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“Great place but not close to town”

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Pelican Reef Villas Resort
Ranked #5 of 54 Hotels in San Pedro
Certificate of Excellence
Pleasanton, California
Level Contributor
288 reviews
47 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 81 helpful votes
“Great place but not close to town”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 7, 2014

This is an excellent place if you prefer a two bedroom condo like setting. There is two large bedrooms, a nice seating area and kitchen. They also serve a very nice breakfast included in the price and have reliable wi-fi which is a plus. The staff is super, super nice and will make reservations, book tours, etc. There is a nice bar and pool to hang out as well as the ubiquitous long pier with a thatched hut at the end. The place is very well maintained and the beach very clean especially as compared to others in the area. It is also a small place and I liked the intimate feel.

The problem is that if it is raining there are a couple of issues. First the flies come out and they are all over the place and the ones on the beach bite. Second the place is 3 miles out of town. The last mile is unpaved. When it has rained a lot the road is really bad- potholes and puddles. The 3 mile drive in a golf cart can take you 20-25 minutes. I would almost recommend forgetting the golf cart and just taking a taxi when you need it into town. Unfortunately there is very little dining options outside of going into town so you need to be prepared to travel every night. There is no dinner served on site. The supermarket is also in town.

If it weren't wet, they tell me the roads and experience would be better.

Room Tip: We stayed with a beachfront view which I would recommend. However since it is a small place, rooms...
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with friends
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank RoBertie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,051 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (307)
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Vancouverite1001
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 3, 2014

We had a great stay here over the holidays. The staff at the hotel were incredibly kind and accommodating. They have activity coordinators that will book tours, scuba, flights, restaurants etc for you. Breakfast was included in our rate--it was excellent, and they would bring to our condo or we could eat outdoors. Lunch was not included in our rate but was not too expensive (about 10 USD per person) and was also very tasty. Dinner is not available at this resort, but there a few options nearby (Lone Star Grill was decent Mexican, Black Orchid restaurant nearby but can't comment on overall quality--not sure why I ordered pasta in Belize...but I wouldn't do it again). The drinks at Pelican Reef are kind of price-y (9USD) but after 5pm there is happy hour and many drinks are 3-5 USD. This resort is mostly couples and families. The bar is not busy and closes around 10-1030pm. The overall ambiance was relaxing.

The beach sand was swept daily of sea grass other garbage that washes up (a regular occurrence in Belize). In the shallow water there was much sea grass so we didn't swim by walking right in from the beach, but could do so easily from the dock. The pool wasn't huge, but big enough and refreshing. It looks like they'd thought about making a water slide, but it wasn't operational while we were there.

The resort has free bikes and stand up paddle boards and bikes--this is great value as many places will charge 20-30 Belizean dollars (10-15 USD) for the water sports. The bikes were single speed (you break like peddling backwards just like the first bike you might have had) and kind of rusty, but worked well enough. The road from town to the resort is part paved and part dirt with big pot holes. The bikes are suitable for riding in to town, but the resort likes them returned by 4-5pm so you can't use them in the evening.

You should know that the resort is a few feet away from the 3 mile marker. It is truly 3 miles south of town. There isn't really much further south than this hotel, it is pretty much at the end of the developed strip. I think most people probably rent golf carts if staying at this resort. They are about 250 USD per week. This seemed like a lot to us, so we didn't get one, but if you are already spending 300-400 USD per night to stay here you can probably afford the golf cart. If you don't get one, it seems safe enough to walk the road day and night. There are enough friendly people traveling this road that you may get picked up along the way if you are walking.

You can walk to town along the beach, but about 25% of the properties are not maintained. You have to pick your way through piles of washed up dead sea grass and bits of plastic garbage. Not ideal and kind of sad to sea all the garbage that washes up, but easy enough to navigate. I ran on both the road and beach and it was fine.

The beds were large and comfortable, the sheets and towels clean and luxurious. AC and ceiling fans worked well. The kitchen was beautiful and fully equipped. There was a safe in each unit. There was a washer and dryer supplied with detergent. Wifi worked at almost all times around the pool, at the beach, and in the unit. There was daily maid service. There was satellite TV with HBO and lots of other movie channels.

There are a lot of flies, particularly by the bar. Seriously a lot. A few of them got into our condo. If I came here again I would bring a fly swatter. There are miniscule sand flies on the beach, but this is something you find on any of the beaches. The resort has a "community box'" filled with free bug spray and sunscreen supplies. They recommend baby oil with "OFF" or similar bug spary over top to keep the sand flies away.

Overall this was a great place, but perhaps not the best value, and quite far from town. I would stay here again, but it may not be for everyone.

Room Tip: Rooms right on the beach are available, but a bit more expensive.
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
10 Thank Vancouverite1001
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Antonio, Texas
Level Contributor
14 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 2, 2014

Stayed at Pelican Reef for 6 days. Beautiful location, fantastic staff -- extremely friendly and accomodating.
They arranged excursions for us -- the all day beach bbq is wonderful. 2 of our group did the all day zip line and cave tubing - loved it.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank rgur
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Central NJ
Level Contributor
48 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 82 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 1, 2014

The previous review sums it up best- very nice property, great, caring staff and a peaceful relaxing time. Prior to the trip I dealt with Teri & Greg. I must have had 50 emails back and forth. We were 8 people (2 families) and were suppose to have side by side beachfront units. I did not think to confirm the week before but I should have as one family was right on the beach and the other on the second floor. Not really equal and there is no comparison- I were in unit 7 on the beach and that was truly beachfront! I would call the upper units oceanview and they are listed at the same price.

The breakfasts were great as were the lunch and drinks. All of our excursions, planned in advance were flawless. We did a sunset sail, day trip to Caulker, day trip to blue hole and hung out on the pier. Everyone was very helpful and this island is welcoming and safe. I highly recommend a golf cart as there are wonderful places to eat and visit. Don't miss the Sol spa at the Phoenix resort or lunch at the upscale Victoria house. We also took full advantage of the free kayaks and paddle boards. We rented jet skis from a vendor who delivered them right to the dock. The weather this Christmas week had it all- bright sun, light drizzle. heavy rains and clouds.

The only negatives which are out of anyone's control is the flies. Seriously, you could not eat or sit out near the pool or tables or on the balcony or decks. The flies were everywhere...but the accommodating staff hauled beach chairs and cushions per our request right out the beautiful dock where the flies did not come due to the breeze. Also- the road just outside the resort is in very poor shape. We blew 3 golf cart tires in 2 days but the cart company came right out and changed them very quickly.

Ruth #1, Ruth #2, Carlos, and Adriana (and the rest), thank you for sharing your home.

Christmas week, rooms 7 & 10

Room Tip: On the beach- well worth it
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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Helpful?
3 Thank Joanne1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Denver, Colorado
Level Contributor
56 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 30, 2013

my sister and I stayed here the first part of December to celebrate a birthday. We were looking for something quiet and beautiful, where we could relax and enjoy each others company without distraction. This place was perfect for this. The staff treats you like family from the second you get here. Ruth #2 was our favorite, and we spent a lot of time visiting with her. Adrianna was helpful as well as Carol. There were only a couple of things to mention on the negative side. The FLIES!! It was next to impossible to enjoy breakfast around the pool as the flies were very aggressive. We soon figured out - if you take your breakfast out on the pier- you enjoy a nice ocean breeze, no flies and the occasional spotted ray swimming by underneath . Loverly! The only other complaint was the road to town. It was in such bad shape (due to rains, we were told) that you bumped and bounced the whole way in and back. This could put a negative edge to a nice dinner in town....other than that- I would recommend this hotel. The staff will help you with whatever you need. All in all a real gem.

Room Tip: We were in room 9, which was oceanfront, but the palm trees right outside the window blocked the vie...
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank cathy p
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Boston, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
61 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 29, 2013

As I mention in several of my reviews on TripAdvisor, I spend a great deal of time researching before staying somewhere. I think where you stay can make a big difference on your experience.

I think the best compliment the Pelican Reef Villas has received actually came from a guy who has lived in San Pedro for 35 years that I spoke to while there. His parents opened the first hotel, The Holiday Hotel, back in the 60s. This guy knows the island up and down and he said, "if I had someone come visit me, I'd tell them to stay at the Pelican Reef. It's the best."

What makes it the best? I don't know all the options on the island but here is what I do know. The accommodations are wonderful. High end kitchen and appliances, spacious villas, and very comfortable. If you can, I suggest getting a beach view but the courtyard is beautiful too. The location is very peaceful and has several good restaurant options nearby. As others have said, the breakfast @ the Pelican Reef is excellent. You can also eat a great lunch there too. I personally enjoyed the shrimp quesadillas the best.

But here's what I think makes this place so special: the people. The owners are very hard workers from Texas who you can tell are passionate about offering a great experience. They have done a wonderful job of hiring an incredible staff. Everyone I spoke with was personable, kind, and very helpful. Glori helped me organize the whole trip. Wait until you get an email from her. Literally everything you would ever need to know she shares. She'll book your flight on Tropic Air (awesome experience), arrange for a taxi when you land, and help with any other questions you have.

Make sure you have someone book a trip to Shark Alley. Yes, it sounds a little insane to swim with sharks but we had 10 year olds on our boat and they LOVED swimming with the sharks. You are completely safe - it's a lifetime memory, I promise.

Book this place. Get to know the owners Greg & CR. Spend time talking to the people who work there. You'll love it!

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank World W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lancaster, PA
Level Contributor
11 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 27, 2013

We spent a week a Pelican Reef in August with friends and we had an amazing vacation! Carlos picked us up at the airport and away we went. Karol, Ruthie, Linda, and Terri took such good care of us. Karol hooked us up with great excursions. The snorkeling was fantastic! We went to Hol Chan and the variety of species we saw was incredible. The trip on the cat to Caye Caulker was fun because there were just 6 of us plus the 2 man crew. Lil Alphonse and his crew were great- the night snorkel was really cool. The alligator trip was recommended by Karol and it did not disappointment. Our second floor apartment was very nice. I would highly recommend Pelican Reef Villas. The staff is the best.

Room Tip: We had an ocean view; it was beautiful.
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  • Stayed August 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank BaileyLancaster_PA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Pelican Reef Villas Resort

Property: Pelican Reef Villas Resort
Address: 2.5 Miles South | 2.5 Miles South, San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize
Phone Number:
Location: Belize > Belize Cayes > Ambergris Caye > San Pedro
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Romantic Hotel in San Pedro
#3 Family Hotel in San Pedro
#4 On the Beach Hotel in San Pedro
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Number of rooms: 23
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Come Experience Luxury! Swaying Palms, sandy beaches, and warm ocean breezes welcome you to Pelican Reef Villas. Experience unparalleled luxury, and service that is raising the standards, in one of our 2 or 3 bedroom villas. Pelican Reef Villas blends deluxe amenities and breath-taking views with a discreet location 2.5 Miles south of San Pedro to give your trip seclusion with real panache! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Pelican Reef Villas Hotel San Pedro
Pelican Reef Hotel
Pelican Reef Resort
Pelican Reef Villas Resort Belize/San Pedro

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