Frugal Foodie Mama: Family Friendly Luxury at The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island

Friday, February 24, 2017

Family Friendly Luxury at The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island

From AAA 5 Star-Diamond dining to an amazingly luxurious spa to a kids' club that goes above and beyond, The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island is sure to surpass the expectations of every member of your family...
From AAA 5 Star-Diamond dining to an amazingly luxurious spa to a kids' club that goes above and beyond, The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island is sure to surpass the expectations of every member of your family.
This post was created in partnership with Amelia Island tourism & The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island. As always, all opinions & thoughts expressed below are 100% my own.

While exploring the wonderful & charming area of Amelia Island on the northeastern Atlantic coast of Florida, I was also afforded the opportunity to stay at one of the island's most acclaimed luxury resorts, The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island. As would be expected from any resort in the Ritz-Carlton family of hotels, the Ritz on Amelia Island offers its guests countless luxuries & accommodations. But what really took me by surprise is just how family friendly and accommodating The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island is towards their much younger guests. 

From AAA 5 Star-Diamond dining to an amazingly luxurious spa to a kids' club that goes above and beyond, The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island is sure to surpass the expectations of every member of your family... :)

The Grounds.
Situated on 1 1/2 miles of pristine private beach along Florida's northeastern coast, The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island also boasts an 18 hole PGA golf championship course, indoor and outdoor heated pools, and a children's pool and playground.

Situated on 1 1/2 miles of pristine private beach along Florida's northeastern coast, The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island also boasts an 18 hole PGA golf championship course, indoor and outdoor heated pools, and a children's pool and playground. Enjoy a cocktail poolside, head down to the beach with the kids for a s'mores fire pit, or sign the entire family up to take paddle board lessons or tennis lessons on their oceanfront clay court from instructors who are on-staff at the resort.
Situated on 1 1/2 miles of pristine private beach along Florida's northeastern coast, The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island also boasts an 18 hole PGA golf championship course, indoor and outdoor heated pools, and a children's pool and playground.
Photo courtesy of Amelia Island tourism.

The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island offers its guests private access to about 1 1/2 miles of the island's coastline. You and your family will only be a boardwalk away from gorgeous beaches teeming with seashells and shark teeth.
Photo courtesy of Amelia Island tourism.

The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island offers its guests private access to about 1 1/2 miles of the island's coastline. You and your family will only be a boardwalk away from gorgeous beaches teeming with seashells and shark teeth. And since the Ritz's beach is only open to hotel guests, you will never have to worry about dealing with crowds or staking your claim for a spot on the beach. ;)

The Dining.
Ocean Bar & Grill has a casual, laid back vibe with a menu that reflects that. From tacos to flatbreads to delicious sandwiches and fruity libations, Ocean is perfect for both couples and families looking to grab a bite to eat before heading out for a day at the beach.


The Ritz-Carlton on Amelia Island is home to five different on-property restaurants ranging from casual waterfront dining to their AAA 5-Diamond restaurant, Salt. I had the opportunity to dine at both the Ocean Bar & Grill (pictured above) and their critically acclaimed Salt (pictured below).

Shortly after checking in and briefly enjoying a few sips of my complimentary Arnold Palmer on the balcony of my room, I headed down to Ocean to join my small group of fellow travel bloggers and our gracious host from Amelia Island tourism for a tasty lunch with an ocean view. Ocean Bar & Grill has a casual, laid back vibe with a menu that reflects that. From tacos to flatbreads to delicious sandwiches and fruity libations, Ocean is perfect for both couples and families looking to grab a bite to eat before heading out for a day at the beach or to explore the nearby historic downtown area of Fernandina Beach.
Enjoy a classy dinner out without leaving the resort property by making a reservation at the Ritz's elegant Salt. The menu at Salt is artfully crafted to include the elements of the ocean- fresh seafood, seasonal produce, and as the name suggests, salt.

Enjoy a classy dinner out without leaving the resort property by making a reservation at the Ritz's elegant Salt. The menu at Salt is artfully crafted to include the elements of the ocean- fresh seafood, seasonal produce, and as the name suggests, salt. The inclusion of salt- from the salt lamps that gently glow on each table to the selection of handcrafted flavored salts they offer that perfectly compliment each dish- is the cornerstone of this culinary wonder. 

We were extremely fortunate to get treated to the very same five course dinner that they chefs at Salt had served during the James Beard dinner earlier that fall. Our meal started with the most perfect Tuna Tartare leading to the most velvety & airy butternut squash soup I had ever tasted and culminating in the dish you see pictured above- their Steak, Eggs, & Lobster. We actually cooked our steaks right at the table on a heated 250 million year old Himalayan salt block! It was truly a mind blowing experience that I just can't recommend enough. A dinner reservation at Salt is completely worth indulging in for a date night out during your stay at The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island. 

If you really want to splurge, be sure to add the The Ritz-Carlton Club Level to your stay. Not only do you have access to the Club Level, but you can also enjoy gourmet breakfasts complete with freshly brewed espressos & lattes and a mimosa bar every morning of you stay. They also offer five food presentations as well as a complimentary cocktail hour each day of your stay. Definitely worth the upgrade for the extra perks if it happens to be in your budget! :)

Kid Friendly Amenities.
The cornerstone of their kid friendly amenities is the Ritz Kids club. Ritz Kids is not a babysitting service, even though it does provide mom & dad with a few hours of kid free time.

I know when we are usually planning a family trip with the kiddos that staying at a luxury resort is rarely ever our first thought when considering where we will stay. We often give up some of the perks and amenities in lieu of a more kid-centered, family friendly hotel or bed & breakfast. But with The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island, you can have it all, folks. The luxury, the spa visits, the first class dining, cocktails poolside, plus kid friendly amenities and options that go above and beyond simple daycare services and a child's menu in the hotel restaurant. In fact, it is obvious that their pint sized guests are most definitely not an after thought at the Ritz on Amelia Island.

The cornerstone of their kid friendly amenities is the Ritz Kids club (pictured above). Ritz Kids is not a babysitting service, even though it does provide mom & dad with a few hours of kid free time. ;) Offering half day & full day programs, Ritz Kids offers supervised hands-on activities that not only entertain, but also happen to educate and widen the world of the Ritz's youngest guests. The club even has their very own mascot, Princess Amelia, an 11 year old Blue & Gold Macaw...
Ritz Kids offers supervised hands-on activities that not only entertain, but also happen to educate and widen the world of the Ritz's youngest guests. The club even has their very own mascot, Princess Amelia, an 11 year old Blue & Gold Macaw.

In addition to Ritz Kids, the resort also offers programs and activities such a daily morning fish feedings, craft time, shark tooth hunts, and more. And on Friday & Saturday evenings, the kiddos can get a break from the adults during Kids Night Out where they will enjoy movies, activities, water sports, s'mores, & hot chocolate. 
Inspired by the island's rich and colorful history as a haven for pirates and their buried treasures, one of the most popular services offered by Ritz Kids is the Pirate Tuck-In.

Inspired by the island's rich and colorful history as a haven for pirates and their buried treasures, one of the most popular services offered by Ritz Kids is the Pirate Tuck-In. Pirate tuck-ins are offered on Friday & Saturday nights from 6-9pm for an additional charge. In addition to cookies & milk, your child will have a goodnight story read to them from a pirate, a princess, and the resort's feathered mascot, Princess Amelia. And before your little one drifts off to sleep, this fun trio will surprise them with a chocolate chest full of colorful "treasure" (pictured above).

The Accommodations & Amenities.
While the kiddos are having a blast a Ritz Kids, mom (or dad) can sneak away to The Ritz-Carlton's luxurious spa for a little pampering.
Photo courtesy of Amelia Island tourism.


While the kiddos are having a blast a Ritz Kids, mom (or dad) can sneak away to The Ritz-Carlton's luxurious spa for a little pampering. If it is in the family vacation budget, I personally recommend treating yourself to a massage, facial, or body treatment from the skilled technicians at the Ritz's spa. :) I was treated to an amazing facial treatment during my stay, and let me just say that it was pure heaven!
The resort's continuing theme of salt and the sea is carried on throughout the Ritz-Carlton's spa thanks to softly glowing Himalayan salt lamps, luxurious salt scrubs, and even a hot salt stone massage.


The resort's continuing theme of salt and the sea is carried on throughout the Ritz-Carlton's spa thanks to softly glowing Himalayan salt lamps, luxurious salt scrubs, and even a hot salt stone massage. You can even take a dip in the spa's adults only saline pool.
The resort's continuing theme of salt and the sea is carried on throughout the Ritz-Carlton's spa thanks to softly glowing Himalayan salt lamps, luxurious salt scrubs, and even a hot salt stone massage.


The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island is appointed with 466 guest rooms ranging from 410 square foot rooms all the way up to a 2401 square foot luxury suite. All rooms have private balconies with full or partial views of either the ocean, pool, coastline, and/or sunrise.

The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island is appointed with 466 guest rooms ranging from 410 square foot rooms all the way up to a 2401 square foot luxury suite. All rooms have private balconies with full or partial views of either the ocean, pool, coastline, and/or sunrise. I was quite partial to the amazingly comfy bed in my room complete with 400 thread count Egyptian cotton sheets & goose down pillows. ;)

And the private balcony off from my room was perfect for enjoying a warm cup of morning coffee brewed in-room, for taking in the waves on the beach, and for sipping on a refreshing Arnold Palmer after I had checked in. ;)

What you need to know before you go...
  • If you are flying into Amelia Island, Jacksonville airport will be your point of entry. It is about a 45 minute drive from the airport to the resort, and the resort does offer shuttles & transportation services via the concierge desk.
  • Please note that most of the services offered via Ritz Kids need to be reserved at least 24 hours in advance and require an additional fee above the normal room rate.
  • The resort offers a shuttle service to the nearby historical downtown of Fernandina Beach. I highly recommend spending a day or two of your stay there to check out the great local shops, take a historical tour, and to check out the local food scene in this quaint town.
CLICK HERE to book your stay at The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island today! :)

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