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Almond Beach Resort & Spa
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Reviews (552)
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Reviewed 13 May 2013

We stayed at Almond Beach/Jaguar Reef April 27- May 4, 2013 with our children, ages 14, 12,9, and 8 and my parents, in their 70's. The resort is a little worn, but very very clean, the staff are warm and we felt very comfortable here. The tours were challenging, educational and fun (ATM Caves, the Mayan Temples, zip lining, snorkeling) and our guides were fantastic (Cippy, Gabby, Nick & Terry). Though the tours were a little much for my mom, they were awesome for the kids. The local town is developing and small, but if you enjoy being part of the local culture (as opposed to the big resort feel), Hopkins is a great place to be. Bikes are free to guests and we really enjoyed following the dirt roads and exploring the area around Jaguar Reef. The food at Jaguar Reef ( and Almond Beach, as they share the same grounds), is very good, especially if you go with the local fare, which we enjoyed. You need to take a boat to get to any good snorkeling, but the guys who run the snorkeling trips are very knowledgeable, we enjoyed the boat ride, and the kids loved all the guides had to share with them about local sea life. We really enjoyed our stay at AB/JR and our second trip to Belize. If you are an adventurous family, go for it!

Room Tip: We booked a two bedroom suite - the second bedroom was a little dank, but just fine for kids.Our room was open and beautiful. We had the Mahogany room and suite.
  • Stayed: May 2013, travelled with family
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2  Thank WF E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 13 May 2013

It may sound a little overboard - "Paradise" and a rating of 5 stars... but BELIZE IT!

I feel as though I need to dispute a few of the "mediocre" reviews concerning the food. We are Canadian, we travel regularly, and go to nicer places - and we are gluten-free. The menu is laid out ahead for the week, so you know what to expect. The food at Almond Beach was extremely good and we had no gluten issues. Was it gourmet? No, but it was definitely on the fringe of gourmet. Honestly, after a day of excursions or baking in the sun, sometimes, you just want real food. This is what we ate every night - real food. The menu has a selection of 3-4 each of appetizers, main courses and deserts, including vegetarian options. Every single dish was flavourful, well prepared and served quickly. We ate beef tenderloin, curry vindaloo, cauliflower soup, stuffed zucchini, stuffed eggplant and chicken stuffed with goat chese with THE BEST marinara sauce I have ever had in my life - and I'm ITALIEN. Everyehing had a Belizian twist, but was by no means unrecognizable. Something for every palate.

Breakfast had over a dozen selections, including domestic and "American" choices and a continental buffet breakfast. You could choce from sandwiches, to omelettes, to waffles and pancakes. We aren't big lunch eaters, and didn't find we needed it after such a big breakfast. But, the lunch menu had a comparable selection to dinner, with salads, burgers and sandwiches of all kinds. And, BONUS, it can be served to you anywhere on the resort, including at the pool. We more than pleased with every single thing we ate. Even the snacks on the excursions were made fresh by the kitchen, including home baked muffins and (gluten free) granola bars. The resort even provided me with the recipe to take home.

If you want to eat off resort, there are a ton of selections in town, from Pizza/Italien to local food, seafood, Indian even a hot stone restaurant.

As for the rest of the resort... Almond Beach is linked to Jaguar Reef, in case you didn't know. But, that made no difference in what amenities and food or room selection. We were on the beach and pool package (included our meals) and we also bought the Adventure Package. The Advendure Package consists of 2 Standard and one Premium excursion for 285$. Certainly well worth it. (We did the birdwatching tour/riberboat cruise, the ziplining and the Barrier Reef snorkeling tour - all EXCELLENT, guides were great)

As the resort is built right on the beach, on the sand itself, he grounds were in a constant state of primping and sweeping but there was nothing in disrepair and no maintenance being done. The sand between the casitas was always raked in a lovely pattern. As it can be quite breezy at night, the beach was raked every morning. The resort is one of the largest on that section of beach but did not feel overcrowded. There were a lot of guests, yes - but when everyone is out on excursions, you have the pool and beach to yourself. There is never a shortage of beach chairs and shaded areas. Plenty of hammocks as well, even on the porch of the casitas, and even a volleball court. The usual Kayaks were available, as were bikes to go into Hopkins, which you should do. Or walk accross the street from the resort and rent a golf cart for 20$/2 hrs and get your hot sauce and souvenier shopping done. The priices in the supermarkets in Hopins, and even in the resort gift shop are MUCH better than at the airport.

As for the room... lovely bed, comfy pillows. Cleaning service came every day - if you wanted. Great big tiles shower with lots of space in the bathroom and living area. Water pressure and temperature was great. And, the room was always a comfortable temperature with the ceiling fan and air conditioner. Big wall mounted flat screen TV, fridge/freezer, water cooler and penty of furniture to sit on. No issues whatsoever. Were there "critters" in the room? Sure there were. A few harmless flying bugs, one pretty big cricket and a timy baby Gecko. Honestly, in a resort that is built with clay and thatch roofs and is in BELIZE, I would think it strange if I did not see one insect. My husband tried the spa services - a massage on the pier - and was impressed. Said it was comparable to ones back home.

Bottom line is this place is remote enough to be able to enjoy unspoiled beauty but has every single need and/or want addressed.The staff was always smiling and helpful. You never feel pressured to tip. We left something extra on our bill for Alex - our server in the dining room, and it was easy to do. The resort owners were around when we were there, even went on some of the excursions, they seem really hands on. Which may be why this place runs so smoothly.

Only things to be careful of are check out and planning your excursions. You have to stay on top of booking your excursions. The sign-up sheets go up the morning of the day before and sometimes fill up fast. However, some don't fill up fast, and if the minimum number of people don't sign up, they are cancelled. So, you have to keep an eye on the forms, especially if there is one you have your heart set on. My advice is check in the morning, and sign up for the one you want. Check in part way through the day and maybe even again at dinner, just in case you need to move your name from one list to another.

Lastly, the check-out and billing. Almond Beach uses a manual "chit" system. So, for every food/beverage/spa service you use, you have to sign a chit. Make sure you sign every one and confirm your room/suite name/number, because that is how they build your final bill. We had a few charges that were not ours. That being said, they were fixed promptly and our bill was regenerated. Just give yourself a few extra minutes when you are checking out, just to go over things.

Would I go back? YES, in a heartbeat!

Room Tip: Really, I can't imagine there being any bad rooms. We were in a unit with 6/7 rooms. 2 floors. We were still 100 feet from the beach, and could still hear the waves crashing at night. As long as you have a beachfront room, you will be happy. As I mentioned, the entire resort is on the sand.
  • Stayed: April 2013, travelled as a couple
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Thank Molly4747
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 May 2013

My boyfriend and I spent 5 nights in their sister resort "The Sleeping Giant" and were upgraded to the River House, absolutely amazing and very well organized. Then after that we stayed at the Almond Beach Resort, which was a huge downer after having a beautiful 2 bed 2 bath house in the jungle with all meals included. When we checked in we thought we would be given a really nice room at least, not so, it was terrible and adjoining another room which we heard everything. After 2 nights in this very depressing room we were upgraded to a Cabana on the beach, what a difference from the crappy room we first got. The location was beautiful, the food was terrible and we ate breakfast at Janet's across the road as she also rented out golf carts that can take you into Hopkins. There were a couple of nice restaurants the "Baracuda" which was a short walk from our place if you walked along the beach you came across "Hamanasi" a beautiful resort that had the best food, we ate there every night and it was worth every penny. The staff at Hamanasi were wonderful and if we were to return to Belize, this is the kind of resort I would stay at.
Anyway back to Almond Beach...We tried to arrange horseback riding and other day trips, but for some reason they couldn't figure stuff out. The resort itself was clean, and our room opened right up to the ocean. Maid service was terrible, very slow and we would be out and about for a few hours come back and it still was cleaned. With the hardwood floors and sand it's not pleasant to walk bare foot on. Oh, the bar guy was very rude and when we asked if they were serving lunch by the pool his reply was "haven't I been doing lunch all week!" Yes, I was taken aback at his rudeness....all in all we both had a wonderful time at Almond Beach, but will not recommend it to any of our friends. The staff were not as friendly as Sleeping Giant. The only person who was really nice was Corrina, one of the managers.

Stayed: April 2013, travelled as a couple
Thank Paula H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 April 2013

My husband and I visited Almond Beach for our honeymoon, and not only did we love Belize (our first time visiting) but absolutely fell in love with this boutique resort! It is very small, so it almost feels like your own private vacation, but there are still enough people around to socialize and mingle if you want. The hotel offers excursions from their location (snorkeling, mayan ruins, cave tubing, zip lining, etc) but we got the package that was half beach/half jungle and had to go on our prepaid excursions from Sleeping Giant (their sister resort/jungle location).
The staff...managers, front desk, waitresses, cooks, and bartenders are incredibly friendly and work very hard to make sure you feel like your on a luxurious yet cultural vacation. I tried their authentic food when it was offered on their menu, and it was always delicious!!!
I also like that the hotel has help-yourself ammenities...kayaks, hammocks, bikes, and books to read/games. One day my husband and I borrowed the hotel's beach cruisers (bikes) to ride into Hopkins village. So fun!

Room Tip: Although Jaguar Reef is on the same grounds as Almond Beach, I thought that Almond Beach's rooms were nicer. Beachfront rooms have their own private outdoor shower!
  • Stayed: April 2013, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank amorousa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 28 April 2013

We stayed a week in mid-March with our family of four including two boys (14 & 9). Everyone had a fantastic time! Hopkins is a perfect location for both a beach and inland adventure vacation. Note that it is a quiet village - not a tourist party location. We stayed in a beachfront casita just yards from the beach. Beautiful view from the porch on the sand. The room was very nice with a king bed, small table, couch and large bathroom. Both indoor and outdoor shower, double sinks. Our casita was right next to the pool and we were worried about the noise at night but everything was completely quiet by 8pm. The resort grounds are immaculately cared for and cleaned/raked each morning. The ocean at the resort is very mild, sometimes smooth as a lake in the mornings. Both pools were very nice. Hotel staff could not have been more friendly or helpful. Anything we needed was immediately taken care of. We took a number of tours from the hotel (Mayan ruins, zipline, Monkey River, cave tubing) and had fantastic guides. We also took a daylong snorkeling/fishing trip. We used the kayaks and bicycle at the resort several times. The road to the hotel is gravel so bike riding can be a challenge. Hopkins is about a mile away and has a number of good restaurants. We had good experiences at Driftwood Pizza, Love on the Rocks, Iris' and Innie's. The hotel will drive you to Hopkins for dinner and the resaturants will call for them to pick you up when finished. Plan on a couple hours for dinner - service is not quick but we found the food and service fantastic. From the hotel we walked on the beach to Chef Rob's and Barracudas and had great food as well. Make reservations for both. We were concerned about sand flies and mosquitos after reading other reviews. During our time there, we had very little issues. We did bring bug spray and used liberally. Had a few mosquitos come out at night but was never really a problem. It was the height of the dry season during our visit. Overall, we had a great time - beautiful beach and fun inland activities. One note- very few locations take credit cards (the few that did seemed to take Visa/Mastercard more often than AMEX). The hotel website said they would cash traveller's checks so I brought some cash and a significant amount of traveller's checks. Once I arrived I found it was very difficult to get the hotel to cash the checks and no other locations took them. I ended up getting enough checks cashed to get through the week but I encourage you to bring plenty of cash. US dollars are accepted everywhere.

  • Stayed: March 2013, travelled with family
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2  Thank JimmyRed005
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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