Skip to content

All-inclusive resorts aren't just for the Caribbean — Hyatt's heading to Bulgaria

September 18 2022
4 min read
people on crowded beach
This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

For the most part, all-inclusive resorts have always fit into the same mold in the same general destinations. We're talking watered-down drinks and subpar food at resorts dotting the beaches up and down the Caribbean and Mexico.

Lately, though, the tide has been changing for the all-inclusive experience. Major hotel companies — including Marriott, Hilton and Hyatt — have been investing serious cash to break the all-inclusive stereotypes as they collect resorts around the world. It's been almost like a game of Monopoly — but one with unlimited tequila and random breaks to limbo with your mother-in-law.

In this game, Hyatt just made one of the most interesting moves yet: It added five resorts in Bulgaria, along the Black Sea, to The Inclusive Collection.

Sign up for our daily newsletter

Hyatt's new additions

Last year, Hyatt closed its roughly $2.7 billion dollar acquisition of Apple Leisure Group, which added about 100 all-inclusive properties to the company's collection. These resorts consist of a series of all-inclusive brands including Secrets Resorts & Spas, Dreams Resorts & Spas and Breathless Resorts & Spas.

Now, World of Hyatt members can earn and redeem points for stays at these Apple Leisure Group properties, along with Hyatt's own Hyatt Zilara and Ziva resorts. However, since all-inclusive resorts operate a little differently than other hotels and resorts, Hyatt also decided to introduce a special awards chart exclusively for all-inclusive properties.

Related: 8 lessons I learned from my 1st all-inclusive vacation

While the company already has a few all-inclusive resorts in (or planned for) Greece and Spain, the rebranding of these five all-inclusive resorts in Bulgaria is Hyatt's first venture into the all-inclusive market along the Black Sea.

The five resorts are split across two Bulgarian resort areas, Sunny Beach and Obzor. These are popular destinations for European holiday travelers and are known for being extremely affordable. Here's a complete list of the properties and a brief description:

  • Secrets Resort & Spa: A 335-room, adults-only resort in Sunny Beach.
  • Dreams Resort & Spa: A 597-room, family-friendly resort next to Secrets in Sunny Beach.
  • AluaSun: A 191-room resort in Obzor.
  • Alua Resort: A 318-room resort in Obzor.
  • Breathless Resort & Spa: A 395-room resort in Sunny Beach.

Of the five resorts being rebranded and renovated, all will assume the new branding in 2023 except for Breathless, where it is scheduled for 2024.

All-new image for all-inclusives

We've said it before and we'll say it again: All-inclusive resorts are getting a new life.

During the pandemic, all-inclusive resorts thrived; they were, in a way, built to provide everything travelers needed during that time, including space, convenience and isolation. That trend seems to be sticking as travelers realize that an all-inclusive vacation can be more than just a trip to a tropical locale.

Accor's Rixos brand serves up luxury all-inclusive experiences at more than two dozen properties in Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt, Croatia and Kazakhstan. In Croatia, at the Rixos Premium Dubrovnik, guests can have an all-inclusive experience at a cliffside resort tucked into the Dalmatian Coast and still head out of the resort to explore Dubrovnik's Old City, a UNESCO World Heritage site.

All-inclusive vacations can also be convenient for winter activities such as skiing or snowboarding. Club Med, a defining brand in the all-inclusive movement, has a number of all-inclusive ski resorts that are great for both seasoned pros and newbies to winter sports. You can find these resorts in Europe, Japan, China and even Canada at the new Cub Med Québec Charlevoix. Who needs margaritas and sun when you can have snow and apres-ski?

Or, to really experience something wild, you could take page out of TPG writer Ben Smithson's book and take a trip to the cheapest all-inclusive resort in Egypt; it cost him just $41.46 a night.

The bottom line is whether you love or hate all-inclusive resorts, they're here to stay.

If these properties — from Croatia to the Black Sea to the snowy mountains of Canada — aren't doing it for you yet, give it some time. The new-age story of the all-inclusive resort is just starting to unfold.

Featured photo by 500px/Getty Images
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

TPG featured card

Best Marriott card for Business Owners
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
3 / 5
Go to review

Rewards

2 - 6X points
6X6x points at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy® program.
4X4x points for purchases made at restaurants worldwide, at U.S. gas stations, on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and on U.S. purchases for shipping.
2X2x points on all other eligible purchases.

Intro offer

Limited Time Offer: Earn 100,000 points75,000 points
Limited Time Offer: Earn 100,000 Bonus Marriott Bonvoy Points after spending $4,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months of Card Membership. Offer expires 11/2/22.

Annual Fee

$125

Recommended Credit

670-850
Excellent/Good
Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

Why We Chose It

The Marriott Bonvoy Business Amex is a stacked card with a rewards rate that will help you earn bonus points on everyday and business-related purchases. You'll earn 15 elite night credits each calendar year, and receive automatic Gold elite status. Finally, the free night award certificate with a redemption level of 35,000 points or less can get you hundreds of dollars in potential value each year.

Pros

  • 6x points on eligible purchases at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy program
  • 4x points at restaurants worldwide, U.S. gas stations, wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and U.S. shipping
  • 2x points on all other eligible purchases
  • Earn a free-night award each card renewal month (up to 35,000 points)
  • Receive 15 elite night credits to jump-start status
  • Transfer Marriott points to 40+ airlines

Cons

  • Airline points transfer ratios are poor
  • Must spend $60,000 in a year for second free-night award
  • Limited Time Offer: Earn 100,000 Bonus Marriott Bonvoy Points after spending $4,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months of Card Membership. Offer expires 11/2/22.
  • 6x points at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy® program.
  • 4x points for purchases made at restaurants worldwide, at U.S. gas stations, on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and on U.S. purchases for shipping.
  • 2x points on all other eligible purchases.
  • Receive a 7% discount off standard rates for reservations of standard guest rooms at hotels that participate in the Marriott Bonvoy program when you book directly. Terms and Conditions Apply.
  • Receive 1 Free Night Award every year after your Card renewal month. Plus, earn an additional Free Night Award after you spend $60K in purchases on your Card in a calendar year. Awards can be used for one night (redemption level at or under 35,000 Marriott Bonvoy® points) at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy®. Certain hotels have resort fees.
  • Enjoy Complimentary Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite Status with your Card.
  • Terms apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Apply for Marriott Bonvoy Business® American Express® Card
at American Express's secure site
Terms & restrictions apply. See rates & fees
Best Marriott card for Business Owners
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
3 / 5
Go to review

Rewards Rate

6X6x points at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy® program.
4X4x points for purchases made at restaurants worldwide, at U.S. gas stations, on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and on U.S. purchases for shipping.
2X2x points on all other eligible purchases.
  • Intro Offer
    Limited Time Offer: Earn 100,000 Bonus Marriott Bonvoy Points after spending $4,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months of Card Membership. Offer expires 11/2/22.

    Limited Time Offer: Earn 100,000 points
    75,000 points
  • Annual Fee

    $125
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    670-850
    Excellent/Good

Why We Chose It

The Marriott Bonvoy Business Amex is a stacked card with a rewards rate that will help you earn bonus points on everyday and business-related purchases. You'll earn 15 elite night credits each calendar year, and receive automatic Gold elite status. Finally, the free night award certificate with a redemption level of 35,000 points or less can get you hundreds of dollars in potential value each year.

Pros

  • 6x points on eligible purchases at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy program
  • 4x points at restaurants worldwide, U.S. gas stations, wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and U.S. shipping
  • 2x points on all other eligible purchases
  • Earn a free-night award each card renewal month (up to 35,000 points)
  • Receive 15 elite night credits to jump-start status
  • Transfer Marriott points to 40+ airlines

Cons

  • Airline points transfer ratios are poor
  • Must spend $60,000 in a year for second free-night award
  • Limited Time Offer: Earn 100,000 Bonus Marriott Bonvoy Points after spending $4,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months of Card Membership. Offer expires 11/2/22.
  • 6x points at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy® program.
  • 4x points for purchases made at restaurants worldwide, at U.S. gas stations, on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and on U.S. purchases for shipping.
  • 2x points on all other eligible purchases.
  • Receive a 7% discount off standard rates for reservations of standard guest rooms at hotels that participate in the Marriott Bonvoy program when you book directly. Terms and Conditions Apply.
  • Receive 1 Free Night Award every year after your Card renewal month. Plus, earn an additional Free Night Award after you spend $60K in purchases on your Card in a calendar year. Awards can be used for one night (redemption level at or under 35,000 Marriott Bonvoy® points) at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy®. Certain hotels have resort fees.
  • Enjoy Complimentary Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite Status with your Card.
  • Terms apply.
  • See Rates & Fees