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“A bit disappointing”
2 of 5 bubbles Review of Banyan Bay Suites

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Banyan Bay Suites
Ranked #23 of 54 Hotels in San Pedro
Certificate of Excellence
Orange County
Level Contributor
129 reviews
49 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 142 helpful votes
“A bit disappointing”
Reviewed February 22, 2007

My wife and I booked into a two bedroom unit with another couple at Banyan Bay in February 2007. The room was nice. However, the fit and finish of cabinets was awful. The drawers would not close. I called maintenance to have them fix it. The maintenance man just looked at us like we were crazy. Who needs to put there clothes away? Also, our maid did not clean at all. I cut myself shaving and had the same bloody towel for three days. I ended up using the pool towel in the bathroom.

I went out early one morning to go fishing with my friend. My wife and my friend’s wife stayed behind in the room. Someone tried to break into our room twice with our wives still in the room 15 minutes after we left. Someone was watching the unit and figured they could get in after we left.

The resort restaurant, Rico’s, was expensive and not good. For the same money, you can eat at Victoria’s Cottage and have a wonderful dinner.

You have to get a golf cart if you stay at Banyan Bay. It is a long walk into town from the hotel.

Also, another gripe. The concierge called me and said she had a welcome gift for me. She asked me to come see her and receive my gift. So I did. My gift was a photocopy of a map of Ambergris Caye, a recommendation for a new restaurant that was connected with the hotel and the opportunity to own a timeshare at Banyan Bay. Some gift. I thought this was pretty cheesy. If someone offers you a gift, ask what it is before you burn 20 minutes of your vacation trying to get away from a time share salesperson.

All in all, this place felt like a middle of the road Cabo San Lucas resort pimping the time share aspect.

Stayed February 2007
8 Thank david b
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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421 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (102)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed February 6, 2007

My husband, father-in-law and I stayed at the Villas of Banyan Bay last November. The 2-bedroom suite we stayed in for the week was very nice, 2 TVs, AC, fully equipped kitchen, 2 baths. It's a very family oriented place, but when we were there, I didn't see families milling around. It was very quiet and lovely. The only disappointment I had during my stay was that they were making repairs to the pool, so it was not available to us during our stay, although we were able to use the pool next door if we wanted to.

My husband and his dad spent 3 days bone fishing, and I spent that alone time walking into town every day...about a 30 minute walk if you aren't stopping to take pictures and just enjoying the views as I was. Every day I saw something different that I had missed the day before. By the time I walked into town, shopped, and walked back, believe me the AC in the room felt great!

The restaurant at the villas, Ricos, was adequate. Nothing to write home about, but we did enjoy Carambas, Elvis Kitchen and even a great dish of beans and rice at a little sidewalk kitchen by the park. The people are so friendly, the town is bustling and full of taxis and golf carts, but rather than finding it an annoyance, I felt it just added another layer of ambience to the place.

We snorkeled one day at the Hol Chan marine reserve, and enjoyed the chumming of the nurse sharks at Shark Ray Alley. Both were an awesome experience. We took a water taxi to Caye Caulker one day. I have mixed feelings about the caye. It was definitely smaller than Ambergris Caye and not the hustle and bustle of San Pedro. Very laid back, almost to the point of being a little on the boring side. But by the same token, it had that great local flavor...clothes hanging on lines above your head, kids riding bikes, lovely little yards and interesting streets to stroll around. If you like to pick up shells, you could find them on Caye Caulker, where it's almost impossible to find any along the beach on Ambergris Caye.

The grocers on A.C. I felt were pretty expensive. I didn't think the bread was very good by American standards, but I guess the taste grows on you the longer you are there. There's an internet cafe right in San Pedro town where you can check email if you feel the need, and get a good cup of coffee. The owner of the place is a real friendly guy and we enjoyed visiting with him.

If you are there during the raining season, the roads are horrendous for getting around in a golf cart. It's easier just to walk.

We already have our trip planned for this coming November. Can't wait to get back!

Stayed November 2006
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wilmington, Delaware
Level Contributor
9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
Reviewed January 30, 2007

Really enjoyed our upstairs, oceanfront condo at Banyan Bay. Unit G-4 was well kept and nicely decorated. The porch had a great view. We spent a lot of time on the porch, having breakfast and cocktails watching the sea. The unit has air conditioning, but we found that we didn't need it the last week in January - windows and ceiling fans were sufficient. Only downside to the unit - one stove burner that wasn't functioning.

The front desk staff was helpful in calling cabs and making dinner reservations when we asked.

We were pleasantly surprised by Rico's, the on-site restaurant. We had read mixed reviews. We ate a few lunches and dinner and found the seafood dishes well prepared. Service was sometimes slow, but not outrageously so.

We dived with Bottom Time, the on-site Dive Shop and recommend them. For the most part we dived in small groups of 4-6 divers. Divemasters Eddie and Rudy have been diving the area for years and work hard at finding critters, even the elusive toad fish.

We also booked some day trips on site, and found them well run. We toured Lamanai with Seaduced, had a private catamaran sail and picnic of fresh casught fish with Capt. Steve of No-rush, and booked one of Bottom
Time's motor boats captained by Carlos to snorkel and visit Caye Caulker. All were great trips and highly recommended.

Stayed January 2007
9 Thank Rumrita
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
12 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
Reviewed January 24, 2007

Belize is a wonderful country and Ambergris Caye is great. The locals are friendly and the snorkelling/scuba diving is outstanding. The island is a throwback in time--hand painted signs, not a McDonalds anywhere.

But Banyan Bay Villas is very standard fare with no local flavor. The rooms vary greatly and ours was definitely not one of the better ones. The furnishings were cheap and tacky. The hot tub was unusable.

The restaurant food was so-so.

This is a good place to stay if you must always have your "American style" hotel with air conditioners blasting out of every room, even when there is a beautiful breeze and the temps are in the 60s at night. It's also a good place to go if you enjoy listening to dozens of kids running around/screaming.

The reviewers that said this place is the only one with a good beach, apparently did not do much walking because if they walked even a few feet further away from town, they would have come upon numerous hotels that had nicer beaches and prettier architecture.

The staff--gardeners, chambermaids--were fine.

The "desk clerks were unhelpful and unfriendly.

There were not enough lounge chairs for everyone.

The only people at the hotel who want to talk to you are the shills who are constantly hounding you to take a "tour" to buy one of the units.

I loved Ambergris Caye but if I return, I will go a few doors down to one of the really luxurious hotels or better yet, I'm going to stay at Ruby's Hotel which is one tenth the price and has some real local flavor

  • Liked — relatively close proximity to town
  • Disliked — ugly rooms, unhelpful management
  • Stayed January 2007, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
15 Thank RuthNYC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York
Level Contributor
12 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed January 15, 2007

We have just returned from a delightful week at The Villas at Banyan Bay. Our 2 bedroom /bath villa was immaculate and very comfortable. The only flaw was that our villa backed onto a parking lot. The next time we'll try for a unit in the A, B or C sections.
The property is south Of San Pedro and, while it is walkable, you are better off with a taxi or golf cart.
The folks at the dive shop were very helpful and can arrange anything from snorkling to jungle tours.
Rico's restaurant at BB was highly rated for ambiance but the food was rated as so-so. We ate there 2 nights (as well as several brekfasts & lunches) and thought that the food was great.
There are any number of good restaurants right on the beach in San Pedro. Our favorites were The Blue Water Grill and The Wild Mango. Everything is very, very casual and shorts and a tee shirt were the uniform of the day.

1 Thank BobMcK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed January 7, 2007

Banyan Bay provided all the comforts of home, which was a treat for our family after spending a week in the jungles of Belize and Guatemala. It provided great amenities, including a clean, relaxing pool, well-furnished two-bedroom apartment with A/C, telephones, alarm clocks and TVs. You wouldn't even know you left the U.S., until you left the property. Then you would find a delightful Caribbean community, a bit dusty and bumpy, with very warm and helpful people.

The on-site restaurant is good, in a beautiful setting, but incredibly expensive. The $5 taxi ride into town or the up-to-one-mile walk (especially along the beach) is well worth it for other dining and lunch options. The town also provides several grocery stores for people who want to buy food to prepare in the well-equipped kitchens. We made breakfast and had a couple of lunches in our room. Besides the indoor dining room, there is a patio table outside each unit.

  • Liked — The luxuriousness of the unit
  • Disliked — Seaweed along the beach
  • Tips/Secrets — If you want to swim, jump off the dock, which takes you beyond the seaweed. You still can touch bottom.
  • Stayed January 2007, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
3 Thank Desert_DwellerTucson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Banyan Bay Suites

Property: Banyan Bay Suites
Address: Seagrape Drive, San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize (Formerly The Villas at Banyan Bay)
Phone Number:
Location: Belize > Belize Cayes > Ambergris Caye > San Pedro
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#8 Spa Hotel in San Pedro
#14 Top resorts Hotel in San Pedro
#19 Family Hotel in San Pedro
#22 On the Beach Hotel in San Pedro
#24 Romantic Hotel in San Pedro
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Banyan Bay Suites 3.5*
Number of rooms: 35
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located by the beach less than a mile from downtown San Pedro, Banyan Bay Suites offers a great getaway from the everyday hustle and bustle of life. Featuring 2 bedrooms/2 bathrooms poolview and beachfront suites and 3 bedrooms/3 bathrooms beachfront suites, with kitchen fully equipped and central air conditioned. Spa is available onsite. A 3-level fresh water pool. Pier 366 Seafood House located by the beach offers breakfast, lunch and dinner. A full service diveshop onsite, that can help in your diving and snorkeling activities. A tour desk that can help in fishing and trips to the mainland including the Mayan temples, ziplining, cave tubing and the Belize Zoo. Banyan Bay Suites is the perfect resort for activities or relaxation. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Villas At Banyan Bay Hotel San Pedro
Hotel At Banyan Bay
Resort At Banyan Bay
Banyan Bay Suites Belize/San Pedro

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