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“Remarkable Resort - Great Service, Food, View & Overall Experience”

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Portofino Beach Resort
Ranked #19 of 53 Hotels in San Pedro
Certificate of Excellence
Wisconsin
1 review
“Remarkable Resort - Great Service, Food, View & Overall Experience”
Reviewed 9 August 2009

The Portofino Resort in Belize was simply a remarkable experience!!
- The service is top notch (Thank you Orville, Rosalee, Raphael, Mo, etc.),
- The Sunflower suite was spectacular with a great view and very clean
- The food was delicious (the seafood was the best I ever had)
- Fabulous pool and pool area to spend a relaxing day after spending the first few days
snorkeling, fishing, a day in San Pedro, visting the Mayan Ruins, etc.
- Grab one of the resorts kayak's and head out to the Mexico Rocks for a wonderful
snorkeling experience. No tour need for the adventerous ones
- On a scale of 1-10 with 10 being the best, The Portofino was a 9.5! We've been to
Hawaii, Mexico multiple times, Jamaica, the Caribbean and this vacation was the best
to date! Thank you Sandra and Jan van Noord for a Top Class Resort!

  • Stayed July 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
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    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Huckster32
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (184)
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English first
San Diego
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 28 July 2009

Staying at the Portofino was the highlight of our vacation in Belize. The rooms there facing the wide tranquil ocean. I felt like a real islander walking around barefoot in the sand and walking up the 3 stairs to the private porch of our room. It is quiet and peaceful. Thatched roofs, wood floors, big windows with bright curtains, and warm breezes all serve to create an atmosphere that envelopes you and makes you feel like you belong here.
My favorite thing to do was to kayak out to Mexico Rocks and snorkel. There are countless types of coral and countless types of fish. It is a feast for the eyes. Here in the reef, life begets life. There is nothing as beautiful as this. The water is deliciously warm and you can stay in and watch the show as long as you like. We wore swimming shirts so that sunscreen was unnecessary, because sunscreen kills the coral. The longer you stay in the water the hungrier you will be when you get back.
This brings me to the amazing food you will be offered at the Portofino restaurant. We were there with a small group of people so between us we tried almost everything on the menu. We loved it all! Some of my favorites were the gazpacho basil soup, Pasta with chicken, and the pineapple pleasure smoothie. We had nearly all our meals here.
The new saline pool was another highlight. Having a pool centrally located serves as a logical hangout spot. The uniquely curved and undulating natural shape of this pool makes swimming an artful as well as refreshing experience. The kids are easy to keep track of while they have a blast in the pool.
The owners make sure you are well looked after, and help you get either to or from the airport without any trouble. The staff is friendly and helpful.
I hope you get to enjoy the good life at the Portofino on the Island of Ambergris Cay.

  • Stayed June 2009, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank NatureLoverSanDiego
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Elgin, Texas
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 July 2009

First and foremost, Portofino is fabulous and well worth the money! Every staff member we encountered was very friendly, helpful and accommodating. We had an awesome time and Portofino went above and beyond what other resorts throughout Belize will do for you, in our (somewhat limited) experience. Their outstanding service rang through in just about every aspect of our trip.

Pros:
~Dining – The food was pretty good; the wait staff was excellent!
~Tours/Services – The Portofino staff was helpful in exchanging a dive tour for a trip to the Lamani Mayan ruins (which was awesome). There was no monetary penalty for the change since there was a cancellation beyond our control.
~Ecologic Divers has a dive shop on Portofino’s dock. We were extremely happy with the staff, service, and dives through Ecologic. They allowed us to store our gear overnight in a locked room, they tore down our gear after diving, and they were very friendly and happy. We felt completely comfortable and at ease with this dive center. They have definitely earned their 5-star PADI Resort rating.
~Quiet location – located 6 miles north of town, this is truly an ideal place if you’re looking for quiet and seclusion. It’s definitely a place for adults only…
~They put small tubs of water at your cabana door to dip your shoes in for sand removal.
~Our cabana was cute and roomy.

Cons:
~Breakfast starts at 7am. If you’re diving in the morning, you have to be at the dock at 7:30. It doesn’t give you much time to finish eating before you’re off and diving.
~The maid services were a little odd. Not only did they clean the room and make the bed, they re-arranged our stuff and put it away (clothes, bath items).

Suggestions for Travelers:
~Dive or snorkel with Ecologic Divers.
~Eat at Waraguma (2 locations). Their huge burritos are really good – local flavor.
~Eat at Carrumba’s. They have great beans and rice.
~Eat a tamale from one of the vendors that rides around on a bike. We bought some from the guy who comes to the Ecologic Divers dock in town. They were excellent.
~If you go on the Lamani trip, buy a stone or wood carving in Bomba village. They’re less expensive here than in San Pedro or Caye Caulker.

  • Stayed October 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Durwood0123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Brussels
2 reviews
Reviewed 21 July 2009

We went to Belize for the 7th time and stayed at Portofino for the 3rd time. It is by far our favourite resort and it doesn't surprise us that Portofino is in the top 4 of tripadvisors' favourite hotels in Belize.
After our fishing trip in the South of Belize (Permit of course) we were looking forward to a couple of days of luxury and that is what you get at Portofino: Excellent food in a very romantic restaurant, a spacious room with an amazing ocean view, probably the nicest freshwater swimming pool on Ambergris Caye and most important, the genuine feeling of being on a Tropical Island.
You can just relax and enjoy the facilities at the resort but there are plenty of interesting and fun things to do. The staff are well informed about the several expeditions and you can book them right from the hotel. Everything is organized for you in a personal and friendly way. Staff and owners will do the impossible to make you feel good.
We cannot wait to return next year !

  • Stayed July 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank Canon123_456
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Idaho
1 review
Reviewed 21 July 2009

Our daughter chose Portofino as her wedding location. What an excellent choice. You couldn't ask for a more ideal, relaxing resort. And the personnel is wonderful. Everything was just as the bride hoped and it was accomplished by the awesome staff. We loved every minute!

  • Stayed June 2009, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank IdahoHummingbird
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
new jersey
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 20 July 2009

My wife and I chose Portofino based on the Tripadvisor reviews. It was a nice place, but I do not think it was worth the $400 a night we spent which only included our dinners and local Tropic Air flights. Besides some nice scenery, there really isn't too much to this place to warrant such high prices. The breakfasts and lunches were really good, however, we paid extra for them. The dinners were not good at all. Everything on the menu is made in heavy sauces, and average at best. The last night of our stay we actually went somewhere else even though our dinners were included.

In 2006, we stayed at The Caves in Jamaica, which was not too much more than what we paid at Portofino. They included all food and alcohol. The place is perched upon the cliffs of Negril. A MUCH better deal than a small resort with average rooms and bad dinners.

Finally, the other thing that irked us about Portofino was that we found the owners to be quite aloof . There were only 5 cabins full while we were there, and we saw the owners just about everyday. They never once asked us how we were doing, if we were enjoying ourselves, or even a thank you for choosing Portofino. I wouldn't have expected this type of interaction from the owners if they weren't so visible, however, when you see them all over the resort, it would be nice to acknowledge that people are spending really good money at your resort. The staff, on the other hand, was great. Raphael and Orville were great bartenders, and fun to hang out with.

All in all, a nice place, but I don't think I would go back or recommend it to someone. We split our trip up between Mystic River resort and Portofino. You can read my review of Mystic River under their listing.

  • Stayed July 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Rooms
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Helpful?
2 Thank dbueno
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
boston
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 July 2009

We wanted to extend our stay in Belize, so we spent one night at the Portofino. It was shabby, dilapedated and dirty. The mold in the shower was crawling up the walls. This hotel certainly did not justify the room rate. The staff were not interested in saying hello or smiling. The guests were loud~ one guest actually played a saxophone at 7am. The menu features very heavy, saucy food. I couldn't wait to get out of this dump.

  • Stayed July 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank momlove
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Portofino Beach Resort

Property: Portofino Beach Resort
Address: 6 Miles North | PO Box 36, San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize
Region: Belize > Belize Cayes > Ambergris Caye > San Pedro
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#6 Spa Hotel in San Pedro
#9 Business Hotel in San Pedro
#12 Top resorts Hotel in San Pedro
#18 On the Beach Hotel in San Pedro
#18 Romantic Hotel in San Pedro
#23 Family Hotel in San Pedro
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:3 star — Portofino Beach Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 17
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Characterized by its warm and friendly hospitality, Portofino is the epitome of barefoot luxury, unpretentious and relaxing… for most; it will be an experience of a lifetime. Our small, boutique resort offers just 17 beautifully appointed rooms, ranging from charming beach cabanas to spacious suites, dotted amidst swaying palm trees, in a private setting with unmatched personal attention and the modern comforts of home. It is a haven of tranquility, where guests will enjoy the subtle sounds of the nearby waves lapping over the reef, gentle breeze, breathtaking sunrise, star studded night sky and spectacular views of the crystal waters of the Caribbean Sea. The perfect setting for a romantic getaway, intimate wedding, honeymoon, family and friends.Portofino offers leisure options to suit every taste. Relax in our fresh water outdoor swimming pool; enjoy a great book from our book collection or simply indulge yourself in a massage on the beach under our hand thatched palapa hut. Explore the underwater world with snorkel equipment or skim along the surface in our complimentary sea kayaks. Delicious meals prepared by our resort chef can be served in the privacy or your beach cabana or suite, on our private dock with a romantic setting or at the Portofino Restaurant. Sip on amazing tropical cocktails at the Green Parrot Beach Bar or perhaps a late afternoon snack from the Green Parrot Bistro. Take advantage of our DVD library and unwind in front of the flat TV screen in your room. Or, simply take in the view. In short, relax and enjoy! Reception in the main building is manned by professional and knowledgeable staff. From, activities bookings and directions to itineraries and dining reservations, our friendly and professional staff is eager to assist you. Access to PORTOFINO is by boat only, and therefore we offer a complimentary meet and greet service at San Pedro Airstrip and boat transfer to the resort, an approximately 20 minutes ride. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Portofino Hotel San Pedro
Portofino San Pedro
Portofino Beach Resort Belize/San Pedro

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