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“Laid back paradise with options” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Xanadu Island Resort Belize

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Xanadu Island Resort Belize
3.5 of 5 Resort   |   Sea Grape Drive | P.O. Box 109, San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize   |  
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Hotel amenities
Ranked #5 of 53 Hotels in San Pedro
Silicon Valley
Level Contributor
11 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Laid back paradise with options”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2012

We visited Xanadu for 10 days during the Christmas holidays. We had booked in August and the staff (Ingrid and Blanca) were incredibly helpful and informative. Our connecting flight was a bit late, and they called the local airline to ensure we were re-booked.
The trip from Belize City to San Pedro is a short 15 mins. Once we got to the hotel (5 mins from San Pedro airport), it felt like another world...30 seconds walk to the beach, nice heated pool, and clean tropical decor.
Room - we stayed in #8, which was a 2BR suite on the 2nd floor. Even though the hotel did not promote it, there was a gorgeous view of the beach, ocean and pool. The amenities were more than adequate and with an eco-friendly bent. Wi-fi and broad TV selection can keep you connected if needed.
Hotel - great beach access and pool was fine. You cannot swim off the beach due to the seagrass. Our favorite swimming hole and quiet spot was the pier, which had one of the most beautiful and serene views.
Activities - we took the kids (10 and 5) out on the kayaks, and also used the bikes (both complimentary). We did a couple of snorkel trips ... would definitely recommend Hol Chan and Shark Ray Alley with Alfonse (organized by hotel). Rent a golf cart for a few hours and visit the north side of the island.
Staff - probably the highlight of our stay. Ingrid and Blanca (front office), Jamel (activities) and Orlando (general) were friendly and helpful. Example - The kids loved fresh coconuts and Orlando would pull them down from the trees. Restaurant recommendations and reservations were excellent. The GM Bev and her husband are phenomenal too.
Miscellaneous - there are a couple of general stores within a 5 min walk. There were plenty of nice restaurants and Ingrid can give you suggestions. Taxis are cheap (US $5 to downtown) and Lelo was our favoriite. Do the chicken drop on Thu if you are there.
Summary - not your traditional westin, hyatt, hilton but warm and friendly...goes with the island vibe. The staff make it special and we will be back.

Room Tip: Call the hotel and discuss options. #1 and #8 were both excellent.
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  • Stayed December 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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910 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (194)
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English first
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 1, 2012

My family had a wonderful time here over Christmas and new year's. We had gone to tamarindo in costa rica and decided to try something new. The island was a trek to get to but worth it. It's laid back. The hotel was quiet. No need to rush to get chairs by the beach or pool. Staff is extremely helpful and attentive. Everything is very clean and they help with transfers and moving rooms if necessary. Due to room rates we changed room 2 times and they did it all for us. We had a 3 bd garden view which was fine. 3 bd ocean view was amazing with a lot of space in living room. They're we're 6 of us. Then me and my husband moved to a 2 bd ocean view the last night since everyone else left. All decorated. Clean. Kept well. I highly recommend this hotel if u are going to San Pedro. Short walk to town and beautiful.

  • Stayed December 2011
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Townsend, Delaware, United States
Level Contributor
22 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 30, 2011

I will certainly add MORE to this review later, as well as pictures- but let me for now simply say- GO TO XANADU!!!!! It is beautiful, it is private, it is removed from the noise and hustle & bustle of San Pedro town, but still VERY VERY VERY accessible (thank you free bicycles and golf cart rentals!) the resort MAKES you relaxed, even if you're not trying to be! The girls that work there at the front desk are sweet and darling and very accomodating- the one thing that i LOVE is that there is a locked gate with a security guard after a certain hour- we found this out when we returned late from a night in town- we had to give our names, room number and ID (very comforting touch) If i absolutely HAVE to come up with some negatives- they would be that there is no bar or restaurant onsite, and that the excursions are a tad pricey. My husband and I did better went we went into town and booked our own excursions. The rooms are amazing though, given the fact that they all have full kitchens- do yourself a favor, stop at the grocery & liquor store on your way from the airport to the resort (while you have a taxi)- stock up, and then just CHILL!!! enjoy, enjoy, ENJOY!!!!!

Room Tip: If you are a honeymooner, you DEFINITELY want to get one of the more private rooms located in the ba...
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  • Stayed May 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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MA
Level Contributor
15 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 29, 2011

Rooms: Spacious and comfortable. Clean with very functional and well equipped kitchens. Nice patio with hammock. Also--they have their own electricity generator which was a big bonus when most of the island lost power for almost 24 hours during our visit. Other hotels were without electricity and some also without running water (due to electric pumps)! So we were very thankful for this.

Location: A good spot along the beach--close enough to other restaurants to walk, but a little away from the bustling center of town. Convenient grocery store just 1 short block down that has most necessities. A dinner at the Victoria House is a lovely treat, and they will send a golf cart to pick you up and bring you back.

Grounds: Beautiful with lots of palm trees. The swimming pool is incredibly warm--truly like a bath tub. Swimming off the dock is also great. A lovely spot to dive in. There is very good snorkeling around and beneath the dock. We saw tons of colorful fish, a ray, and an eel right in the resort swim area.

Excursions: We did 2 excellent snorkel trips: Shark Ray Alley and the Tres Cocos trips. Both were great. We saw beautiful coral and sea life, sharks, rays, dolphins, and a sea turtle.

Staff: Friendly, attentive, and professional.

  • Stayed November 2011, 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
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Cincinnati, OH
Level Contributor
51 reviews
40 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 20, 2011

OVERALL:
Xanadu is a well maintained, comfortable place to stay, just a little over a mile south of the center of San Pedro. It's not far from things, but still feels secluded. The staff are great, the units are well equipped, the pool area is gorgeous, and their pier is very convenient for excursions.

LOCATION:
Xanadu is located 1.1 miles south of the center of San Pedro. This is about a 25 minute walk along the beach, or a 10 minute golf-cart ride along the paved street. The area between Xanadu and town is fully developed, though, so you do not need to walk all the way to the town center to find a restaurant, bar, or store. I stayed 7 nights and only had a golf-cart one day. This is in contrast to the north side of the island, which is less developed and the spaces between establishments are more stretched out. North of town, a golf-cart would be mandatory.

Arguably the cheapest grocery store on the island (though they are all pretty expensive) is Marina's, which is located right next door to Xanadu.

ROOMS:
The units are built as thick, concrete "dome" structures to withstand hurricanes. This makes for an interesting, curved interior space. Most of the units have plenty of windows, though unless you have a beach facing unit, the amount of light coming in will be limited by the canopy of trees and the other units.

The unit I stayed in was very clean and spacious. The kitchen was fully equipped, the showers always had hot water, the central air conditioning worked well enough to cool the entire place, and the LCD TV had lots of (standard def) satellite channels. There was a hammock and a table/chairs on the porch.

There is daily maid service, which includes washing your dishes.

The only problem was the lack of wi-fi in the room. Despite being told that wi-fi was available in all of the rooms, this was not the case (I was in unit 16). Fortunately, there was a hardwired internet cable to hook up my laptop next to the couch. This worked great. The wi-fi worked fine by the pool or even (weakly) at the beach. Maybe my room was unique or maybe one of the many routers was down, but if in-room wi-fi is important to you, you might want to call and double check.

RESTAURANT/BAR:
Xanadu does not have a bar or restaurant. Some would say that this means that they are not technically a full "resort," but with a full kitchen in the room and restaurants and bars within walking distance, I did not mind at all.

GROUNDS:
The Xanadu resort was built in such a way as to leave the trees in-place. This makes for a very shaded, forest feel to the resort. The resort is also far enough back from the street to make it very secluded and quiet. There is a bird sanctuary on site, which involves a short elevated walk into the tree canopy, about 15 feet above the ground.

The only downside to all of the greenery is the presence of mosquitoes and no-see-ums. Though bugs are almost everywhere on the island, the Xanadu environment is probably a little worse than average due to the shade and the wind break. The pool area seemed more clear of bugs in the middle of the day, but sitting in the porch hammock was an invitation to become lunch.

POOL:
The resort is fairly small, so the pool, front desk, or beach are only steps away from any of the units. The pool is gorgeous, heated, and is surrounded by plenty of comfortable lounge chairs.

BEACH:
The beachfront is, like most of the places on the island, a seawall with sand behind it. Ambergris Caye is not Miami Beach. If you want to swim, you are better off going to the end of the pier, past the sea grass. Still, the ocean view is great. Sitting on a beach chair in the sand or at the palapa at the end of the pier, you will not be left wanting.

There is also a small, roped-off area for swimming/snorkeling at the end of the pier. However, there is not much to see at this spot. You really need to get out to the reef to experience decent snorkeling.

SERVICES:
The Xanadu staff will arrange excursions, provide golf cart rentals (expensive), and snorkel equipment rental. They also provide purified water for about $1US/gallon. Beach towels, kayaks, and bicycles (daytime only) are free to guests.

The staff were always helpful and friendly.

SECURITY:
San Pedro did not strike me as a dangerous place. Still, the number of police and security guards on the island indicate that they want to keep it that way. I always saw a couple of guys patroling the grounds at Xanadu day and night.

VALUE:
I stayed during the off-season, so the rates on Ambergris were lower. After comparing with many other resorts, Xanadu seemed to be appropriately priced for what they offered.

  • Stayed November 2011, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 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.
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 18, 2011

We stayed at Xanadu for 5 days at the beginning of December, and were married on the beach on the third day.

The day of travel from Canada was quite long and tiring, so next time I would definitely fly to the island rather than taking the water taxi. We just managed to catch the last water taxi, too, due to a delayed connecting flight in Houston. Once we arrived, Brian was most helpful in getting us settled into our rooms and trying to help us find a nearby restaurant that was still open (without going into town). In the end, we ended up having baloney sandwiches, so I would also recommend using the hotel's service of stocking the fridge before arrival.

The pool is lovely and heated and my 4-year-old son spent many hours in it learning to swim with water wings and use a mask and snorkel that we got from the activity window. The rooms are spacious, clean and comfortable. Staff were extremely friendly and helpful.

The wedding itself was everything I had hoped it would be. Blanca has a real eye for detail, including slipping my mother-in-law a tissue during the ceremony. The flowers and arch were gorgeous. Blanca and Ingrid also arranged dinner for us at Victoria House, which included being picked up and brought back to Xanadu.

It was very hard to leave Xanadu and San Pedro. Next time, we will probably stay longer and take excursions from the island rather than transferring to the mainland.

  • Stayed December 2011, traveled with family
    • 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 5
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Kamloops, Canada
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 16, 2011

Xanadu Island Resort, Ambergris Caye, Belize.
Having read so many reviews of Xanadu, ours I know may be superfluous....

We chose to try Xanadu after watching Samantha Brown's TV show, and loved it! The setting and location are terrific, with views of the reef, and a lovely walk to San Pedro. The pleasant, well-equipped suites surround an inviting, heated pool nestled in an oceanside garden setting. The owners are working to keep the units current with a program of updates.

The staff is an excellent team of friendly men and women who do their best to make your stay a great one. Orlando and his team keep the grounds looking great. He is always ready to help with kayaks and local info--and your stupidly over-packed bags! Ingrid and Blanca keep the office organized, and do a great job booking anything from reef tours to Tropic Air tickets to anniversary dinners at Victoria House. Last visit we met Jamil, who organized the sporting outings, but will no doubt be helping in the office by now. Eerily, Samantha has been given a permanent position in the office as well! Under Martin's supervision, the place has run well, and with purpose. We congratulate them on their Green status, and encourage others to follow their lead.

When we had flight delay problems last winter, and arrived 2 days late, the staff tried their best to adjust our dates. Although we were very upset when a problem with data-processing trashed those plans, Martin made it up to us. It is important to feel valued as clients, and we do.

We always enjoy the reef tours--go with the guide staff recommends--he is an excellent source of information. Lil' ALfonso takes you to great sea life. Guaranteed. The night snorkeling was worth the cost, but I suggest a light/short wetsuit.

If you are looking for a quiet getaway on the ocean away from the bustle of town and lots of kids and partying folk, Xanadu is a great option. We have returned twice since our first visit and have booked yet another visit. Often when things at home get hectic or seem a tad overwhelming, it is to Xanadu we daydream about escaping.

Room Tip: All rooms can see the ocean!
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  • Stayed February 2011, 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Xanadu Island Resort Belize

Address: Sea Grape Drive | P.O. Box 109, San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize
Phone Number:
Location: Belize > Belize Cayes > Ambergris Caye > San Pedro
Amenities:
Beach Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#2 Top resorts Hotel in San Pedro
#2 Family Hotel in San Pedro
#3 Romantic Hotel in San Pedro
#4 On the Beach Hotel in San Pedro
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Xanadu Island Resort Belize 3.5*
Number of rooms: 20
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
UNIQUE, BOUTIQUE, TRANQUIL & ROMANTIC Eco-friendly Xanadu Resort lies nestled in the natural vegetation, on the beach overlooking the 2nd largest barrier reef and the Caribbean Sea. Located a mile south of San Pedro, Xanadu is close enough to enjoy the activities of the town yet far enough away to be peaceful and quiet. Green Globe certified, Xanadu takes care of their guests, their staff, their community and their environment. Service excellence combined with the beautiful natural grounds and unique buildings draw guests to return again and again. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Xanadu Island Resort Belize Hotel San Pedro
Xanadu Island Hotel
Xanadu Island San Pedro
Xanadu Island Resort Belize San Pedro

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