Our Kid-Friendly Vacation at the #GrandPalladium Resort in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic - This West Coast Mommy
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Our Kid-Friendly Vacation at the #GrandPalladium Resort in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic

A few weeks ago, my family and I had the opportunity to take our very first family vacation together. We decided to take the girls to Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic, where hubby and I went on our honeymoon almost nine years ago. I hate to say it, but that was our last real vacation. So much has happened since then! I finished my degree, changed jobs twice, we bought a new house, and then along came these two little girls!

Kick back at the Grand Palladium Bávaro Suites Resort & Spa

For a long time I was reluctant to consider taking a “real” vacation. You know, one where you go somewhere far away from home, probably in a plane, for at least a week. Sure we’ve gone camping as a family, but I don’t think that really counts as a vacation to most people. (Hubby would agree with them, seeing as he’s our camp cook!)

I just felt the kids were too young. Who wants to fly with a baby? What will we do with the kids when we’re there? Europe would be wonderful for me, but boring for a 3-year-old. I’ve been wanting a relaxing all-inclusive vacation on a tropical beach for years, but it’s not a vacation if I’m constantly chasing my toddler around to stop her from drowning herself.

A friend suggested looking into a resort with a kids club. Someone to watch and play with my kids for a while so I can actually relax by the pool? I like that idea! Almost all the places I looked at only offered childcare for older kids though. Five years old or sometimes four and up. Well, that wasn’t very helpful to me. And then I saw a mention of a resort with a Baby Club on TripAdvisor. In Punta Cana, where we wanted to go, the Grand Palladium all-inclusive resort caters to families with children of all ages, including babies and toddlers. I knew that was where I wanted to go!

Family-Friendly Vacations at the Grand Palladium Punta Cana, Dominican Republic

There’s so much to talk about that I’ve broken it down into parts to keep it easy to read. In this part I just want to share a little bit about the resort itself. Like many of the larger hotels in the Caribbean, the Grand Palladium is actually a huge complex of several smaller resorts: Grand Palladium Bávaro Suites Resort & Spa, Grand Palladium Palace Resort Spa & Casino, Grand Palladium Punta Cana Resort & Spa, and The Royal Suites Turquesa by Palladium. We stayed in the Bávaro section which is a little quieter, but still close to the Baby Club and Kids Club.

Grand Palladium Bávaro Suites Resort & Spa

After a long, exhausting plane ride and a 30 minute cab ride from Punta Cana International Airport, we were greeted with cold drinks for everyone.

After a long trip we were greeted with cold drinks for everyone.

Check-in was quick and friendly, and we got a mini tour of the complex during the golf cart ride to our room. That’s not to say we didn’t get lost multiple times our first few days, but every little bit helps, right?

We stayed in a Family Master Junior Suite with two double beds and a fold out couch. The girls don’t share a room at home, but they were pretty excited about sharing a bed on vacation. Our room came with a play tent and kids table, and the kids moved half of their stuff into the tent the moment we stepped into the room.

The Grand Palladium Bávaro Suites Deluxe Junior Suite came with lots of little details and extras to make it truly family-friendly.

Image courtesy of Grand Palladium Hotel Group.

Our room was clean and cool, and we were greeted by robes, slippers, pretty towel swans, and fresh flowers when we came in. Aaah!

We were welcomed with towel swans and fresh flowers

The extra large bathroom had a big jacuzzi tub, separate shower, and screened off toilet area. With a family of four, the extra space was really nice! The room also had a flat screen LCD TV and a fully stocked mini fridge, but honestly we didn’t spend much time in the room. Instead we explored the resort, lounged by the pool, played with the kids, ate and drank (and didn’t wash one single dish!), and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. Hubby and I even got to sneak in a few sunset walks on the beach!

What's more beautiful than a Caribbean sunset on the beach?

For families with even younger children, the Grand Palladium offers a Family Kit add-on where parents can order a la carte supplies like baby food, diapers, and formula. Our bathroom also came with a baby bathtub, a potty, and a smaller toilet seat to adapt the toilet for bitty bums so they don’t fall in. It’s those little touches that made the room and resort so welcoming for us and the kids.

The Grand Palladium has tons of other rooms of course. Best bet for families are the junior suites which come with a little extra room for comfort’s sake. Next time I’d love to stay in one of the swim up junior suites and relax in the private pool right outside my deck!

Swim Up Junior Suites at the Grand Palladium Bávaro Suites Resort & Spa have their own pool out front.

Image courtesy of Grand Palladium Hotel Group.

Keep reading in Part II to learn about all the things for kids to do at the Grand Palladium (and see lots of pictures of the kids having fun!), Part III: What to Eat, Part IV: The Pools & Beach, and Part V: Things for Parents to Do.

Connect with the Grand Palladium on social media via Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Disclosure: I was provided with a complimentary stay for review. Nevertheless, all opinions expressed are completely honest and my own, based on my personal experience. Your experience may differ.

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21 Comments

  • This resort looks gorgeous. I love the idea of the kids club so you can get some adult time too. Punta Cana is a place I would love to take my family. I have been to Peurto Plata but I have heard the beaches are nicer on the Punta Cana side. Looking forward to part 2.

    • Yes, having that kids club let us enjoy time with the kids but still get some time to ourselves. It was the best of both worlds! I haven’t visited Puerto Plata, but I imagine anywhere in DR must be beautiful!

    • Totally agree about the resort. They definitely spoiled us rotten. I remember seeing your trip to Riviera Maya – I want to go back one day!

  • We have done some serious research. Your girls look about the ages of mine. I was worried mine were too young, but I really REALLY want to do a beach get away with these little turkeys before they only want to stare at their iphones!!!

    • Lol, yes mine are 3 and 5. Having the childcare/Kids Club available here made it totally doable with the little ones, and I’m so glad we went. I agree, I want to do as many of these vacations as we can while the kids still *want* to spend time with us.

  • This looks like it was incredible. I would love to stay in a room with a private pool! We’ve considered taking our kids with us on our next trip to Mexico but we haven’t decided whether or not we want to yet. Our 7 year old really wants to go to Mexico but the younger ones don’t care too much and may actually prefer staying at Grandma’s!

    • We walked past those rooms on the way to the beach and they looked incredible! Probably best for families with slightly older kids I would imagine though. Don’t want babies falling in!

      If you’re lucky enough to be able to leave the kids with Grandma for the week, go for it!

      • I think it would be awesome to convince my parents to go with us an then we could all get a vacation somewhere warm and I wouldn’t miss my kids so much!

  • Wow, those pictures are amazing! Like you, its been nine years since we’ve vacay’d, which was during our honeymoon too. Really hope to go somewhere next year, and this place looks perfect!

    • I would totally recommend the Grand Palladium resorts! Isn’t it scary how the time gets away from you? All of a sudden it’s NINE years since a vacation! Too long!

  • Our travel budget gets spent mainly visiting family, but we did take our son to a Mexican resort when he was 6 months old. Because my parents were there and he was nursing, we didn’t need a Baby Club. Now that he’s three, I wouldn’t spend the money to go to a resort UNLESS they had some form of childcare that included his age group! I’m psyched to hear how the girls enjoyed their activities and what you did on your down time!

    • That makes sense with an infant that you can keep close by. Once they start moving and getting into trouble though, yeah, I wouldn’t go anywhere without a Kids Club either.

  • Thank you for this. We’ve been trying to figure out where to go on vacation with two little ones. I’m looking forward to your post on what kids can do there.

  • This place looks amazing, I don’t know if the pictures were done by you or if they were provided but they’re beautiful. I want to be there !