Friday May 26, 2017
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A view of the interior of Dromoland Castle Hotel & Country Estate in Ireland. ― AFP picA view of the interior of Dromoland Castle Hotel & Country Estate in Ireland. ― AFP picPARIS, May 26 ― With summer at our doorstep, a website that aims to make family travel easier has named the best hotels for keeping the whole family happy over the holidays and curtailing the number of meltdowns ― be it kid or parent. 

Family Vacation Critic, an offshoot of TripAdvisor, has released its annual list of the most family-friendly hotels in 15 regions across the globe in the US, Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean and Europe. 

Overall, more than 750 hotels representing the top 6 per cent of hotels on the site were named Family Vacation Critic Favorites. 

For the designation, hotels had to have been vetted and visited by the site's in-house experts; receive a four or five out of five-star ranking; and snag a recommendation by at least 75 per cent of families. 

Properties on the list feature some of the standard family-friendly amenities like free breakfast for kids and free WiFi.  

But others go further, offering children's programs, themed rooms, a kids' concierge and babysitting services. 

The highest-rated family-friendly hotel in Europe, for instance, is the Dromoland Castle Hotel & Country Estate in County Clare, Ireland, a majestic property that has hosted everyone from The Beatles, Nelson Mandela and former US president George W. Bush. 

The property also gives kids bragging rights to having stayed at a real-life, fairytale castle akin to Hogwarts when they return to school. 

Then there's The Inn at Christmas Place in the Smoky Mountain town of Pigeon Forge, Tennessee, the highest-ranked hotel in the US Southeast, where the magic of Christmas exists all year long. 

Here are the top-rated family-friendly hotels in each region: 

·         California: West Inn & Suites (Carlsbad, CA) 

·         Florida: Premiere Hotel (Fort Lauderdale, FL) 

·         Hawaii: Four Seasons Resort Lana'i (Lanai, HI) 

·         Mid-Atlantic: Casablanca Hotel by Library Hotel Collection (New York, NY) 

·         Midwest: Black Hawk Motel & Suites (Wisconsin Dells, WI) 

·         New England: The Nantucket Hotel & Resort (Nantucket, MA) 

·         Pacific Northwest: Hallmark Resort Cannon Beach (Cannon Beach, OR) 

·         Rockies: Tivoli Lodge (Vail, CO) 

·         Southeast: The Inn at Christmas Place (Pigeon Forge, TN) 

·         Southwest: The Venetian Las Vegas (Las Vegas, NV) 

·         Canada: The Ritz-Carlton Montreal (Montreal, Canada) 

·         Caribbean: Round Hill Hotel and Villas (Montego Bay, Jamaica) 

·         Central America: Arenas del Mar Beachfront and Rainforest Resort (Costa Rica) 

·         Europe: Dromoland Castle Hotel & Country Estate (County Clare, Ireland) 

·         Mexico: Grand Solmar Land's End Resort & Spa (Cabo San Lucas, Mexico) ― AFP-Relaxnews

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