I have rated this resort as 5 stars in the 3 star category. It is an excellent resort and definitely fulfilled our expectations and more. You definitely need to research the type of holiday you are expecting. If you want to be treated like royalty, being served drinks on the beach by someone in a tux, a deluxe room laid out in tile and marble, dressing fancy for dinner, etc. stay away. But, if you want the flavour of Roatan, in a down to earth setting, in a relaxed laid back atmosphere where you can kick back, relax, eat good food, meet nice people and be entertained this is an excellent place to get that. And we felt we were still treated like royalty!!
We were 6 people mid 50's to 64. We came for the snorkelling/diving and getting to know Roatan. We certainly got that. Our stay was Feb. 28-Mar. 7
Weather: Rainy season ends Feb. 15, so if you book earlier, you could have a lot of rain!!! Don't blame the resort. Do your research! We had one night of rain, but 3 days of high winds, and boy were they strong! No swimming or sitting on the beach those days unless you wanted to get a sandblasted facial. All the boats you see in pictures were taken to the other side of the island, all chairs taken back and many signs taken in. On days like this, which are rare, it is good to have a plan B, which we did.
We took a nice walk, about an hr. over to the other side, which is not far away and safe to do. Still would not go all alone, 2 people is O.K. If you go out the Henry Morgan gate, turn right and it will take you to West Bay Mall. It is very small, check out the little shops. Penelope's Emporium is very interesting--bought Nature's Veil, a natural insect repellent for $8 and a book called Roatan Odyssey for $23, which is now making very interesting reading. I hear it will be made into a movie. Across the street is Celeste's--really good food, so I hear, but did not try it. If you turn right at the end of the mall you will get to the beach, with a nice craft vendor along the way. We, however, continued past Infinity Bay, which led us past many villas, some lookout spots over the ocean with nice views, and when you get back to the main road, turn left to get to the resort. The next day we took the Nolitours island tour, it was the quickest, most convenient at our immediate disposal on a high wind day, even though I had researched extensively for private tour operators. We were not disappointed. Our tour guide was Julio. He was very accommodating, making a few extra stops when the requests came. He was very knowledgable and gave us an excellent insight into Roatan life. We saw enough of the island and were satisfied. Our lunch stop that day was at Media Luna, also owned by Henry Morgan. While the food was good, it did not have the variety of Henry Morgan or the sampling of local dishes we came to enjoy. It had a more Italian flavour to it, was very quiet, had less shade, not really much beach that we could see. It was a bit more upscale in its look. We were happy with the resort we had chosen. To each his own.
Food: We liked the food so did not go anywhere else to eat. There were comments about mystery meat. If it is a mystery, why don't you ask and it will be a mystery no longer! This is what I did for several dishes, got explanation on contents and how prepared, and then was willing to try them all. Breakfast had lots of choices--yogurt, fruits, croissants,pastry-like items, toast, FABULOUS SUGAR DONUTS, ALWAYS SERVED FRESH AND WARM. Get those when you see them because the platter is cleared out quickly! There was also a hot cereal which was rather like a warm rice pudding, very tasty, sausage, bacon(sometimes crispy, sometimes not) Big deal, take the sausage on that day if the bacon is not to your liking. There was also french toast, pancakes, cold cereals, meats and cheeses, as well as an excellent omelet station. Coffee was excellent. Lunch and dinner had similar type things--chicken fish, beef(which I did not try because the Carib. does not do good beef in general, and it is true here, often people said it was tough, so there are other choices which I made) great salads that you could build yourself, 2 kinds of rice, potatoes, cooked veggies(always a variety), good soup, desserts, fruit, an ice cream bar. Lunch and dinner items were not rehashed from one meal to the next. One of the days when we had been walking and were returning to the resort, it looked like workers were leaving to go home and were carrying leftovers. So, our food was freshly prepared. If some ended up in one of the fabulous soups, that is O.K. too. It is what we do at home, isn't it? While breakfast was early, there was always something to eat somewhere, at the snack bar, on the main bar counter, you just had to go and find it. DRINK THE WATER FROM THE FILLING STATIONS OR THE BAR. It is all good. I think I rinsed my tooth brush with tap water, but can't really remember, and then had tummy trouble soon after. A dose of imodium fixed it. Also don't get water in your mouth when showering. Same result can be expected. We enjoyed both the red and white wines offered during our week, even though white only appeared near the end of the holiday. The boat brings supplies and no trips were made during the high wind days, so it arrived once the weather was calm. Two things you need to be ready for--there is no real orange juice, it is like tang, and another option like fruit punch, and there is no real butter, it is more like margarine. Not a problem. Work around it, there are lots of other choices.
Room: Had rooms 226, 227, 228, top floor. Good choice for us. Very rustic, hammocks on balcony, wood floors, yes older and dated, drawers sometimes got stuck, but did not use those, used the ones that worked and hung the rest up. The beds were very comfortable, good pillows, bedding nice, towel art the best I have seen. Everything was very clean, the maid always polite and having a welcoming smile. When we first arrived, it was evening and our air conditioning did not work, had a hot night, reported it in the morning and it was fixed with a smile and an apology--functioning by noon. One thing you need to be prepared for: TOILET PAPER GOES IN THE GARBAGE NOT IN THE TOILET. Wrap your head around that, it is not that nasty, and don't blame the resort. It was everywhere on the island, incl. the local bars, Media Luna, even the airport. Not a big deal. We need to be respectful of the environment. There are no sludge treatment plants here so these items need to go elsewhere.
Front Desk: Very friendly and helpful, always a smile for the guest. I cannot see how anyone can say these people are unfriendly and not helpful. Treat others with respect and you shall receive--they fixed what problems we had very quickly. It was also clear that cleanup, renovation(painting, etc.) is ongoing as it is when you have your own home.
The Animation Team and Entertainment: Very talented dancers, very friendly and personable. Gave everyone the opportunity to participate but never pushy, always smiling and engaging us if we were willing. There was latin dancing every day. Two of us do zumba at home and were right at home here. We absolutely loved the music. All the music is latin, local, not the standard North American. It gave us a feel for what Roatan is about when you can tap into the music, which is the soul of the people. Shows were also entertaining, fabulous latin dance presentations, fire dancers, Garifuna cultural dance, and yes, the standard audience participation, but some people really like this, so it was a nice mix. Shows were about an hr. right after dinner was finished, then there was some dancing and everything shut down at 11. We often did not make it till then, but again we were up early to enjoy what the day had to offer.
Bought coffee to take home at Casa De Paradise, is cheaper than anywhere else. Other shops offered the same coffee for $10 a bag. Casa was 3/$24, I bargained and got 4/$30, roasted and ground right there and then vacuum sealed. If you are in front of Henry Morgan, face the beach and go right, there is an alleyway/road with a pink building visible from the beach, as you pass the building there is a garage door, which when open lets you know they are there roasting and grinding.
The Mini Mart a bit further along the beach had good prices on local vanilla,hot sauces and sea salt/spices which are locally prepared.
Snorkelling: Excellent the further out you went. We were never bothered by the cruisers even though there were a whole lot of them--a mass invasion in fact. It was easy to use the yellow kayaks as markers to get out into the channel where you go left for the better snorkelling. There are also less people further out. Go past the Infinity Bay dock, look for the heart shaped pool in front of Infinity. Once you get into that there are channels that lead out into the bigger channel which allows you to go left without damaging the reef. You can go all the way to the rock. What angers me is that there is still not enough education about the reef and the damage caused by humans. I saw someone put their flippers down, thinking they were standing on sand, or almost. Well they were not! I quickly swam over and let them know they were killing what they were standing on. Oh, they didn't know. I think huge signs need to be posted on do's and don'ts and that there would be fines, quite hefty ones. NO STANDING IN THE REEF AREA AND NO FISH FEEDING. Those rules should be made very clear. That will get people to stop and listen. This is still a good reef and more needs to be done to save it. When the reef is gone/damaged the tourism will also disappear. We had issues with small jelly fish once you got out close to the big rock--I couldn't see them, felt the burning sting, lasted about an hr. or so and applied some vinegar which cleared the problem. Good security on the beach. Felt comfortable leaving our bag with stuff while we went down the beach to snorkel. Lots of chairs available.
Bugs: Well, we had the whole range here between the 6 of us. I did not use repellent and got no bites. The 3 men got bites but were not bothered, one of the women was bothered somewhat, and my poor sister-in-law was the magnet for every sand flea on the beach even though she was forced into being the heavy user of DEET. She had angry swollen bites and lots of them. Bring your claritin, benadryl, etc. and hope you are like me, not bothered by them--maybe I am toxic? Also I appreciated that there was no fogging on the resort while we were there. If administration reads this, it is important! We inhale the poison and it is not good. We are better off using repellent in the evening.
In short, a great vacation, chose the right resort for us, and would come back to Henry Morgan. Sorry I was so wordy.
We liked 2nd floor, no sewage or musty odors, nice view from balcony.
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