Mexico properties make a push for families

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*logoFamily travel has never been one of Mexico's biggest markets, but that isn't stopping resorts throughout the country from offering family travel packages in time for the summer vacation season.

With the country's tourism industry in recovery mode following the swine flu outbreak and image problems over drug violence, resorts are doing all they can to help fill empty rooms, including marketing to families.

Through Sept. 30, luxury, all-inclusive Velas Resorts (www.velasresorts.com) is waiving the single supplement for solo parents traveling with their kids at the Velas Vallarta Suite Resort and the Grand Velas All Suites & Spa resorts in the Riviera Maya and Riviera Nayarit. In addition, the resort company is allowing two children age 16 or younger to stay and eat for free when sharing a room with a parent. Rates range from $165 a night at Velas Vallarta to $300 a night at the two Grand Velas properties.

Free unlimited ice cream and smoothies will be available to kids age 14 or younger at the luxe One&Only Palmilla in Los Cabos (www.oneandonlyresorts.com) this summer. The sweet treats will be among the many other complimentary amenities and programs that are part of One&Only's KidsOnly program, which offers activities for kids that reflect the cultures and traditions of each resort's destination.

Club Med is offering a Kids 15 & Under Stay Free promotion at its Cancun Yucatan and Ixtapa Pacific properties; kids eat for free, as well, at those resorts. The offer is available through Dec. 19 but must be booked by June 30. For even more savings, parents who book by June 30 can ask for Club Med's 50% off the Second Person promotion for seven-night stays through Dec. 19. Visit www.clubmed.com.  

A family of four staying in a Junior Suite at Real Resorts' Grand Caribe Real in Cancun or Gran Porto Real Playa del Carmen will pay from $268 a night. The rate covers an all-inclusive stay for two adults and up to two children age 12 or younger. Visit www.realresorts.com.  

Occidental Hotels & Resorts is offering a number of promotions at six all-inclusive properties throughout Mexico, with rates starting at $46 a night per person, double, at the Allegro Nuevo Vallarta. At the Allegro Nuevo Vallarta, Allegro Cozumel and Allegro Playacar, kids age 12 or younger stay free through Dec. 20. Visit www.occidentalhotels.com.

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