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“Paradise in the making”

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Hatchet Caye Resort
Ranked #8 of 19 Hotels in Placencia
Certificate of Excellence
Santa Cruz, California
Level 5 Contributor
80 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
“Paradise in the making”
Reviewed 21 August 2014 via mobile

Twenty miles off shore from Placencia, Hatchet Caye is peaceful and exclusive. As such, plan your activities ahead of time, ie, side trips or a massage.

The atmosphere and staff are laid back which are perfect if you want downtime, or to dive, snorkel, and fish. Lots of water toys to help you navigate around the caye (I was told was 7acres). The nightlife is...well, what you make of it.

My daughter and I enjoyed 3 nights on the island and although it was booked to capacity (18 guests), we felt marooned. Imagine this place with a group of your friends and family, how fun would that be?!?

The restaurant strives to present a well-balanced and savory menu. It's garlicky but I happen to like garlic. It helps to have dinner specials that change it up a bit. I can't imagine staying here more than 3 nights with the same food selection. Morris and Jose are stellar!

Our room #4 was well appointed, comfortable and spacious. It could get tight if you had more than 2 adults. We appreciated the kind reminders to conserve water and power, but we did not feel deprived at all. Wifi was available at no charge, albeit slow at times. Another good reminder to take it easy.

Although the staff averaged 4 months tenure, they were seasoned and very accommodating of our requests. William, our boat captain, made our rough passage tolerable. Our snorkel guide, Janik, who couldn't wait to get wet on a hot day, came to life before our eyes, pointed put marine life and gave us the confidence to swim around the island.

The other reviews regarding tighter communications have merit. Not quite 5 stars for me but well on its way; I would consider returning with a group of my own and a firmer itinerary.

Stayed August 2014, travelled with family
Helpful?
1 Thank Jocelyn F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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258 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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  • Sleep Quality
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1 review
Reviewed 16 August 2014 via mobile

That about sums it up. My wife and I have traveled the South Pacific, Bahamas and Mexico and Hatchet Caye is simply the best place we have been. The location, food and amenities are all excellent but it is the staff that really puts this place over the top. We were on island recently for our wedding and stayed for 9 nights with a large, diverse group. The staff was organized, thoughtful, friendly and attentive and, most of all, just plain fun to hang out with...I still fell Punta in my legs!!!

For those of you who seek solitude and a choice location, look no further. Hatchet is worth every penny.

We will be returning...JB and Angie Shireman

Stayed August 2014, travelled with friends
Helpful?
Thank John S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
1 review
Reviewed 4 August 2014

We spent 6 nights in Cabana #1......wonderful accommodations, great location for the dock and restaurant.
You need 2 or so nights just to get in the 'island' mood, then you really start to appreciate the relaxed atmosphere encouraged by the friendly and totally competent staff, plus the 'away from it all' location.
Travel to the Caye was extremely easy with the Hatchet Caye staff organizing all connections from Belize City airport to the Caye.
If you want a place to get away from it all, to decompress from a busy work life, then you cannot do much better than going to Hatchet Caye where your wishes and comfort are paramount in the personable staff led by their totally professional manager, Dasha.

Room Tip: Cabana #1 (honeymoon) or the main House cabana (#9) are probably the most unique. #1 is nearest the...
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  • Stayed July 2014, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank sheri4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Westport, Connecticut
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 July 2014

Our family spent four nights at Hatchet Caye and had a fantastic time. The island is tiny and is surrounded by the most beautiful, clear water. There is amazing snorkeling off the pier, and there are daily boat trips to other snorkeling spots. The beach areas are small, but they are beautiful spots in which to relax, and there are hammocks all over the island. There is also a very small pool. The restaurant has a surprisingly large menu considering that all the ingredients have to be transported to the island by boat, and the food is quite good. Drinks from the bar are delicious. Rooms are large but fairly basic, and they would benefit from more room to unpack your clothes.

My husband and son did their scuba certification dives while we were there. Everyone in the dive shop was extremely knowledgable and helpful, and they had a wonderful diving experience.

Finally, all the staff was incredibly helpful, going above and beyond to make our stay enjoyable in every way. If it were possible to give them 6 stars for service, I would. We are already planning our return.

  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
4 Thank Susan R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Westport, Connecticut
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 July 2014

We stayed at Hatchet Caye for 4 nights of a two week Belize vacation. We loved it. The location is spectacular, with beautiful water in every direction, excellent snorkeling and fishing right on the island (caught a bonefish and cast to tailing permit within 100 yards of our room), and world class diving just a short boat ride away. The staff is wonderful and friendly, and went out of their way to make our stay special for the whole family. The rooms are very nice and clean, the drinks were great and we found the food to be quite good, exceeding expectations for a tiny island with 8 guest rooms.

Sean runs an excellent dive operation, and two of us finished our open water scuba certification at Hatchet Caye. We saw nurse and lemon shares, sting rays and eagle rays and even a manta ray! We also went lionfish hunting on the reef, which our 12-year-old son absolutely loved.

Room Tip: The bungalows seem much nicer than the rooms over the office.
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  • Stayed June 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Service
Helpful?
Thank James R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Baltimore, Maryland
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 July 2014

My girlfriend found an amazing deal on Groupon and I packed my bags and was ready to go! The Placencia airport is smallish, upon arrival there...you take a smaller (crop duster plane) to the docks of Placencia. We had a little time to kill and walked around to visit a local eatery and a gift shop which your driver will gladly direct you to. After an hour or 2...the boat was ready to leave for the island paradise known as Hatchet Caye.

Some reviews complained about spray from the boat, and wet luggage so I wrapped my contents, but did not have any issues with wetness at all. The boat ride was about 45 minutes and boasted spectacular views.

Upon arrival at Hatchet, we were greeted with fruity umbrella drinks as if we were guests on Fantasy Island (which we kind of were). This is a private island that holds roughly 16 guests and an equal number of staff. The cabana was beautiful! Each has a deck and a view of the ocean (with the exception of one). Our bags were delivered to our room and we quickly changed to walk around the island. At 7 acres, you can easily walk it and see all of the sights and attractions.

If you are a party person, this isn’t the right island for you. It's secluded (18 miles offshore) and very laid back (flip flops, sundresses, tanks and swimwear). Leave the fancy duds at home. The staff was awesome! But even more than that, the young chef prepared some of the most delicious food I have ever had in my life! The island is the resort and the resort is the island so there are no quickie marts or trinket shops, although they have a small sundries section in the restaurant. We snorkeled, wind surfed, paddle boated and relaxed! It's a very chill atmosphere. Dasha was very hospitable to us during our stay as well, in addition to Jefe, the 4 legged welcome committee. He's a barker, but just until you give him a little tummy time, then he's putty in your hands!

I had 0 phone/internet reception with Sprint, but after the first day of "well how do I tell everyone how good a time I'm having". I got over it and appreciated the simplicity of bring disconnected. My favorite nightime activity was watching the stingrays by the dock with the blu light. Lastly...I found myself there. I didn't realize that I was lost, but this trip centered me and allowed me to return a new woman.

Kids can come, although this is more of a romantic, or group of friends type of place in my opinion.

Room Tip: Every room is a good one!
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  • Stayed August 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
3 Thank Alex L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Francisco, California
Level 4 Contributor
28 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 June 2014

5 stars for the setting and 3.5 stars for service. We stayed for 4 nights at Hatchet Caye in the honeymoon cabana. Our primary reason for selecting Hatchet Caye was it's proximity to the Gladden Spit so we could attempt to snorkel with the whale sharks. We timed our arrival so we were there 2 days after the full moon. I'll start with the pros;

Pros;
Setting-The island is beautiful and well situated to several popular snorkel spots (Laughing Bird Caye, Silk Cayes) If you want to relax on the beach, fish from a pier or snorkel off a dock, maybe take a couple snorkel trips this is a great place to do it.

Restaurant/Bar-We thought the restaurant staff (Luis/Jose) were friendly and very attentive...they were professional and the highlight of our experience with the staff at Hatchet Caye. Dinners were great and the food for breakfast/lunch was good.

Snorkeling/Fishing; There is some great snorkeling from the south dock and my boyfriend enjoyed fishing from the dock. The spotted eagle rays come around the dock at night and sitting on a hammock watching the moon over the water is fantastic.

Cabana-We liked the honeymoon cabana because it was stand alone and had a private deck. Also it's right next to the south dock so you can walk right out and enjoy the fishing/snorkeling/etc. We didn't find the foot traffic (as other reviewers mention) to be an issue.

Cons;
Booking Excursions-They say that you can do whatever you'd like but that's not really the case. If the boats are booked for another party on the island or for a private charter (there are yachts that dock off Hatchet that then use their activities) then you are out of luck. For example; I had emailed prior to our arrival that we'd really like to do the whale shark tour on our first full day if a tour is organizing (they require at least 6 ppl for the trip). Upon our arrival we learned that a private yacht docked off Hatchet had booked for the next day so we'd have to wait to see what time they were wanting to going to see if it would be feasible for us to go. Long story short the weather didn't cooperate that day and luckily the yacht left so we were able to go out on our 2nd full day but I think that was primarily because we talked to them multiple times and had stressed how important it was to us to try and see the whale sharks. If your visiting Hatchet Caye with specific things you'd like to do then I'd highly encourage you to try and set them up in advance to avoid being disappointed. I've travelled a fair amount (22 countries) and wasn't impressed by the "enthusiasm" of some of the staff to assist with questions.

Arrival-When we arrived at the airport no one was there to pick us up. A local cab that was there called their office and they sent someone about 10 minutes later. All in all after waiting for about 10 minutes for them show and then another 10 for them to arrive it was about a 20 minute delay. Obviously not a deal breaker but not a great start and not ideal considering the nightly rate.

Departure-As others had mentioned they typically shuttle guests to and from Placencia only once per day. In our case we had to depart on our last morning at 7am (along with 4 other parties) as one of those parties had a 8am flight. That means 6 am wake up and 6:30 breakfast..not ideal when your on vacation. I would recommend waiting to hear what your departure time will be before booking your flight as if you end up having to leave early then you can plan accordingly.

Overall, we enjoyed our stay at Hatchet Caye. It's a unique destination and a truly beautiful setting. If your looking to relax then this is a great choice.

Room Tip: Honeymoon cabana is freestanding and has a private deck area with chairs overlooking the south pier...
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank k3421
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
hatchetcaye, General Manager at Hatchet Caye Resort, responded to this review, 14 June 2014
Thanks for your review and candid info on your snorkel sign up experience. The large vessel that was anchored off our island had actually booked their private trip with us nearly 6 months prior and the weather was not cooperating for them either so they had to go back to the mainland to stay a few nights before returning at a good time for us to service the trip. This did throw us off schedule a bit and for that we do apologize. All department heads and core staff were aware that you were wanting to go whale shark snorkeling long before you arrived and we all knew we had to make that happen. Had the private tour been omitted from the equation the sea conditions on your first full day were not condusive to a trip outside the reef, but we were happy to see fair conditions the following day and from the feedback when you arrived back to the island the tour was amazing, which is music to our ears! Sea conditions are out of our control which is why we sometimes avoid pre-booked/pre-paid tours. Belize Port Authority can issue a craft warning at any time and we must abide by the law. There are many variables in play when sending out a safe tour. Your experience will be shared with all staff including the guides and Rasta - who books tours - so that we make sure to keep our enthusiasm up as this is very important! Thanks again for your review.
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Additional Information about Hatchet Caye Resort

Property: Hatchet Caye Resort
Address: 17 Miles Offshore, Placencia, Belize
Phone Number:
Region: Belize > Stann Creek > Placencia
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#2 Romantic Hotel in Placencia
#4 Top resorts Hotel in Placencia
#5 Family Hotel in Placencia
#8 On the Beach Hotel in Placencia
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Hatchet Caye Resort 3.5*
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A private island on the edge of the Silk Marine Reserve, seventeen miles east of Placencia, Hatchet is on the longest reef in North America. Laugh, love, play, explore, relax, rejuvenate, and dine in the island lifestyle you want. with a mile of private shoreline and word class diving and fishing only minutes away. With a pirates past, a hideaway present, and an environmental future, Hatchet offers unspoiled environment for your unforgettable tropical island experience. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hatchet Caye Hotel Placencia
Hatchet Caye Resort Belize/Placencia

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