Family vacations can be a great opportunity to spend quality time together outside of daily life. However, among this picture of familial bliss is also the possibility that one sulky teenager can effectively ruin what should be a relaxing break for their parents. Overly concerned with being “cool,” many kids’ number one vacation goal is to ditch their parental units. To combat this, resorts and hotels have started providing activities for those who are beyond scavenger hunts, but not quite ready for cocktail hour. Helping teens meet each other and stay occupied, these vacation options provide parents with a break from headphone-wearing apathetic adolescents.
Trying to strike a fine balance between independence and supervision, these hotels and resorts create a safe environment for teens to just hang out. The Loews Miami Beach Hotel in Florida features a teen beach cabana, complete with Wii contests and an assortment of mocktails, fun drinks without the alcohol of their mature versions. Such spaces don’t attempt to organize and entertain, something potentially perceived as “uncool,” but rather provide facilities for young guests to do their thing. Events such as “casino” night at The Montage Laguna Beach give adolescents a simulated grown up experience. Teens get the chance to sip “teentails” like Shirley Temples while they play poker and enjoy the candy buffet.
Despite these mock grown up experiences, hotels are very aware of the potential for mischief that comes with the onset of puberty. When building its new massive teen club, Atlantis, Paradise Island in the Bahamas made sure that there were “no ‘dark hidden areas’ where teens could sneak off and make out.” All events are supervised and teen hang outs use software to make sure websites and music stay PG. When searching for the location of your next vacation, you might consider a place that will keep both you and your teenagers happy.
To learn more about the plethora of teen hangouts popping up in hotels, check out the Wall Street Journal article here.