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“Rustic with outstanding diving”
4 of 5 bubbles Review of Reef House Resort

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Reef House Resort
Ranked #29 of 41 Hotels in Roatan
Pompano Beach, Florida
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Rustic with outstanding diving”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 8 January 2013

There were 13 guests the week we stayed Oct 6-13th. On arrival our carry on with all our camera and regulators got shuttled to another resort. They were great at giving us equipment to use and following up until the suitcase was tracked down. They did the legwork and encouraged us to just enjoy diving. The weather was fabulous with flat seas all but one day. Rooms are very comfortable although our window A/C was a bit noisy. The new managment is in the process of several upgrades so I would expect improvements by our next visit. The big porch outside the rooms as well as a great deck offered spectacular sunrises to start the day. The atmosphere was very relaxed and coffee pot ready to plug in for the early risers. Food was plentiful and the family style table worked out as we got to know each other. Food swapping became an adventure and nothing went to waste....well, maybe to someones waist! The diving was absolutely phenomenol and Davit was one of the knowledgeable and friendliest divemasters we have run into for some time. Plenty of dive time and the reefs are in very good shape. The bar in on the honor system and you just mark your card with whatever beverages you use and self serve guarantees satisfaction. We would have enjoyed more interaction with the managers who did not share meals with us, but were certainly very nice to talk with. The resort was very accomodating about setting up tours and just adding to our tab at the end of the week so we had only one bill and didn't have to worry about money. If you are looking for a luxury 5 star don't bother. If you are looking for comfortable, friendly comraderie and excellent diving, then this is your place. My husband and I as well as other dive club members with us agree that we would definitely go back!

Room Tip: They all face the water on a big veranda porch and seemed to be equally as nice. There is a separate...
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  • Stayed October 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Diane P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (24)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Kelowna, Canada
Level Contributor
109 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 72 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 January 2013

As it happened, travelling to Roatan for a dive vacation netted us so much more. Though it was considered the rainy season, we were there for the diving and not the sun. It ended up that the other expected guests' flights were cancelled so we had the whole place to ourselves.

Accommodations are simple yet comfortable. To help keep systems running you are requested to put 'all' sanitary paper in the garbage and not down the toilet. The dining facility is family style with plenty of variety and excellent flavours. Never left the table hungry. My wife being a 'picky' vegetarian, met with the cook, explained her preferences and was treated like her daughter (very well) at every meal. There is a nice little bar & patio area with an 'honor bar' system for beverages. Before arriving, my wife informed the owner of my preference of local quality rum. Even though I was the only one drinking, he had a 40oz bottle of Flor de Caña for me to enjoy. Nice! Tried several of the local beers too, but like sticking to the rum.
The dive boat and master were at our disposal. Every dive site was less than 15 minutes travel and always rewarded with spectacular sea life. You could dive from shore as much as you wanted, plus they have a turtle sanctuary at the shoreline with excellent snorkeling. We were so spent at from the boat diving, that we never felt the need to do a shore dive.

We took in a shark dive. A must do!!! No cage, just you and nature. It was the most peaceful feeling, entering the water and seeing 8 or more 8' Reef sharks swimming around. Once we were in location, they were swimming among us freely, then getting busy with the chum bucket. Fantastic experience.

A former Canadian and new friend lives at the north end, meeting up with us and providing a first hand tour of the island. Interesting to see the real estate and commercial development, the new and growing cruise ship port and the NW end beach development. Even started tempting me with great potential job offers. Traveled around to some of the other resort locations, lizard type zoo area, golf course development and lots of local scenery.

Of all our trips, all my sampling and tastings, I would have to say that the Flor de Caña is the nicest, smoothest BEST RUM I've tried. The 10 & 18 yr old are spectacular, and if you can find it the Centenario 21 won't disappoint. I tried some there, but have yet to crack the bottle I brought home.

If you are looking for a very quiet dive trip, with very rewarding dive experiences, simple but comfortable accommodations at a friendly island / country location - you can't go wrong. We will return one day for a repeat of the hospitality at The Reef House.

Azul is the on site black cat and there's a friendly (watch your fingers) parrot.

  • Stayed October 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Ynotdive
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Winfield, Illinois
Level Contributor
109 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 57 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 January 2013

People really need to read reviews before they go places. Also spending time reviewing a resorts website is truly helpful! This is my opinion of RHR and if I am going to take the time to write it it will be everything I can think of, so sorry for the length in advance.

This is a dive resort, repeat dive resort. It is on the east end of the island where some of the most stunning walls around Roatan are seen. The east end by far has hands down the best dive site in the world. I have been many places, but even those who have dove truly all over the world said this side of the island is not to be missed!

I will start with the diving. Daveet, is an amazing DM and has a keen eye to everything around him. Thanks to him we saw so may really cool things we would have missed for sure. Every dive we saw something new to us. Again, it was walls walls walls. And while that statement may make one think "boring", it is not in the least bit repetitive. We never dove the same site twice. With the exception of the night dive, which was even more amazing at night! The walls are seer drop offs with cascading over hangs and tons of fish and small creatures! So an abundant of scorpion fish and toad fish! Not at all the over stock of lion fish like you see on the west end. Saw a huge beautiful nurser shark under an over hang!

The reef system is in beautiful shape. No damaged corals from being over dove. And much more colorful than on the west end. Even the variety of corals differ from the west end. Healthy, stunning and so colorful! The dives are all about 70ft up to 20ft where you easily burn off your safety stop time while continuing to see so many things. I saw sea cucmbers and flounder while on the stops. Our dives were never shorter than 50 min dives with many running upwards of 60+ min. And on that note, I suck a lot of air and even found myself at 59min on most dives.

The DM Daveet and boat capt. Were helpful on and off the boat, they changed out our tanks before each dive and helped us on and off the boat. You rinse your own gear at the end of each day and they have storage cubby's for your fins and regs with drying hangers for your BC and wetsuits. They lock the entire room at the end of the day. So there is no lugging your gear each day from your room. In the morning they have everything set up for you for your first dive of the day. Btw, I like their goo stuff for your mask, it works great!

I loved our SI between dives! They would toodle around and sight see some of the area along shore so you could see more of the coastal island. On that note, the East end is beautiful! So quiet and serene. You dive some sites up by Port Royal and it is just the most amazing part of the island! We only saw another dive boat once the whole week!

The dive boats are great! Both are easy on and easy off. Both have covers and are very comfortable! You never felt like cattle. I personally preferred the smaller boat, it had a huge platform and when you came up, you inflate your bc and they haul it up on the boat for you. One fin kick and you are sitting comfortably on the huge platform where you can take off your fins easily. The other boat has a platform and also a large ladder.

The resort is easy going, The check in process was nothing more than, here's your room make yourself comfortable, our place is yours. Some reviewer mentioned that the staff disappeared during the day. This place is like staying with friends. The staff works hard for you, but after they are done they spend time with their families til they come back. If you ever needed anything, it was available. We needed more tp, the storage closet was open for anything you need. Need more towels? Go grab some. Davey and Dave are in and out during the day. There was nothing we needed during the time some one was away. We were busy relaxing and having a few drinks at the end of the day. Making your drinks was easy and personally I really liked the set up. Most resorts charge an astronomical amount for their drinks, just to have them watered down. Their drink prices were reasonable and it was fun making new concoctions! It is like your own personal wet bar! Each meal had pitchers of juice or ice tea for everyone.

The meals were great! Large portions (if you are not real hungry make sure to let them know and they will make the portion more to your appetite. I hate wasting food! They make popcorn and homemade cookies every day and if you want a quick P&J to tie you over you could help yourself. We stopped at a grocery store after leaving the airport to pick up snacks and such, not a bad idea if you get the munchies often. We ended up giving all of what we bought to a young girl and her father after we left. We never needed it.

The grounds are well kept, there are hammocks and a bean bag toss game in the main area. There is a lounge area with books and books about reef life! Everyone just did their own thing and hung out when not diving. We had a great bunch of divers and learned about new places to visit and dive. Nice people! At dinner, you all eat at a large table together, I liked that, I am a social person and love hearing everyone's stories! If you prefer to eat alone, the table is big enough to just scooch down and be alone. Or I am sure you could eat in the lounge are to. Point is, is that you are not forced together or made to do anything you don't want to.

There are cozy lounge chairs up on the deck or down along the "pond area" if you want to be alone. The rooms are really nice! They have a choice of different rooms to pick from. 2 are really big with 2 queen size beds, Some are great for single travelers or couples. We had the last room out over the "pond" facing the ocean! I miss it terribly right now! It has a queen size bed only so it was perfect for my husband and I. We had a little deck for ourselves and just fell asleep with the sound of the ocean all night! Yes, you do put all your TP in a garbage can next to your toilet. It is removed everyday. They are in a less developed area than the busy west end, but that is what makes this place so much more appealing. Each room has A/C but we never used it once while we stayed. The other rooms may need it more since we had the breezes from the ocean to cool us.

The pond area is a wonderful place to snorkel and take a dip. But wear booties, it is not a pool, it has living creatures and I personally would treat it like the ocean itself, touch nothing destroy nothing. The highlight each night with everyone was shinning a flashlight in the pond after dinner! There are octopus and lobster and brittle stars all over. Along the dock past the fence we saw several scorpion fish and sea cucmbers! Almost every night we saw something different appear!

A father and daughter (age 11) did a snorkel trip off the dock and said it was amazing! The dock is only about 50-100ft away from the wall drop off. They said they saw so many colorful fish! I was way to exhausted after diving all day to do much more than have a perfectly made drink and soak in the view!

Now some details about the resort in general. It is on an island. It is in the middle of a quaint fishing community with extremely friendly people! Dave is more than happy to take you any place you would like, some couples took the ride to walk around Oak Ridge a bit. They said it was wonderful. Small village, with local people selling trinkets to make money.
We did the shark dive last week, they dropped us off and picked us up. We did the submarine trip and they made sure we got picked up and brought back even though it was a late hour by the time we got done.

There is no internet, I did not need it, but others might. Davey had his own personal computer there for anyone who needed the internet. I checked e-mails once and awhile and talked to my son 2 times just to say hi. They have an internet "stick" that they were more than happy to let you use. We lost power off and on during the week. I think someone said they do this now and again, mostly at night, when they are working on it or sometimes just to conserve. They have battery lanterns in each room for those times. It was never out very long, and since we brought candles we never missed it when it was out. I suggest you bring candles, it helped.

I miss everyone we have met, everyone was just so great and fun to hang with. I would repeat RHR anytime I can. RHR is not going to have live bands every night, they don';t have swim up pool bars and they don't have tacky "for the tourist" fake hula dancers. What they do offer, is great dive sites, cozy beds, great meals and a wonderful view. We couldn't have asked for more.

A few things you need to do if you go. 1st one up plugs in the coffee pot! It is ready to go just plug it in. Turn on the hot water pot for those who like tea. Let azul (the cat) in so she can eat, lol. The staff does this all, but it was an on going joke since we all woke up early everyday and wanted coffee!

mi casa es su casa was the feeling at RHR!

Room Tip: we really loved the last room over the pond area. bigger room with cross breezes and a wonderful vi...
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  • Stayed January 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Skimmer2065
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Blue Mound Il
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 November 2012

This was my second two week stay at the Reef House. It's a dive resort. Don't expect a five star hotel, but good rooms, great food and super folks. Best value for a complete diving experience. I went there to dive and diving I did. Three dives a day off the boat with plenty to see. And then all the shore diving your computer will allow. David, the dive master, is terrific a spotting the minute details you can easily miss. Davey and the other David, who run the resort and cook on the side, my made land stay relaxing, tasty and fun. Yes, that's three Davids so the pressure is off to remember names of the important people. I was there with my dive buddy and two couples the first week and then a group of guys from North Dakota, a couple of doctors and another couple. We had a ball. Lots of photographers in the group so we had slide shows nightly of the days work. I'm already planning my next years return trip. Hats off to a great time...

  • Stayed October 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Kent B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mission Viejo
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 November 2012

6 of us (3 Couples) and 4 other guests were at the Reef House Oct 13 - 20. Without exception we had a great time. The Diving, the food, the other guests, and the staff were all absolutely great. We knew from others reviews that this is not a 5 star resort, and so our expectations were realistic. Having said that however I would not change a thing. We really enjoyed the "being away from it all" and really never felt like we were doing without anything. Dave, Davey, David, Daveet, Choco, Jennie and Ruth were all friendly and a lot of fun. The rooms were clean and comfy, was able to have a hot shower and the A/C worked, so what else do you need? I really would not call this 'roughing it' at all. Give em a try, if you have the right expectations and right attitude this place is really a blast.

  • Stayed October 2012, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Luv2DiveMissionViejo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Canada
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 October 2012

Diving is absolutely great, dive master and captain are very-very good. Dive boat in a very good shape with enough space for 10-12 people. This is for the sea part. On the on the hand; on the land I found things to be, how should I say lack of personality and in some instances service. We did not feel welcomed. What can be a personality issue on my side, however I want to say just don’t expect much. Grounds over all tiny and there is no place to go. And if you want to relax on the chaise long next to the bar, it is hard if there are people at the bar and especially when somebody is smoking. Entrance to the “pool” is barely safe as the last step is over two feet high, which make exit difficult, same with the step at the end of the pier. Gardener finally cleans the derby thrown be the sea by 9 in the morning so most of it you enjoy nice view of cans and leaves. The food is OK but mostly fried, salad may be once a week, fruit we had to nag for. Room is clean and hot water is ok. In conclusion, I will go back to the east side to dive, will not go back to Reef House.

  • Stayed September 2012, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Strelitz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Roscoe, Illinois
Level Contributor
49 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 October 2012

We just returned from home after spending a week at Reef House Resort. The diving is really great. The dive master Da-vid is the best. Each one of our dives was full of things to see. There really is little to do except dive and relax. The staff was efficient and rooms were clean. The food was very good. The rooms are modest with 2 beds, ceiling fan, air conditioner, TV, WiFi and private bathroom. The only downside is the No-See-Ums. This is to be expected anywhere in the Caribbean this time of year. So...If you want a new challenge and plenty of great diving," off the beaten path" you should consider Reef House.

  • Stayed October 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank ROSE M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Reef House Resort

Property: Reef House Resort
Address: Oak Ridge Cay, Roatan, Honduras
Region: Honduras > Bay Islands > Roatan
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#17 Top resorts Hotel in Roatan
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Number of rooms: 11
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
REEF HOUSE IS A SMALL, FAMILY OWNED RESORT, ORIGINALLY STARTED IN THE 60'S AS A FISHING LODGE. We are a small operation & can cater to all sorts of individuals & small groups. We almost always have at least a room or two to spare, so email us & let us know what interests you or any question on your mind. We'll get back to you and are happy to be flexible & make your experience here your "Best Vacation Yet!" Terri H. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Reef House Hotel Roatan
Reef Hotel Roatan
Reef Resort Roatan
Reef House Resort Roatan, Honduras - Bay Islands

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