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“Awesome place to stay, great service”

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Pelican Reef Villas Resort
Ranked #5 of 54 Hotels in San Pedro
Certificate of Excellence
Cincinnati
Level Contributor
15 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Awesome place to stay, great service”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 20 February 2010

My husband and I LOVED this hotel. Of course it is expensive, but if you can afford it make sure you stay here. I loved having the hammocks, the back porch facing the ocean, and the pier out into the ocean. The place was immaculate, and having a TV was great because the summer Olympics were on and there is not as much to do in the evenings. The service was second to none, you needed something done and it was done. If you are debating whether or not to rent a golf cart, DO IT. I know it is also expensive, but it is a very far from the center of town and it is cobblestone, so the free bikes become very painful quickly. Food is limited at the condos, but that is okay because there are so many great places to eat elsewhere. Plus they have a full kitchen and grills so if you go shopping you can cook anything you want.

Stayed August 2008, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
3 Thank crayztraveler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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1,051 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (307)
Date | Rating
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English first
Utah
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 February 2010

We booked our trip after seeing the beautiful pictures and hearing of the fun time of a family member that had previously visited Pelican Reef.
When we arrived we were met by Laurie, Eliazer and Cesar, and instantly felt comfortable. The resort is beautiful. The rooms are very nice, it felt very much like home.
The staff was very helpful. They would do or get anything, anytime you needed it, there was not one time that we were looking for someone that you could not find them. Cesar even helped us start the BBQ outside our condo to cook some fish my husband caught on a fishing trip.
Everyone was so friendly, all the employees and other residents also.

My favorite part is the wonderful view. We had a ground floor condo and the view of the ocean was out of this world beautiful. We were only feet from the beach. Better then I ever dreamed of.

We rented a golf cart and drove to San Pedro everyday to look around and explore, we felt very safe everywhere we went, even at night. We ate a several different restaurants in town and never once felt uncomfortable with any part of the meal, preparation of the food or conditions of the restaurants we ate in.

We can't wait to go back again!!! Thanks to Pelican Reef for making our vacation "THE BEST EVER"!!!

  • Stayed February 2010, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Unbeliezeable
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Calgary, Canada
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 31 January 2010

We visited Pelican Reef Resort xmas/new years 09' with two other couples. First off, Lori was amazing at arranging our trip and answering any questions we had before our arrival. The resort is the perfect size - 24 rooms- all fully equipped villas. If you want to see the definition of hard work, go to Pelican Reef and see "E" in action. He is the hardest working person we have seen in a long time. There is nothing he can't do - check you in, make you a fabulous drink at the bar, serve you a light lunch, arrange an exciting tour or snorkle trip, recommend a great for your to dine and book it for you. ( we ordered Pepperoni's Pizza 3 nights because it was pouring rain and we couldn't go out - EXCELLENT) Thank "E" you made our trip a very memorable one.

The resort is situated on a beautiful stretch of beach on the south end of the island. It's very quiet. They have a nice long dock with a sandy swimming area at the end. Take your snorkle gear - you'll see lots of action around the dock. The pool is small, but perfect for a quick dip- a quick one because it's not heated so it's kinda chilly. There are very comfortable beach loungers to relax in, however if the resort is fully booked get out there early as there are not enough for everyone(really the only negative thing about the resort).

Be sure to rent a golf cart, because you are not really within close walking distance of shops and restaurants. The security at the resort is top notch. 24 hour patrol service. Given the size of the resort, it allows you to get to know the other quests.

We highly recommened Pelican Reef. We can't wait for our next trip back.

  • Stayed December 2009, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank live2travel1990
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
South Dakota
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 January 2010

There were 5 couples that rented 2 villas and the only disappointment was the day we had to check out! The staff was very friendly and willing to please. They arranged all of our activities and suggested excursions and restaurants, and we were more than happy with all of their advice. We celebrated a birthday while we were there, they ordered a cake and decorated her room with flowers and champagne. Very special service. The villas are well appointed, clean and comfortable. The common areas are well maintained and inviting. I could go on and on, but I think you get the picture!!! We would definitely return to Pelican Reef Villas. Hello to all the staff, we miss you and want to thank you again for everything!

  • Stayed January 2010, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank USDRN
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Melville, NY
Level Contributor
10 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 January 2010

Pelican Reef Villas is an awesome place to stay..It is a very upscale resort with 24 condos that are for rent by the wonderful staff that runs the resort....Lori and Greg and Lori's parents run this fantastic resort with a marvelous staff..When arriving you are greeted by E...who runs everything from check in..to tours and trips..golf car rental and dinner reservation...with the utmost precise accuracy...Everything that they recommend to do and places to eat are the best and most perfect...they also tell you where to shop for groceries and are there to acommodate you for everything that you need..Not only do the accomodate you ..but are always out and about and are friendly and always stop to talk with you and make sure everything is perfect for your stay..There is a pool, swim up bar and regular bar on premises..also a restaurant for breakfast and lunch..with the perfect food choices on the menu. In summary...Pelican Reef Villas is the best place to stay..I would highly recommened you to stay there...and when we return to Ambergris Caye..we will 100 percent stay at Pelican Reef Villas again..I guarantee you will enjoy your stay as much as we did!!

  • Stayed December 2009, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank 2motherhead
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
bentonville AR
Level Contributor
64 reviews
41 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 104 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 13 January 2010

After some research we selected the Pelican Reef Villas resort based on various reviews and their website combined with the efficient and prompt replies to questions received from Lori. It was Lori’s promptness and courtesy in our email exchanges that helped make that decision.

I must first point out that the 4 star rating I have given does not reflect dissatisfaction with the PRV (other than the notes listed below) but I find that people that hand out 5 star ratings have rarely if ever experienced a true 5 star resort, hotel or, in this case, managed apartments. To achieve 5 stars in any category the complete package must be the best in every aspect and those properties are hard to come by. PRV is definitely a solid 4 star destination, well managed with strong attention to those services that they offer.

We booked a 2 bedroom villa (apartment) for 2 weeks. We have 3 kids and one (10 year old) slept on the couch with the extra bed linens provided and did not complain at all during the stay. The apartments are well furnished, lit, ventilated (although the AC blower unit is a bit noisy) and maintained. The kitchen is well stocked with equipment and eating in is easy – even for 5. We actually used the kitchen a lot more than we anticipated as the weather was very mixed and eating in was an option we chose on several nights – more on that later. Basically the rooms are as advertised and well thought out with premium furnishings. The TV’s (2) had good channel selection – no TV in second bedroom – would have been useful for the kids.

The PRV sit on the East side of Ambergris Key and the 4 apartment buildings (each with 6 units) form a U with the open end facing east. The pool and bar sit in the middle of the U. This means that the pool gets morning sun and gradually less and less through the day. The pool is not heated and we found it too cold for regular dipping (the kids used it all the time but were often quite chilled on getting out). There are only 4 recliners around the pool plus 7 tables with chairs. If sunbathing by the pool and dropping in and out of the pool on a regular basis is your thing then the PRV are probably not for you. The bar is small with 6 stools on the dry side and 5 in the pool. I only saw the swim up stools used once (temp?)

The bar serves reasonable breakfast and lunch with typical fare for Westerners in mind. The bar drinks are a little pricey and served by the ever present Elizar who frankly works harder than any one I have ever met to keep the guests happy. Want to arrange anything then “E” will fix it. Change your mind on a trip with less than 48 hours notice (as we did) then E will fix it, want to go snorkeling tomorrow at 9am or book a restaurant on Christmas Eve…I think you get the picture. All this done with no expectations of anything more than a thank you, and with a smile on his face. He is on site from 6.45am to 9pm (when the bar closes) and is the heartbeat of the place; truly a gem of a man and a Gentleman.

The beach sits a few seconds walk from the pool and is a well kept sandy beach. There are 20 loungers set on the beach and are of high quality wood construction with padded tops placed every morning. However, this is not enough to cover the residents. There are 24 condos and say an average of 4 people per unit – even at 80% occupancy this gives 70+ residents. The “throw a towel and leave” mob are well entrenched here – saw loungers left for hours like this. On 2 occasions we just had to go without and on 2 other occasions I moved 2 loungers from the pool onto the beach. The beach is well raked every morning and any grass or weeds that have washed up are removed. This is important as the prevailing wind is from the East and a lot of junk accumulates at the shoreline during the day. The sea grass that grows at the shoreline (no wave action due to the reef) is slimy and not very pleasant to walk in. In addition once you get more than a few feet from the shore the sand can become boggy and slimy and you can sink into it quickly and it has a rank sulphurous odor– not pleasant. There are palms planted along the shore for shade but still plenty of sun. Bugs are an issue – you will get bitten.

PRV have addressed the sea grass/quicksand by building a pier that you can swim off and the sand at the end is free of vegetation and is firm underfoot. Water is about 4-5’ deep and it has steps down to it. The added bonus to this pier is the artificial reef they have created along most of its length. Lots of life including lobsters, rays, jacks, yellow stripes etc; even saw a Barracuda one day and the sea is considerably warmer than the pool. There are also 3 kayaks that are free to use as well as life jackets and snorkel gear that all add to the fun (we would go out to about 15’ of water in the kayaks and then swim)

One thing we liked about PRV is its tranquility – no noisy bars or honking horns. Our condo was positioned along the main entrance way to the complex and although our view was great that did mean we were disturbed by talking in the mornings as this is where people would gather for breakfast or going out on trips or even the security guards chatting (security is on all night) but apart from that it was quiet. Most trips depart from the Pier – via water taxi – most convenient.

Quiet means you have to go out for an evening meal (bar food service at PRV) and that quietness is because PRV is nearly 3 miles from San Pedro center. So we arranged with PRV to rent a golf cart and it was ready and waiting on our arrival. However, the road to PRV is about 1+ mile of paved followed by about 1.5 of potholed, rutted and at times flooded dirt road that is no fun (after the first 2 trips anyway) to drive on. The legs of the passengers in the back are often splattered with mud and if you don’t have a bad back then you soon will. One night we got caught out in a rainstorm and there are no windshields or side guards on the carts – we got soaked. So if you want to walk to restaurants or bars then PRV is not for you. This journey, particularly if it looks like rain or has just rained (unfortunately a common occurrence on our trip) is what led us to cook several more meals than anticipated at PRV and we were grateful for the well appointed and stocked kitchen and comfortable furniture.

In summary the PRV are some well appointed, well managed apartments in a quiet corner of Ambergris Key. The staff are excellent and accommodating (although when full “E” can be stretched a bit thin) and the business does not misrepresent anything about itself on its website. I would change 2 things that would have certainly enhanced our stay:

1) Heat that pool!
2) Get some more beach loungers

Other than that we were very happy with the visit.

  • Stayed December 2009, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Liam B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Houston, Texas
Level Contributor
15 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 January 2010

My wife and I stayed at the Pelican Reef Villas in July 2008 and returned again in December 2009 with our teenage son. There are several factors that made us want to return, but highest on the list are the people who own and operate the property. Owners Joe and Rhonda, Lori and Greg who handle day-to-day operations, and Eliazar and Cesar who handle the bar, food service, trip booking, etc. couldn't be nicer or more helpful. Joe has me just about convinced to buy a place on Ambergris Caye for retirement.

The resort is beautiful as the photos on Trip Advisor will attest to. Breakfast and lunch food service was a nice new addition from our first visit that our teenage son took full advantage of. Eliazar booked us a great little reef fishing trip that we enjoyed and was reasonably priced. Drinks at the bar compare to the prices we found elsewhere on the island.

Lori takes care of everything from booking your jump flight on Tropic Air to having a golf cart ready for use upon your arrival. She arranges a ride from the airstrip to the villas. She really doesn't leave much for you to worry about, and we like that a lot. On site security guards and a police substation a few yards down the road make all on the property feel safe. The villas are beautiful and well appointed with tankless hot water heaters, beautiful bathrooms, cable TV, granite kitchen countertops, and everything you could want or use inside. Free coffee and wi-fi in bar area is a nice touch as well.

The Pelican Reef Villas are located a few miles south of town. I have noticed over the years on Trip Advisor that some reviewers have this listed as a negative. My wife and I prefer it. You have very few strangers wandering the beach in front of the property, it is very quiet and relaxing, and it has a much more secluded feel than places closer to town. Mr. Joe's store is located just a few yards from the property with some pretty tasty breakfast, lunch, and dinner fare, along with other essentials. We used it quite a bit.

Eliazar and Cesar have made my family feel at home during our last two trips to Pelican Reef, and are a big reason we plan to return again in July with our friends and neighbors. It is amazing how much these two friendly gentleman have added to our fond memories of our trips to Ambergris Caye.

Joe is opening a huge new property just north of the Pelican Reef Villas called Athens Gate. My wife took a quick tour of the property with Lori and was very impressed with the villas, pool area and bar.

Villa trip tips:

(1) Bug spray or wipes are a must. This is the Mosquito Coast, and depending on the wind direction they can be aggressive. Our Cutter wipes with DEET have protected us well during two trips.

(2) A laptop for the free wifi is a nice way to stay in touch with the outside world and post photos on Facebook to tease your friends from Belize.

(3) We have learned to bring our own Splenda for our morning coffee. Not much in the way of sugar substitutes on the island.

(4) There are some huge and very tasty breakfast tacos a few yards north down the sand road at Mr. Joe's. Hearty lunch and dinner dishes are served there as well.

(5) Bring a few DVD's. Each villa we have rented has had a DVD player, which is a nice touch for a little down time in the villa.

(6) They have some snorkel equipment in a closet near the bar that was handy for a lot of the kids to use. They provide beach towels out near the pool, so don't worry about packing those.

(7) Don't yell at your teenage son to get out of the driver's seat of the golf cart so you can park it for him on the side of the villas and then proceed to run it into a palm tree. I can still hear him laughing.

We were pleasantly surprised by how much our 15-year-old son found to do on the property. Kayaking and snorkeling kept him occupied so Mom and Dad could relax and on occasion go into town without him.

In our two visits to Pelican Reef we always seem to meet other couples and families that we stay in touch with afterwards. It just seems to attract nice people that we enjoy spending time with. They tend to get a lot of repeat business (like us) which should tell you something.

I can't say enough about this place. We have explored the island, but haven't found any other property or resort we would prefer to stay at. This place is beautiful, well-built, well-managed, and has a wonderful staff. You will not be sorry.

  • Stayed December 2009, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank TexasHoustonFamily
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Pelican Reef Villas Resort

Property: Pelican Reef Villas Resort
Address: 2.5 Miles South | 2.5 Miles South, San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize
Phone Number:
Region: Belize > Belize Cayes > Ambergris Caye > San Pedro
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Romantic Hotel in San Pedro
#3 Family Hotel in San Pedro
#4 On the Beach Hotel in San Pedro
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Number of rooms: 23
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Come Experience Luxury! Swaying Palms, sandy beaches, and warm ocean breezes welcome you to Pelican Reef Villas. Experience unparalleled luxury, and service that is raising the standards, in one of our 2 or 3 bedroom villas. Pelican Reef Villas blends deluxe amenities and breath-taking views with a discreet location 2.5 Miles south of San Pedro to give your trip seclusion with real panache! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Pelican Reef Villas Hotel San Pedro
Pelican Reef Hotel
Pelican Reef Resort
Pelican Reef Villas Resort Belize/San Pedro

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