I'm still pinching myself. I feel like a rockstar, but now that I'm back to reality, I'll take the time to fill you in on what the Warman family has been up to...
Last week, my family and I spent an amazing fun-in-the-sun-filled week at the Azul Fives resort by Karisma in Riviera Maya, Mexico — courtesy of Transat Holidays. It was a five-star experience we will never forget, and there were many "firsts" for our family on this trip. It was our first time flying as a family of four (well, five technically, since we brought my mom along too!). And guess what? It went surprisingly well.
Air Transat offers the Air Transat Kids Club program (it's free to join!) and since we are members, we got:
Despite my fear of my kids screaming their heads off for 4 hours straight at 34,000 feet—they were both champions and mostly slept and played the whole time (with the exception of one tired toddler meltdown when the seatbelt sign came on). But hey, that's pretty standard I think.
Once we arrived at our resort in Mexico (aka: paradise) we continued to experience more family "firsts."
I felt like a celebrity at this resort! As part of the Family Collection Package, we were assigned a personal butler/concierge who helped take care of our needs while we were at the resort. He would check-in with us several times throughout the day to ensure that we were well looked after. He booked our dinner reservations, brought Cole an ice-cream sundae, and hunted down a pack of diapers for Maeve when we embarrassingly realized we forgot to pack enough for her! (Oops!) His name was Cesar, and he rocked. We gave him many high-fives and fist bumps. He also made sure our fridge was full of all the good stuff including water, and most importantly: beer.
In addition to this stellar personal service, we were beyond impressed with how kid-friendly the resort was. Upon arrival in our rooms we found 2 strollers, 2 cribs, a baby monitor, and a bottle sterilizer and warmer. All of these things are available upon request prior to the trip.
At the buffet breakfast they had a selection of toys the kids could borrow and play with at their tables, and every restaurant on the resort was stocked with a large supply of high chairs. The Family Collection package even offers babysitting for a small fee (which we didn't need because we had my mom with us) but seriously...they thought of everything!
As you can see, it was pretty easy to settle into life at Azul Fives, and it really allowed us time to focus on one thing, and one thing only: having fun as a family!
So we did just that! We spent our days building sand-castles, lounging by the pool, swimming in the ocean for the first time, and playing at the awesome Azulitos Kids Club: Cole loved it there, Maeve too!
They had a large play gym for the older kids, and a colourful play room full of toys for the younger kids. They had a video game room, a nap room, and activities and events planned all day, every day. The staff were awesome too! They hosted parties every night at 8pm, and I was happy that Cole was able to stay up late enough at least once to experience breaking his first pinata at the Mexican party!
"There's CANDY in the pinata?"
"Yes son, there sure is. And yes...you may even eat some before bed. Just brush your teeth. And remember: when we get back home to Canada, the madness STOPS. No more marshmallows for breakfast either..."
Maybe it's the calming effects of the warm Mexican sun or perhaps it's the tequila, but we sure did relax and say "yes" to just about everything while we were on vacation.
Yes, Cole ate pancakes every single day. Yes, I drank two cocktails consecutively for the first time in six months and got somewhat tipsy. Yes, I'm a lush. And yes — it felt amazing.
In addition to the stellar service, the food at this resort was unbelievable. We filled our bellies more than we should have with the finest the resort had to offer: fresh sushi, yellow Thai curry (the best I've ever had), three cheese tortellini, and, of course, authentic Mexican cuisine. They offered something for everyone. The hardest part will be pacing yourself and saving room for the next delicious meal. I suppose that's a good problem to have...
It truly was a family trip of a lifetime. The Azul Fives by Karisma offers the perfect blend of luxury and kid-friendly activities, the kind of blend that is perfect for families. You can spend your mornings at the spa (note that there is an extra fee for spa services), I spent some time there getting a massage and my first facial! You can also spend your afternoons playing ping-pong or life-sized chess: there's no shortage of activities for every age. We absolutely loved it there, and I certainly hope to go back in the future.
Now, please, let me share a little video I created and some of my 1,500 or so photos. Then you can see for yourself what a family vacation in paradise looks like, and why you should join us next time! :)