Though this review is a little late in coming, (we visited for 3 weeks in Feb, 2013), we wanted to make sure we took the time to talk about our experience.
This was our first visit to Roatan, and we came as a family of 4, with our two children, ages 6 and 2. During our stay, two sets of grandparents and my adult sister joined us at different times during the trip.
First off I'd like to say that if this is your first time to the island, you will be awed by the setting. We have travelled quite extensively over the years, and this is the loveliest beach we have ever come across. I cannot tell you how many times I stood on the beach looking out at the white sand and the amazing colours in the bay and said, 'I can't believe this is real!!!' It is like something out of movie, or a photo from a calendar featuring tropical beaches of the world.
The West Bay beach area is home to about 15 smaller hotels and condo developments, and has a quaint, relaxed feel to it most of the time. Walking from one end of the beach to the other, takes about 15 minutes (with two children in tow), so we often did this several times a day.
This hotel's location on the beach is ideal, as it is pretty much dead center. There are several restaurants in either direction on the beach, as well as a small 'mall' located a block behind the hotel, which had a couple of cute shops, coffee shops, an ATM, and a few other recommended restaurants. This is also where you would go to catch a taxi if you wish to go into town.
To be completely honest in my assessment of this hotel, at this point its target market is clearly couples and single adult travellers who have come on an all-inclusive package. In truth, this can be said about many of the hotels in West Bay. We had initially hoped to be part of the all-inclusive as well, but were told when we booked the 2 bedroom villa, that this was not an option.
Breakfast, (and a great breakfast it was, with lots of choices and fantastic fresh fruits every day), was included in our stay, but beyond that, we either cooked in our room or ate out at restaurants in the area. Roatan is much newer to tourism than say Hawaii or Mexico, (one of the main reasons it appealed to us), but as a result, this hotel and others in the area, weren't necessarily designed with young travellers in mind. For instance, the pools were too deep for younger children, we didn't see things like high chairs in the restaurants, etc.
That being said, our kids had a fabulous time!! The staff were warm and welcoming and treated us and our little ones with kindness and care. The beach is absolutely ideal for children, and with almost no surf, we felt very comfortable lounging under a palapa, while our 6 and 2 year olds ran in and out of the clear, bathtub warm water. We spent hours on the beach every day, which was exactly what we had hoped for. Our 6 year old tried snorkelling for the first time, and loved it!
The two bedroom villa we stayed in was fantastic, and well provisioned. The kitchen had a large fridge, freezer, microwave, stove and all the dishes we could need - (except for wine glasses - but hopefully the hotel has resolved this :). The bottom level of the villa offered the kitchen and living room. Up a small stair case was a bedroom with two single beds and a bathroom, (perfect for the kids), and up a larger staircase was the master bedroom (king bed), second bathroom and decks with views to die for. The only issue we had, and we have addressed this with the staff at hotel and I wouldn't be surprised if it has already been dealt with, is that there is a large drop-off from the landing at the top of the stairs by the master bedroom, which is a real problem with little children. It would be an easy fix, with an additional piece of wood put below the top of the railing, and as I said, I'm sure the staff will have looked into this.
At night, before dinner, we would make a margarita or pour a glass of wine, and bring everyone up to the balcony off the master bedroom and watch the sunset. It was phenomenal, and I have been missing it ever since. In regards to cooking meals, groceries in town are very reasonable and there are at least three large supermarkets, in which you can find just about everything you need. *Make sure you bring ID with you to the store, if you are paying with your credit card.*
Eating out is a bit of an adventure, and lots of fun. If you are eating out with kids, we HIGHLY recommend that you get to the restaurants no later than 5:30, before most other diners arrive. If you leave it much later, you may find, as we did on several occasions, that you are waiting an hour or an hour and a half for food, which is a bit of a challenge with little people. (We finally broke down and brought the iPad to dinner with us towards the third week to put on a movie - I know, SAD - but it helped with the waiting and kept everyone at our table, and around our table, happy :). Also, during the second week of our stay at this hotel, they opened up a take-out pizza place, which was great, and offered a quick, easy meal which we could eat back at our room. On Monday nights, (I believe), they offered 2 for 1 pizzas, which were a great deal.
I cannot say enough about the staff at this hotel! They were fantastic, and lots of fun!! The wait staff at breakfast, the bar staff, the cleaning staff and the front desk staff were exceptional. The manager, (Harry?), would be seen many times a day checking on the hotel operations and making sure guests were being taken care of. We were glad we had a chance to meet him towards the end of our stay and tell him how happy we were with the lovely resort!! (And a special thanks to the security guard Juan, at the beach, who watched over us and our stuff daily).
*The only other thing I would mention is that if you are visiting as a couple, do choose the all-inclusive (or half board) as opposed to staying in a one bedroom suite to cook your meals. The kitchens are very basic in the suites, (as the two sets of grandparents were to discover) and are not really meant for cooking in. After my husband, kids and I left, my parents changed over to the all-inclusive and really enjoyed it. The dinners were served in a different place each night, and they loved the food, the ambiance and getting to meet other guests.
Lastly, I wanted to note that we had no problems or issues with safety or security at any point during our stay in Roatan - and we toured around the whole island more than once. Clearly we used common sense, and weren't wandering around downtown in the bar scene at 2:00 a.m., but we felt extremely comfortable at all times during our visit. We would bring young children back here without hesitation.
This a really good hotel, well on its way to becoming great. We would stay here again in a heart beat. Thank you to all the staff for our wonderful, wonderful stay. We miss Roatan and we miss the Paradise Beach Resort!!!!!!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Set in tropical gardens, the newly renovated Paradise Beach Hotel with direct access to the renowned West Bay Beach and only steps away from turquoise waters and world famous coral reef is a great family destination. With four restaurants, two swimming pools, fully equipped dive center and Gym, Paradise Beach Hotel has something for everyone. Roatan as a destination is renowned for its Dolphin attractions, world Class Golf Course, numerous outdoor activities and its close proximity to the USA with direct flight from Atlanta, Dallas, Houston, Miami and El Salvador. Come and join us for one of the most beautiful sunsets in the Caribbean. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
- TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Expedia, Hotels.com, Booking.com, TripOnline SA, Odigeo, Priceline, Agoda, Traveltool, S.L.U. and HotelQuickly so you can book your Paradise Beach Hotel reservations with confidence. We help millions of travellers each month to find the perfect hotel for both holiday and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
- Also Known As:
- Paradise Beach Club Hotel West Bay
- Paradise Beach Resort
- Paradise Beach Hotel Roatan, Honduras - West Bay