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“Great wedding location!” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Portofino

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Portofino
3.0 of 5 Resort   |   6 Miles North | PO Box 36, San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize   |  
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5TH NIGHT FREE
Ranked #18 of 55 hotels in San Pedro
Abington, Massachusetts
1 review
“Great wedding location!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 9, 2012

It makes me sad to write this review because it means that my vacation is over! Portofino hosted almost everyone who came to attend my wedding (22 people) for a week in October. The resort is small and it was the perfect size for our group. We took up almost half of the rooms and since it was their low-season there weren't too many other guests.

Before I get into the resort details, let me start with the wedding coordinator, Lorraine. I must have emailed her a million times throughout the year and she was always patient with me! She gave me a great group rate and set it up so that my guests could contact the resort to book their own rooms. She organized a welcome party, the wedding ceremony, wedding reception, reserved tours for us and made sure that we were always happy at the resort. She confirmed my appointments for my hair and makeup and accompanied us downtown to sign the wedding paperwork. During the wedding, she was there the entire time to make sure everything went well and if I had any concerns, she made sure that they got fixed.

During our stay, my husband and I stayed in the Honeymoon suite. It was really nice and decorated with fresh flowers. We had the best hammock on the resort (Besides the ones in the water!) There are no phones in the room and the internet connection was spotty so if we wanted to get in touch with our family, we'd just walk down to the bar or pool area and meet up with them. It was actually fun to not be wired for the week and we still knew where we could find everyone! If you have a group here, I definitely recommend that everyone stay here. The couple of people who stayed other places felt disconnected and never knew what was going on. My sister actually had a room on the other side of the island. Once she got in, she cancelled her room and moved here. The beach was raked everyday. The pool was a nice temperature. We got to use the free kayaks and go snorkeling at Mexico rocks. I liked that the beach was private, unlike some of the other big resorts downtown. Unfortunately, the trip on the watertaxi into town was very long. The resort has a trip or two into town each day that you can ride for free but the watertaxi was $11 per person. If you have a group of people, have the hotel call you a private boat. It costs the same and you don't have to make a bunch of stops before you reach your destination. We didn't figure this out until half-way through the trip! The hotel took care of everything we needed while we were there including booking a bunch of us massages and tours. The bartenders, Orville and Rafael, were so much fun and made us anything that we wanted.

Our first dinner at the restaurant didn't go so great, but the rest of the week was better. Erwin made sure that we were happy. The filet mignon was awesome! And once I tried the chicken quesadilla, I ate it everyday for lunch! The appetizers for the welcome party were great and all of my guests loved the food at the wedding reception. Erwin added in Key Lime pie at the last minute and it was the best that I've ever had.

The setup for the wedding was beautiful. Lorraine let me pick and choose some features from other pictures to make it my own. She had my centerpieces made for me there. They added little details like a "Mr & Mrs" sign behind our seats and a "Happily ever after starts here" sign for the welcome party. They placed cute notes in all the guests rooms giving them the information about the wedding day.

Overall, we all loved the staff and the resort. All of my guests, even some who were hesitant to go all the way to Belize for my wedding, had the best time! Thank you for making my week amazing!

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
PortofinoBZ, Owner at Portofino, responded to this review, November 26, 2012
Weddings are special and we are happy to know that your special day was celebrated here at our resort. Thank you very much for the review. We are glad that the process of orgainizing your dream wedding was pleasant and that your were able to have great memories of your destination wedding in Belize!

It was a pleasure having all of your family and friends here as well and we hope to welcome you again one day...perhaps for your anniversary!! :)

All the best wishes in your new life as a married couple. May you have many wonderful years together!
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332 people have reviewed this hotel

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (82)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Charlotte, North Carolina
2 reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 27, 2012

We stayed 6 days at Portofinos. Our initial impression was that the room was beautiful, the staff was welcoming and the resort was very well kept, however the location was a little far from town and only accessible by boat. Although the website boasts a private boat to take you back and forth, these trips are very few and far between.
The restaurant was very pretty and we had no problem getting a table, however the food choices were mundane and the service was quite frankly awful, sometimes waiting 30 mins just for water.
The beach is non existent. There is no ocean that you can swim in or even wade in. The ocean around the resort is full of sea grass and mud, but this is common for most of the island, and still gorgeous.
The bar tenders Rafeal and Orville really made our vacation. They were fun, entertaining and very attentive. We tried to book tours through the hotel with no luck. We were told that both tours we wanted we could not go on because there were not enough people. They only work with one company and if they cannot accommodate you then you are out of luck. We then booked our own tours and after that got the cold shoulder from the front desk for the remainder of out trip.
Nevertheless we made the best out of it and ended up having a great time. We met some fun people and saw some amazing things Thanks to Ricky and Leon at Seaduced Tours.

Room Tip: We stayed in the beach cabana's and although it is more like pool front cabana's they were s...
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
PortofinoBZ, Owner at Portofino, responded to this review, April 13, 2013
Thank you for your review. We are very sorry that your stay with us was somewhat disappointing. Our resort is located 6 miles north of San Pedro, as indicated in all our ads and our website. For most, our location is ideal as it allows our guests the peacefulness and privacy that cannot be found in San Pedro Town. For those wanting to be right in town, we can see how that would be a con for them. We do provide free service to town to all of our guests, whenever we have a boat going in for arrivals and departures. There is also a private company that offers water taxi services that go by every two hours for those that need to go into town.

We do not conduct our own tours, but pride ourselves in using select tour operators as there are certain standards and requirements that they need to comply with, for us to use them. Licenses, insurance and reputation are very important, as our guest safety is a priority. It is not that we are setting any limitations, but we want to be confident and have a peace of mind whenever we send our guests out on tours. Yes, we can agree that there are sometimes when a tour does not get the minimum number or guests required, therefore they do not get confirmed. We apologize that we did not get the trips you were interested in confirmed in time. We are also sorry if our staff was inappropriate in anyway and we will definitely look into this. We do have a great team and if they behaved in this manner then of course, that is unacceptable, and we will ensure that no one else will experience this again.

We are happy that despite your disappointments, you still had a great time in Belize.
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Glendale
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 23, 2012 via mobile

My husband and I stayed w the honeymoon package. It is expensive for sure but the honeymoon package seemed like best fit for a couple getaway. We got the cheapest room do it was like a room cut in half. When we first arrived I was upset at how tiny the room was for its price, just enough for a bed two chairs a tv and bathroom. Never stayed in such a small room but it was decorated very nicely and romantically w flowers in a vase, flowers even in the toilet which made me laugh and the cleaning was great. Portofino is a very nice little secluded place. It's not a huge resort its private and yes each room gets a hammock which I loved. The beach was beautiful and nice with the warm ocean. The portofino restaurant was overly priced and not that great. Easier to take the boat to town and eat some local food especially Lilly's! We ate there a lot and loved the conch soup. The boat driver was nice and friendly. (you have to take boats to get anywhere on the island from portofino so make sure u check in what time they are leaving if u want to go to town and sometimes it's not always right on time) the activities by portofino were great! I enjoyed the romantic dinner on the pier a lot one of my favorite nights while at the resort. Def reccommend visiting the blue hole! This is a quiet little secluded place so if you are a party animal maybe this isn't right for you but of you want a great time w just the people you came w then definitely this is your place. Staff was nice and friendly. I'd come here again when I can afford it and have finished visiting other places. The managers even have us drinks bc they were holding us up from getting back to the resort. Very nice couple.

  • Stayed November 2011
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
PortofinoBZ, Owner at Portofino, responded to this review, November 15, 2012
Thank you very much for your response. We are happy to hear that your overall experience with your stay with us was pleasurable and that you would come back again. Our beach cabanas are duplexes, but are still very nice. For more privacy, we would reccommend our VIP Suites as these are very spacious and they stand alone. Our sincerest apologies if your experience at the restaurant was not up to expectations, but we are pleased to announce that we have made some great improvements within the last two weeks. We now have casual dining on our newly expanded terrace on the beach, and fine dining upstairs, for our guests' convenience.

We are glad that you enjoyed the location and privacy of our property and the warm hospitality of our staff, and we look forward to welcoming you once again when you come back to beautiful Belize!
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Brighton
Top Contributor
52 reviews 52 reviews
49 hotel reviews
Reviews in 48 cities Reviews in 48 cities
54 helpful votes 54 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 14, 2012

if you are after an exclusive yet down to earth place a get away from it all then this is your place. this resort is just a 15 minute boat ride from San Pedro, close enough to visit the mainland for the day if you want to see ruins but far enough away from the larger more less exclusive resorts closer to town. My highlights of Portofino was the exclusive location, the excellent food (try the Belizean Breakfast) and the closeness to the reef. We actually kayaked to the reef one day for some snorkeling less than 1km from the beach. There is also a snorkel/dive centre based from here for people that would like a more structured journey which we also did and very much recommended. exclusive yet down to earth are the key words here.

Room Tip: pay the extra money and stay in one of the suites, well worth the extra dosh!
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
PortofinoBZ, Owner at Portofino, responded to this review, October 25, 2012
Thank you very much for your review. We are delighted to hear that you were able to enjoy the exclusive location of our beach resort, our ammenities and the convenience of our dive shop.

Thank you for sharing your experience with other travelers. We hope to welcome you again to Portofino!
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Fayettville, GA
Contributor
19 reviews 19 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 27, 2012

This is a beautiful property, well run and the grounds are wonderfully manicured. The beach is lovely, with plenty of space to relax on lounges or perhaps a nap in the hammocks suspended over the water. At the end of the dock is easy access to sandy bottom clear water.
The pool is top notch, with adarondack chairs around and also available to sit in shallow end for total relaxation.
We ordered several items off lunch menu and enjoyed "icy cold" beers thanks to Orville.
We had dinner upstairs and the food was fabulous. The blue beef was great, we also enjoyed seafood pasta dish and lobster with a bottle of white wine. The evening was delightful, the breeze, the stars and the pretty setting.
The staff was always attentive, at poolside for drinks, generously mixed and also in resturant;
Orville always had a smile on his face and a joke to share, also some helpful island info.

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
PortofinoBZ, Owner at Portofino, responded to this review, October 12, 2012
Thank you very much for your review. We are very happy to hear that you thoroughly enjoyed the warm hospitality of our staff and the tranquil atmosphere at Portofino! We are always working to ensure preserve our little piece of paradise and it gives us great satisfaction to be able to share it with our guests. We hope to welcome you again in the not so distant future. Once again, thank you so much for sharing your experience with other travelers.
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San Diego, California
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 20, 2012

If you're considering staying at the Portofino and you don't have a stick up your butt, you will absolutely love it. My new wife and I stayed here for 7 days for our honeymoon and we literally enjoyed every minute! Portofino is a small intimate family-owned resort that is perfect for a romantic getaway. After arriving in San Pedro, we were picked-up at the airport by Mo, Portofino's boat captain. After a 2min taxi ride we were taken to a pier where we boarded a boat which took us north on a very scenic 15min ride up the coast to the Portofino. The key points to the Portofino include very well-kept grounds, beautiful rustic thatched-roof suites, nice pool, delicious restaurant, you can walk barefoot anywhere including the bar, and a very friendly staff. We opted for a tree-top suite which was roomy with a large deck with table, chairs, and a hammock. Restaurant food is top-notch and service is excellent, however prices are a little high. And if you don't eat in town there is no other choice. Lounging beach side you feel as though you're on your own private beach, quiet and relaxing! The staff are amazingly friendly and helpful. Although Portofino is a 15-20 minute boat ride from the center of town, we managed to avoid having to take the $11 US (per person per way) water taxi for most of our trip by working around Mo's schedule. Which has a daily last-run from town back to Portofino at 6:30pm. Some of the most fun we had at the resort was when we would grab masks and snorkels which are provided by the resort and snorkel in the chest-deep water right off their own pier. On our last night we were served a complimentary honeymoon dinner which we opted to have served on our own private deck. We found our deck decorated beautifully, including white table cloth, candle-light, and flowers. As romantic as it gets! Overall an excellent experience and highly recommended!

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
PortofinoBZ, Owner at Portofino, responded to this review, September 22, 2012
Thank you very much for taking the time out to share your honeymoon experience. We are delighted to hear that you enjoyed your stay with us. We wish you both many wonderful years to come and hope to welcome you again someday!
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Pearland, Texas
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 13, 2012

Almost dont want to write a review not sure if I want everyone to know about a little slice of heaven.Well here is goes arriving in San Pedro by water taxi we were greeted then walked to another pier where a girfriend and I were wisked off to the North End of Ambergris Caye in the resorts own private boat.When we arrive we were greeted by the staff at the pier and walked to the lobby . We were then greeted by the bartendar also who gave us some fruity alcohol beverage it was tasty beyond belief There she sat us down and went over the ameneties as far as were the resteraunt was where the bar was. She told us we had free use of the kyaks.She had the biggest smile then said " NOW YOUR VACATION STARTS". We were walked to our room everthing the pictures have on the internet are true pictures no false advertisment there. I will aslo add pictures. Hmmmmm lets see no casino's not a lot of people privacy - private beach - no hustle and bustle. If you are looing for a spring break type atmosphere this is not it. This would be an ideal spot for a honeymoon or couples resparking that flame.The staf was incredible funny and made everyone feel at home. Since this is a small resort met some great people that stayed there and we went to dinner together almost every night with different guest . The resteraunt on the grounds had amazing food. ( pictures to follow) I write travel blogs for the company I work for in the Travel Industry and I hope you trust when i say this is a little slice of heaven it is. That got everything right to flower petals in the toilet . To the management of the hotel walking to the pier with us telling us goodbye and waving. This resort has thought of every single little thing to make youre stay incredible. If you have any questions I am more than happy to answer.

Room Tip: I stayed in room 8 but honestly it looked like every room had a view of the beach
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  • Stayed August 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
PortofinoBZ, Owner at Portofino, responded to this review, April 13, 2013
Thank you for your kind words. It gives us great pleasure know that you had a great vacation and that you enjoyed all the effort our team puts into making our guests have a great stay with us. We also love the privacy of our location and we are very happy that we were able to share our little piece of paradise with you. Hope to have you again with us!
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Additional Information about Portofino

Also Known As:
Portofino Hotel
Portofino Hotel San Pedro
Portofino San Pedro
Portofino Belize/San Pedro
Address: 6 Miles North | PO Box 36, San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize
Phone Number:
Location: Belize > Belize Cayes > Ambergris Caye > San Pedro
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#4 Business Hotel in San Pedro
#5 Romantic Hotel in San Pedro
#9 Top resorts Hotel in San Pedro
#15 On the Beach Hotel in San Pedro
#20 Family Hotel in San Pedro
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3 star — Portofino 3*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Characterized by its warm and friendly hospitality, Portofino is the epitome of barefoot luxury, unpretentious and relaxing… for most; it will be an experience of a lifetime. Our small, boutique resort offers just 17 beautifully appointed rooms, ranging from charming beach cabanas to spacious suites, dotted amidst swaying palm trees, in a private setting with unmatched personal attention and the modern comforts of home. It is a haven of tranquility, where guests will enjoy the subtle sounds of the nearby waves lapping over the reef, gentle breeze, breathtaking sunrise, star studded night sky and spectacular views of the crystal waters of the Caribbean Sea. The perfect setting for a romantic getaway, intimate wedding, honeymoon, family and friends.Portofino offers leisure options to suit every taste. Relax in our fresh water outdoor swimming pool; enjoy a great book from our book collection or simply indulge yourself in a massage on the beach under our hand thatched palapa hut. Explore the underwater world with snorkel equipment or skim along the surface in our complimentary sea kayaks. Delicious meals prepared by our resort chef can be served in the privacy or your beach cabana or suite, on our private dock with a romantic setting or at the Portofino Restaurant. Sip on amazing tropical cocktails at the Green Parrot Beach Bar or perhaps a late afternoon snack from the Green Parrot Bistro. Take advantage of our DVD library and unwind in front of the flat TV screen in your room. Or, simply take in the view. In short, relax and enjoy! Reception in the main building is manned by professional and knowledgeable staff. From, activities bookings and directions to itineraries and dining reservations, our friendly and professional staff is eager to assist you. Access to PORTOFINO is by boat only, and therefore we offer a complimentary meet and greet service at San Pedro Airstrip and boat transfer to the resort, an approximately 20 minutes ride. ... more   less 
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