Wanted to share our thoughts on our stay so people know before they go. Ambergris Caye and San Pedro are not your high end resort areas, so expectations should be lower than normal for most resorts/hotels on the island. However, from looking at the photos we saw on the Ramon's website and seeing the description of amenities, we thought things would be much better than they were. There were many pros and cons so will try to describe those below.
We booked the ocean front "Guest Suite", but frankly, "Suite" should NOT be in the name or the description. This was about a 12x12 Room with two small chairs, no nightstands (my wife used her suitcase for a nightstand), and only three small drawers and a very small closet for clothes. The desk was connected to the three drawers and only had a short stool, so really not there as a place to work. There is almost no room to even store luggage, so the room became even smaller. We asked if we could change to a real suite, but were told they were sold out (other guests said they were not).
The bathroom was very small with only a sink and almost no counter space, and the toilet almost always kept running after flushing. Had to replace the small refrigerator (on the floor) and have the sink fixed as both did not work. We were told there was a safe in the room then when someone came to show us they said they were wrong about that. So valuables had to be stored at the front desk. Not sure why, but housekeeping seemed to show up in the middle of the afternoon and not in the late morning which we are accustomed to when people are out on the water or beach.
I better say a few good things here before I get carried away. The grounds are kept nice and the staff is friendly and helpful. They quickly picked us up at the airport. We did not spend much time on the beach but there are chairs and loungers for hotel guests. We only saw one person in the pool all week. The bartender was good and there were good drink choices. Food at the restaurants was pretty good - definitely not 5 star, but pretty good, although a bit pricey. And it is very nice to have the restaurant and bar right there. We selected the prepaid breakfast plan and believe that was a good value since you can order anything off the menu and most items were pretty good. You can get a massage there. The pier, dive shop and boats were very good, but believe they are independently owned. Three trips a day for diving/snorkeling and many choices for activities on the island or the mainland. Some people snorkelled off the Ramon pier and liked it. We did go diving and the team we had there was very good, so highly recommend them.
OK, back to a few negatives. Internet service was frustrating. The first day I tried to log in numerous (over 40) times without success. Called the front desk and they said my laptop might have a problem (it did not). Called a second time and they said they might need to reboot their router but they did not know when they could do that. Then brought my laptop to the front desk and of course they were able to log in. Then back to the room and no access. Went back to the front desk and then one person admitted that Internet service in the rooms is not good or not available. It worked fine around the bar but was fairly noisy there. Yes, the planes get going every morning around 6:40- 7am, and yes, you can hear them clearly in an ocean front room. It was not a big problem for us, but you do hear them every morning and everytime they land and take off, every hour. Other than the planes, the area was pretty quiet.
Other issues, the shower is very small and the curtain hangs about 3-4 inches on the bottom of the tub. I had to duck to get in the shower. Hot water takes about 5 minutes to get going. If you rent a golf cart from the hotel be aware these are all battery powered, so much slower and less powerful than the other gas carts on the island. In fact, we barely made it up the bridge across the cut to the north side of the island. The bed has limited support as I seemed to have a backache every morning. One big item was my wife found a few tiny bugs between the sheets. Apparently they bite as she was bitten by something one night with swelling. You can get ice and water daily from the bar.
So, some negatives and some positives. This island has plenty of choices at various price points. We did look at others while there and frankly most are of similar quality, so keep your expectations fairly low. If you want a top resort on this island you will have to pay much more, but maybe that is worth it to you. Victoria House is one of the best around with a great beach, but a ways south of town and pretty pricey. The Phoenix is a great location in the heart of town, but again very pricey. Personally, we like to stay a little closer to the restaurants/bars, etc., but quality of hotels/rooms goes down some, and noise levels could go up some, although size of rooms does get bigger which we like. All hotels/resorts have pros and cons so decide what is important to you, ask questions and try to get photos, and go with it. Just know that you probably cannot have it all. If you want a suite with a little more room at Ramon's select the Guest Suite which has a lot more room and we recommend since it is only $15 more per night.
We will probably not stay at Ramon's again, but it does have many good qualities (staff, dive shop, beach, etc.) and I know they get many repeat customers. If we do stay there again, we will be prepared, and will make sure the room we book really is a suite, with a lot more room.
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
February 8, 2013
Thank you for your comments on Trip Advisor and please allow us to provide some feedback which may be helpful. Over the past several months, Ramon's Village Resort has been in the process of upgrading each and every room at our resort to include new mattresses, bedspreads and sheets, new interior design features along with replacing all of the doors and windows in each thatched roof cabana. This process involves taking the room out of the reservation circuit while contractors upgrade each room and maintain a low profile so that our resort guests are not inconvenienced by the sounds that accompany the renovation work. In addition, we have ordered and installed in-room safes in almost every guest room with the balance of the safes being installed over the next week. In order to enhance our Internet wireless connectivity, we are also installing additional devices that boost receptivity across the entire resort with that work being concluded over the next two days.
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Our Pineapples restaurant has added many new specialty items and if you haven't dined with us lately, you should take the opportunity to try some of our signature items including steak, fish or lobster on a hot cooking stone served at your table and the delightful Pineapple Boat filled with exotic delicacies. All of our dishes are prepared fresh daily and are moderately priced with guests enjoying a stunning view of the azure blue waters of the Caribbean right from their table. Chefs Rommy Kie and Ronnie Kie craft delicious and wonderfully presented breakfast, lunch and dinner creations each day certain to please the tastes of even the most stringent food critics.
Our staff is committed to providing you an unforgettable vacation experience in an authentic thatched roof cabana surrounded by native flora and fauna. Our resort is not a concrete box with identically decorated rooms. When you visit Ramon's Village Resort, you are stepping back into the Caribbean of fifty years ago albeit with some modern features that make life more comfortable. Our location right on the beach near downtown San Pedro makes it convenient for guests to experience Belize and the entire island of Ambergris Caye right from our resort. Our electric golf carts, which are available on a rental basis, provide ease of access all across the island, and are emission free and quiet. In addition, Ramon's Village Divers is a PADI 5 Star IDC resort with six dive boats and the most experienced dive masters on the island. Combine all of these features with our Beach Spa, incredible pool, fully stocked Gift Shop and the renowned Purple Parrot and you have a resort from which you can experience all of the wonders of Belize right from the doorsteps to your thatched roof cabana.
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.