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“Be cautious when booking, make sure this is what you want.” 4 of 5 stars
Review of The Placencia Hotel and Residences

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The Placencia Hotel and Residences
4.0 of 5 Resort   |   Placencia Village, Placencia 00000, Belize   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #17 of 20 Hotels in Placencia
Hamilton, Canada
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
“Be cautious when booking, make sure this is what you want.”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2013

This was not our first trip to Belize but it was out first staying at an all inclusive resort. Actually, it's not really an all inclusive resort but they have made a deal with Sunwing to sell it as such. This destination is typically sold as not all inclusive. It's clear by the food that they are not prepared for the all inclusive crowd, they are more set up for A la cart service. The buffet, although served on the beautiful pier, was typically luke warm at best and not a great variety. It was switched up daily but you did not have a choice, you ate what they served that day and when they served it. Some days it was excellent, others not so much Food in the dining room however, was distinctly the opposite. It was fantastic! If we could have eaten there all week It would have been wonderful! Alas, it was only allowed twice during our weeks stay.

Our room was stunning but I gather that there are a variety of room styles. It had a large eat in kitchen with all amenities should you wish to make your own dinner. Large bedroom and super comfy bed. The balcony overlooked the pool and the ocean beyond. It was wonderful watching the sunrise from the deck.

The main difference from this resort an other typical all inclusives was the lack of evening entertainment. There was karaoke one night but that was it. We were in bed by nine or ten most nights as there was simply nothing else to do. Also the all inclusive package only includes local drinks. That means beer and rum only. All other drinks were at an additional charge. There is good nightly entertainment in Placencia but that's a half hour drive away. Nothing within walking distance.

We found the staff very friendly for the most part. Management had a presence and it was great chatting with them personally. They were open to our comments and seemed genuinely concerned about making improvements. We understand that they are undergoing a change in management which may be the cause of some of the issues other travelers have experienced.

The grounds and entire resort is beautiful and I would highly recommend it for a couple or family looking for a quiet vacation. If you're traveling with a group (or a college travel and tourism class), and looking for a party week I would suggest elsewhere. The week we were there total guests numbered around 80 and the following week it was supposed to be around 50. Definitely not a party place but if you're looking for peace and quiet, this is the place.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 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
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Julia291977, General Manager at The Placencia Hotel and Residences, responded to this review, January 13, 2013
Thank you for your feedback. Your comments are a fair description of our Resort and we are making changes to the buffet options based on the comments we are receiving. We appreciate your feedback and will work to improve for our future guests traveling on the Sunwing Package.
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283 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (75)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Ottawa, Canada
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 2, 2013

We stayed at The Placencia from Christmas Eve to New Year's Eve.

Our room was a suite and it was huge, but we didn't use the kitchen except for microwaving some popcorn. The view was wonderful. The staff were very good and kept things clean and supplied.

The grounds are beautiful and there is lots of wildlife (lots of birds, some iguanas, a couple of crocodiles, and even a little fox wandering around at night). The pool is great and suitable to all ages. The beach is beautiful and very well maintained, but the water is 'cloudy' and not very inviting. No problem finding chairs and lounges and they are upscale!!!

The staff are very friendly and helpful. Most of the them are very young and lack experience but they work hard at making sure you get what you want and with a smile. They are easy to get to know and enjoy talking to everyone.

The restaurant is out on a pier and you can catch fish from the pier. This was the best part of our vacation. We spent many hours catching and releasing LOTS of fish. Be sure to bring a fishing rod (or two). You can get frozen shrimp in Maya Beach which is a 10 minute bike ride down the road.

We went on a snorkeling trip through the hotel and enjoyed it very much. They pick you up and drop you off at the hotel dock. No problem!

The BARS: the service is great and everyone is friendly. Some of the kids are inexperienced but they try hard and always have a smile. Remember they make very little and a tip is very much appreciated! The bars open about 10 in the morning and close about 10 in the evening unless they are busy. If they are closing before you want to quit imbibing get a couple of extra drinks and relax.

The FOOD: there are only five choices at each meal and because of the trip out to the pier it is usually cool / cold. After a couple of days of 'being nice and making do' we switched to toast and jam for breakfast, going to town for lunch, and skipping dinner if we didn't have an 'a la carte'. We didn't gain any weight at an all-inclusive!!!! First time. BRING SNACKS!!!!!!!! and go to town for dinner!!!!!

We give the hotel and grounds an EXCELLENT, the staff were a joy, the pool was GREAT, but the food was BRUTAL. The highlight for us was the fishing off the dock. There were LOTS of fish and somebody to bring you drinks while you were fishing. This is a great place to relax.

We wouldn't go back to the Placencia, because of the food and the 'adventure' that is involved in getting there, But, if you want a BEAUTIFUL place to relax with wonderful staff to look after you and you are on a diet...................

Room Tip: the ocean view rooms have great sunrises and the balcony is in the shade in the afternoon for a nap.
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 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 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Julia291977, General Manager at The Placencia Hotel and Residences, responded to this review, January 13, 2013
Thank you for your feedback. I am happy that you enjoyed your stay and apologize, that we were not able to fix the issues with the temperature of the food served on the buffet. Our managers eat from the buffet daily to ensure the quality, but perhaps we need to take steps to ensure that the food remains at the appropriate temperature throughout the designated meal times. I also appreciate that you added humor to the negatives you experienced, and that despite this area of concern you had an overall good experience at our Resort.

Thanks again
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Syracuse NY
Top Contributor
79 reviews 79 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 35 cities Reviews in 35 cities
49 helpful votes 49 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 1, 2013

After reading some of the reviews I wonder if I stayed at the same place as some of these people. We traveled across Belize and ended our vacation with 3 days at the Placencia. Our goal was to sit on the beach and not move too much - the Placencia was the perfect place for this. We had an ocean view suite so we walked out of the room to some very comfy lounge chairs on the beach. The room was very comfortable and a very good size for 3 of us. The beach is beautiful with palm trees - very clean. The pool is quite large and the water was warm & clean. We swam in the pool as we saw jelly fish in the ocean, but that was fine with us. We had a car rental so we never ate at the hotel - the drive into town was 15 min or so and we preferred to eat there. The hotel,was very quite which was another plus. I actually thought this was a good value considering other carribean hotels over Christmas are very expensive . Also people mentioned paying for internet, tennis, etc - as I have seen this at numerous other luxury hotels, it didn't sound any alarms for me. This hotel,was extremely relaxing and exactly what we needed

Room Tip: Take a suite on the beach - we had 14 and it was perfect!
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 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
    • 4 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.
Julia291977, General Manager at The Placencia Hotel and Residences, responded to this review, January 13, 2013
We are very encouraged by your feedback. We are happy that you found the resort to be relaxing as this is the type of atmosphere we promote. We work very hard to keep our grounds and rooms above standard and we are glad you enjoyed them, and had the opportunity to explore the peninsula.
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Toronto, Canada
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 31, 2012

My stay at the Placencia Resort was so different from anything that I have ever done before that it prompted me to make an account here. So many things about this resort are amazing, but there are a few things that one should know before going there.

FRONT DESK/CHECK-IN:
We arrived with a big group for the All Inclusive package from Toronto on Christmas Eve. As a resort with a relatively low number of rooms, I was VERY impressed that they invited us to lunch at the picturesque Pier Restaurant while they got the room ready and delivered the keys to us. No standing around in the lobby for half an hour here. One of our rooms had a broken air conditioner, but they staff knew of this previously and upgraded the room for the inconvenience. Checking out the night before was great as we had an early flight. The final night I had a personal issue where I needed a room change (nothing the resort was lacking or didn't do, just a phobia) and they set up a new room for me without any hassle, greatly appreciated.

ROOMS:
Clean, nice TVs with more channels than most hotels, comfortable beds, nice bathrooms, bright. Mini fridge comes with water. Enough space in the basic room for 2 travelers.

FOOD:
This is one of the unfortunate parts of this resort. As a culinary school grad and restaurant cook I was extremely disappointed with the food. It is not GROSS as many people have said, it is good enough to eat and keeps you going. But as a resort that offers 4/5 food options in the buffet per meal with (my guess only) about 80 All Inclusive guests at a time, they could of done a far better job. There are challenges with timing and heating with the main buffet being located approx 250m from the kitchen, but they chose dishes that don't hold in a buffet very well. Not a lot of variety breakfast was toast, weird scrambled eggs that looked like they were powdered, but the final day we had an omelette bar and it just looked like the chickens had a different diet, potatoes and leftovers from the previous night. Lunch - some sort of cold salad (very rarely green, usually potato) rice and beans (great), veg, chicken and pork. Dinner - same salad, something rice based, veg, chicken and another meat. Very disappointed with the lack of seafood, as you are eating on top of the ocean, down the street from a shrimp farm. Powdered mashed potatoes unacceptable at Christmas dinner. Even with staff off, peel them the day before! Communication between Pier staff and kitchen seemed a little foggy. A la Carte meal was a nice change, but it too had its issues. Service time was slow, but we weren't going anywhere and enjoyed cocktails from Fermin while waiting. Portions were mindblowingly off, you could order a pizza (Large-XL in Canada) for 1 person or get buffalo wings and get 5 wings and half a cup of fries. Your meal there could feed half a person or a family, so I suggest ordering as a group (dont ask for more than five wings, theyll charge you). Food was pretty good there, beef was GREAT. Pretty sure the catch of the day was frozen snapper every day. Final minor food gripe: people have expectations when they read something on a menu and can be frustrated when you dont deliver, ie risotto thats boiled rice, buffalo wings without a buffalo sauce on them, chicken milanese without tomato sauce. In summary, if you go to a resort expecting great food, stay away, if you are looking for something to keep you going while you enjoy the amazing resort this is satisfactory. Also note to guests, dont publicly complain about the food, negative attitudes compound and just make everything worse, meet with the food manager or GM in private. FINAL NOTE: Food on last 2 days improved greatly, keep reading reviews as I think they are making changes.

BAR/NIGHTLIFE:
Typical AI setup where local booze is free, you pay for imports. No local tequila, go grab a bottle in town at a grocery store if you love it (around 8 bucks). They make drinks I have never heard of before, but occasionally you'll find one that they should have that they don't. Canadians, heads up, no Ceasers. Bar does close at 10 unless there is a good group, not a problem to me, I like going to bed early, gives you more of the sun shining day to work with. On the weekend the bar was open to around one with karaoke and dancing (cant guarantee though). Overall very happy with the bar experience, great staff. If you love to party until 4 am every night, go to town, safe and fun.

TOWN:
About 25 minutes away, shuttle goes in officially once a day but often goes in separately for errands and you can catch a ride if you ask management. Bus is 1 dollar, comes infrequently but is worth the experience. Town is safe and fun. Must try the gelato. Grocery store is cheaper than duty free.

STAFF:
Very friendly, always say good morning, if you start a conversation with them they will remember and talk to your for the remainder of your stay. Impressed by all staff, entry level workers to managers. With the communication gaps between Pier and Kitchen I did hear my 3 least favourite words a couple times "I don't know".

FINAL THOUGHTS:
Hot sauce at restaurant is really good. (Marie Sharps I think). Odd things were being charged for occasionally (gym was the most surprising). Beach was muddy in the water but maintained amazingly on top. December 15-30 is jellyfish season. Amazingly peaceful and quiet, you were never forced to run out and reserve a beach chair at 6am. A couple minor changes and this place could be exceptional rather then amazing. Would happily return and recommend to friends if food was improved, but again it is not quite as bad as some reviewers say.

Room Tip: Unless you need the extra room of the suite, stick with the base rooms. No couches, just extra space...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 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
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Julia291977, General Manager at The Placencia Hotel and Residences, responded to this review, January 13, 2013
Thanks for taking time to provide specific feedback to the various areas of our resort. As you mention the last two days of your stay the food improved as we made changes based on suggestions and overall feedback. With the feedback we are working to improve in the area pertaining to food. We have a dynamic challenge on our hands with providing buffet to our guests traveling on sunwing's package, the A lA Carte, as well as the items offered on our regular dining menu which we are working to improve daily. We are a young team and with the feedback of guests like you it will help us to improve and build a strong team. Thanks again for taking the time out to comment. We are happy you had an overall awesome experience here with us.
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Syracuse, New York
Top Contributor
139 reviews 139 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 61 cities Reviews in 61 cities
50 helpful votes 50 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 31, 2012

The hotel, pool and beach are absolutely beautiful. Our room was of good size and clean. I cannot speak to the meals which seem to be a concern for others as we did not eat there. I was very disapppointed that the wifi which was advertized as free wasn't and there 'seemed' to be an additional cost for many things. It is about 10 miles from the village of Plancencia so you'll be best to have a car as we spent time in the village and had our meals in the area at the many very high quality restaurants. The staff was very friendly and attentive, no complaints there at all or with the physical property. We enjoyed lounging at the beach soaking up the sun between trips to the village.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 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
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Belleville, Canada
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed December 30, 2012

Returned from the Placencia Dec. 24/12. The accomodations, hotel grounds and pools were fine. We were very disappointed with the quality and availability of meals. The meals were repetitive with little choice. Breakfast was always runny scrambled eggs with bacon or chicken sausages. Very little fruit - watermelon and pineapple. They'd run out of papaya and oranges. Supper was always a chicken dish (legs/thighs) and another meat dish that came with rice and coleslaw. One dessert only and looked the same night after night. The meals were basic, limited selection and of 2 star quality!!

The website stated 2 a la cartes restaurants - there was only 1 and the menu was limited to about 10 items: chicken wings, marguerita pizza, chicken or beef dish, fish of the day and a pasta. The meat meals came with a scoop of rice and a small green salad. No appetizers on the menu. The meals were very plain and something we could have had at home. We were NOT impressed.

At orientation, we were told NO food between 3 - 6:30 pm. Many guests returning from day tours after 3pm were starved!! Nothing to eat. The only all-inclusive we have been to and have been hungry! The resort eventually brought out pizzas or nachos to the pool area. The food was devoured iin minutes. We ended up eating off the resort numerous times.

The staff were friendly and accomodating. We did note many new staff who were not familiar with the menu and unable to answer our questions about the food.

We did enjoy the snorkeling, jaguar preserve and visits to the town of Placencia. The people are very friendly and Belize is a beautiful country.

Unfortunately, we will not be recommending this resort to anyone!

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
Orillia, Canada
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 29, 2012

Just returned Dec. 24, 2012 from a one week stay at The Placencia. I left from Toronto on the 17th. Belize was fine, not nearly the poverty as many other counties I have visited. I have vacationed about 30 times. The weather was good, temps. 28-30 daily, rained one day. Friendly staff, decent service and management was quiet. My room was a beautiful picture perfect room with ocean pool view, good rain shower head and A/C wonderful. Room stocked daily with 2 bottled water, coffee, but pay 7US each day if used. The hotel has a nice sandy beach, but cant swim in the water because of jelly fish. Food tasty, but limited, not like usual all-inclusives. There was 3 meals daily at a buffet, served to you, about 4-5 choices only, hardly no veggies or fruit. Be on time for food because it runs out. This was my biggest disappointment, two days at 9am they were out of food for breakfast and ran out at lunch one day of the chicken. this is unacceptable, not good and definately not of a 4 star rating. All other A/I vacations I have visited, have all offered 40-50 options of food choices, you helped yourself and food 24 hours a day. I think because the trip was so expensive I expected the similar service from this A/I experience. What they did serve was tasty, similar day to day, hardly any seafood, just very limited and dessert the same cake all week with different topping. Snacks at the pool in the afternoons were fine, often late though, and ranged from cake and muffins to chicken wings and tacos. All bars at the resort close at 10pm, and no food/snacks after your supper meal. Swim up bar is nice,cleaned daily, good bar service from Alex and other bar tenders. The best time was definately spent here. Hoor-ay to you. The 2 el'cart meals were better than the buffet without a doubt, but the room service meals were fantastic and by far a better rounded meal. It does cost about 50 US or 100 Belize dollars for two meals, but the beef meal was fantastic, melt in your mouth. The local drinks and pizza are good, there is lots of ice and bottled water at the bar. Dirty monkeys, pina colattas, dacaries and mohitos were fabulous. Coffee in room expensive if using each day, billed 7US each day., cleaning of room daily was good but only change bedding every 3rd day. One day I took my sheets off because of a cut foot and I had gotten blood on the botttom sheet, they actually made up my bed and put the same sheets back on. I did complain and then the service staff did change them, but VERY disappointed about needing to ask and the fact that because I had stripped the bed completely that they actually would do that!! Disappointing!! There is a beach towel shortage at hotel so bring towels from home. I did not expect to leave from Toronto and fly to Cozamel either, have to get off the plane and go to customs, get back on the plane fly to Belize city, get off at Belize and get on a 320 cesna charter which then proceeded to fly to Placencia, land and then take a bus to the hotel. This made for a long first day. Once at hotel they did a great welcome with food and beverage and were well organized, thank god. We did need to change time back 1 hour so this made me happy. The return trip did not have to stop at Cozamel, saved time. A Free shuttle from the hotel to the local village was great, pay 1US dollar to take the bus back to the hotel! Belizian people are friendly and helpful. Food at the local Barefoot bar was great and cheap. Purchase gifts for home at the Belize airport on your return back to toronto, cheaper than buying from locals, however I did shop on many local sidewalks and managed to get some nice items. My trip to the Blue Hole was expensive but had a wonderful time and friendly people and great service. I would rate this hotel 3 and 1/2 stars. Beautiful place, but without a swimable beach, long travel time and in my opinion, suitable flavored food but real shortage on amounts available to compensate guests even running out 3 times, room service big error, I would not think of giving this hotel a higher review. There were too many unexceptable issues when I paid almost $3300.00 for two people for one week. I have travelled alot, and never pay this much for so little. Sorry, Lynne from Orillia Ontario Canada. Belize itself was nice, just not this resort. There needs to be more than beautiful surrounding. This hotel can easily fix these problems if they want. Thanks to Sandy from Sunwing, you were amazing.

Room Tip: Pool View!
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Placencia Hotel and Residences

Address: Placencia Village, Placencia 00000, Belize
Location: Belize > Stann Creek > Placencia
Amenities:
Beach Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#4 Luxury Hotel in Placencia
#10 Top resorts Hotel in Placencia
#15 On the Beach Hotel in Placencia
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — The Placencia Hotel and Residences 4*
Number of rooms: 90
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Placencia Hotel is the fastest growing Hotel in the general area offering the finest amenities and service to an ever discerning clientele visiting Belize. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Hotel Placencia
The Resort Placencia
The Placencia Hotel And Residences Belize

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