If I could, I would give this hotel one and a half circles (especially because of one unpleasant staff member at the office), but the area was really beautiful, hence the two circles.
To make a long story short, this resort is not worth what you pay to stay there ($145 US for the cheapest room). Not only are the rooms overpriced, but they nickel and dime you during your stay. They called a cab for us (we assumed that was a normal service they provided for free), and charged $35 US for a route the cab driver would have charged $15 US if we had called him ourselves. The difference is what the resort keeps for making the call!
Because of its location, it's not very easy to eat out all the time, so you feel somewhat trapped at meal time. The food seemed healthy and was pretty good, but selection is small, and again, overpriced. They have meal packages that make it slightly cheaper, but we weren't told of them and even had to press to be signed up for them. The tours they offer are quite overpriced because you are trapped there, and setting up anything was a hassle because we felt like they were trying to sell the more expensive tour, and not necessarily interested in what our interests were. When we went for a tour of their gardens, the staff person quoted an erroneous price, and slipped us a guide book that came with a charge that he didn't bother to mention. We were frustrated with him at this point (there were other things that I won't get into), and settled the matter with someone else. The rest of the staff were really great. They also have a strange policy that requires you to buy Internet time (on a computer that had lots of glitches) by 30 minute blocks.
In the interest of giving a more objective review, I will say that we didn't hear too much grumbling from other guests (a point the staff person made over and over when we finally shared our frustrations with him), but our experience definitely did not match the positive reviews we read on this site. We are big tippers by choice and don't like to feel like people are constantly trying to squeeze every extra dollar out of you they can.
As for the positives, the grounds are pretty, they have a great bird watching deck, a fabulous botanical garden (and wonderful tour guide named Freddie), and access to the Macal River, which was a nice canoeing river. The rooms were clean and pleasant, but be ready for lots of windows that don't lock. During the day, you either check any valuables at the office or take them with you.
If we visit the area again, we wouldn't stay here. There are other resorts in the area, such as Chaa Creek Resort (so pretty!) down the road, which we would choose from next time.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- duPlooy's Jungle Lodge Resort, on the Macal River, an organic property since 1988, now powered by the sun, may just be the Eco-Lodge you are looking for.duPlooy's offers the original "Create Your Own Vacation' package as well as set packages for individuals and groups and custom packages which include other locations in Belize. Whatever you are looking for, we offer a great venue for your Belize Vacation for Families,Romantic Getaways and Honeymoons, Adventure Holidays and more. There is excellent Birding on and around the property as well as many on-site activities.Included with your room: continental breakfast, entrance to adjacent Belize Botanic Gardens, access to trails, use of canoes and tubes from our beautiful Macal River Beach,incredible bird watching from the deck with complimentary morning coffee, delicious meals from locally-sourced meats, eggs and produce. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Duplooy`s Jungle Hotel San Ignacio
- DuPlooy's Jungle Lodge Belize/San Ignacio