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“Paradise island, all in all just perfect”

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Off The Wall Dive Center & Resort
Certificate of Excellence
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MathieusDeli
Level 2 Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Paradise island, all in all just perfect”
Reviewed 24 July 2012

Having sampled a fair few of the offshore private islands and island resorts Belize has to offer I was looking for something truly away from it all, somewhere that blends with the landscape and isn't built like a concrete block on the beach.... and Off the Wall is just that.

I didn't miss the TV, or the light pollution, the noise, traffic or dimly lit bars, the chi-chi restaurants of San Pedro or Caye Caulker, the constant whirr of the a/c, the background drone of a generator, or a slick, marble bathroom with all the trimmings of a 5 star resort. Off The Wall gave me exactly what you dream a Paradise Island is all about. Spacious, beautifully mosaic decorated open air showers with handmade coconut candle lighting (should you get distracted from the waving coconut palms and astoundingly clear constellations above), natural paths wending their way through coconut and gumbo limbo trees, hibiscus and lilies, lemongrass and aloe. My all natural wooden cabin (with one of the most comfortable mattresses ever) was oceanside (they all are... who needs a/c or fans with your own private breeze!), and I could absolutely believe that i was totally alone on the island early mornings on my porch doing yoga alongside naturally formed driftwood sculptures and shells.

Walks along the southeastern shore bring you in contact with the gentle waves over the nearby coral reef (the diving is a literal two minute boat ride out to the fabulous wall), a myriad of colourful hermit crab populations, blue crabs, huge yellow and green iguanas (Stumpy the three legged iguana was resident next to my cabin, Kendra has some great stories about the island and its changes over the years) white lilies, fuscia morning glories, huge pink conch shells and all manner of coral boulders and pebbles, the north western shore is white coral sand, populated with amazing swing beds and hammocks amongst the coconut palms.

The dive crew just makes everything so easy, from preparing your equipment to rolling into the clear warm water (can't believe it was a balmy 83degrees). Junior was our helpful boat captain, and Matthew, Tyrone & Doreth the DMs & Instructor - laid back enough to fit perfectly in paradise, but more professional, courteous and knowledgeable than I've seen in many bigger and more international resorts. I took my own diving equipment which the crew took care of (not just a quick rinse, but a through, careful wash), but they have well maintained Sherwood BCDs & regulators, and new 3mm wetsuits (not that you'd need one most of the year round!) or rash guards and boxed rental masks. The tanks were about to be sent for their yearly inspection just as i was leaving the resort - so no shoddy equipment here.

We saw garden eels, flounder, barracuda, shark, crab, lobster, conch, turtles, stingrays and eaglerays, and big schools of jack, and Kendra even woke me up one evening to come see a nesting hawksbill turtle on their beach. You really feel like you've been set free the regimented dive schedules and can roll out of your hammock into your bcd and off the boat, when you feel like it (though I'm sure that during high season there is a little more to prepare, I was there at the end of the season - no reason not to go... the night sky lit up with the most incredible lightening over nearby Honduras, and gorgeously clear and warm days)

The food Eileen & Theresa prepared was fabulous - I just couldn't get enough of Eileen's (no-diet) Lemon meringue pie, the homemade granola with island coconut, the coffee (I'm a coffee addict), her green rice, the veggie patties, superb surface-interval cookies, her local recipe local fish, dropped off by the fishermen early morning (get up to see the hungry stingray circle the end of the cleaning dock for scraps.... ) - all in all not a thing I wouldn't devour (well, only Eileen's home made habanero & onion salsa, but i was told it was amazing).

Loved Kendra's little gift shop - handmade local jewellery, a really nice selection of summer dresses and tops, mayan carvings, sarongs and t shirts, and there is a veritable library of all kinds of books from novels to plant and animal ID books (the entire collection of the Humann fish/coral/animal ID books) which you can borrow to while away time in your hammock.

I thoroughly recommend Off the Wall to paradise seekers who really do want to get away from it all, proof that a genuinely environmentally friendly resort (rainwater showers, greywater recycling, composting toilets etc etc) need not mean compromising your comfort, and it all comes with a top notch crew to match. You truly feel that Jim & Kendra are inviting you to join the family when you stay - they went out of their way to create a welcoming environment. I can't wait to be back there with visiting family & friends!

  • Stayed July 2012, travelled solo
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Helpful?
5 Thank MathieusDeli
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (62)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
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English first
Calgary, Canada
Level 3 Contributor
6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 May 2012

My husband and I first became aware of Off the Wall on a previous trip to Glovers Reef with Slickrock Adventures. During our first stay on the island we discovered that Off the Wall would be more to our liking and we made a point of going back to stay with Jim and Kendra. We had an amazing experience from the time we met Jim in Dangriga to our drop off at the Dangriga airport 12 dives and 7 days later.

We loved the outdoor showers and the privacy between units. The grounds were well maintained and the diving equipment was in excellent condition. You certainly can’t beat 3 – 10 minute boat rides to the best diving sites in this part of the world.

Our sincere thanks go to everyone who made our stay so memorable...
Kendra and Jim: for their kindness, hospitality and generosity. We enjoyed being regaled with endless stories about their experiences on the island.
Eileen: an amazing cook, who made the best, stewed chicken rice and beans we’ve ever tasted. We loved to see her grooving to her tunes on the radio!
Tyrone: an exceptional dive master, who was always professional and accommodating. Remember… “one shot one kill”!
Captain Junior: the hardest working man on the island! We were often entertained by his song choices before entering the water on our dives.
Steven: who worked the night shift and kept us well lit.

A special shout out goes to Lisa, our favourite dive buddy!! We look forward to planning our return trip!

Rubene & Mark

  • Stayed May 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Ladybug360
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mammoth Lakes
Level 5 Contributor
48 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 May 2012

Jim and Kendra make this a wonderful vacation. The location provides constant challenges and they have adapted well. They are always working to keep it clean and install upgrades. The dive masters and boat captains handled our gear and were very competent. We had wonderful meals with fresh baked cookies every day. Staff took good care of us and were open to requests or special needs. Dives usually 60-80 feet and 45-50 minutes due to remote location. Boats all equipped for emergencies and med evac planned for. Dive sites all along the wall off the three cayes. We saw turtles and eagle rays and eels and sharks regularly!

Room Tip: All cabins have great ocean views. No AC except the breezes. All electrical power outlets in the k...
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  • Stayed May 2012, travelled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank helena s
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Vancouver, Canada
1 review
Reviewed 11 May 2012

If you are looking for vacation that is a real retreat to a tropical island paradise, with white sand, crystal clear water and amazing diving at your fingertips, Off the Wall is the place to be. OTW is special because it gives you something few other places do: a total break from the modern urban rush: there is no traffic, no TV, no loud music, no transactions -- just the sound of the waves and the wind in the palm trees; and the greatest decisions of the day are how many dives to do, which hammock to swing in, and whether you need one more beer (of course you do!). Jim and Kendra are wonderful hosts, and they have done a great job setting up OTW to feel cozy and welcoming. And of course, our stay at OTW wouldn't have been what it was without the OTW crew who made our stay so memorable: Dive Master Extraordinaire Tyrone, Top Chef Eileen, Captain Junior, Maestro de la Noche Mario, and finally Dr. Dive Instructor Doreth. It is hard to be back at work, in the cold and grey. We are going through OTW withdrawal!

  • Stayed April 2012, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank Joanna M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Toronto, Canada
1 review
Reviewed 16 April 2012

We arrived home last night from out experience at Off The Wall in Belize. We are a full service retreat company and we took 10 people from various locations throughout the world on a Yoga Dive Retreat to Off The Wall.

First is the location - truly is paradise on earth. I have never seen water as clear and blue, turqousie as this. The perfect place to swim, snorkel or dive. We had some certified divers and some not, the ones that were certified were able to dive to their hearts content - those that were not were offered courses upon arrival and by the end of our experience, everyone that wanted to be certified did so within 4 days!

The staff are fantastic and very helpful. Our retreats are always vegetarian - and Belize is not the easiest place to facilitate a vegetarian diet. On the mainland - it is next to impossible unless you eat a steady diet of cheese pizza or nachos. But Kendra and Eileen worked hard to pull off their first week of vegetarian cooking and you would have thought they were doing it for years!

The accomodations are beautiful and rustic - falling asleep to the sound of the ocean waves! Some of our retreaters had to get used to the composting toilets, but like we told them. If you want to spend time in a beautiful environment like this - then we need to look after it!

All in all - a perfect get-a-way from beginning to end - cannot thank Kendra and Jim enough for their help throughout the process and our endless emails! This is a place you MUST see before it is too late!

Thanks again!

Room Tip: Every room is beautiful!
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  • Stayed April 2012, travelled with friends
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Helpful?
Thank iRETREAT I
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Houston, Texas
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 February 2012

Off The Wall was OFF THE CHARTS for us! We're in our 50s and have both traveled worldwide, including Belize. Although we went to dive, it was the total experience that took us away...

Jim and Kendra, the resident owners, were delightful hosts and saw to our every need. Kendra's artful touch in every detail - the cabana's, showers, walkways, relaxation spots, dining hut - achieved the quantest ambience : ). Eileen's home cooked meals made with a smile - we wouldn't be finished with one meal before fantasizing about her next creation. Doreth, Beverly, and Junior were professional, knowledgeable and personable in seeing to all our dive needs. One of us being a novice and the other only slightly more experienced, we both felt completely safe and expertly guided on top and under water. We appreciated the level of service, which included breaking down & rinsing our equipment after dives. Our bed was comfy and our cabana private with our own little deck and beach area to enjoy the ocean, the sunset, the stars and Stumpy the 3-footed Iquana which kept watch over us. Abundant animal life EVERYwhere we turned, above and below the water. We loved how Jim and Kendra set up their peaceful coexistence with these creatures and the island itself. Kendra's nature trail was a delightful intro to the island wildlife, vegetation and history. Guests and staff enjoyed gathering together at the big round table in the shade and at the family style dining hut to share stories, learn about island life, sea life, Belize, personal experiences...

This kind of vacation is for true nature lovers. If you like camping, you'll appreciate what the owners have done here - all the perks of camping without all the work, thanks to their creative engineering. Only solar heated showers could be a shock on a cold cloudy day, but we found it a minimal hazard considering the environment. We did enjoy enough electricity to keep our small electronics charged and even wifi for communicating back home and some light internet surfing. Even a tiny gift shop for necessities we forgot and souvenirs, Jim and Kendra thought of EVERYthing. We highly recommend Off The Wall for a truly unique experience and give it the highest rating of 5 stars or maybe 6! We look forward to returning.

Room Tip: Sleeping huts with thatched roofs a little more quaint. Metal roofs maybe a little more noisy if it...
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  • Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank Stacy M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Denver, Colorado
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 22 February 2012

Where do we even begin? My husband and I had so much fun at Off the Wall that we considered hiding in our bungalow and "accidentally" missing the boat home! We spent a week at the resort to celebrate our honeymoon and couldn't have asked for a more perfect vacation. Kendra, Jim and the rest of the staff are so kind and welcoming that you feel at home the moment you arrive. The bungalows, dining hall and grounds are beautifully decorated and are quite romantic with candles and torches lit every evening to guide your way home. The island is beautiful. There was always a refreshing breeze blowing, tropical palms, plants, and beautiful cerulean blue waters - a little sliver of paradise. We finished up our dive certification while on the island, Bev was an excellent teacher and we had a blast practicing our skills with her. We saw every sea creature imaginable in the crystal clear waters just off shore and dive-master Mathew expertly guided us through each trip. When not diving we tried out the paddle boards, kayaks, snorkeling and fishing. There were so many fun things to do that we barely even had time for naps in our beach chairs. (we may or may not have fallen asleep at 8 pm a couple of nights). After all that activity, Terese kept us well-fed with delicious Belizean home cooking; her coconut cookies were to die for! It should also be noted that OTW has an exceptional selection of condiments. By the end of the week we felt as though we were lifelong friends with our fellow travelers and the OTW staff. We hope and plan to come back as often as we can and will probably spend the next ten years trying to persuade other friends to join us. In short, our stay at Off the Wall was nothing short of amazing and we are dreaming of a return trip soon!

  • Stayed February 2012, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Diana C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Off The Wall Dive Center & Resort

Property: Off The Wall Dive Center & Resort
Address: Long Caye, Glovers Reef Atoll, Belize
Phone Number:
Region: Belize > Belize Cayes > Glovers Reef Atoll
Amenities:
Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Speciality Lodging in Glovers Reef Atoll
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Off The Wall Dive Center is situated on a private island in the turquoise waters of Glover's Atoll. We are a small Eco-friendly, PADI 5 star Dive Center and Resort and offer Scuba Courses, Whale Shark trips and the best diving, snorkeling and fly-fishing in Belize, as well as kayaking and stand up paddling. Or, just come to relax and enjoy our white, sandy beaches and idealistic setting for getting away from it all. Our packages include Saturday boat transportation to and from our island, 7 nights accommodations in charming, ocean front cabanas, and all your meals. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Off The Wall Dive Hotel Glovers Reef Atoll
Off The Wall Dive Center And Resort

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