You’ve heard the stories. Someone you know talks about their “all-inclusive” vacation or incentive trip and doesn’t have many positive things to say. From bland-tasting buffets, cheap watered-down booze, packed pools, loud and rowdy vacationers, the negative comments abound. However, all-inclusive properties can live up to their name and boost morale while also creating unforgettable experiences. A far cry from the negative stories people have heard.
What’s the secret to avoiding a terrible experience? At Brightspot, we know it comes down to research and finding top-quality experiences. In fact, we have compiled a list of the top all-inclusive resorts if you’re interested in just the hotel names. In the case of enhancements, you should first understand that some all-inclusives cater to leisure travelers while others excel with groups. Talking to hotels or DMCs is vital, and we believe in championing your all-inclusive trip with special perks and exclusive experiences. It’s about going above and beyond, and that’s why we’ve compiled a list of 11 enhancements you can add to an all-inclusive incentive trip.
11 Enhancements for an All-Inclusive Incentive Trip:
- Room Upgrades
- Butler Service
- Personalized Gifts
- Private Spaces
- Private Dinners
- Spa Packages
- Hospitality Cabanas
- Themed Drinks & Cocktails
- Manicure Stations
- Company Branding
- Artisan Market
1. Room Upgrades
A room with extra space or amenities can go a long way to making the experience more memorable. From breathtaking city views to calming ocean views, your guests will thank you when they can feel an escape right from their bedroom. Room choice has seen upgrades from past years, with hotels usually offering multiple options. Aside from the room layout and furniture, ask about different types of rooms that include:
- Ocean views
- Oceanfront views
- Pool views
- City views
- And more
And maybe you get a combination of two types like a room with a private pool and ocean view together. With a guestroom like that, your attendees are bound to remember their first time sinking their feet into their private plunge pool as they watch the sun set over the ocean.
2. Butler Service
We know guests love to be pampered, so why not give them the royal treatment with a butler? Providing butler service speaks to how much you value your attendees, and they won’t soon forget it. Being treated like kings and queens doesn’t happen very often, and butlers or resort attendants will help ensure your guests’ every need is met, from drawing a bath to making reservations at on- and off-site restaurants. Knowing the difference between an incentive-quality all-inclusive is important here; many offer butler services within your room rate; it would be wise to investigate what services are provided and add it in as a perk.
3. Personalized Gifts
Although personalization can come in the typical embroidery, label, or knickknack, we recommend locally sourcing a gift and adding some personality. Some popular examples we’ve seen include monogram pillow shams inside each room and bottled drinks with a participant’s name and picture. Also, we recommend partnering with local brands or artisans and adding a custom label to their products. Sometimes the local artisans even uniquely write each name. Not only are you helping the local community, but you are also providing special gifts to participants.
4. Private Spaces
Sometimes asking your CSM or hotel about a unique space for a private reception will uncover some hidden gem group venues. An unforgettable private dinner in an underground cave or an event next to a beautiful, lush garden can leave your guests in awe. You never know what you can do until you ask. Sometimes the resort’s beachfront can turn into a beautiful dinner location. Just don’t forget to confirm amenities and how many participants can fit.
5. Private Dinners
We talked earlier about bland food, but not all all-inclusive resorts are equal when it comes to the quality of food. Instead, we find that the best all-inclusive resorts include mouth-watering dishes and leave your guests raving about the cuisine – even after returning home! So, why not ask about buying out one of the resort’s restaurants and creating a private dining atmosphere. Many locations also provide enhanced décor, making it feel like an upgraded dining experience. We’ve seen some beautiful indoor and outdoor dining options, and sometimes decorations are available at no or low cost.
6. Spa Packages
After working their way toward earning this incentive trip, your participants are looking forward to forgetting about the normalcy of life and celebrating their success! Treating them to a spa package is the ultimate relaxation method to do just that. Whether it’s massages, facials, manicures, or pedicures, your participants will be eternally grateful after spending time refreshing at the spa. It is not only a great bonding time for some, but it also sends a great message that you care for your participant’s well-being.
7. Hospitality Cabanas
Sometimes when your group is at a resort, they can become overwhelmed by the property’s sheer size. With a hospitality cabana or suite, you have the opportunity to create a location where your guests can easily find each other and network. You can even use multiple cabanas with larger groups for different regions or divisions. Enhance the experience by providing drinks, snacks, and even giveaways or a gifting experience that your guests will appreciate. You don’t want to miss out on delivering a stellar trip experience.
8. Themed Drinks & Cocktails
More often these days, you’ll see resorts offering a specialty drink to arrivals. Did you know many resorts allow you to customize this drink for your attendees? It’s the perfect opportunity to show off some creativity by tailor-making a themed drink, cocktail, or smoothie. If your company has a strong brand color, try asking for this unique color to be added and see if the hotel can create an alcoholic and non-alcoholic option. Your guests will be impressed with your attention to detail.
9. Manicure Stations
Like the spa treatment, a manicure station goes above and beyond, providing an extra courtesy to your guests. When preparing for a fancy reception, everyone wants to dress to impress. A manicure station offers an easy way for your guests to clean, polish, and color their nails before a big event. A popular choice with the ladies and the gentlemen, these stations will be something your guests will continue to talk about even after returning home.
10. Company Branding
Make your guests feel extra special by taking over the resort with your company’s branding. With banners, floor stickers, company colors, tablecloths, souvenirs, GOBO lighting, sand sculptures, and more, your imagination is the only limiting factor. Your guests will feel more connected to each other, and the wonderful experience with be cemented in their minds with the hosting company. One super creative idea we’ve seen was as simple as flip-flops: a company logo added to the bottom of the sandal left an impression in the sand with each step. Soon their logo was everywhere on the beach!
11. Artisan Market
Infuse the local culture into your event by hiring 3-5 local artisans to sell authentic handcrafted gifts inside the resort. Not only will you be providing your guests with unique gifts, but you will also help the local community. In addition, we recommend providing branded “dollars” to make it easier for your guests to shop and spend without worrying about handling cash. Your attendees will thank you when they realize they can experience a taste of the local culture without having to leave the resort.
We hope these enhancements have spurred some creativity and eased your mind about sending a group to an all-inclusive resort. There are bound to be more ideas than the ones we just shared, so feel free to think outside the box to come up with a few of your own. We find that an all-inclusive property can be just the starting point for a great guest experience.
If you feel overwhelmed or need third-party support, don’t hesitate to contact our Brightspot team. Our incentive trip experts will help you create the perfect motivational incentive trip package, so you do not have to stress over the details. Contact us today!