INTERNATIONAL REPORT—Keeping children interested and happy while on vacation can often require efforts of creating constant novelty. Some hotels are upping the ante, going beyond giving families an outdoor pool and movie nights for entertainment to offer programs that are destination-centric and culturally engaging.
“With its beautiful tropical forest and beachfront setting at Emerald Bay, Rosewood Phuket was the perfect environment to introduce Rosewood Explorers, Rosewood Hotels & Resorts’ new children’s club concept which has been designed to inspire creativity and social responsibility through fun and adventure,” said Niamh O’Connell, group VP of guest experience and wellness, Rosewood Hotel Group. “Through unique experiences that are in keeping with Rosewood’s guiding A Sense of Place philosophy, in which the culture, sensibilities, and heritage of the destination to inform every element of our properties, Rosewood Explorers encourages adventure, exploration, and engagement in social responsibility.”
As a brand, Rosewood has been dedicated to creating opportunities for guests to experience travel in a meaningful way that enables them to connect with new cultures and new destinations around the world.
“Rosewood Explorers allows us to extend these opportunities to our younger guests, with the aim to introduce children to the many wonders of the natural world, teach the importance of contributing to the global environment, inspire appreciation for different cultures, and spark a lifelong passion for all that the planet has to offer,” said O’Connell. “We also recognize the importance of disengaging children from technology, which is why many of our experiences are hands-on and involve outdoor activities.”
Children can be a finicky bunch, preferring to move between a variety of activities. Rosewood keeps it fun with the sheer variety of offerings on-property.
“By offering myriad experiences that explore several themes and methods of activity, including creative expression, environmental awareness, self-introspection, and active movement, the Rosewood Explorers program at large affords children with the opportunity to play, explore, learn and unleash their imaginations in the ways that most organically resonate with them while also exposing them to new avenues for social engagement,” said O’Connell.
Guided by the brand’s philosophy of A Sense of Place, the children’s programming offered at each Rosewood location taps into the destination’s local environment and heritage.
“At Rosewood Phuket, for example, we have authentic Thai weaving looms we use for classes that not only demonstrate the intricacies of weaving, but also improve motor skills by teaching kids how to use their arms, hands and feet at the same time,” said O’Connell. “Other activities include creating clay creatures modeled on those living in the surrounding area or making potpourri from leaves and flowers collected from the destination- both will help kids get familiar with indigenous animals and plants.”
O’Connell continued, “At Rosewood Bermuda, kids can participate in guided eco-nature walks, on-property cave explorations and beach excursions which introduce them to Bermuda’s flora, fauna and native species and teach them how the resort takes part in preserving the island’s natural habitat. Kids can also engage in traditional Bermudian games and pastimes, including crafting traditional Bermudian kites, creating authentic Gombey hand-painted masks and painting an interactive map of Bermuda.
“At Rosewood Sanya, one of the evening activities is star gazing where our young guests learn about the constellations, which for many of our urban children is a very exciting first-time experience. We also show the children how to harvest rain water and share how this water can be used within the households.”
The brand’s programming isn’t just for children, parents can capture memories and learn something new as well.
“Rosewood Explorers’ dynamic offerings show how anyone, no matter their age, can contribute to the preservation of the global community,” said O’Connell. “In many instances, the parents also participate in some of the activities especially those that are based on cultural activities.”