Eight of us spent a week at this north Ambergris Caye resort. The place is a "has been". It needs a complete facelift to improve the tired decor and somewhat shabby rooms in the beach cabanas. I'm not sure which Is worse- the apparent unhappy, bored, aloof staff (except for Orville at the bar and Mo the boat driver or the very poor breakfasts (which were included in our package). The service was completely erratic, making it a challenge to get both utensils and food close enough together to eat. The menu boasts 4 types of juices, most days it's just orange from concentrate. The hollandaise sauce on the so called eggs Benedict was lumpy and flavorless. The granola was store bought and there was no yogurt for several days in a row. We resorted to eggs most days and the same old toast and jam. (One kind only for 7 days straight!) I had to ask for salt and pepper, milk and sugar as there was no anticipation that these items were needed with breakfast.
The first day there I noticed a number of chipped dishes and mugs. When I asked for a tea pot I was told there were none. Tea was a cup of lukewarm water and a tea bag on the side. Breakfast became a struggle and not a pleasant start to the day.
Lunch at the beach was better with OK quesadillas and fish sandwiches but don't dare ask for salad instead of fries. You will be told NO!
The place lacks good management. For a small place where our group occupied 4 out of 17 rooms we expected some interaction with the manager and his wife. Never once were we asked if we were having a good time or if there was anything they could do to make our stay more enjoyable. I tried to use the pay phone and when it didn't work I told the front desk. I was told, "oh , it hasn't worked in years." The manager seemed insulted when I suggested that he put a sign on it to advise other guests.
The New Years Eve menu was so bad that we opted to dine elsewhere. In fact, after our first dinner which was expensive and ordinary we found better places to have dinner on the other nights.
We are a well travelled family and know what service looks like in this price range.
I had expected much more from Portofino after reading mostly positive Trip Advisor reports and the "expensive category" listing in Fodors.
Needless to say, we won't be returning to Portofino, even though Belize is a great destination for a family holiday.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Characterized by its warm and friendly hospitality, Portofino is the epitome of barefoot luxury, unpretentious and relaxing… for most; it will be an experience of a lifetime. Our small, boutique resort offers just 17 beautifully appointed rooms, ranging from charming beach cabanas to spacious suites, dotted amidst swaying palm trees, in a private setting with unmatched personal attention and the modern comforts of home. It is a haven of tranquility, where guests will enjoy the subtle sounds of the nearby waves lapping over the reef, gentle breeze, breathtaking sunrise, star studded night sky and spectacular views of the crystal waters of the Caribbean Sea. The perfect setting for a romantic getaway, intimate wedding, honeymoon, family and friends.Portofino offers leisure options to suit every taste. Relax in our fresh water outdoor swimming pool; enjoy a great book from our book collection or simply indulge yourself in a massage on the beach under our hand thatched palapa hut. Explore the underwater world with snorkel equipment or skim along the surface in our complimentary sea kayaks. Delicious meals prepared by our resort chef can be served in the privacy or your beach cabana or suite, on our private dock with a romantic setting or at the Portofino Restaurant. Sip on amazing tropical cocktails at the Green Parrot Beach Bar or perhaps a late afternoon snack from the Green Parrot Bistro. Take advantage of our DVD library and unwind in front of the flat TV screen in your room. Or, simply take in the view. In short, relax and enjoy! Reception in the main building is manned by professional and knowledgeable staff. From, activities bookings and directions to itineraries and dining reservations, our friendly and professional staff is eager to assist you. Access to PORTOFINO is by boat only, and therefore we offer a complimentary meet and greet service at San Pedro Airstrip and boat transfer to the resort, an approximately 20 minutes ride. ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Portofino Hotel San Pedro
- Portofino San Pedro
- Portofino Beach Resort Belize/San Pedro