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Manzanillo, a resort destination on the Pacific coast, was in the spotlight last October, when it was directly in the path of Hurricane Patricia. Luckily, the hurricane wilted by the time it reached landfall. Up until that moment, Manzanillo had received scant notice over the years, often overshadowed by resort destinations on the rise, such as Riviera Nayarit, Riviera Maya and Los Cabos.
Manzanillo is composed of two main parts. The major tourist resorts can be found on Peninsula de Santiago, with its golden sand beaches and swaying palms. South of the peninsula lies downtown Manzanillo, which is practically devoid of tourism appeal and is instead devoted to everyday commerce.
While there is a selection of all-inclusive resorts in Manzanillo, agents won’t find some of the brands most familiar to them when booking Mexico beach vacations for their clients, such as AMResorts, Club Med, Iberostar, Hard Rock Hotel and Palace Resorts. The brands they will find include Barcelo, represented by Barcelo Karmina Palace Deluxe; and Las Brisas Hotel Collection, which offers Las Hadas Golf Resort & Marina Manzanillo.
Who is the ideal client for a Manzanillo vacation? Currently, the destination is popular with the domestic Mexican trade, as well as snowbirds coming down from Canada. Potential visitors from the U.S. include those who have done Mazatlan and Ixtapa/Zihuatanejo and are looking for fresh experiences. Manzanillo also has appeal for sportfishermen, surfers, budget travelers and those who enjoy observing a busy port city going about its daily business. Here are a few of the all-inclusive properties Manzanillo has to offer visitors.
Manzanillo’s All-Inclusive OfferingsThe beachfront Las Hadas is practically a destination in itself, with 232 rooms and suites spread out over 15 acres. The Moorish-style resort has a championship golf course and a 70-slip marina. The AAA Four Diamond property — which has a quarter-mile of private beach — provides the type of high-end all-inclusive holiday that would be pricier in Mexico’s more popular resort destinations.
Barcelo Karmina Palace Deluxe is also a AAA Four Diamond property. The 324-suite beachfront resort has four restaurants, five bars, a spa and six pools. This is a family-friendly resort, with a children’s club for kids 5 to 12 years old. Your clients can kick it up a notch by booking the resort’s Deluxe Club Premium rooms, where they’ll receive an elevated level of service.
The 450-room Gran Festivall All Inclusive Resort is a classic all-inclusive, packed with a wide range of activities centered on the hotel’s pools, waterpark, climbing wall and tennis courts. Unfortunately, the resort is across the highway from the beach (although it’s connected via a pedestrian bridge). But if the beach isn’t essential to your clients, Gran Festival delivers all the expected bells and whistles of an affordable all-inclusive vacation.
The upscale 199-room Grand Isla Navidad Resort is a good choice for families with children. The hotel regularly offers special pricing for teens, as well as free stays for two kids under 12 years old. The resort, which is surrounded by a lagoon, has a small beach of its own. A variety of plans are offered, including a modified all-inclusive rate the property calls “Grand Inclusive,” which provides all meals, drinks, Wi-Fi access and an hour of daytime tennis. Grand Isla Navidad Resort is also great for golfers: It has its own 27-hole Isla Navidad Golf Course, a championship course designed by Robert Von Hagge.
Barcelo Karmina Palace Deluxewww.barcelo.com
Gran Festivall All Inclusive Resortwww.granfestivall.com
Grand Isla Navidad Resortwww.islanavidad.com.mx
Las Hadas Golf Resort and Marina www.brisas.com.mx