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“Nice break from the Norm!” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Blue Reef Island Resort

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Blue Reef Island Resort
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North Ambergris Caye, San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #37 of 56 Hotels in San Pedro
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Senior Contributor
28 reviews 28 reviews
12 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
“Nice break from the Norm!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 27, 2012

We stayed here in May for a little simple getaway and it was such a relaxing time! You are actually kind of forced to let go and relax at Blue Reef because it is sort of off to its own. This is a good thing if you that is what you are looking for. We loved being away from the normal tourist hustle and bustle while feeling like we were on our own private island resort. Prior to arriving, Miriam was the best at providing important details and promptly answering every single question asked. Even at the resort, Miriam provided excellent service and always greeted us with a pleasant smile. For that matter, the entire staff was amazing with everyone having warm personalities and seemed to love what they do. They made the experience even better. We had our room fully stocked with provisions from one of the local markets which worked out wonderfully as far as expense and not needing to go out to eat for every meal. Cooking our own meals was quite enjoyable. We did have two prepared meals at the resort and they were quite delightful. Even the desserts were dreamy! Loved the convenience of just taking a kayak out to the reef and spending all day swimming/snorkeling at our leisure. I saw some complaints about the resort not be swimmable, which is true as far as being able to walk right into the water and swim, but it was nothing to take the kayaks out a very very short distance to enjoy all of the swimming you heart desires. The rooms were awesome, very big!! The views were awesome, beautiful blue water with crashing waves on the horizon and wonderful sunsets/sunrises! The only small complaint I have about our trip is the bugs could be a little troublesome at times, but definitely not unbearable and nothing a little bug spray couldn't handle. If you are looking for a true "getaway" this is your place!

  • Stayed May 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
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86 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    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 (17)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Vancouver, Canada
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 27, 2012

We stayed for 2 weeks over Christmas 2006-07.NOT in Dec 2011, the time selection would not go back to 06/07. OK, this was a while ago. BUT, my previous review seems to be missing? We had a great time! The resort is very top end, for accomodations.Bugs were not an issue, however, they spray everyday. Great looking units, amazing comfy beds. Fully equiped kitchens. Really lacking in activities though. They had a volleyball net, No balls. We had to buy our own in San Pedro!! Food was good. But, expensive. We bought groceries in San Pedro. The beach shore was gross!! Washed up bottles, flipflops, garbage. They rake the beach every day. The sand at the shore is really squishy, sink 6", and you don't know what you are going to step on. Water was clear and warm. Off the end of the dock, way out, that is where you swim. OK. Any "off island" activities offered, you pay a "fee" to the resort for "planning" your adventure. Be careful how many activities you are "booked into, and paying for" in a day. We planned to Cave canoe, see Xunantunich,Mayan ruin (which was excellent!!!) and waterfalls. We never did see the waterfalls due to time restraints........ But the caving on canoes, with flashlights to see glow worms and blind fish? was really amazing and I have incredible pictures. At the time we were at the resort, transportation to San Pedro town was free and offered typically in the am and again in evening. Never really an issue. But if you wanted to stay later, you had to take a water taxi. San Pedro town is very safe for teenagers to go, with a buddy. Many restaurant options in town. Some night life too, if desired.In SanPedro it is definitely a "party" atmosphere. Our kids (15 to 24)two learned to scuba dive, and loved it! Sting Ray Alley, and the reef. A day trip picnic included to Cay Caulker(with 200 cruise ship guests too, they were leaving as we were arriving, luckily)a beautiful little island. They felt it was a little long, without activities. Back to the resort though, very nice setting, extremely attentive staff. However, do NOT leave valuables open and available in your unit. We had cash go missing which was a bummer.However, the manager was very willing to compensate with dinner vouchers. Overall, for the price of our holiday, for 6, it would be equal to our stay financially and timeframe to staying at Ekahi Village, Maui. I would go to Hawaii!!

Room Tip: We were on the top floor,corner unit,(room 305?) 2 bed, 2 bath. Pull out sofa in living room. Amazin...
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  • Stayed December 2011, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Gulfport, Mississippi
Senior Contributor
37 reviews 37 reviews
37 hotel reviews
Reviews in 36 cities Reviews in 36 cities
80 helpful votes 80 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 26, 2012

The resort itself was very nice. The condo we rented was 2 bed/2 bath, nice kitchen, laundry just outside. Pool was nice, no problems with mosquitoes but it was really windy, satellite TV from US and Canada. Internet in the office was slow, it was better to use the WiFi, but you have to be close to the office. We were the only people at the resort except for 1 day. It seems this is the off season, high season is November to May I believe. The staff did a good job. The condo was cleaned each day, the food we had at the resort was really good, although we only ate a couple times there. I recommend skipping breakfast and lunch, only because its expensive....but EVERYTHING in Ambergris is expensive, not so much ripping tourists but EVERYTHING has to be shipped from the mainland. We went to the grocery in San Pedro and got some a few things to eat on our own. We brought breakfast stuff from home and made sandwiches and spaghetti for lunch/dinner a couple of times. I would recommend eating dinner at least once at the resort. I had the pork chops which were perfect....you should try them. The staff was very informative about any questions you have. A few people live at the resort and its too bad the owners of the property didn't build them a nice place to live in. They pretty much hide them in a small shack behind the property. We spent one day just at the resort laying around the pool and in the hammock, it was very relaxing and I recommend everyone do the same. Getting to the resort you fly into Belize City (Ladyville actually), Goldson Intl Airport. Its kinda a 3rd world 1960's looking airport but Immigration and Customs is relatively quick and painless. Bring a pen on the flight so you can fill out the required forms, the airline has NO pens to loan. From there you can take a 2 hour boat ride (not recommended) or a 15 minute plane ride with Tropic Air to San Pedro, the main town on Ambergris Caye. Its worth the money for the flight. At the San Pedro airport Blue Reef will have a taxi waiting for the 30 second ride to the dock where a small boat will take you to the resort, about a 20 minute ride. You will see on your first day when you try to schedule activities that another problem with the resort is that its 9 miles out from San Pedro. The tour/dive shop operators only pick up about 5 miles out so its on you to get to San Pedro, which is another issue. To get to and from San Pedro via Coastal XPress Water Taxi is $28 US per person and its a rather uncomfortable and crowed ride on a small boat. Also, depending on the time of day there may be alot of stops along the way which can turn the 20 minute ride into a 45 minutes ride. I found that really cut into my budget and I would have spent more money if I didn't have that expense every day. Another issue is that the last boat leaves San Pedro at 8:30 PM so if you want to stay out late thats not possible with the water taxi. A private boat will cost much more. San Pedro itself was not bad. It reminded me at times of parts of Mexico or time I spent in Kosovo, kinda like a 3rd world country at times. The town has 3 main streets, very few vehicles, most people get around on golf carts. We rented a cart one day just to see what was in town, but its possible to just walk if you don't mind the heat or have any physical problems or any small children with you. We went to Super Buy, purple building on Middle Street to get some groceries. We went to Green House market, green building on Middle Street to get some meat/cold cuts. Linos on Middle street was recommended for meat but we didn't go there. Pan Dulce bakery, next to Linos, was recommended but we went later in the day and things looked rather old. As for dining, Calliente on the beach was not bad, portions small and kinda pricey. Food was OK but won't recommend or go back. Smiling Gringos on First Street was pricey and food not so good, don't go there! Elvi's, lime green building on Middle street was recommended and very good. I got the traditional Rice/Beans/Stew Chicken which was excellent, try it for sure! El Patio, on a side street, was also recommeded and very good, i had the Seafood Skewer which was also excellent. Blue Water Grille on the beach was recommended and was also good. Its mostly American fare, I had the Turkey Pita which was very tasty. Wild Mango's which is next to Blue Water Grill is also recommended but we didn't go there. We also wanted to try Fido's but didn't have a chance. For ice cream you must go to Manelly's on First Street, its really good, only problem is its small and cramped and lots of kids playing video games inside, its better to get it and go. We did a spa/massage one day at Black Orchid, near the airport. It was the least expensive indoor spa and was worth it...totally relaxed afterwards. There are cheaper outdoor massage places but its too hot/humid for an outdoor massage for sure. On Ambergris any activities will be water activities. Snorkeling/diving, fishing, etc. We spent one day at Hol Chan/Shark Ray Alley snorkeling/diving with Amigos Del Mar, which was recommended.. You get to pet Nurse Sharks and Stingrays (no barbs). The Blue Hole is recommended for divers but its gonna be an all day affair so we skipped it. Any other tours advertised, Cave Tubing, Mayan Ruins, etc., are all back on the mainland, (Belize City), which makes it costly because of the flight to and from. It also makes it a whole day adventure so we skipped those activities as well. For souvenirs, get something made of Brazilian woods, or a handbag, or some jewelry, and definitely a bottle of hot sauce. Conch shells may be a problem as I was asked about that when leaving and travel guides recommend you don't take any home with you. Get ALL souvenirs at the airport before going home, the airport has WAY cheaper prices than ANYONE on Ambergris Caye and you can pack you stuff in you check in luggage before going through Customs back in the US. It was really an enjoyable trip. My only issue was that everything was expensive. Probably won't ever go back but I can recommend it. A cruise ship to Mexico or the Bahamas would be much cheaper and you can do the same things, although seclusion is not one of them. Tourism is a new industry in Belize and its evident with customer service. Nothing is really quick or efficient there and sometimes there are screw ups with no explanations. However, EVERYONE was VERY friendly and spoke English well. You can use your Visa/Mastercard almost anywhere, just call the card company before leaving the US so your charges are not declined. Even the street hustlers were friendly. Just say "No, thanks" and they move on without bothering you any further.

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
North Ambergris Caye
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 21, 2012

This place is so beautiful. It's far enough from downtown to feel like your own your own private island (except living with all the luxuries and amenities you could ever want). The staff is so friendly, helpful and absolutely lovely. You feel like they're a part of your family. Albie (the bartender) and Miriam (the office manager) have now become my very good friends. I will miss them and plan to visit them the next time I'm on Ambergris Caye .. even if I don't stay at Blue Reef.

I really love this place! Blue Reef gets 2 thumbs up!!!!

  • Stayed July 2012, traveled with family
    • 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta, Georgia
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 18, 2012

We started our time in Belize with a few days in the jungle. Very active & busy. Then we (me, husband and 2 teenagers) flew into San Pedro to start our relaxation at Blue Reef. Albie met us at the airport and had a taxi all ready for us. We caught a boat and headed up to the resort where Miriam greeted us with welcome drinks. Our bags were brought up to our room---gorgeous 2 bedroom condo, ocean front and a fantastic view! Breathtaking. Everything we wanted our needed was taken care up. Staff sought us out to get our dinner selections and then brought it to us at the desired time. Giovanni was great and prepared all our meals. It's a real treat to have dinner brought to you! The bar at the pool serves great drinks. We thoroughly enjoyed them. Ask Giovanni to make you a Cry Baby!!! We enjoyed the use of the kayaks and headed out to the reef to snorkel. So nice to be able to do that at your leisure and without added expense. The only trip we did was to Hol Chan/Shark Ray Alley and that is one trip you won't want to miss. All I did was mention the desire to go and Miriam handled all the details. It was a truly relaxing time.

  • Stayed June 2012, 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
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1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 16, 2012

One of the few places my wife and I would go back to. Not for everyone. Large families or groups with small kids looking for constant entertainment and shopping.....not the place. Small, intimate, secluded, quiet. No big pool with loud music & afternoon boat drink parties. No lots of people. Staff was there to meet our every need. Amazing snorkeling off the reef. Ask where to find the 6' nurse shark. We found it. Small rural town with amazing eateries. Fun to get to (ask to drive the boat). Easy to fly to (ask to sit in the co-pilot's seat). Scheduled for Jun 2010. Got hurricane delayed til Sept. No problems. End of the season. Had the place to ourselves. Nats are troublesome but liberal bug spray makes up. Ask for highest floors.
My best recommendation would be "Awful place. Don't go there." Then we'll have the place to ourselves.

Room Tip: Beeing small they all have veiws of the ocean. If you don't eat like you used to, like us, load...
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  • Stayed June 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Minneapolis, Minnesota
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 4, 2012

This is a fantastic resort! We wanted a beautiful, quiet and relaxing resort and this was a perfect. It started with Kristy who helped us book our reservation--she was so kind, helpful and accommodating. Wonderful to work with. Our daughter has life threatening food allergies and they were able to accommodate them. Kristy chose a unit for us--walk out to the beach with ocean views and lovely patio/porch area where we ate and lounged. Resort staff met us at the airport--seamless transition to paradise! The Belize airport staff were great, resort staff coordinated well with them. Short ride to the boat that took us to the resort (~20 minutes). Mirium coordinated everything for us and met us on the dock--she is so helpful and kind. We met with Chef Giavanni to review food allergies--he was great! and the food was excellent. The unit was equipped with a full kitchen--stainless steel appliances-everything you would want to prepare food (we mostly ordered from the resort but there is the option of ordering from a local grocer and they will deliver). There is a central area facing the ocean with several tables where you can eat or they will deliver food to your unit. Our unit was equipped with a dining room, living room, huge bath with shower and spa tub. Bedroom faced the ocean. It was beautifully decorated--with many extra touches that contributed to the tranquil environment (like something you would see in Architectural Digest). The beach was so quiet and lovely--we spent many hours reading in lounge chairs under the trees. No big waves as the area is surrounded by the reefs (that are farther out)--the water was very warm and nice to swim in.
Mirium arranged for us to snorkel--Roberto picked us up at the dock and took us to Ho Chan marine reserve--a MUST. It's magical--lots of fish, turtles...we ate on Caye Caulker at a restaurant facing the ocean. Great food. When you book this tour, be clear on the hours and what you would like to do. It's $300 (US dollars) for a private tour and well worth it. Roberto is very pleasant and was a great tour guide! He has wetsuits and snorkeling equipment and knows a lot. Very interesting history of the area etc...It would be worth it to come with a full body wetsuit as the sun is very strong and the water does get a little chilly. Also head protection (swim cap) (due to sun). The water is deep and active at times--I wore a life jacket (they use it differently so that it doesn't at all interfere with the snorkeling experience)-would recommend this.
We visited San Pedro--reminded me of Key West a bit. Local artisans sold beautiful jewelry, beads. There is a fair amount of poverty--so be aware of belongings etc...
We felt safe at the resort. Fantastic vacation!

Room Tip: Our ground floor suite was adjacent to the eating area. Centrally located, which was nice--but if t...
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  • Stayed March 2012, 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
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Additional Information about Blue Reef Island Resort

Address: North Ambergris Caye, San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize
Location: Belize > Belize Cayes > Ambergris Caye > San Pedro
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( Wi-Fi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#20 Top resorts Hotel in San Pedro
#23 Family Hotel in San Pedro
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Also Known As:
Blue Reef Island Hotel San Pedro
Hotel Blue Reef Island
Blue Reef Island Resort Belize/San Pedro

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