Here at l'étale we've been planning our summer holiday and to celebrate the launch of our Father/Son matching swimming trunks, we bring you our favourite baby-and-toddler-friendly hotels on the beach, because a hotel, villa or guesthouse more than 1km away from the sand is too far!
1. Anassa, Latchi, Cyprus
It would be rude to write an article about luxury family-friendly hotels and not include the Grand Dame that is the Anassa. Part of a group of three iconic Cypriot hotels (which include the Almyra and the Annabelle), this stunning hotel really does have it all. You can take your children to a smart hotel without worrying about them breaking glasses or putting sticky fingers all over silk curtains. It has four villas - so if you're children are really badly behaved book these! Children can join the kids club from 4 months (wahoo!) and the Baby Go Lightly service means you don't have to use up all your luggage allowance with nappies as everything you need will be waiting for you.
2. Domaine de Murtoli, Corsica
I am reluctant to tell you about this place because I'm scared it will suddenly become too popular to be able to get a booking. Domaine de Murtoli is a hamlet of villas built on pristine Corsican coastline and among a working farm. Although the words tranquility and family holiday don't normally go hand in hand, there is so much space here that you should your little darlings have a gigantic tantrum or be of the noisy variety (like ours), you can just send them off into the mountains to let loose. The 2,000 hectare dream-land has two delightful restaurants - one on the beach and one in a cave - but the villas all have kitchens and groceries can be delivered; guests are also encouraged to help themselves to vegetables and fruit growing on the farm. It is indeed a kind of Eden.
3. Ekies All Senses, Halkidiki, Greece
When it comes to beach hotels Greece always comes up trumps. And the bonus of this barefoot hideaway is that it's on the mainland, so travelling there is simple. Ekies All Senses has just the right balance of boutique-design-hotel-style and family-friendly-resort-facilities. Set literally right on the beach, - which in my daughter's eyes are the only criteria for a good holiday - Ekies is all about low-key luxury, designed to blend in with its environment. Leave your shoes in your room and sashay from palm-fringed pool, to bar, to treehouse restaurant. There's a kid's club for the over fours, open-air spa and gym, bikes to hire, boat rides to deserted beaches with picnics.
4. Masseria Torre Coccaro, Savelletri di Fasano, Puglia, Italy
Voted as one of the 20 Best Hotels in the World on Conde Nast Traveller's 2018 Gold List, Masseria Torre Coccaro is utterly charming. Encapsulating that effortless Puglian style with a traditional farmhouse look. The rooms are elegant, decorated with embroidered linen, eclectic art, tiled floors and local ceramics. Sit under the stars, next to the cascading bougainvillea or under the 1600 vaulted ceilings of the Egnathia restaurant for your dinner. Lunches can be taken barefoot by the pool, while your children frolic happily in the kids area. The beach has a fabulous beach club serving freshly-caught fish, a chic boutique, kids club and plenty of watersports.
5. Sublime, Comporta, Portugal
With a name like Sublime you're going to hope it's a pretty special place. Comporta is the name on everyone's lips at the moment. In Portugla's Alentejo region, this area is the yin to the Algarve's yang. Just a hop, skip and a jump from Lisbon and you'll find crashing Atlantic waves, wild sand dunes and this sleepy collection of rooms and cabanas. Sublime's minimalist design complements the surrounding woodlands and wildflowers that occupy the 17-acre patch. There's an adult's only pool and a children's one for splashing, delicious Portuguese food and a fire pit to spend romantic evenings next to while the tribe is watched over by a babysitter. There's no kids club but Sublime does have highchairs and a kid's menu.
Wherever you choose for your family holiday this summer don't forget to pack your father and son matching l'étale swimming trunks!