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“A piece of natural paradise”
Review of Marble Hill Farms

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Marble Hill Farms
Kansas City, Missouri
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“A piece of natural paradise”
Reviewed 25 January 2014

Marble Hill Farms was an amazing find in Roatan. Having been to Roatan several times in previous years, we were looking specifically for a place to stay away from the crowds and "tourist" areas for this trip. Months of research led us to choose MHF, and WOW are we so very pleased that we did. It was like being dropped in the midst of a tropical paradise with the greatest staff and natural surroundings anyone could ask for.

First, I must say that we are outdoor/nature people. This is not a place for someone who is looking for the all-inclusive resort experience. The casita we stayed in (#3, one bedroom) was right near the shore with a lovely view and very comfortable - rustic, but had two roomy (hot) showers, a comfy bed and living room area. The kitchenette was sufficient for our needs - but we are used to camp and boat cooking with limited space and appliances. Marek even brought us our own little kettle grill so we could cook outside, which was above and beyond and very sweet!

The Place: We were welcomed at the airport by Marek, our host, who shared a lot of information about the island as we drove the hour to MHF. We asked a lot of questions, and he cheerfully filled us in on the area and what to expect. We stopped at Eldon's in French Harbour for supplies and continued to MHF. We pulled in, and what a gorgeous setting :) You truly feel secluded (in a GOOD way) and the smiles and welcoming of all the staff made us feel immediately at home.

Jana, the second half of the fantastic management team, welcomed us at the main house. All was in order, and they set us up in our casita, which as I said was just perfect and more than we had hoped for. Jana, by the way, was prompt and very helpful in communicating with us before the trip by email. She even handled our reservations while she herself was on vacation!!! Above and beyond, as was the norm for all things we experienced and Marble Hill. :)

Food: The restaurant (The Crow's Nest) was not only a lovely setting, but had excellent food and great staff. Good drinks, very healthy portions and absolutely delicious fresh everything! We even had lionfish and conch seviche the last night that was simply out of this world! Don't forget to taste the homemade jams, jellies, hot sauce and salsa they make on premises. Not to be missed along with fresh squeezed guava juice. YUMMY!

Staff: We had the luxury of being the only guests here for the majority of our stay. The staff, however, was always available and so very pleasant from Marek and Jana, to the maid Lily (who even cleaned the barbecue grill!!! again above and beyond!) to the smiling and courteous security guards. Edward, the boat pilot and dive instructor, was charming and very competent. We always felt safe and well taken care of.

Amenities: As I said, we chose MHF for it's location away from the touristy areas of Roatan. Our trip was to relax and enjoy the reef, snorkel and soak up the island beauty. We couldn't have chosen a more perfect spot for this. We enjoyed taking coffee or a drink down to the double decker dock located just a brief walk from our casita where an unobstructed view of the reef, the moon, sunrise or sunset was always available. Tropical Island Divers is the dive shop run by MHF, and we were fortunate indeed to have Marek as a guide on several dive excursions including our favorite to Pigeon Cay. Marek would take the divers down and advised us where the best snorkel areas were (he said we were the luckiest snorkelers...we saw lionfish, puffers, a sharp-tailed snake eel and tons of beautiful coral and reef fish). Marek was a really knowledgeable and fun guide, and knew right where to go and when so it wasn't crowded with other dive boats. We had use of a sea kayak which we paddled all over the area - there are many things to explore and see if you are interested in nature as we are.

We miss Jana and Marek's little slice of paradise, and encourage you to experience it for yourself. If you are looking for a tranquil, safe, home away from home in Roatan, this is the spot. We can't wait to go back SOON and are still eating delicious tropical jams and hot sauce we brought back wishing we were still sitting on the dock listening to the ocean and spotting little fish in the clear blue water and listening to the mockingbirds sing good morning.

Final note: Joe has been to Roatan several times, and this was my first trip. We visited West Bay one day during the week and that was where he had stayed in previous years. I can't tell you how GLAD I am that we did NOT stay in that tourist mess. Marble Hill Farms is the ONLY place we will stay in years to come.

We went in December right before the Christmas rush. It did rain for a bit almost every day, but nothing that deterred us from any outdoor activities. Weather was perfect - 85 during the day, 70s with a breeze at night.

Room Tip: Casita #3 was closest to the water, very romantic and plenty of space. Perfect for a couple. Very qu...
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  • Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Mary E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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silver spring
Level Contributor
45 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 January 2014

We didn't stay at Marble Hill (we stayed at Lost Moose Lodge) -- but Martina at Lost Moose recommended that we dive with Marek at Tropical Island Divers, and we're delighted we did. We felt very safe, and he made a big effort to take us to dive sites that were way off the beaten path. Plus -- he's a super nice guy, and really puts you at ease. I'd love to dive with him again.

  • Stayed December 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank silverspringlaurie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hartsville, SC
Level Contributor
220 reviews
81 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 305 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 November 2013

My wife and I are not divers. There are a lot of reviews regarding the diving operation, and I wanted to provide some insight into the non-diving experience. We stayed at Marble Hill Farms on a quick weekend get-a-way. We arrived on Saturday afternoon and departed on Monday morning. This was a stop-over on our way to Colombia.

The facility is a long way from the airport. We rented a car and the driving is quite easy. It is a beautiful drive and car rentals are not expensive. There is only one road along the length of the island, so there is no way to get lost. If you are planning to be there on Sunday, I would highly recommend a vehicle of your own. The on-site restaurant is closed on Sunday, as is quite a bit of retail establishments across the entire island. It is wise to go into town on Saturday and purchase needed supplies for Sunday. If you have the ability to bring a lot in your checked luggage, perhaps you could just bring it from home.

We stayed in a traditional cabin. Half of the cabin was walled, with wooden paneled windows and screens. This was the bedroom area of the cabin. The other half of the cabin was only screened. This was the bathroom and kitchen area of the cabin. There is an air conditioning unit in the enclosed portion of the cabin, but the air conditioning cannot be used during the day or when you are not in the unit. It simply cannot keep up with the heat generated and is a waste of electricity. During our stay, the room quickly exceeded 90F (31C) during the day, even with the windows open. At night, it was possible to get the room down to almost 70F (21C).

The room was quite nice and had everything that we could need. The host brought drinking water to our room and was sufficient for our stay. The kitchen has a small refrigerator, and as I previously mentioned, I strongly recommend bringing supplies.

The wildlife is amazing. There were bats, tarantulas and lizards everywhere we looked. The diving dock is beautiful and we relaxed by the ocean and enjoyed the scenery.

The on-site restaurant is amazing. The food is great and the beer is cold. The prices are not crazy, but maybe a bit high for those on a tight budget. The host and hostess are very friendly and will try to accommodate any request that you may have.

All together, I really enjoyed staying at Marble Hill Farms. I would definitely stay again. However, I would consider staying somewhere else if only there one weekend. Considering that everything nearby was closed on Sunday, we drove quite a bit. However, the beauty was amazing. We would have enjoyed our Sunday more if we simply brought more supplies from town on Saturday.

  • Stayed July 2013, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank 568MarkR
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tupelo, Mississippi
Level Contributor
16 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 October 2013

We had already booked lodgeing,and did not stay at Marble Hill Farms but we did dive with them. That is what my review is about. We are not pros but we enjoy a good time diving and have been enough to know the difference between great and so-so.I think choosing a dive operation is very important because it can be the very good or very bad part of a vacation. My wife and I would like to tell you about Marek and Edward. We felt as if we were with someone we had known for years,someone who made it his business to make you feel comfortable,relaxed and taken care of on the highest level. Marek as well as Edward were at all times professional and SAFE.When you only get to dive once a year it makes you feel better when you know the dive operation has your safety in mind at all times. Then there's knowing where the creatures hang out and pointing them out to you.And if that was not enough on the last day of our diving they spotted a whale shark and we were able to snorkle beside it, not once but twice. Then we had 2 more great dives. The only bad part was having to go back home when it was over. One more thing,the Crow's nest resturant has the best lobster on Roatan island. It's worth driving from the West end to get some.We had to have it twice. Thanks again Marek,Jana and Edward,,,You guys made a great vacation... FANTASTIC!!! Thank you Nick and Nancy Tupelo Ms.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Nick G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Roatan, Honduras
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 September 2013

My husband and I dove with Tropical Island Divers for 2 weeks and can't recommend them highly enough! The dive package pricing is unbelievable, especially when you consider it is basically valet diving without the premium price. We did not touch our gear once we dropped it off on day one--Marek and Edward changed our gear between dives, rinsed and stored it afterward, what a treat! As an added bonus, we only had to share the boat with other divers twice in 2 weeks. As an instructor, I am picky and don't throw around such glowing reviews often. I can honestly say this is one of the best dive shops on the entire island. We have been coming to Roatan for 10 years, so we have seen the gamut.
We didn't stay at the resort, but did eat at the Crow's Nest several times after diving. The food was always excellent, beer always super cold, and Jana a great host. The atmosphere is so peaceful and relaxing, and the view from the upstairs deck of the restaurant is awesome. If you go for happy hour or dinner you can usually meet some colorful ex-pat characters at the bar that are happy to tell tall tales of their adventures on Roatan!
Marble Hills makes a great stop even if you are just touring the east end of the island, be sure to pick up some of the unique homeade organic jellies at the restaurant, they make great gifts.
Thank you Jana, Marek and Edward for your hospitality, we hope to see you very soon!
Chrissie and Brian, Dallas, TX

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank cbowen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Waco, TX
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 August 2013

Our family just finished a wonderful stay at Marble Hill Farms. We have stayed and visited Roatan on a number of occasions and have always wound up on the West End which has good diving but tends to draw the cruise ship excursions, loud traffic and unfortunately, increased crime. Marble Hill Farms is a perfect solution for all those problems and allows you to get away to a natural and beautiful setting more indicative of a tropical location like Roatan.

Marble Hill Farms is located on the east side of the island about 10-15 minutes off the paved road. Plans have been in place for years to pave the road further into the East End. The resort is on a large tract of land and the owner is US based. Currently, Jana and Marek are in their 8 month of managing the resort property with a reasonably stable Honduran staff. They both have extensive diving experience. The resort is basically in full operation M-F with the restaurant/bar open M-Sat and diving by appointment on Saturday as well. Guests can check-out and probably even arrive on Sunday but there is no diving and no restaurant availability.

Because of the small staff, I highly recommend you plan as much of the details of your trip via email or phone with Jana prior to your arrival. She is very sweet and in person, a bit reserved, but I think she does not want to impose on or intimidate any of the guests. Jana and Marek are both very accommodating.

Arrival was very efficient, we were picked up on time by a van arranged from the resort which charged $35.00 but handled our family of four and luggage (we had more than usual due to travel to the mainland prior to Roatan). The driver, who was not a resort employee, was not shy about asking about a tip and filled us with crap about how Roatan has no crime which ironically was about the time we passed the guard at the resort entrance with a shotgun in tow. The guard is friendly and we never felt unsafe at the resort.

Jana greeted us right away and showed us to our Casita and gave a brief tour of the property. The Casitas are spacious, clean and comfortable. This is an “eco” lodge which a think is a hipster term for minimal. There aren’t fancy fixtures or marble floors but everything you need is there and is rather whimsical in some of the furnishings. There is a dorm style fridge and electric cooktop in the kitchenette with a very basic supply of kitchen utensils, pan, pot and dishes for four. Water is provided in dispenser but the resort is supplied by a reliable and clean well. You could fix some minimal meals in the Casita but do not miss the Crow’s Nest restaurant or Jana’s breakfast (breakfast is $10 per person per day).

There is the option of the tree houses (more like huts on stilts) which sit isolated and close to the water or the dorm as well. Their internet page has more about those options. The dorm guests can use the kitchen at the main house to fix meals. I saw a guest eating breakfast cereal every morning and with the very cheap dorm fee, was staying in paradise for probably less than $40 a day.

Jana’s breakfasts were great, plentiful and creative. She makes juice from fruit on the property and has a selection of fresh fruits, jams, tea, coffee and Honduran style tacos for breakfast. Can you say “homemade flour tortillas”? The dogs, Dulce and Dynamite, are there in the morning to greet you and send you off for the day and now there are some cats to help out with critters. We did not see any however.

The Crow’s Nest was a pleasant surprise. The prices are comparable to other restaurants on the island but I would venture from memory that the portions are bigger. From steak, to hamburgers, to pasta and pizza and FISH TACOS, I found all meals fresh and delicious. There are a few people that venture to the resort just to eat. The view from the elevated deck portion of the Crow’s Nest is incredible. Service was attentive and friendly.

We dove for three days with Marek and his boat captain Edward. Marek does not take cruise ship tours and during our stay, we were the only ones regularly diving with them. Marek is relaxed and friendly but does follow standard procedures so we had no safety worries. The equipment is in good shape and he had us do safety checks on our equipment prior to each dive. I never felt we pushed any safety boundaries. One of the reasons we came to the east side for diving was the lack of regular and large dive groups which have hampered the condition of the coral and reef on the West End. Regardless, the lion fish and over fishing of the whole Roatan reef have really put a strain on the native fish population. We still saw incredible reef formations, interesting sea fans and several interesting fish. Edward even showed us lion fish hunting at our request. Marek says he has seen a surprising number of large lion fish on some deep dives so I would encourage all the eradication you can.

I would definitely stay here again on a return trip to Roatan. We had an extended cab truck us back to the airport ($30 for that trip). Consider renting a car if you are not shy about driving on the island as you may want to run about during the day to see the rest of the island. If not, ask your driver to stop at the grocery store near French Harbor which carries many American food items so you can have some snack or quick meals if needed.

Room Tip: The Casitas are best for a family or larger group
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  • Stayed July 2013, travelled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank Newdoc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
oregon
Level Contributor
16 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 July 2013

We just returned from our "Family Reunion" trip to Roatan. We didn't stay at Marble Hills, but Merek, from Tropical Island Divers, took several of our family members scuba diving on 3 different days (which they said was "fantastic"), and all of us on a snorkeling trip to Pigeon Cay (FABULOUS - the highlight of our trip). Merek was absolutely wonderful: so very attentive, accomodating, professional, thoughtful and fun! By the end of our trip, we all thought of him as "family". We HIGHLY recommend Tropical Island Divers, and Merek, for your snorkeling and scuba diving trips.

  • Stayed June 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank linward
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Marble Hill Farms

Property: Marble Hill Farms
Address: Diamond Rock | East end, Roatan IB3100, Honduras
Phone Number:
Region: Honduras > Bay Islands > Roatan
Amenities:
Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #8 of 54 Speciality Lodging in Roatan
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Marble Hill Farms 2.5*
Number of rooms: 6
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Marble Hill Farms, a rustic eco-lodge, is a 26 acre property situated on the East end of the exotic island of Roatan, Honduras. A peaceful paradise awaits you in the tranquil gardens and startling blue Caribbean waters that encompass the pristine coral reef. Here you will find quiet stillness and natural beauty all around. The sights, sounds and scents of our tropical fruit gardens will be sure to cast their spell as you find yourself captivated by hummingbirds, iguanas and other island creatures that make their home at the farm. Marble Hill Farms is a place for those who are ready to get away from stress and step into a truly relaxing experience. Whether you are dining in the treetops at The Crow’s Nest, diving our playground of coral reef, flying on a kite board, or enjoying a swing in a hammock, you will find yourself leaving behind the frantic pace of your every day life and slowly catching the quiet rhythm of the island. Visit our Facebook page for updates and specials! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Marble Hill Farms Hotel Roatan
Marble Hill Farms Roatan, Honduras - Bay Islands

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