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“Beautiful resort”

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The Placencia Hotel and Residences
Ranked #17 of 20 Hotels in Placencia
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 5 September 2013

My friend and I stayed for 5 days at The Placencia Hotel and Residences in a 1 bedroom beach view room August 15, 2013. The room was basic but comfortable. The grounds are beautiful and very clean. There is a very nice large pool with swim up bar.

This resort is ocean front but the water is more like a lake, murky green and no waves, not even a ripple. I did not even go in the water because it is not clear. I did see lots of small jellyfish. This was disappointing.

The staff and management were wonderful. Very friendly people who did there best to make sure we had our needs met. They took us on a tour of the Mayan ruins, which was great.

It was a great disappointment that my friend and I were the only guest at the resort. We like to meet and mingle with others and we were totally alone. The resort is not close to anything so there was nowhere to go. No shopping, restaurants, bars, etc unless you go to Placencia which is about 20 minutes away. The resort had a shuttle that took us into town and back one day. It is a very small town.

The resort is lovely, staff great, but I wouldn't go back. It is a little too remote for me.

  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with friends
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3  Thank hotmamacj
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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97 - 103 of 339 reviews

Reviewed 7 August 2013

I visited the Placencia Hotel on a business trip in August 2013. While the grounds and beach are beautiful and very well-maintained, I was a bit disappointed in a few things.

The bathroom in my room was small - beautiful, but small. It was fine for one person, but two would have struggled. And there were no towel racks; there was a hook on one door, but if two people used washcloths and towels, there would have been no room to hang them. In addition, the rainfall shower head was lovely, but the water pressure was so low it took 3x longer to rinse my hair. Water-saving fixtures aren't as effective if the showers take longer.

Storage - There was one small closet in my room, but it was short and wouldn't hold any full-length clothes. And it only had two hangers. In addition, there was no iron in the room. With heat and humidity at full blast, anything coming out of a suitcase was a wrinkled mess so ironing and hanging would have been helpful. (But then again, if you're on vacation - which I wasn't - maybe you wouldn't mind.)

Bed - The linens were high qualtiy and my bed was comfortable, but very noisy. As I moved at night, the creaking of the bed frame and headboard woke me. One of my co-workers commented on the same thing in his room.

Activity - If you want to lie by the pool or on the beach, this is a perfect spot. Both areas are luxurious and very neat and tidy. However, there didn't seem to be any other activity going on at the resort. Even the bar at the end of the dock was closed. Maybe it opens on the weekend, but if I'm on vacation, I'd like to enjoy some outside refreshments during the week too.

No complimentary Wifi - when traveling on business, wifi is a must these days. The Placencia charges by the hour for this service.

All in all - it was beautiful, clean and well maintained. But I expected more from a luxury resort.

Room Tip: Ask for a room facing the grounds and pool. Otherwise you might look at an unfinished and abandoned...
  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled on business
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2  Thank Bookworm426
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 June 2013

We stayed in many places in Belize during our trip and The Placencia was by far the most expensive and nicest, however they will nickel & dime you for everything. The beach is nice, the rooms are very comfortable (we stayed in a Jr. Suite on the beach), the pool is awesome and the staff is accomodating. The real rub with me was that they want to charge you by the hour to use WiFi. We stayed in much more humble hotels throughout Belize and the WiFi was always complimentary. We even ate in small restaurants on Caye Caulker and the WiFi was complimentary, but the 500 American dollars we spent for one night plus dinner and breakfast did not include WiFi. Also, careful how many cups of coffee you drink as well, because they also charge you for refills. Bottom line: Nice place to stay, but they are cheap!

Room Tip: Very safe place to stay with 24 hour security, so any room is fine.
  • Stayed: June 2013, travelled as a couple
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6  Thank gilstrr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 May 2013

I stayed at the Placencia in December 2012 along with 35 of my classmates from college. Going on this trip was part of our program at school, as we were in the Tourism Management program. I'm going to list the pros and cons of this resort..

Pros:

1. The resort is beautiful, the villas are nice and the entire property is well kept.

2. The staff that work here are very friendly, young and inexperienced yes, but very nice and they work hard.

3. The front desk was very helpful with setting our group up with buses to and from town.

4. The bartenders make a wide assortment of drinks, they are not always consisent but are delicious otherwise. The beer is amazing, but the wine is dreadful.

5. The rooms are basic, but quite nice. Beds were really comfortable, and the cleaning staff were great. Although the showers have almost no water pressure.

6. The pool is nice. Lots of chairs for everyone and a good swim up bar.

Cons:

1. The food is absolutely terrible. I don't know where they got their chefs from but they seriously need new ones or better training. It was the same crappy, tastless food every day and night. They would always run out of food quickly, which is strange because for a small resort they should not be running out of food that fast. When they did finally bring out more food to the buffet, it was always cold because the buffet is always served all the way out on the pier. The a la carte isn't any better. Ate there twice during the week and there are only 3 things on the menu, 3 things, that's it! Food took over an hour to come out both times. Snacks at the resort are only served once a day by the pool, and they are totally gone within 10 minutes. I have seen other people's reviews of the food at this hotel and the manager continues to respond to them saying they are working on improving it, well... he hasn't.

2. The beach is unswimmable. You heard me, you CAN NOT swim in the ocean at this resort. The rep even tells you this when you get there. As soon as you take a step in, you sink in this mucky sand and seaweed. We jumped off the pier a couple times, but then we noticed all the constant jelly fish in the water.

3. There is NO ENTERTAINMENT at all. One night they set up karaokee but that's it, other than that there are no shows, no activities, nothing.

4. The resort is quite far from the village, nearly a half an hour drive from the resort.


Overall this resort looks nice but needs A LOT of work. I wouldn't return to the Placencia.

  • Stayed: December 2012, travelled with friends
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3  Thank Brydon R
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 reviewResponded 3 June 2013

Thank you for your positive comments as well as your thoughts regarding other areas of the resort. Since your visit over 6 months ago several changes have been made to the A La Carte menu for those traveling on the inclusive package as well as the buffet. During your stay we did have nightly entertainment but since your group was so large and made up mostly college aged students we provided nightly rides into the village so that your classmates could experience Placencia's night life as requested since the onsite entertainment ended around 9 p.m. nightly except as you mentioned on Karaoke nights which ends much later on the weekends.

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Reviewed 28 May 2013

I just stayed here last week and it was again amazing. Satiago was head of the food service and did an excellent job. I totally love staying here. It is the only place to stay in Belize. The room was always fresh and clean as was the beach. The pool is the largest on the island and it always unreal. I hate to leave and return home.

Room Tip: Get one with an ocean view if you can.
  • Stayed: May 2013, travelled on business
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1  Thank DrSteve6872
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 May 2013

My mother and I spent one week at The Placencia this past season traveling from Toronto on the Sunwing package. This is a fairly common package bringing Canadians to Belize weekly throughout the winter. I read the previous reviews thoroughly before booking and so please be prepared for a detailed review that I hope helps to provide some insight as I address specific topics, especially those I felt I did not agree with in previous reviews.

Transportation to Placencia:
Placencia is a ~25minute flight or approx 3-4hr drive (not recommended) from Belize City International Airport. Flights operate regularly from BZE to Placencia on both Maya Island Air and Tropic Air. Both use similar aircraft for similar fares on similar schedules. We (and most Sunwing guests) used Maya Island Air and had no complaints. If you are booked on Sunwing, you will land in BZE and proceed to clear customs and claim your baggage. This only took a total of 10 minutes, fantastic! Then we found our lovely Sunwing rep for the week (Sandy) who showed us to the Maya Island check in counter. Check-in was smooth and our flight was to depart in about 90 minutes. We went through security to the Maya Island gate where they listed us on standby for an earlier flight. We got a rum punch from the bar, conveniently located in front of Maya Island, and only waited 15min before we were called to board an earlier flight! The aircraft is a 12 seat Cessna 208 turboprop. It was well equipped and actually quite a bit more comfortable than previous 208's I'd flown on. As I had mentioned that I was a private pilot, the crew allowed me to sit in the front next to the aircraft's single pilot. Fantastic! The flight was quick and smooth. We loved getting an aerial view of The Placencia as we came down for landing. How often do you get to experience that? At the airport, we grabbed our bags and boarded the air conditioned bus to The Placencia where our rep was waiting for us. We filled out a little paper work and got our wristbands for the week as well as information about check in. The ride to the hotel was just over 15minutes and quite smooth.

Check In:
Admittedly, check in was the one area that we had an issue with during the week. After being up nearly 12 hours traveling it was not a welcome surprise. Initial check in was actually quite quick and appeared smooth. They gave us our keys and told us we had been upgraded to a room with a full kitchen! Excited, we headed off for our welcome drink and asked to be shown to our room immediately so we could get settled. Unfortunately, upon arrival we found that it was not the room we were promised and the bags in the room were not our own.

I recalled what number was on our bags and luckily we found them outside the next building over. We instructed the staff to not deliver them until we confirmed what room we were assigned. The guests listed on their manifest for the room our bags were tagged for were also not us. After making our way back to the front dest we waited another 10 minutes before being told they had located our correct room.

We made our way to room number three, which was indeed a room equipped with a kitchen, as promised. However, we found that once again this room had someone else's belongings in it...so off we went again. At this point we politely told Sandy that we would be going for lunch and a (stiff) drink as we were physically exhausted from the heat and carrying our hand luggage around while still dressed for travel, not the humidity.

After a fabulous lunch and refreshing drink (or two) we returned to the front desk anxious for what was next. Thankfully, we were told that all was sorted out. The staff explained the error which originally stemmed from my mother sharing the same name as another guest from our flight, resulting in us having bags tagged to their room. The other room turned out to be a connected room where the hotel did not close the connector prior to assigning the room. So the guests in the adjacent room ended up in ours when we showed up. Whoops!

However, the result was a room even better than the three we had seen! We had a second floor one bedroom kitchen equipped room. By all inclusive standards, the best room I have ever occupied.

The Room:
We were finally assigned a room on the second floor facing the pool and with a partial ocean view. We were thrilled for second floor as it was our first preference. The buildings are equipped with three floors. Inside the room we had an extremely modern kitchen including a stove, microwave and fridge. One of the best features was always having ice from the ice maker and being able to enjoy the filtered water. Small points that make a big difference down south! There was a large dining room table with plenty of seating as well as two chairs in front of the first flat screen TV. In the bedroom we had another flat screen TV. Both had more channels than I've ever had down south, a nice touch for when you wanted to lay low. The bathroom was very generous with a large "rainfall" shower, dual sinks and a fair sized closet. Only complaint: the water pressure in the shower is quite low. Men didn't mind it much but I know several of the women had to get some technique to get closer to it for the pressure. While I appreciate eco-friendly, we would have appreciated a bit more pressure. Finally, the balcony was extraordinary! Largest I've had in a long time and equipped with two chairs, a very comfortable chaise lounge and two entrances from the room. Overall: absolutely amazing accommodations and well worth the wait! We wished we had been traveling in a bigger group as it would have been perfect for entertaining. If you can upgrade, I highly recommend it.

The Hotel Facilities (Overall):
The Placencia certainly takes pride in their property and it is evidenced by their extreme care and careful grooming of the property. Not a day went by that we didn't see work being done. The beach is groomed every morning and the ground were immaculate. Keep up the good work! Likewise with the housekeeping, they were friendly, efficient and thorough. Not a spot in our room.

The Beach:
Unfortunately, the beach is not the main focal point of the resort. While it is very nice and well kept, we did not go into the water or spend much time on the beach. The water is a little murky so we decided to stay out. However, there are chaise lounges under palapas (think: huts) which were quite popular! Close enough to the pool that you could easily get food and drinks. Good if you wanted a little siesta in the shade and usually a nice refreshing breeze.

The Pool & Swim Up Bar:
This spot really becomes the hub at The Placencia. This area really steals the show from the beach and I couldn't complain! The chaise lounges were plentiful and all are furnished with a padded white faux-leather type material. They were lovely for lounging or napping, a huge upgrade from many resorts I've stayed at. Towels are available at the pool and you receive a ticket when you check in. This feature seemed a bit unnecessary but luckily the pool staff quickly learned the guests and allowed us to leave our ticket with them. Wonderful! The pool itself it two tier with a shallow area by the water fall and a deeper area by the pool bar. The pool was extremely refreshing in the extreme Belize heat. At the pool bar, the staff served up a variety of delicious drinks that were in no short supply!

Previous reviews criticized the selection and quality of drinks, both of which I thought were excellent! We had everything from mixed drinks to shots to blended drinks to bottles of Belikin beer. Literally, the only drink they could not make was ones with tequila. Not a big deal, if you ask me. I was even surprised when I ordered a Long Island Iced Tea and had one of the best I've had served to me, that made for a tipsy afternoon!

Mid-morning then mid-afternoon snacks were brought to the pool. It was something different every day, and no it was not just pizza. I don't know where people are getting that from. I also don't know why they'd complain. There are Italian owners and the pizza was fantastic! We even paid to order it by room service twice, and we are not "basic" eaters so that says a lot. We enjoyed the local flare to some of the snacks but a bit more supply certain days would go a long way.

Buffet Restaurant:
The buffet restaurant is located at the end of the pier just off the beach. What an ideal and beautiful place to eat your meals! We felt so relaxed and often sat for quite a while after we finished just to enjoy the scenery and tranquility. There are several tables and we never had an issue getting a table. The bar also has several seats which was a nice spot to hang out at.

Each meal featured at least 3-4 main choices, 1-2 sides and a dessert/pastry. You need to realize this is not the same as some of the mega sized all inclusive properties out there. However, what they lack in selection they make up for in flavour and creativity. We were excited every meal to see what would be offered and surprised to not see hardly any repetition in the menu. Surprisingly that ended up being disappointing as we had a few favourites we were craving again! But that's not a bad problem to have and is a real compliment to the chefs. We never left the restaurant hungry and only once did they run out of any of the options, with a replenishment coming quickly after. Drink service was always prompt and spot on. I much prefer this style of dining to that of larger resorts I've stayed at where the selection was massive but food left much to be desired.

Staff:
The staff at The Placencia were very hospitable, accommodating and all around friendly. Sandy, the Sunwing rep, was a real pleasure to deal with. We really do thank her for her advice and for taking good care of us. She was always around and did a great job. Alex (bartender) also deserves a huge pat on the back. He seemed like he never stopped working! Alex was a lot of fun to be around and really made the pool bar the place to be. He knew his drinks and never failed on a recommendation. It was great to have someone so attentive as well, he always knew when you were ready for a refill. He would truly be an asset to any hospitality service and I hope management is aware of that, he was definitely the "guest favourite" that week! Finally, we must mention the lovely Ms.Angie who's excellent leadership brought it all together. We met Ms.Angie on the first day and were greeted by name through the week. She apologized for our check in confusion, assured us the week would be fabulous and even gave some personal recommendations. What more could we ask for? From my family to yours, thank you!

Sadly there is one (possible) staff member I do need to point the finger at. There was a larger gentleman and his young son who were at the pool bar several days through our stay. We didn't pay much attention to him at first as all he did was talk on his iPhone. However, his behaviour quickly caught our attention as the week went on. He became loud and rude with other guests and we were all rather offended by how he was treating his son. I know this isn't ParentingAdvisor, but it was noticeable enough that all of us in the pool were put off and talking about it. We suspected he was connected with the hotel as he was on the bar's phone several times. If he is, I do hope this is not a regular occurrence. It was downright unprofessional.

Overall, while we went into this vacation with slight hesitations from previous reviews, our expectations were quickly exceeded. For the amazing service we received and the beautiful property and delicious food, I'd say we got an excellent value. We would not hesitate to recommend this to our friends and family and truly hope we are able to return in the future.

I realize I did not review some aspects such as excursions etc but I think I've written enough and we didn't utilize them very much so I'll let you gather that from others. As always though, I would be happy to answer any more specific questions, just message me. Thanks for reading!

  • Stayed: March 2013, travelled with family
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6  Thank TheJohnStar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 May 2013

Where can I start? Looks are deceiving. It looks like an exclusive hotel, but it's a roach haven and comes with poor housekeeping and service. Staff eager to take their tip, but not so eager to give quality service. Our first night we visited the on-site restaurant, the lighting was too dark to see properly. Fortunately, the white milk in the glass provided the background needed to see the cockroach crawling around on the glass. I was leery of anything that came out of the kitchen. The air conditioning in the room was not enough to keep the room cool so we spent two nights sweating it out in our bed. The first night I was in the bathroom and a huge cockroach (3" long) came running towards me from the sink--I screamed. My husband dispensed with the creature in short order. The second day, housekeeping failed to leave service items and we had to call the front desk to get coffee and shampoo delivered to our room. We waited an interminable length of time for housekeeping to show up and finally gave up and left a tip on the bed cover and left for the pool. When we returned, the tip was gone and the coffee had been left on the counter. The next morning, however, we discovered the filter and the creamer were missing from the coffee pack--so making coffee was pretty much impossible. We couldn't leave this place fast enough and the pricey cost of a suite is inappropriate for the poor accommodations and sloppy service. If you want to take pictures of a pretty place and don't care about anything else (service, A/C, cockroaches)...then this is the place for you.

  • Stayed: May 2013, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank AlaskanGemstone
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 reviewResponded 26 May 2013

We apologize that you did not enjoy your stay with us. Please see response above where we responded to your husband. Again please feel free to contact us if you would like to provide more feedback on how we can improve our service, so that we can share and discuss with our management.

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Additional Information about 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
#15 On the Beach Hotel in Placencia
Price Range: £158 - £190 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
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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