Vacation Nanny 411: All about FDR Resorts’ ultimate "all-inclusive inclusion" for families

As I mention in my review of Franklyn D. Resort & Spa, what is particularly appealing about Franklyn D. Resort & Spa (a.k.a. FDR) in Jamaica is that the “all-inclusive inclusions” include a Vacation Nanny assigned exclusively to your family to assist you each day of your stay (and after hours by request).

Compared with other family resorts that may offer drop-off childcare or private babysitters, at FDR you and your children (including infants and toddlers who are often excluded from kid’ camps) have a chance to become familiar with your personal nanny from the start. So even those children who are slow to warm up to new caregivers and surroundings have a chance to adapt, even while you are all together.

One couple that was visiting the resort from Kentucky with their 5-year-old twin boys, told me that the previous night they’d had their first date in 5 years—at home or away—thanks to their Vacation Nanny (Phyllis). They explained that, unlike other babysitters they’d passed up over the years, she was able to make them all feel comfortable with the idea. The intimate resort setting and evening children’s activities she could escort them to (including nightly popcorn and a kids’ movie), didn’t hurt anything either. Suffice to say, they had several more dates before they checked out, and they plan to return to the resort in 2010. 

I, myself, was surprised by how quickly our Vacation Nannies, Coretta and Jasmine, fit in with our family. Within 24 hours, I found myself handing off the baby for a diaper change and a stroll without a second thought (his first time with anyone outside of the family). It was quite clear to me that these women, who have assisted family after family with children of every temperament, have far more experience caring for children than I do (not to mention they are also mothers, themselves). Of course, they are also professionally trained, CPR-certified, and lots and lots of fun, too.

FDR Vacation Nannies at a glance:

  • Daily “vacation support” from 9:00 a.m. to 4:40 p.m.
  • Available extra hours as requested, $6 per hour
  • Second nanny available, $20 per day

What we really came to appreciate about the Vacation Nanny concept is that it is so much more than just having a babysitter at an appointed hour. She provides “vacation support” as needed the whole day through, whether it’s times when the whole family is together or while the parents enjoy time alone. She’s that extra set of hands, as well as watchful eyes, that allow even a family with very young children feel like they’ve had a vacation.

By the end of our stay, it was clear to me that the FDR Vacation Nannies help families vacation better as families—something I think is particularly important. Your time together with your child is more relaxed and enjoyable with the set of extra helping hands, and your time apart from your child is also more relaxed and enjoyable because you know your child is comfortable—and happy with—your family’s own Vacation Nanny. 

Think you could use a Vacation Nanny on your next vacation? 
Don’t miss the Travels with Baby Vacation Nanny video where you can meet the nannies and see them in action at Franklyn D. Resort & Spa. You can also read nanny recommendations from guests of FDR and. I also highly recommend you watch this blog closely for a BIG announcement coming soon!

Safe journey,

Shelly Rivoli, author of the award-winning guide Travels with Baby
The Ultimate Guide for Planning Trips with Babies, Toddlers, and Preschool-Age Children   facebook   twitter


  1. Shelly Rivoli

    Thanks for the great tip! Glad to know about them.

  2. Anonymous

    If you are thinking of going to Europe, you could have a British Travel Nanny come and meet you at your destination. We did this on a group family holiday in Italy, was fabulous, and a great break for adults and kids. This way we got to choose our accommodation (huge Tuscan farmhouse) but still have the freedom to do 'adult' excursions, and go for evening meals out.
    We used 'My Travelling Nanny' who were fab, and good value too.

    Hope this helps

  3. Anonymous

    Thank you!

  4. Shelly Rivoli

    Anonymous – To my knowledge this is the only nanny program like it in the world. Beaches resorts offer certified nannies in their drop-off care centers for infants up to 24 months during daytime hours, included in the cost of your stay, but it may be different people at different times, and of course it is quite different from having one dedicated and familiar person who will accompany your family to the pool or beach or grill, or simply sit in your room as your child naps, etc. You might consider FDR Pebbles, also in Jamaica, for a slight variation on the theme but with your own vacation nanny.

  5. Anonymous

    We loved FDR and are thinking about going back this summer, but would love to try somewhere differnt just for variety. Do you know of any other places that offer this kind of vacation nanny servuce? It does not have to be in Jamaica.

  6. Shelly Rivoli

    Anonymous – I'm not sure where you saw those reviews from visitors re: food; most I've seen have been pleased all the way around, hence the Traveler's Choice Awards (both resorts). I know food and services can vary at any resort, however, as seasons and staff change over, and most family resorts (these included) and cruise lines offer more activities in the high (school break) seasons than they do in low seasons, though there were daily activities even as I was there at the end of low season. During my visit, I found the food to be great–in fact, I have a hard time bringing myself to eat fish at all at home, but the fish dishes were so great there that I was eating it every day and loving it. If the culinary experience is the highest on your list of priorities, there are probably some other resorts with you in mind. For me and many parents, I'm sure, it's hard to enjoy dining no matter how delicious when you are also wrestling your toddler in the high chair or cutting her food for her, or taking your fussing baby out for a walk while your partner eats. In that way, I think any vacation meal tastes better with help from a Vacation Nanny. 😉 Perhaps you would like to read more about our experience staying there in my review

  7. Anonymous

    I have a 2 year old and we were considering FDR or Pebbles for our first family vacation. The Nanny thing seems great. However when I read reviews about the resort the Nannies were the only thing that got consistently good reviews. Food reviews vary from blah to inedible. Other reviews talk about being poorly supplied with everything from food to beach equipment. And many events and activities just never happen or are very late. What do people who have stayed there think? Are these things true. If they are, is it worth it to stay in sup par accommodations just for the nanny?

  8. Amy @ The Q Family

    What a unique service that is perfect for family travel!!

    A lot of time, I will hear from my friends (myself included) that we need a vacation after a family vacation because we (parents) were so exhausted from our trip. This feature seems like a great way for family to truly enjoy their vacation!

    Thanks for sharing!

  9. info

    What a dream for families! Thanks for sharing!

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