“Experiences” - aka family vacations

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4nursebee
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“Experiences” - aka family vacations

Post by 4nursebee »

Hello. We are getting quite comfortable in life, always dreamed of an expensive beach rental to invite family and friends. Looking at prices had me wondering if we could make it an annual event, but perhaps change the scenery. What else could be done? Nothing off limits but hiking the Appalachian trail not likely to get folks to get excited. Travel, stay at home, hire out guides, great places to see, every thing else really possible. Ages are 13 to 90, mostly 50s and 60s.
Including some extended family max of 25.
What have you done?
What might you do?
What have you heard about?
Please help us brainstorm.
Thank you
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windaar
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Re: “Experiences” - aka family vacations

Post by windaar »

In the last decade of his life my father would rent a big condo on a Florida beach every December and he would fly any family member and their family for a visit of however long they liked. This was the only "Christmas Present" that was offered to any of us. My siblings and I went down every year. Great times and memories for all of us. My Mom & Dad got to see their adult children with their families, and we all got to enjoy our parents in a relaxing setting on a free trip!
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winterfan
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Re: “Experiences” - aka family vacations

Post by winterfan »

A big lake cabin for a weekend works pretty well. It was only about a two hour drive, so it's easy to get to. There was enough downtime for the older people, but enough recreational activities (paddleboarding, kayaking, swimming, etc.) for the kids. I think it's best when there aren't a lot of structured things to do and people can come and go as they please.
livesoft
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Re: “Experiences” - aka family vacations

Post by livesoft »

Galapagos.
Patagonia.
France.
China.
Australia.

If that's not enough, come back and ask again.
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coalcracker
Posts: 603
Joined: Sat Feb 04, 2012 12:25 pm

Re: “Experiences” - aka family vacations

Post by coalcracker »

4nursebee wrote: Fri Aug 21, 2020 5:18 am Hello. We are getting quite comfortable in life, always dreamed of an expensive beach rental to invite family and friends. Looking at prices had me wondering if we could make it an annual event, but perhaps change the scenery. What else could be done? Nothing off limits but hiking the Appalachian trail not likely to get folks to get excited. Travel, stay at home, hire out guides, great places to see, every thing else really possible. Ages are 13 to 90, mostly 50s and 60s.
Including some extended family max of 25.
What have you done?
What might you do?
What have you heard about?
Please help us brainstorm.
Thank you
Over the past few years I've planned 2 domestic trips for a group of close friends from 4 families (8 adults and 8 children), one to Anna Maria Island in Florida and one to Lake Oconee in Georgia. We had a fantastic time, but planning a trip for a large group was not easy.

The first challenge was getting everyone to agree on a vacation destination. I like the idea of another poster: just rent a big house where YOU would like to go and invite everyone else.

The second challenge was orchestrating the timing of the trip so everyone could go. You could take the same approach as the first challenge here as well.

The third challenge was finding a house that could accommodate us. We needed 4 bedrooms for the adults and at least 3 bedrooms for the children. 7+ bedroom houses are out there, but you need to be selective with your destinations. For a group of up to 25 you'll likely need something even bigger. I found it useful to input the necessary number of bedrooms on VRBO and move the map around the country to see what pops up. You can easily see clusters of the "monster" houses in certain vacation destinations.

A few places that I've noticed very large house rental options:

Outer Banks, NC
Coastal SC (Isle of Palms, Folly Beach, Kiawah Island)
Gulf Coast of Florida (Anna Maria was great, but many other options)
Puget sound, WA (less options but wonderful and different summer vacation)
Long Island/Hamptons
France (Our next trip we are considering France. If you google french chateau rental, you'll find some of very large chateaus that could fit groups of 20-25.)

If you want to spend $$$$, you could take everyone on Safari or charter a large sailboat/yacht in the Caribbean.

I love the idea, have fun!
Last edited by coalcracker on Fri Aug 21, 2020 8:04 am, edited 1 time in total.
Mr.BB
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Re: “Experiences” - aka family vacations

Post by Mr.BB »

Maui.... There's no other place like Maui
"We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit."
Flyer24
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Re: “Experiences” - aka family vacations

Post by Flyer24 »

Topic moved to Personal Consumer Issues (travel).
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Watty
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Re: “Experiences” - aka family vacations

Post by Watty »

One thing to pay a lot of attention to in your plans is how to handle parking if you rent a large place for 25 people. Many beach properties have very limited parking so that can be a big issue if every couple has their own rental car. Even if there is parking for a dozen cars they may all be crammed together and you may need to jocky cars whenever someone wants to go somewhere.
4nursebee wrote: Fri Aug 21, 2020 5:18 am What have you heard about?
I have heard of retired people renting a larger than needed condo in Florida for one to three months in the winter that had some extra bedrooms so that people could come and visit at different times. One advantage of that is that you could actually spend time with each of the guests instead of barely seeing a lot of the people if you had 25 people all there at the same time. That also makes food less of an issue since cooking for 25 people is a lot of work and a rental kitchen may not have enough pots and pans for cooking for that many people. It is also hard to get restaurant reservations for that many people.

That would also give the people some flexibility to travel when they could get the time off. For example grandkids might have spring break at different times. If some week is popular and more people want to be there at the same time than can fit in the condo then extra hotel rooms or condo units can be rented. Some people like spouses or people looking for a more romantic getaway may actually prefer a separate nearby place to stay.

I once went to a place like that as an inlaw and I would sometimes go off and do something else while my wife spent time with her relatives. If I did not have some way to get away being with her relatives for the entire week would have not really worked out all that well for me.
4nursebee wrote: Fri Aug 21, 2020 5:18 am Please help us brainstorm.
Even before the pandemic I was not a "cruise person" but I have heard of people taking large family groups on cruises and you may even be able to get group rates. While cruises might become an option again, someday, I suspect that they will never be the same.
flaccidsteele
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Re: “Experiences” - aka family vacations

Post by flaccidsteele »

windaar wrote: Fri Aug 21, 2020 6:49 am In the last decade of his life my father would rent a big condo on a Florida beach every December and he would fly any family member and their family for a visit of however long they liked. This was the only "Christmas Present" that was offered to any of us. My siblings and I went down every year. Great times and memories for all of us. My Mom & Dad got to see their adult children with their families, and we all got to enjoy our parents in a relaxing setting on a free trip!
This sounds awesome!
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GmanJeff
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Re: “Experiences” - aka family vacations

Post by GmanJeff »

If you are sufficiently "comfortable" this may be a good option: https://y.co/yacht-charter.
coalcracker
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Re: “Experiences” - aka family vacations

Post by coalcracker »

GmanJeff wrote: Fri Aug 21, 2020 8:53 am If you are sufficiently "comfortable" this may be a good option: https://y.co/yacht-charter.
Wow, the first one I clicked on was $450,000 per WEEK :shock:
sailaway
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Re: “Experiences” - aka family vacations

Post by sailaway »

flaccidsteele wrote: Fri Aug 21, 2020 8:51 am
windaar wrote: Fri Aug 21, 2020 6:49 am In the last decade of his life my father would rent a big condo on a Florida beach every December and he would fly any family member and their family for a visit of however long they liked. This was the only "Christmas Present" that was offered to any of us. My siblings and I went down every year. Great times and memories for all of us. My Mom & Dad got to see their adult children with their families, and we all got to enjoy our parents in a relaxing setting on a free trip!
This sounds awesome!

My parents do this every five years for their children and grandchildren. They did add in siblings for their 50th anniversary, renting an enormous beach house in SC. This year it was a grouping of small lakeside cabins, but only the closest child and grandchildren attended, as no one was much interested in getting on a plane. Preciously, it was a lakeside house near where we all graduated from high school, with a pontoon boat rental for cruising the lake.

My parents also own a small lake cabin and a pontoon boat. It is actually a small mobile home with log cladding and we even with grandkids happy to sleep on the porch, you can only fit a few people. But it is only about 29 minutes from their slightly larger home, so it extends the available sleeping for get togethers and is a place for everyone to hang out at the lake all day. Many family members use it, with a few using it for weeks at a time as transitional housing.
delamer
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Re: “Experiences” - aka family vacations

Post by delamer »

Post-coronavirus, a cruise would fit the bill.

Plenty of activities for every age group, nobody has to cook, everybody has some privacy (and a bathroom), but you can all have dinner together.
gogleheads.orb
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Re: “Experiences” - aka family vacations

Post by gogleheads.orb »

rent a house on the beach on the outer banks for a week. Maybe two. They aren't super cheap.
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marti038
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Re: “Experiences” - aka family vacations

Post by marti038 »

Just got back from Gardiner, MT. We rented a house with DW's side of the family that had 5 bedrooms (there were 11 of us). It was on the Yellowstone River in between some smaller mountains that framed the sunset almost perfectly. The scenery was unbelievable; like sitting in an Albert Bierstadt painting. I'd like to move there during the summers if I could afford it.

My only regret was we planned to spend so much of our time in Yellowstone NP that I didn't get to enjoy the house more.
Hockey10
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Re: “Experiences” - aka family vacations

Post by Hockey10 »

In the 1960s, my grandfather each year would rent an oceanfront home for 2 weeks in Ocean City, NJ. My family would spend a week there, then my Uncle's family would spend a week. At the end of the 1st week on changeover day, the entire family would be there together for a few hours and my grandfather was as happy as could be.
mw1739
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Re: “Experiences” - aka family vacations

Post by mw1739 »

My wife's family is big on this. Places we've traveled as a group of 20-40 (depending on how many extended family are invited): Various places in Florida, Scottsdale, Nashville, Asheville, Mackinaw Island, Aspen, various places in Mexico and Caribbean etc. With groups of up to 25, we will typically rent 1-2 large homes in the same vicinity/resort. Over that amount, we typically do resort-type hotels.

In my opinion, the easiest method for everyone is all-inclusive places in Mexico/Caribbean - that takes the hassle of cooking out of the equation and there are many activities to do on/off the resort to please all age groups.
LittleMaggieMae
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Re: “Experiences” - aka family vacations

Post by LittleMaggieMae »

I'm not against doing this - I think it's awesome!

But as one of the people "left behind" - I'd suggest changing up what "holidays" the clan gets together from year to year. Or being willing to host clan members at different times of the year if they cannot make the "holidays".

I have friends (and relatives) who experienced a lot of stress because joining the family at Christmas or for 2 weeks every summer became a required Obligation and Duty rather than "a happy choice". There can be a lot of tension and stress when people feel they have to choose between two "required Obligations and Duties" or when they have to choose between "a once in a life time thing they always wanted to do or try" and a "family Obligation and Duty'. Especially if you've drilled or constantly say that "family comes first" into everyone's head.

Not to mention some stress when one family always takes advantage of the "freebie" when other families can't or don't.
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batpot
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Re: “Experiences” - aka family vacations

Post by batpot »

AirBnB.

Why go to the same place every year? And no 2nd property to maintain.

The only time we've gone to a repeat locale is to meet up with friends or family.
IMO
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Re: “Experiences” - aka family vacations

Post by IMO »

coalcracker wrote: Fri Aug 21, 2020 7:36 am
4nursebee wrote: Fri Aug 21, 2020 5:18 am Hello. We are getting quite comfortable in life, always dreamed of an expensive beach rental to invite family and friends. Looking at prices had me wondering if we could make it an annual event, but perhaps change the scenery. What else could be done? Nothing off limits but hiking the Appalachian trail not likely to get folks to get excited. Travel, stay at home, hire out guides, great places to see, every thing else really possible. Ages are 13 to 90, mostly 50s and 60s.
Including some extended family max of 25.
What have you done?
What might you do?
What have you heard about?
Please help us brainstorm.
Thank you
Over the past few years I've planned 2 domestic trips for a group of close friends from 4 families (8 adults and 8 children), one to Anna Maria Island in Florida and one to Lake Oconee in Georgia. We had a fantastic time, but planning a trip for a large group was not easy.

The first challenge was getting everyone to agree on a vacation destination. I like the idea of another poster: just rent a big house where YOU would like to go and invite everyone else.

The second challenge was orchestrating the timing of the trip so everyone could go. You could take the same approach as the first challenge here as well.

The third challenge was finding a house that could accommodate us. We needed 4 bedrooms for the adults and at least 3 bedrooms for the children. 7+ bedroom houses are out there, but you need to be selective with your destinations. For a group of up to 25 you'll likely need something even bigger. I found it useful to input the necessary number of bedrooms on VRBO and move the map around the country to see what pops up. You can easily see clusters of the "monster" houses in certain vacation destinations.

A few places that I've noticed very large house rental options:

Outer Banks, NC
Coastal SC (Isle of Palms, Folly Beach, Kiawah Island)
Gulf Coast of Florida (Anna Maria was great, but many other options)
Puget sound, WA (less options but wonderful and different summer vacation)
Long Island/Hamptons
France (Our next trip we are considering France. If you google french chateau rental, you'll find some of very large chateaus that could fit groups of 20-25.)

If you want to spend $$$$, you could take everyone on Safari or charter a large sailboat/yacht in the Caribbean.

I love the idea, have fun!
Good advice.

You also have to make sure that there are activities for the variety of ages AND the variety of physical abilities and desires. Some people may love the thought a tropical home on/near the beach in an isolated area, others may not. Some may enjoy a combined sports/destination location, some may not.

It may also be necessary to look into what flight options are available for various people, as some may be able to have non-stops and others may have multiple stops and long layovers. And somewhat related may be the variety of personal fiances for each family/friend presuming you are not paying for their flights.

You can also look at a destination where you may rent a number of hotel rooms if large single accommodations are not possible. In a sense, sometimes that can work out well because some people may not want to share things like bathrooms with other families/couples, etc. In the Covid world, this option may be the most advisable to lower risk.

I think ultimately if one puts out the destination and what's covered about 1 yr ahead, it can be up to the families/friends to RSVP or as they say in France, Répondez s'il vous plaît, within a reasonable time to help one finalize plans.
LifeIsGood
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Re: “Experiences” - aka family vacations

Post by LifeIsGood »

We typically do 1 - 2 family vacations per years. Three years ago we celebrated our 50th wedding anniversary and wanted to do something special. We rented a house with pool on the beach near Tulum Mexico. The house came with a gardener, housekeeper and 2 cooks. We picked out the menus and they shopped and cooked 3 meals per day. Everyone still talks about what a treat is was not to have to decide where to eat each day, get changed and then drive to the restaurant. The food was fantastic and the whole vacation was just a bit more than we usually spend stateside.
J295
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Re: “Experiences” - aka family vacations

Post by J295 »

Here’s what my 87-year-old parents have done for the last 10 years or so… Rented a large home in Colorado for a week. Can hold 25 people. It’s within a 500 mile drive for most, and an airline flight for a few. Everyone who can make it gets there for whatever time works out. Many can’t make it… New babies, living in Asia, work, etc. No hard feelings about those who can’t make it, it just happens a week in July every year.

Since it’s like herding cats, everyone does their own thing for the most part during the day. At evening there’s a meal and each family unit gets a different night to prepare the meal. Typically nothing fancy…

For our immediate family… 61-year-old parents, adult kids and spouses and grandkid … we try and get together in a state we’ve never visited once each year, maybe twice if we’re lucky. Everyone’s busy. It’s part of a family tradition we started when our kids were young. So far we have visited 43 states, and continuing to try and knock out the remaining seven. Covid put the brakes on things for this year. 🤷🏼‍♂️
coalcracker
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Re: “Experiences” - aka family vacations

Post by coalcracker »

LifeIsGood wrote: Sat Aug 22, 2020 5:24 am We typically do 1 - 2 family vacations per years. Three years ago we celebrated our 50th wedding anniversary and wanted to do something special. We rented a house with pool on the beach near Tulum Mexico. The house came with a gardener, housekeeper and 2 cooks. We picked out the menus and they shopped and cooked 3 meals per day. Everyone still talks about what a treat is was not to have to decide where to eat each day, get changed and then drive to the restaurant. The food was fantastic and the whole vacation was just a bit more than we usually spend stateside.
Do you mind sharing where you rented? Feel free to PM.
LifeIsGood
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Re: “Experiences” - aka family vacations

Post by LifeIsGood »

This is the property we rented. https://www.mayaluxe.com/luxury-villas/ ... el-viento/
PM me for specific questions.
coalcracker wrote: Sat Aug 22, 2020 7:07 am
LifeIsGood wrote: Sat Aug 22, 2020 5:24 am We typically do 1 - 2 family vacations per years. Three years ago we celebrated our 50th wedding anniversary and wanted to do something special. We rented a house with pool on the beach near Tulum Mexico. The house came with a gardener, housekeeper and 2 cooks. We picked out the menus and they shopped and cooked 3 meals per day. Everyone still talks about what a treat is was not to have to decide where to eat each day, get changed and then drive to the restaurant. The food was fantastic and the whole vacation was just a bit more than we usually spend stateside.
Do you mind sharing where you rented? Feel free to PM.
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CABob
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Re: “Experiences” - aka family vacations

Post by CABob »

My family is not of the nature that such a vacation is feasible, but I have a friend who a couple of years ago took about 20 friends and relatives on a European river cruise. It was a small boat and the entire boat was rented for the group.
Bob
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