When you go on vacation, are you typically looking to let your hair down, relax, and be yourself? Great, me too (well, what’s left of my hair)!
Though much progress has been made for the LGBTQ community recently, queer travelers still struggle to safely travel outside their home country without ridicule, intimidation, or even experiencing violence. What we need is a literal safe place for us to go to enjoy ourselves.
All of the following vacation stays provide LGBT sensitivity training for staff or are a member of The International Gay & Lesbian Travel Association (IGLTA) and/or TAG Approved.
Below are our picks of the best LGBTQ-friendly or LGBTQ-run all-inclusive resorts in Mexico and the Caribbean.
1. Hotel Esencia – Riviera Maya, Mexico
Look for the Hotel Esencia, an enormous, 50-acre resort, nestled between Playa del Carmen and Tulum. The new owner Kevin Wendle and his partner took pains to update and build on the appeal of this secluded 29 room retreat since he took over in 2014. This all-inclusive hotel is family-friendly, even touting multi-lingual nannies!
2. Casa Velas Hotel Boutique – Puerto Vallarta, Mexico
For a luxurious break from real life, try the Casa Velas Hotel Boutique. Come for the fine dining, artistic flair by Mexican artists, palm trees, and pool to relax by, a short 5 minutes from the closest international airport. Leave the kids at home for this Adults-Only resort.
3. Grand Oasis Sens – Cancun, Mexico
The Grand Oasis Sens exudes luxury along Cancun’s line of resorts. This 21+ adults-only resort is sure to turn up the heat when the lights go off with its parties and Late-Night Kinky Burlesque Cabaret. Romance is in the design of this couples-oriented vacation spot.
4. Temptation Cancun Resort – Cancun, Mexico
Temptation Cancun Resort is Cancun’s premier not-just-adults-only but “adult-centric” resort. You know what we mean – this resort offers thrills of the “topless optional” variety. Temptation Resort is also one of the best all-inclusive resorts with adults only nightclubs. Check out their various playgrounds designed around an idea they call “sensual minimalism“. Delight your other senses by visiting one or more of the 7 restaurants with offerings from around the world. Intrigued? Enticed? Enjoy!
5. Holiday Inn Resort – Aruba
Whether you are looking for a relaxing couples retreat or a jet-setting family vacay, the Holiday Inn Resort on Aruba starts our look towards all-inclusive experiences in the islands of the Caribbean. Don’t miss the Spa to cash in on your (included) decompressing time on the massage table. Look to Pelican Adventures for water excursions.
6. Barceló Aruba – Noord, Aruba
Take your family to an Arubian oasis at the Barceló Aruba. The all-inclusive experience here includes meals at 5 on-site restaurants, all beverages, and many activities. Relax at the rock-garden island or soak in the sun at the lagoon pool around the island. This family-friendly hotel supplies a Kids’ club and supervisors for children’s’ activities for young ones from 5 – 12 years old.
7. Renaissance Curacao Resort & Casino – Willemstad, Curaçao
The island of Curaçao is beloved by LGBTQ travelers, mostly because the island shows the love. Willemstad is the beautiful UNESCO World Heritage city where you will find the colorful Renaissance Curacao Resort & Casino. Just a few steps from the sea, this resort is your place to stay for all-inclusive meals and beverages. Take a round of golf or let loose at the non-stop party in the casino. This cosmopolitan city sports four major languages and even hosts an annual Pride Event.
8. Sunscape Curaçao Resort, Spa & Casino – Willemstad, Curaçao
As if you need more reasons to come to Curaçao, don’t miss your all-inclusive special at the Sunscape Curaçao Resort, Spa & Casino. This all-ages, family-friendly resort gives you “unlimited-fun” in the way of non-stop buffet and à la carte restaurants, beverages around the resort and in your room, plus both dry and wet activities for everyone!
9. Sonesta Ocean Point – St. Martin/St. Maarten
Let’s take a trip back to adults-only adventures by looking at the Sonesta Ocean Point in St. Martin/St. Maarten. The all-inclusive perks include every drink you can imagine at the swim-up pool bar, round the clock meals and snacks, scheduled daytime activities, and themed parties at night. Don’t miss this chance to relax while letting out your wild side.
10. The Reserve at Paradisus Palma Real – Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
The choice is up to you at The Reserve at Paradisus Palma Real to select a family suite, one of the intimate suites with access to a private garden, or a “swim-up suite”. No matter what you choose, you will be delighted by the luxurious mahogany furniture, marble floors…I could go on forever about the rooms.
A Word to the Wise
So there you have our top choices for where to enjoy a comfortable vacation at truly inclusive all-inclusive resorts in Mexico and the Caribbean.
Remember, while traveling to keep the local customs and religions (which are largely Christian/Catholic and conservative in Latin America and in the Caribbean) as well as your personal safety in mind. All of the resorts listed are LGBTQ-friendly, sometimes even run by folks in the community, however, their diverse guests may have many different views regarding LGBTQ folks…A smile goes a long way!
Calling All LGBTQ Travelers!
LGBTQ travelers, what are some all-inclusive resorts where you have felt truly welcome and comfortable?