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“Feels like home”
Review of Mata Rocks Resort

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Mata Rocks Resort
Ranked #26 of 53 Hotels in San Pedro
Certificate of Excellence
Albany, NY
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
“Feels like home”
Reviewed March 8, 2011

This was my 3rd time to Belize and 3rd time to Mata Rocks. And while the island itself has changed some since my last visit 4 years ago (more built up), Mata Rocks still feels like home. The reason: The staff will remember you (specifically Sherilyn & Chrisella) and treat you like long-lost family (as well as do whatever it takes to make your vacation pleasant and comfortable)

Mata Rocks isn't fancy. If you want luxury, it may not be for you. What Mata Rocks does well is offer a sense of community. The heart & soul of the resort is the Squirrel's Nest Beach Bar. It is there that you will have your coffee (very, very strong) and sweet treats in the morning, get your beach towels, arrange diving/ snorkeling/mainland trips, view the restaurant book (favorites include Celi's for rum cake &, believe it or not, spaghetti on Thursdays; The Reef for seafood; Estelle's for breakfast; Elvi's; Hidden Treasure; and the martini bar next door), and enjoy any number of yummy drinks at happy hour with your fellow resort mates (as well as ex-pats who frequent the place because of the friendly and welcoming vibe).

What kind of people frequent Mata Rocks? This is something that I always like to consider before I travel. As an introvert who prefers a more low-key environment to party-central, I prefer smaller, more intimate resorts with a diverse group of people, minus the kids. At Mata Rocks, I noticed single travelers, gay couples, and friendship groups (ages late 20's to 60's). I tend to like this mix. Some people kept to themselves (which is cool), and others made it a practice to hang out at happy hour each night. You can completely be yourself.

As far as the accommodations go, the rooms are spacious and kept very clean, and I love the fresh flowers they put on your table. However, I might change a few things - I would add a dresser or cabinet for clothes; I would update the air conditioning systems; I would include some things in the kitchenettes like silverware, plates & dish liquid; and I would make the mattresses a little softer.

I find the location of Mata Rocks to be perfect. It's just outside of town so as to avoid the crowds, but close enough so that you can walk the beach into town (takes approximately 25 minutes). Some prefer to take bikes or golf carts, but I enjoyed the daily walk.

I first chose Mata Rocks because of the white washed buildings and pastel colored beach furniture (call me a sucker for that Grecian look). It remains one of the most visually beautiful resorts I've seen on the island (this side of Santorini). The beach however is relatively small and full of sea grass. They do their best to keep the beach clean (they are literally always raking), but when it's windy, the sea weed piles up like you wouldn't believe. There is a sand bar down the beach a bit (2 docks towards town), but in order to get to it, you either have to swim out or jump off the dock to swim out to it. The annoying part is that you can't just climb up out back on to the dock as there are no stairs - you have to swim in. If there is one thing I would change about the island is the sea-grass/weed. I would much prefer the sandy bottom of other beaches in the Caribbean. The pool at Mata Rocks is small but okay, and the patio area is lovely.

Final tips: For those who don't dive and are nervous about even snorkeling, arrange a trip in the Glass Bottom Boat (staff will do this for you). The tour guy (sorry I can't remember his name) is outstanding and will swim with you to reduce your anxiety (people who aren't strong swimmers or don't like to have their heads submerged). Also, bring mosquito spray and use it! Bring a sweater for those windy nights. The water is fine to drink, but if you want bottled water the closest place is right next door at the Monkey Business gift shop (otherwise, the markets are a bit of a walk).

Lastly, when I think of going back to Belize I always initially think of trying someplace new (say with a swim up pool bar), but I always almost immediately decide against it and opt for going back to Mata Rocks. There's just something so special about this place.

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled with friends
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Helpful?
5 Thank Greta40
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (132)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Bellingham, Washington
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed February 25, 2011

My husband and I, and his dive buddy all stayed here! The girls are wonderful, they set up the dives for them with great ease, they got picked up at the dock in front of the hotel. I spent the days lasing at the hotel or borrowed a bike to run around town. The Squirrel's Nest bar/snack bar was fun. people from the neighboring condos and locals all visit. The people at the hotel are nice and helpful and fun!! The people in town are as well. We can't wait to come back!

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank liljohn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
liverpool
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 61 helpful votes
Reviewed January 20, 2011

Mata Rocks is a fab little hotel on the beach, we stayed for 8 days from New Years Eve & loved it. Mata Rocks only has 17 rooms & a small pool but it feels like home, there is a bar on the beach & the staff are great & very helpful. It's such a laid back place you can't help but relax. It's very simple but comfortable & all we needed.
Ambergris Caye is a lovley Island with a Carribean feel, everything happens on Belize time which is just fine. It very esy going & there are some gorgeous places to eat, Caramba in San Pedro was our favourite & we went here at least 3 times.
We would deffo go back to Abergris Caye & wouldn't hesitate to stay a Mata Rocks!

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank cherub74
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
17 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed December 27, 2010

This place is by far the nicest hotel I have seen on the island. It appears to stick to a Greek theme with bright white which is very nice and contrasts with the other green hotels along the beach. It also isn't in the centre of town so you have a lovely beach with lots of activities you can do. But of course it is only a 15 minute cycle or 5 minute drive downtown. The staff are very friendly and willing to help at any stage in your stay. It is brilliant.

  • Stayed December 2010, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank JessicaHern
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
California
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed November 22, 2010

Just returned from a week in Ambergris Caye, Belize. Stayed at Mata Rocks, what a great place. The staff took care of everything. Chris and Sherilynn at the Squirrels Nest Bar were great. Nice clean rooms, friendly staff and the very best part was the small size of the resort allowed us to get to know our fellow travelers and we even did adventures with them.

  • Stayed November 2010, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank ColbysmomCalifornia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Diego, California
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed November 17, 2010

This is more than a place right on the beach, it has a beach bar near the pool that made meeting our fellow resort guests, at breakfast & later, a fun experience.
They had free bikes available &wireless internet access. Our diving trip picked us up at our dock. We rented a golf cart which made getting to & from town a blast.
It was close to cute local restaurants craft shops & grocery stores.
This was a small "resort" that looked like Mykonos in Greece.

  • Stayed October 2010, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Terri L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
California
Level 3 Contributor
20 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed November 16, 2010

Wife and I, second visit to Ambergris Caye. First visit 2002. Did a time share exchange and
wanted some extra days and found Mata Rocks on the web. After lots of checking around, like the results of working with Terry and got their second floor ocean front. Nice clean room,
nothing real fancy but very adequate. This is a boutique property, very clean, out from town and right on the beach. Nice little pool and a fun open air bar (light snacks). Staff very pleasant and helpful.
We were only their for 4 nights before moving to our exhange but had some friends Mike and Terry that came in for a week to stay the day we moved. They were in room 2 on the second floor over looking the ocean (a real nice room) so we were back there on and off the following week and actually did some diving right off the pier in front (Ambergris Divers, Karen right next door).
This property is a good value and a place the locals come to have a cold Belikin. (local beer).
Good Itialian restruant next door, and a great open air restruant "Hidden Treasure" within a easy short walk.
Rodney and Robin
Novato Californial

  • Stayed October 2010, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank RodneyRobin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Mata Rocks Resort

Property: Mata Rocks Resort
Address: 45 Coconut Drive | PO Box 47, San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize
Location: Belize > Belize Cayes > Ambergris Caye > San Pedro
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#15 Top resorts Hotel in San Pedro
#20 Family Hotel in San Pedro
#25 On the Beach Hotel in San Pedro
#29 Romantic Hotel in San Pedro
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Mata Rocks Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 17
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Intimate beachfront hotel providing personalized service in a casual atmosphere. Located one mile south of San Pedro on a beautiful sandy beach. All rooms and Jr. Suites have ocean views, A/C, cable TV, mini-fridges, coffeemakers, hair dryers, safes. Some rooms have kitchenettes. Complimentary continental breakfast, daytime use of bicycles, and taxi transfer upon arrival/departure are included in room rates. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Mata Rocks Hotel San Pedro
Mata Rocks San Pedro
Mata Rocks Resort Belize/San Pedro

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