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“Really great place to stay!” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Portofino Beach Resort

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Portofino Beach Resort
3.0 of 5 Resort   |   6 Miles North | PO Box 36, San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize   |  
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Hotel amenities
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5TH NIGHT FREE
Ranked #23 of 53 Hotels in San Pedro
Miami, Florida
Level Contributor
18 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“Really great place to stay!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 16, 2013

What a great place! We stayed there for a week during my wife's birthday. Besides the amazing tranquility of the property, the staff is what I remember the most about Portofino.
One other reviewer wrote "like family" is exactly true.

We had never been to this place before and everyone from the front desk to the wait staff and in my eyes even the grounds staff worked everyday day in day out to make sure that everything was in order. My wife and I were always addressed by name and even though it was the off season and things were slow we never had a request denied.

Since it was my wife's birthday I wanted to mske sure the event was extra special. I had asked the staff for dinner service on the end of their pier. Just a table for two with candles, a blue moon and the open ocean. Wondering what the limited possibilities of actually getting a birthday cake was, I asked. To my suprise the chef actually baked an amazing birthday cake for my wife.
Furthermore the service was excellent. The table was set up at the end of the dock which was about 150 yards and two filghts of stairs from the kitchen. Service was prompt, polite and unheard of domestically.

For us this was a great place! Portofino offered free use of kayaks and the Mexican Rocks Reef was only a 15 miniute paddle to some great snorkling in shallow water.

We WILL surely be back.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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 Beach Resort, responded to this review, January 31, 2014
Greetings from our little piece of paradise brian h,

We would like to Thank You for taking the time to write such a wonderful review. In addition, we are very pleased to hear that your experience with us was such a memorable and cherished one.

Your recognition for the team’s excellent service and the overall experience is much appreciated and we will strive to continue upkeeping our service standards.

We hope to see you back soon so we can welcome you with warm welcoming hearts.
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498 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    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 (141)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Litchfield, Connecticut
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 12, 2013

My husband and I stayed for 8 days for our 1 year wedding anniversary. The resort was recommended by a friend who stayed there 6 years ago. The moment Moe picked us up, I knew we were in for a treat.we got off the boat and entered into what seemed like a hidden gem, a quaint, beautiful nook hidden behind palm trees. We were met immediately by a female staff who checked us in, brought us to our room and cut fresh soap for us!
We would see the female owner in the evening at times and she was exceptionally nice and informative. We loved how the resort was quiet and peaceful, its definitely not a party spot, which was great for us. The welcome drinks were non alcoholic, which was exciting for us since we don't drink. We were 6 miles from town which felt like we were away from any busyiness and could just relax. Exceptionally friendly was our waiters Tristan, Roy, Ivan and the bartender Rafael. And of course Moe!! They were always smiling and asking us how our day was. My husband had some negative experiences with one of the front desk staff,(the same person who checked us in) whom he felt was short with him and that she seemed put out with any questions, I did notice it at one time. I chaulk that up to people having a bad day, but it seems unnecessary...you almost dont want to ask anything! There was one day we asked for more drinking water because we were taking a walk and it was hot. We were told by a front desk staff that we couldn't have any until the cleaning ladies came by, even though we were leaving. The paperwork clearly stated we would have drinking water as needed so that didn't sit well with my husband.especially since we drank the water from the day before already. The only other negative was that the complimentary boat ride into town had been leaving at 430pm, it was changed to 5 without any notice yet the return time (6:30) remained the same. We felt that if 30min got shaved off it should'be been made up for in the pick up. We took the coastal express back one night but we had to wait until 830pm.
Any of the negatives we would have chatted with the owner about just for feedback.But we didn't see her again and honestly all the greatness outweighed any of that.
Other than that, our room was cleaned everyday....they even folded our clothes, the cleaning crew was quite friendly as well. I felt very safe an comfortable
there. Overall, the full
experience made our first time in Belize amazing and we would definitely go back to Portofino.

  • Stayed December 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 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, General Manager at Portofino Beach Resort, responded to this review, April 25, 2014
Thank you for taking the time to write your positive response. We are thrilled we made your anniversary a very special occasion.

As for the boat service, for arrival and departures we can ensure times it will be available for you but our regularly scheduled runs on occasions, alter based on resort needs. We apologize for that inconvenience.

As for the staff, we re saddened you felt they were a bit surly and unapproachable and have since and currently gong through retraining and monitoring. Our staff are important to us and the functional of the resort to ensure our guests' happiness.

We thank you again for your review and are proud to have made your anniversary so special.
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New York City, New York
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 11, 2013

what a great place to go chill out. you cant get any better than Portofino. Just got back and it was like a dream. Everything about this place was the best. The staff just great no joking about that like family. The food just great no the best. you have too go and see for your self. take this trip and enjoy. I will return very soon.

Room Tip: all the rooms have ocean view. no gym or spa but a great Massuse
See more room tips
  • Stayed December 2013, traveled solo
    • 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
PortofinoBZ, Owner at Portofino Beach Resort, responded to this review, January 31, 2014
Thank you for taking the time to write us such a wonderful review.

It was indeed a pleasure to have had you as our guest and are delighted to know that you enjoyed your stay with us.

Your recognition for our team’s excellent service and overall experience is much appreciated.

We hope to have the pleasure of hosting you again.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brooklyn, New York
2 reviews
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 9, 2013

My husband & I stayed for 6 days at Portofino & each day the accommodations were great! The cabana we had was beautiful & the staff from front desk to waiters were very friendly & helpful.
The only downside is that the beach at the resort is not really swimmable because of the seaweed.

  • Stayed December 2013, 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
PortofinoBZ, Owner at Portofino Beach Resort, responded to this review, January 31, 2014
Thank you for taking the time to write us such a wonderful review.

It was indeed a pleasure to have had you as our guest and are delighted to know that you enjoyed your stay with us.

Your recognition for our team’s excellent service and overall experience is much appreciated.

Because of the proximity to the reef some areas along our beach do have sea grass. There is however, a beautiful swimming area just off our pier.

We hope to have the pleasure of hosting you again.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Detroit, Michigan
Level Contributor
11 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 9, 2013

Stayed here longer than I really wanted to due to a package deal. The place is generally nice but remote. That means paying a premium for meals and drinks. Decent pool but the beach isn't swimmable due to sea grass and shallowness extending well beyond the pier. When the wind is down there is a strong fish odor and it gets buggy. Staff is generally friendly and helpful, the honeymoon suite is roomy and romantic with king size bed, mosquito netting, a/c, rain shower, balcony and hammock. Restaurant is nice with generally excellent food, but prices are high. Overall a decent place to stay if you plan on excursions to reef, but 2-3 nights only. Otherwise there isn't enough to do there.

  • Stayed December 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
PortofinoBZ, General Manager at Portofino Beach Resort, responded to this review, April 25, 2014
Thank you for sharing your experiences of Portofino. We promote that our resort is 6.5 miles outside of town and only accessible by boat. This does offer some seclusion and makes some of the costs of the restaurant and bar.

Unfortunately what we offer and the remote seclusion of the resort may not be to everyone's liking, but some do find it accommodating.

We do make an effort to make everyone feel comfortable and welcomed.

We thank you for sharing your comments on the resort.
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Seattle, Washington
Level Contributor
6 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 8, 2013

this place is fine but not great. we found the people who work here to be a bit surly and not very accommodating, which was rare and surprising given that everywhere else we stayed in belize had the nicest people in the world. one of the front desk people was friendly at first but then seemed pretty put out when we had simple questions about like the ferry schedule and such.

we were annoyed about a couple things. for instance, they say they have bikes for you to use but they only have two for the entire resort. we had four people in our group so were never able to use them.

they also say they have snorkeling equipment for guests to use. they do, but only for use snorkeling off the dock. they won't let you take it out for a day excursion. not a huge deal but kind of strange -- makes you feel nickle and dimed.

a bunch of other minor things added up to make you feel like you were paying too much for what you get. for instance, when we arrived there were loads of people standing around but no one ever offered to help carry a bag, from the boat dock, to reception and then on to our cabin. the guy who drives the boat never offers to help in any way when you're trying to step into or out of the rocking boat with your backpack on your back.

we randomly got turn-down service. i don't really care about it but why do it sometimes and not others?

we also thought it was a little weird that when we got dropped off down town when we were leaving, we ended up walking (again, carrying our bags) to the airport. it's actually really close, not much more than a city block and we're perfectly able, but it was strange given that other people we talked to at the resort had a golf cart waiting to take them.

the rooms are pretty sweet though -- we stayed in the lower level of one of the colonial rooms. comfortable beds and a nice bathroom with nice soaps and shampoo.

we had a lovely lunch and a nice dinner. and the pool is awesome. quite big by belize standards and really deep. and cool that they put chairs in the low end so you can sit in the water. it was also the perfect temperature -- much cooler than the sea which is lovely but warm so not all that refreshing on a hot day.

we walked down to matachica a number of days for breakfast and dinner (very good food). some of their rooms are spendier than portofino but others are pretty close. i didn't stay there but suspect it's a better bet than portofino.

  • Stayed November 2013, traveled with friends
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
PortofinoBZ, General Manager at Portofino Beach Resort, responded to this review, April 25, 2014
Thank you for your review on the resort on trip advisor and I hope you would allow the opportunity to respond.
As to the concerns about the rental of the snorkeling equipment, the dive operations services guests of Portofino as well as other resorts. We restrict the use because the diving operation has their own equipment for rental and we wouldn’t want for gears to get mixed up and the like. While it seems odd that it is within the same resort, for management purposes the equipment is tracked separately.
Our staff are an integral part of the resort and are like family to us and saddens us deeply that you felt this way. After your review about the manner of the resort staff we are having regular meeting and checks on all our staff to ensure that the service and attitude is on par with the relaxation we want our guests to feel. We do sincerely apologize for this and it is not the way our resort operates. This is a very important issue for us. We have since contracted the service of a taxi provider to ensure our guests don’t have to wait around or carry their luggage to the airport. We are on a constant monitoring and training to ensure that this does not reoccur.
Thank you again for sharing your concerns with us.
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Lafayette, Louisiana
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 5, 2013

This was the second trip to Portofino for my wife and I in six months. Yes, Portofino truly spoils you. The staff is second to none and takes care of your every need and want. Jermy, Loraine, Roy, Elida, Orville, and others on their staff help to make Portofino the quality escape resort that it is. The living quarters on the beach are positioned to view a perfect sunrise each morning and a perfect sunet each evening. The housekeeping staff maintains your living space beautifully clean and refreshing. The food at the restaurant is exceptional with a key lime pie that will tickle your taste buds. Portofino truly is a great escape. We will return again and again.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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, General Manager at Portofino Beach Resort, responded to this review, April 25, 2014
We are happy that you enjoyed your stay with us and appreciate your review. Our staff are a key component to our resort experience and we are pleased to hear how happy you are with kind and good hearted nature.

We hope to see you again in the future.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Portofino Beach Resort

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:
#5 Spa Hotel in San Pedro
#7 Business Hotel in San Pedro
#13 Top resorts Hotel in San Pedro
#17 Romantic Hotel in San Pedro
#22 On the Beach Hotel in San Pedro
#25 Family Hotel in San Pedro
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3 star — Portofino Beach Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 17
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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Also Known As:
Portofino Hotel San Pedro
Portofino San Pedro
Portofino Beach Resort Belize/San Pedro

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