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“Great resort, but dont go if you expect all inclusive”

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The Placencia Hotel and Residences
Ranked #16 of 19 Hotels in Placencia
Level Contributor
43 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“Great resort, but dont go if you expect all inclusive”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 May 2013 via mobile

I was here by myself in early April and thoroughly enjoyed my stay. Staff were super friendly and went above and beyond. The food as part of the all inclusive was average, but I always found something nice and healthy to eat. The food at the main restaurant was absolutely delicious, overpriced, yes .... I had the catch of the day a couple of times and it was to die for!

Rooms were nice and clean. I read some of the other reviews, but i had no issues whatsoever.

One of the main reasons I picked this resort was their diving school and the fact i could organize trips right through the front desk. Exploring was one of the man reasons I chose Belize. But this was a very slow week for the. And they couldn't get big enough groups to organize trips. I was very disappointed, but have to say the staff went above and beyond to make my trips possible ... Including organizing a snorkeling trip for just two ppl when they need at 4 four ... I ended up with my personal guide :) and when they couldn't get enough ppl in the hotel to do the trips, they reached out to local diving schools, so i ended up doing all my trips :)

One negative is the beach .... I am total beach bum and love the seawater .... And while the beach is super clean, there is a freshwater stream close by ... So the water isn't the crystal clear blue but more green and full of seaweed ... When i was at the resort i spent most of my time at the pool, which was fabulous!




Stayed April 2013, travelled solo
Helpful?
4 Thank Maja J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Location
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
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Barrie, Canada
Level Contributor
22 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 May 2013

My wife and I stayed at the Placentia Hotel and Residences for our 10th anniversary trip this year, from April 22-29. This was our first time staying at a 'smaller' resort, and I think it may have changed how we plan our vacations in the future. We thoroughly enjoyed our week in Belize, and hope to return again in the next few years. Note that the hotel is about a half hour drive from the village of Placencia, so you'll have to consider that for any offsite plans. This location helps to ensure a peaceful atmosphere onsite - if you're looking to party, this probably isn't the place for you. Google Maps actually shows the resort in two different places - one at the south end of the penninsula, and one toward the north end - it is the north location that is correct.

The staff were all extremely friendly, ALWAYS smiling, and seemed to remember more of the little details about us. The hotel's concierge, Manny, was always helpful if we needed information, or to try to contact someone offsite. Debbie was our favourite server for mealtimes, always ready with a big smile and a hug for my wife; she even arranged a special dessert for our anniversary dinner, in the a la carte restaurant. Rick, one of the bartenders on staff, was great to chat with, and talk about life in Belize, or just share a joke and a smile. We were happy to meet Anselmo, the pool bartender, early in our vacation, and learned that he was finishing work early for the week to prepare for his wedding - Anselmo, we hope your wedding was fantastic, and that you find married life as wonderful as we have!

Rooms:

Our room was on the 3rd floor (top level of the villa buildings) - room 145. We had a beautiful view of the property, and could see the ocean from our balcony. The room was nicely equipped, with travertine tiled floors, throughout, and matching tile on the bathroom walls. The king-size bed was comfortable, and we slept well. The air conditioning worked well, as did the large ceiling fan, to disperse the cool air throughout the room. The closet and clothing storage were perfectly adequate. The safe in the closet worked fine, and there's no charge to use it. There was a small bar-sized fridge, however, it is only stocked with water. There is a coffee maker in the room as well, but the coffee is extra. We were quite happy to go to the breakfast buffet for our morning coffee. The bathroom is modern, with a rainfall showerhead in the shower. We found that you had to let the water run for a few minutes to get hot water, and the water pressure was lower than we're used to in Canada - such that my wife found it a bit challenging to properly rinse her hair. Housekeeping staff did a good job of maintaining the room, and towel replacement was pretty consistent. If you've browsed the pictures on this site, you've no doubt seen the 'quirky' chairs on the balconies; if I had to scrounge up something to complain about in the rooms, it would probably be these chairs. Not overly comfortable, and very low to the ground, making them difficult to get out of. In the whole scheme of our stay, I'd say that this is not only a minor complaint, but one that could very easily be remedied by the management, if so desired. The room is equipped with a large flat-screen tv with satellite reception, but seriously, we didn't go to Belize to watch television!

Grounds:

The grounds are well maintained, with gardens all over the place. The resort also has its own organic garden, where vegetables used onsite are grown. There is relatively little lawn area, but it is kept well watered and mowed. Strangely, they don't appear to use trimmers, which means that the grass is allowed to creep over the sidewalks, and grows up around the sprinkler heads somewhat; a very minor detail, but again, would make a difference in guests' perceptions. The walkways are concrete with pieces of tile inset into it, and the walks are bordered with a brown gravel, which has the added bonus of being largely maintenance-free. There are carved tree-trunk 'totem pole' carvings found all over the site, which suit the atmosphere of the resort..

Pool:

The pool is a triple-infinity pool with a waterfall and a swim-up bar. This is where most people swim, as the beach isn't great for swimming. There are also sun loungers built right into the middle section of the infinity pool, which is only about 7 inches deep. Generally, we found the pool water to be quite warm, but then, we did have a humidex in the low 40s celsius every day. As we were there at the end of tourist season, there were always deck loungers available, but the only shade is from umbrellas.

Beach:

Again, we were there towards the end of the busy season, but still, we were amazed at how few people were using the beach. It is groomed each morning, and seldom difficult to find an available chair, and plenty of shade available. The sand is a coarse, crushed-coral sand, rather than the soft, powder sand you might be used to on some Caribbean islands. There isn't a long stretch of beach to walk along, as the area to the north is under construction, and to the south, the beach becomes grassy south of the resort. The waves are few, if any, because of the breakwall that has been built to protect the not-yet-finished marina next door. This makes it easy to use the area for kayaking, pedalboating, or stand-up paddling. The water is a bit murky, both due to the construction, and the resort's proximity to the nearby river. Small fish frequent the area, as evidenced by the frequent dive-bombs by hungry pelicans. In addition to the murkiness, the slope of entry from the shore, and some weeds, few people swim from the beach. Instead, there are stairs that extend down into the water from the end of the pier, which is how most people choose to enjoy a swim in the ocean.

Food:

Some friends who had visited this resort previously had advised us that there was a slightly different approach to 'all inclusive.' Rather than 24/7 food availability like you might find at large resorts elsewhere, meals are available at specific times through the day, and snacks are available at the pool bar. Again, because it's a smaller resort, you're not going to have the mega-selection you might be used to. Generally, for meals, there is a starch, vegetable/fruit, and two meat options, as well as dessert. It is served buffet-style, so the quantity is up to you. The main dining room is at the end of the pier, and has a full bar available. The pier pavilion seats about 50, and usually has a nice ocean breeze. There is also an a la carte restaurant, which guests are allowed two seatings per week. The food was delicious, and Chef Laurenc loves to stop by each table to greet his patrons.

Drinks:

This is another area which, at least to us, we found different to the 'norm.' According to Rick, Belizean bartenders have 'heavy hands,' which might result in your drink being stronger than normal, as opposed to 'watered down,' which is often the standard for all inclusive resorts. We're not big drinkers, but still found ourselves enjoying a tropical drink prepared by the Placencia's staff.

To summarize, we had a wonderful week at the Placencia Hotel, with friendly smiles, beautiful weather, good rest and good food, and would definitely return.

  • Stayed April 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Bssplayr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
25 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 April 2013

The trip to the resort from Toronto was a bit long since we had to stop in Roatan to drop people off and pick people up (plane was cleaned as well) This took about an hour and a half. Once we got to Belize City Airport, we still had another short flight in a puddle jumper!
TIP: If you bought duty free booze at Toronto airport - when you land in Belize you pick up your
luggage and have to check in again. Add your duty free booze into your suite case before checking in because when you go through security, it can be confiscated (happened to me)The best place to have a couple of drinks at the airport while waiting for your little plane to Placencia, is Jett's bar. Great service and very reasonable prices.
Once you land in Placenicia, the bus ride to the resort is yet another 30 minutes, but when you arrive - you are in a lovely, peaceful place.
The resort is small - with a maximum occupancy of about 90 - 100 people which is kind of nice since you get to know everyone. The grounds are immaculate! The rooms are wonderful and the pool is amazing. The only downside is, the water at the beach is packed with sea grass, almost as if the beach area was a mangrove previously. The sand on the beach is very nice and there are plenty of palapas and very comfortable beds to lounge on and enjoy the breeze.

Food - all meals for the all inclusive are at the end of the pier. I personally loved it! It is not your typical all-inclusive with tables and tables of different foods. You have 4 or 5 chaffing dishes that get delivered, and that is your meal. From what I observed, people completely enjoyed it and just hung out in the restaurant for most meals....

The only area we had difficulty with was booking some time with the tennis pro. One of us booked a session and when we arrived, it was double booked. Was very relieved when Manual (Manny) sought us out to apologize for the confusion. He had indicated that the session would be re-booked, on the house. Only problem was, when we tried to do this, he had no recollection of making such a commitment. Manual needs to understand that this was not a matter of confusion, since my friend new she wanted to play tennis and booked the time. The problem was a fairly new staff person made a mistake...

Other than Manuel, we absolutely loved the staff at this resort!! Our favourites - Marvin, Rick, Erika, Clifton, et al Staff were super attentive and lovely to chat with.

This is a lovely, small resort to relax at. Not much to do on site, but that was perfect for us since we needed the rest. Would I return? If I didn't have to fly in the puddle-jumper, probably would return regularly.
Thanks for a wonderful time !

Room Tip: book ocean view - definitely worth the money
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  • Stayed April 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank birutebToronto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Julia291977, General Manager at The Placencia Hotel and Residences, responded to this review, 3 June 2013
Thank you for taking the time out to provide us with details of your experience. We are so sorry about the mix up with the Tennis Pro. We have spoken to both Manny and Mr.Bob (Tennis Pro), to ensure that we are all on the same page as far as the procedures for setting up time with him. We are happy that overall you enjoyed your stay here with us and hope that once the International Airport in Placencia is up and running that you return for another relaxing vacation!
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Kamloops, Canada
Level Contributor
50 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 25 April 2013

I am very torn on this review! This resort is beautiful and the best part of it is the staff that work there! If you want people who are friendly and try hard to give good service it is that at Placencia. We went on a 2 week all inclusive in April 2013 with Sunwing. First I must say this is the grossest misrepresentation of false advertising I have ever seen. If you research this resort it offers golf, casino and boasts its large marina and private airport that you fly out of....these do not exist!!!! Thank God I did not pay the extra freight as I had plannned for my golf clubs. These all are all proposed and computer generated.
The rooms were spacious and beds were comfortable which I am quite picky. However our friends did have their sheets lift and consequently found the mattress covered in large quantity of dried vomit that had not even attempted to been wipped up. However when the front desk was made aware of this they brought an entire new bed in. The staff went above and beyond to try to make things right! Then the air went in our friends room. The Front desk then upgraded both couples to deluxe suites-no charge....again going above and beyond to make things right! So house keeping was vey hit and miss depending on the attendant! Attendants are not provided with mops. Floors are never washed only swept, so dont spray hair products or sunscreen in your room because it will be there for the duration. Tubs and showeres never de-greased just wiped.
The grounds of the resort are immaculate however the main lobby where the food is had large cockroaches regularly . This maybe natural for Belize - not sure.
The spa was very good and the Estithitician was extremly knowledgeable and helpful. My husband and I, as well as our friend enjoyed our treatments and had repeat services. I would highly recommend taking advantage of the spa services and request Christina. She is European and knows her stuff. I use to work in this Industry for many years and found it a pleasure to recieve such quality service!!! Again...she went above and beyond!
The food. I wish I could say this was good. Do I hit you with the punch. I am suffering with ecoli ( fecal contamination in food) contamination that started abouted 3 days before I left. I am suffering terribly. There is no such thing as food safe. They have a french chef and its a joke!!!!. It took all I had to not drag him out to the peir and show him a thing or two. Fresh from the kitchen covered in plastic....HOT POTATO SALAD! YES ASSEMBLED and SERVED HOT and left like this for hours never on ice. (no I didnt eat it). When serving green salad they would accompany it with warm ranch dressing that is stored in warm cupbaords never refridgerating. At the begininng of the week the meals at the all inclusive were good and a variety of 6 or 7 items but selection and quality would decline quickly to 4 or 5 things and often no dessert with maybe a small platter of fruit at best. It was very clear if you are all-inclusive you are fed one scale of food where people purchasing off the menu get a total different level of quality of food!!!! Let me be very clear about that!!!! Example of a poor meal: Rice with beans, plantains, tortiallas chips , chicken and fruit. Thats all! No other choices. However it wasnt all bad. We did have to start paying and ordering off the menu. It was tasty but I found expensive. 2 lasagna and 1 very small starter size ceaser salad came to $50 US. (not including tip) Can I recommend the restaurant - NOOOOOOOOOO
Bartenders and servers -----EXCELLENT!!!!!! Tip them directly not on the bill!
Excerscions- We went on a couple. Snorkelling to silk kays and Monkey river. Silk Kays was one of the best days of my life! We swam with sharks , turtles, rays, barracuda, many fish and craetures. Harry was our guide and was very knowledgeable and informative. EXCELLENT!!!!!! Book in the resort. They will make sure you are happy before you pay and you are insure. We saw many folks go through others intown and not as happy and tasken to places they saw far less. Thank you HARRY!!
With all this said. We made the best of it. We had a really good time. The resort is beautiful. I also want to add it has a beautiful organic garden. The beaches are well maintained but you cannot snorkel there!! If you walk a few hundred feet up the beach/water it is very polluted. The water is very cloudy.
I wish I could be more positive!

Room Tip: definately go for the king size rooms
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  • Stayed April 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank caseys1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Nice
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 April 2013

I have always wanted to go to Belize,so when it came up as a last minute I jumped at the chance.I have been more disappointed in a hotel in all my years of travel. It is tainted as a great property with all the amenitys.I have never complained about food in any hotel but when you book an all inclusive and you go to the buffet restaurant and you get mashed potatoes some greasy veg and a breaded pork chop not fit for a dog I will say do not go .the a la carte
which you were only supposed to use twice in your week stay (we went every night but 1 )had the same catch of the day everyday once it was good.The wine was bad and the Vodka worse
the only thing to drink that was good was beer but as my wife said if I had to drink beer for a week I would gain 10 pounds.the village was 18 KM away and there were nice places to eat and drink so if you want to go to Belize stay in the village.

Room Tip: Stay in the village
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  • Stayed March 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank bmduncan7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Julia291977, General Manager at The Placencia Hotel and Residences, responded to this review, 19 April 2013
It is unfortunate that you did not enjoy the food served on the buffet during your all inclusive stay here with us. Perhaps if you would have given it another try you would have seen that we put a lot of thought into our menu and perhaps your feelings would have changed. Although I was not aware of your dissatisfaction with the pork chops I am sure the gesture by our other management to allow you to have your meals nightly at the A La Carte was to enhance your experience rather than increase your dissatisfaction. As you mentioned the A la Carte is provide for only two meals during a one week stay just to provide an additional option from the buffet in a more intimate setting. It is not intended to be served every night but there is enough variety that you could have chosen options other than the catch of day as the type of fish served is based on what we catch for that particular day perhaps we should have suggested having it cooked differently each day (i.e. fried, steamed, baked, grilled, cajun etc). Also, the spirits included in your package are produced domestically and therefore may have a different flavor then you are use to. We are very disappointed whenever anyone is unhappy with there stay here with us, I wish I had known prior to your post that you did not enjoy your stay so that we could have done something more to ensure was an enjoyable one.
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Florida
Level Contributor
179 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 123 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 April 2013

For the great things--the pool. As other reviewers have noted, it is very large with a shallow area for kids and a deeper part with a swim up bar. It's big enough to swim "laps" even though the form is not rectangular. The hotel offers free use of kayaks and bicycles, which is a nice benefit.

The room was large--a sea view villa. A living/dining room which was furnished with two drab and uncomfortable futon sofas. Not great to sit and relax on, but this would have been a good setup for a family. The bedroom was in the back, separated from the living area by a kitchenette. The sea view wasn't worth it. The plantings in front of our building really got in the way of the view. The bathroom was nice, but wasn't as clean as I would have liked. Be aware that the tub is very deep and you have to take a couple steps up to it. Anyone with mobility problems might struggle.

The food in the restaurant was good as was our service. Prices were a little high for Belize, but a good value when compared with the states. I had the filet and the size was generous. The drink prices are good at all bars--$5 a drink.

While the staff are friendly, they don't seem to know their own resort. The woman at the front desk couldn't give us basic information, like how much the buffet cost. We weren't told about things like the shuttle to town--even when we asked about getting a cab. We stumbled on this information. The bartenders were so indifferent as to be almost rude. There was no informational booklet about the hotel itself in our room.

When we booked our shuttle to the airport, we were given a time. As we were showering and packing, we got a call telling us the shuttle was actually a half an hour earlier. We could have managed except the call was 5 minutes before the shuttle was due to depart. So we ended up waiting for several hours for the next shuttle.

The hotel is a ways from town. The water in the ocean near the resort was "muddy" not the clear blue you expect in Belize. This may have been a temporary phenomenon, but it didn't entice me to go in, although we did kayak.

As another reviewer stated, I think this hotel needs better management. We payed around $300 with taxes to stay here (only stayed one night). For the price, I would have expected a step up in service. There is a lot of potential here.

Stayed March 2013, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
2 Thank Eube
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Lunenburg, Canada
Level Contributor
37 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 April 2013

Stayed at the Placencia the week of April 1/13. Did not have the all inclusive but found the meals reasonably priced. Only ate at the buffet on the pier once for breakfast it was plentiful. We were in room 36 and had an oceanfront suite with fulll kitchen although there were no cooking pots supplied. We got a drive into the village on the hotel shuttle bus and bought a few items like coffee, milk, beer, wine, bread, etc. Caught the locall bus on the way back it was crowded but we did get a seat it was ok. The resort is beautiful the pool exceptional and you did not have to fight for a lounger at the pool or at the beach. Not much night life but was not there for that and the music at the pool was perfect. Staff went out of their way to help with anything we needed. We did the half day snorkel, Xunantunich Ruins/ Blue Hole swim and the Monkey River tour. All the tours left from the hotel and was not overpriced well worth the money and no hassle. We have been on a lot of trips all over the world and this was our most relaxing. Would definetly reccommend this resort to anyone.

Room Tip: We had an ocean front suite next to the pool number 36 it was great.
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  • Stayed April 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank bandittraveler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Julia291977, General Manager at The Placencia Hotel and Residences, responded to this review, 19 April 2013
Thank you very much for your positive feedback. The way you described your trip it seems you got to experience Belize as both a visitor and a local. Taking the local bus at least once during a visit is a must! We are pleased to know you enjoyed your trip and are encouraged by your comments.
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Additional Information about The Placencia Hotel and Residences

Property: The Placencia Hotel and Residences
Address: Placencia Village, Placencia, Belize
Region: Belize > Stann Creek > Placencia
Amenities:
Beach Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#5 Luxury Hotel in Placencia
#10 Top resorts Hotel in Placencia
#14 On the Beach Hotel in Placencia
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:4 star — The Placencia Hotel and Residences 4*
Number of rooms: 90
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Placencia Hotel is the fastest growing Hotel in the general area offering the finest amenities and service to an ever discerning clientele visiting Belize. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Hotel Placencia
The Resort Placencia
The Placencia Hotel And Residences Belize

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