The all-inclusive resorts are happy to oblige.
“Primarily, the difference is in the location, the higher level of accommodations and more personalized guest services — not to mention bragging rights,” said Mr. Fareed, the hospitality consultant. “However, it may also be found in the resort’s food and wine offerings: Think celebrity or Michelin-starred chefs, spa amenities and treatments, unique cultural or educational experiences, and niche market offerings such as fishing, golfing, cooking or even yoga with a recognized celebrity in the space.”
As a result, tiny, luxury, often independent all-inclusives in the United States, Canada and Europe are flourishing, increasing their offerings and opening new locations. Big-name hotel brands including Marriott and Hyatt are entering the scene with their own ultraluxe all-inclusives. W Hotel (part of Marriott) is planning its all-inclusive Dominican Republic debut in 2025, while Hyatt is opening its new Inclusive Collection portfolio of resorts in Portugal, Mexico and Bulgaria.
“There’s enough people that will spend $5,000 to their heart’s content now, so there’s a whole market to go to these ultraluxury spots,” said Haydn Kramer, a partner at Valley of the Moon Partners, a hotel consultancy company. “People are looking for privatized, very special experiences, and they want to pay for them.”
Ikos Odisia is scheduled to open a new resort on the Greek island of Corfu in May 2023, and the all-inclusive provides guests with a Tesla and passes to the local museums, churches and local restaurants.
La Maison du Val, an all-inclusive castle masquerading as a country house that opened in 2021 in St.-Germain-en-Laye, France, west of Paris, offers complimentary boots so guests can stroll through the forest where kings and emperors of France took their afternoon walks. It follows in the footsteps of the Château de Villiers-le-Mahieu, an upscale all-inclusive estate that opened its doors in 2019 in a wooded park 45 minutes outside Paris.