massage table, and an atmosphere adorned with wedding-appropriate furniture and lighting to make the bride feel like the princess she is. The only thing I might add is they could also offer a similar-esque "Grooms Room" (though perhaps with a bar, TV and such other "manly" things).
But no resort can make any stay pleasant if the workers are rude or inconsiderate, and if there is one thing Generations Resort excels at is the amazing and very friendly staff. Not once did I feel anything other but appreciated and like royalty. That is a truly great testament to the management and the warm and near-family-like atmosphere from the staff.