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“great excursion”

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Fantasy Island Beach Resort
Ranked #5 of 5 Hotels in French Harbour
Minneapolis, MN
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“great excursion”
Reviewed April 10, 2011

Roatan-Crown Princess. I booked the Fantasy Island trip through Island Marketing (about $100 cheaper than through Princess). Roatan did not look like it did when I visited in 1997. Mahogany Bay reminded me of an amusement park. Our driver was Sovony, she was waiting for us out of the complex and up the hill. She gave us information about the island on our way to the resort. The trip included snorkeling and kayaking. We were able to pick out our place on the beach (the other larger tours that came had to sit in certain areas). We had a nice section of beach all to ourselves. The beach was nice and it was a calm protected bay area. Im not sure if i would want to stay at this resort, but it was great for the day. The snorkeling was okay, we saw many conchs. It was possible to snorkel out to the reef, but there was boat and seaplane traffic – so it was a little dangerous. There were 3 kayaks and my 10 year old spent most of his time in one of them. There were large iguanas and a monkey on the island. The monkey was quite fond of my 10 year old and played with him for a while. Sovony waited for us and took us back to the ship when we were ready. When we returned to Mahogany Bay, we did a little shopping and stopped at Fat Tuesdays before returning to the ship.

  • Stayed April 2011, traveled with family
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Trystan27
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Edmonton, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed March 29, 2011

Other then the noseeums ... thats because you can't see them when they bite!!! This was a top notch vacation. Diving; beach; & hotel hospitallity "FANTASTIC".Only a 3 star but they make you feel like its a 5 star. Again one of the best !!! Met a lot of nice people, including the monkeys, highly recommended & will go back.

Carm & James

  • Stayed March 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Cyber999
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
los angeles
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed March 26, 2011

I just returned from a week at Fantasy Island. To start with the good, the dive operation is fantastic. There are 3 dive times daily, at 9, 11 and 2:30. I dove each of the 3 dive times, every day, the most we ever had on the boat was 8, but even on that dive a few of the divers were working on instructional dives with other instructors, so it was never crowded or had any of the cattle call feeling dive operations can sometimes have. I dove with Miguel as the dive master all week, he had a fantastic slow and easy pace, and made sure to point out what we might have missed without his experienced eye. He was also very agreeable to taking the boat out on a longer run to a dive site that the small group of us really wanted to see. There is fresh fruit, water and towels on board after every dive. The diving in that area of Roatan is really fantastic, the reef appears to be under very little stress, very vibrant! I would dive with these guys again in a heartbeat!
The downside is the hotel side of the resort. While I would dive with Fantasy Island again, I would never stay at the resort again. The rooms are average, clean, a/c works well, about what you would expect for a moderately priced facility. However, the food is both awful, and spartan. There are no snacks available between meal times, and the meals are barely edible. The group of us that was diving went out 2 nights for dinner - when we were simply unable to tolerate the unpalatable offerings another night.
The hotel also was doing upgrades and maintenance, that started quite early every morning, before 7am most mornings. The sound of heavy machinery early in the morning isn't my idea of a relaxing vacation. The hotel staff was largely apathetic, unwilling to be helpful and even rude when questioned. An example, I never had soap left in my room, I repeatedly asked for soap, but never had any left. When I went to the front desk to obtain some I was given one small bar and a lecture about getting soap from the housekeeping staff. Also, bring some sort of alarm, I requested wake up calls, but rarely received one. I was also put on the opposite side of the resort from the dive shop, which was a significant walk. I asked for another room when they checked me in, and was told that none closer to the dive shop were available. I found out later that day that only 27 guests total were in the hotel, and there were 3 buildings between me and the dive shop. Which told me that they simply didn't want to bother with moving my room. The walk was far enough that I couldn't possibly make it back to my room between the 9 and 11 am dive times to swap batteries on my dive camera, much less anything else. Also the hot water and water pressure were unreliable. Somedays I took a cold shower, somedays I struggled to lather up under a meager trickle.
If you're not a diver there isn't much to do on the resort. There are some kayaks, and there is a outfit near the dive shop that rents waverunners and offers tubing and wakeboarding. But there is really very little in regards to entertainment for non divers.
If the resort would do some very simple upgrades it would be a dream dive destination. Healthy, appetizing meals, snacks, friendly service, some attempts towards customer service, and if it's not too much hot water with at least enough pressure to lather ones hair .
The pool was also disgusting, it was a thick, sludge of green water the entire time I was there...don't plan on a dip in it!
If you go, bring LOTS of bug repellant, the "noseeums" are wicked, they have a painless bite, but leave red welts all over, and the mosquitos are what one would expect in the tropics.

  • Stayed March 2011, traveled solo
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Helpful?
2 Thank carribeanluv
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boulder, Colorado
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed March 25, 2011

Beautiful location, beautiful fish, beautiful view from our room. However, much of the coral on the reef near the lodge is dead, and we were heartsick at the collecting of living organisms. Late each afternoon several guests would come ashore with bags full of living conchs and coral. When I asked at the desk about taking a dead conch shell, the attendant said it was illegal, but nothing was done to notify guests unless they asked. The management at Fantasy Island could lead in preserving the reef if they took a few simple steps. 1) Include an informational sheet with their handouts giving a brief statement about Honduras’s magnificent reefs and fish that attract visitors from all over the world and stating that it is illegal to collect coral or shells 2) Posting informational signs with photos and interesting information about the reef as well as the statement saying it is illegal to collect 3) hiring a local naturalist (students would probably be enthusiastic about the job and work for relatively low wages plus tips) to lead nature walks and be on hand to talk to people. Even a half-time position would be great.

  • Stayed March 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank cseawriter
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Massachusetts
Level Contributor
59 reviews
23 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
Reviewed March 10, 2011

We found this day-trip to Fantasy Island when looking for kayak excursions on Roatan because the resort advertised free use of their kayaks to explore the marshes. The resort looked lovely and was well reviewed. The price was excellent.

Upon arriving at the resort, we discovered they no longer have kayaks. Okay, they had ONE, sit-on-top, with a single canoe paddle. That was a disappointment and they really should eliminate references to the kayaks on their website.

That said, we soon were so charmed by the resort, that we forgot all about the kayaks. The beach is absolutely gorgeous. Wildlife abounds with enormous iguanas and something the locals call wild red rabbits all over. The spider monkeys are very tame and enormously entertaining.

If you visit the resort, do not miss the nature walk area behind the building. There are deer, peacock, rabbits, monkeys and geese. We spent a long time playing with the monkeys, who have no fear. One of them playfully swiped my son's sunglasses, refusing to give them back until he grew bored with them.

On my last visit to Roatan, I visited one of the popular, upscale beaches recommended by the cruise ship. While it was lovely, we all had issues with sand fleas. Not the case at Fantasy Island. The beach was clean and bug-free.

The pool is also lovely and offers reasonably-priced cocktails at the near-by bar.

  • Stayed February 2011, traveled with family
    • Location
Helpful?
1 Thank PaddlingFan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CT-USA
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed February 21, 2011

FANTASY ISLAND has under gone a change in management from PRIVLEDGE HOTELS back to owner managed. This has beena great improvement as privledge was lacking in upkeep & repairs. These issues made me leary of returning for a 7th trip with family & friends. I can say that the 6 others who traveled in our group were very pleased with what they saw.

We have seen the outdoor restaurant is now reopened for lunches & has some very-very cold ice cream that is to die for !! The inside dining room has just completed a complete refurbish including paint and redone flooring, looks great !! GREAT JOB GUSTO(OWNER OF RESORT).

We have seen most rooms have new ac units in them & new beds. all units have new refridgerators in them that are ice cold.

The dive center was great as we saw so many familiar faces there that we felt very comfortable in diving with them. We dove on there newest addition to there fllet of boats the "MALLORCA" her sister is due to be put in service in 2 weeks . JUST IMAGINE COMING UP FROM A DIVE AND BEING HANDED A FULL LENGTH ROBE TO TAKE THAT CHILL OFF !! NICE !! ALL THE DOCKS ARE NOW REBUILT INCLUDING NEW PILINGS !!

NOW THERE IS STILL A DOWN SIDE TO ALL GOOD THINGS. THE RESORT NEEDS TO ADD 2-3 OVERHEAD LIGHTS TO LOCKER AREA & A COUPLE OF FANS TO CIRCULATE SOME AIR AROUND !! REPLACE THE SHOWER HEADS ON THE 3 OUTSIDE SHOWERS WOULD BE NICE ALSO !!

THE US TRAVEL AGENT REPING FANTASY ISLAND IS RICH HARVEY WHO HAS BEEN MORE THAN HELPFUL IN OUR TRIP PLANNING & CONCERNS ABOUT RESORT REHAB PROGRESS. WHAT HE TOLD ME OVER THE 3 + MONTHS OF GROUP TRIP PLANNING HAS BEEN HONEST & ACCURATE !! THANKS RICH FOR YOUR HELP & CANDOR !!!

WE ARE PLANNING TRIP 8 TO RESORT IN 4-5 MONTHS AND WILL HAVE NO SSUES IN A RETURN TRIP HERE !!

  • Stayed February 2011, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank DIVERWAYNE
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tucson, Arizona
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed December 15, 2010

We had a terrific time at Fantasy Island! This older facility on the water is under constant maintenance. New ownership in November is remodeling the rooms, installing new A/C units and new windows. The staff are all very friendly and helpful. The management was very responsive to suggestions as well. When I suggested that it would be great if there was a can of insect repellent available at the bar (it is a jungle island, after all) so I didn't have to stop my playing with friends to go back to my room for some, the sales manager thought it was such a great idea that HE went to the store, brought back a can and instituted the policy!
Divers will love the dock side lockers, so you only have to sclep your gear twice- once when you arrive and once when you leave. Otherwise, use the convenient fresh water dip tanks to rinse and let your equipment dry on hangers overnight! The divemasters and captains are very helpful, courteous, and knowledgable. They switched our gear to fresh tanks between dives, helped us on and off the boat without even asking! Better-- there were dry towels on the boats! BETTER- there were dry terry cloth ROBES on the boats! What a fantastic idea! I didn't have to get my own cover up clothes wet and nasty! And so warm after that dive! The new Dive Manager, Darrin, was very attentive to our requests and suggestions.
Young Children will really love the Bubblemaker course (8- 10 yr olds get to dive to 6 feet in the ocean with fish!) with the charming Tatianna. My son was a little nervous at first, but loved his time with Tati! I think it will be his first step to joining us on the reef next year!
Plenty for non-divers. Kayaking in the placid lagoon, beach volleyball net always up, balls available from the desk. A sea plane is available right there for low flying island tours. You can rent jet ski's and wave boards too-- all in good condition! The pool looked great-- well maintained and clean. It was closed one day after heavy use for cleaning. Jungle zipline tours, shopping excursions into town, horseback riding are also available for land-lubbers.
It's not the Ritz Carlton. But for a resort on an island in an economically challenged country, it's very comfortable, clean, the food is better than edible, the diving is great, and the management is working to make it even better!

  • Stayed December 2010, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank debjacobstucson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Fantasy Island Beach Resort

Property: Fantasy Island Beach Resort
Address: Carretera Pavimentada Ppal, French Harbour, French Harbour, Roatan IB3110, Honduras
Location: Honduras > Bay Islands > Roatan > French Harbour
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 5 Hotels in French Harbour
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Fantasy Island Beach Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 115
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Enjoy the best of the Caribbean at Fantasy Island Beach Resort, Dive and Marina! Our Roatan, Honduras resort is located on its own 21 acre private island. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Fantasy Island Beach Hotel Roatan
Fantasy Island Beach Roatan
Fantasy Island Roatan
Fantasy Island Beach Resort Roatan, Honduras

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