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“Turtle Inn with a 2 year old toddler”
Review of Turtle Inn

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Turtle Inn
Ranked #3 of 19 Hotels in Placencia
Certificate of Excellence
High Bridge, New Jersey
Level 3 Contributor
17 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Turtle Inn with a 2 year old toddler”
Reviewed December 22, 2012

The Turtle Inn is a lovely location, but clearly caters to an adult crowd. Here is all of the toddler relevant information I wish I'd been able to find about Turtle Inn prior to our departure.

Food: Milk was always available. There is a toddler menu with fish fingers, spaghetti etc, but if you stay for a week it is a bit monotonous. Since they grow all of their veggies on site, they won't always have specific veggies on hand (eg broccoli). I packed several cans of my daughters favorite beans and snacks. The continental breakfast always includes a basket of muffins etc, so my daughter often ate those. In general, pack some extra food to supplement the food at the hotel, and you'll be fine. Pack a plastic plate, cup and cutlery, unless your kid can be trusted with china and glassware.

Room: Our room had a larger bar fridge, and we were able to take items out of it to store our own food. There was a small ice section too, so you can freeze your ice packs. Pack all snacks into Ziplocs because there are a fair amount of little tiny ants that find their way into the room if you leave food out. Ditto for the bathroom (pack any benedryl or sweetened Advil into Ziplocs to keep critters away).

Bathroom has a very large deep square tub. We brought a rubber bathmat to keep her from slipping during baths. It was a tiled bathtub, so not as slippery as some tubs. Probably not essential if you are short on space.

It's hard to find a place to dry kids wet clothes (bathings suits, clothes that you hand wash), so if you have a travel clothes line, it will get a lot of use. I did a fair amount of laundry in the bathroom sink and hung it to dry outside in the "garden" area. (There are no coin laundry facilities, so expect to send things out and pay per item or hand wash and dry yourself).

They provided a crib, non standard size (larger than pack n play, smaller than normal crib), but provided a sheet for it. Also provided a bug net for it on request. Bring some warm blankets, nights get cool.

Lots of bugs at night, including a large flying cockroach that hung out in the bathroom but disappeared by morning. Just go in, turn on the light, and try not to think about it.

Amenities: Kids are only allowed in the round pool. It's about 3 feet deep in the shallow and 7 feet in deep end. It has steps that lead into it, but no really kid paddling splash area. Steps are very sharp; be careful about letting kids climb up and down them. Bring inflatable toys as I didn't see any at the hotel to borrow.

Beach is nice, although there are lots of sea grassy areas (underwater). Some sandy areas can be found though, so kids can sit in water and sit on sand (not grass). They do have some kids lifevests available if you want to go out in the kayak. Bug spray is a must. The no-see-ums will get you if you don't use it. Plenty of shady areas under trees.

Kids bike seats mounted on back of bike and kid helmets are available.

In Town: although we brought all of our own diapers, wipes and swimmer diapers, but there is a mid sized grocery store in town that sells sunscreen, diapers, wipes, kid food, etc, if you need to pick up supplies.

Side Trips: My daughter enjoyed the boat trip to Monkey River. You do hike in the jungle at the end of it, so put on sturdy shoes. The boat goes very fast, so be sure to ask for a life vest.

Other: We opted to give our daughter malaria meds. It was a tough decision. Stann creek district is listed on the CDC website as a malaria region. She got more no-see-um bites than mosquito bites.

  • Stayed November 2012
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Helpful?
2 Thank TessaNJ
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 (194)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
San Francisco, California
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed December 9, 2012

The resort itself is great - beautiful villas, property, great views and wonderful service from the local staff that makes you want to stay longer. One of the top 5 star places I've stayed overall, aside from the food. The breakfast and lunch are good as the menus are basic, it's hard to go wrong with eggs, sandwiches and even pizza. The dinners are best had in town at local restaurants such as Rumfish and Secret Garden, which serve great local fresh food at very reasonable prices. Secret Garden is run by a trained chef, which shows. We did our best to give Mare a chance - we had both the local fish/special of the day and Italian entrees on 2 separate nights, although the fact that the restaurant had 6 people in it one night (other guests had dinner in town, having eaten at Mare the previous night) should have tipped us off. We were served overcooked fish/shrimp that was uninspired and borderline inedible (in fact, we sent the special back, the fish tasted several days old) at New York prices. The staff didn't seem surprised that we sent one entree back and barely consumed half of another, which says something. As does the lack of an executive chef, I've never been to a 5 star hotel that doesn't have one. That said, I would absolutely recommend staying here for the whole experience, as long as you take the shuttle into town for dinner, which is a 5 minute ride and well worth it.

Room Tip: Oceanfront villas are great, one note - thatched roofs allow small animals to get through, keep an e...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank mcamym
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Montgomery, Ohio
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed November 25, 2012

This was our third trip to Belize and second trip to whale shark dive at the Turtle Inn. Saw whale sharks both trips, on the surface and at a 110 feet plus in between. First trip was at the full moon in April 2010, second trip full moon May 2012. Recommend arriving at about the full moon and staying at least a week. The resort looks east so you see the full moon rise over the ocean. The beech is protected by the largest reef in the northern latitudes second only to the Great Barrier Reef. The whale shark diving is outside the reef and the reef diving around the reef. There is about a 45 minute ride to the dive area. I have about 200 dives mostly in the Caribbean and if you like the convenience of the area but want to step up the diving blue water whale shark diving plus the bullsharks is the ticket. First trip I watched a hammerhead swim past thirty feet below the surface. There can be waves however the reef protects the reef diving. Additionally we saw loggerhead turtles, some very large. The Turtle Inn is a five star diving experience. Dee and I found it listed as the Caribbean Dive/Resort Operator in the book “Diving in Style”. This Francis Coppola resort lived up to all and more as reviewed in the book. You stay in cottages on or around the beach and the new dive boat leaves from the bay side behind the resort. This is not the low budget dive destination however the value is definitely there for the dollars paid. The dive shop manager, Bertram, has been there 10 years. The new dive boat is well laid out with an upper deck plus ample area to get out of the sun. His staff is excellent including dealing with an unexpected diver situation on one of our reef dives. The dive trip has a lunch break between dives either on an island or for whale shark diving on the boat in a snorkeling area inside the reef. For reef diving we really like Bonaire (three trips to Den Laman) however the reef diving in Belize was on par with Bonaire plus you have the blue water diving with its larger pelagic and fish species not to forget the Blue Hole for advanced divers. Also in Belize there is the back country including a second Coppola resort called Blancaneaux Lodge. We have not been there however on our first trip we visited the back country and found it very interesting especially the night hike. The bottom line on the Turtle Inn is the people from Martin, the GM from Holland, through all the other staff areas. Part of why we returned was the friendships made with the servers. This was our first trip since Martin became GM. Unlike most resorts, even top resorts, he spent a lot of his time engaged with the guests including diving on some of our dive trips. We are headed back in April 2013 for the full moon and the whale sharks.

Room Tip: Beachfront rooms are amazing and the Trades blow right in.
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Wildcatf18
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Charleston, South Carolina
Level 2 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed November 5, 2012

We stayed at Turtle Inn for the final 4 nights of our honeymoon after being at Chaa Creek in the mountains. We had an oceanfront cottage near the pool and beach bar. Easy bike rides into downtown for lunch / dinner / nightlife. A day of snorkeling including a private island bbq was about the only activity we planned. A great place to wind down and enjoy the ocean breeze and drinks in coconuts. Good enough for Bill Gates and his friends, who arrived via helicopter for an afternoon of relaxation! Can't wait to go back asap. Staff was legitimately friendly and helpful in every way, especially George and the guys that lent me fishing tackle and snorkle gear.

  • Stayed April 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Michael M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
West Des Moines, Iowa
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed October 28, 2012 via mobile

80+ hotel stays a year...and Villa 5 might be the No. 1 spot on my list of rooms EVER (calling this place a room is unfair). This facility is beautiful, exotic, unplugged, and relaxing all mixed into one. Views are unforgettable, Food is expensive. Service is outstanding. I had read about the town of Placencia being third world before coming here...ummm, those people need to venture outside of cities in the USA, because EVERY state in the union has multiple towns with less culture, restaurants and watering holes than this place, not to mention Tutti Frutti. Do yourself a favor stay here in the off season and enjoy.

Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
4 Thank stewiestud
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Burlington, Canada
Level 4 Contributor
35 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
Reviewed October 23, 2012

We stayed at Turtle Inn for 3 nights in an ocean front cabana. The cabana was gorgeous, and had a screened front porch, big bedroom with sitting area, separate bathroom with shower, as well as an outdoor shower. There is also drinking water provided in reusable glass bottles with refilling stations around the property. Our flight arrived at Placencia airport and it was less than 5 minutes driving to Turtle Inn. We were welcomed by name (which was really nice) and given a welcome drink. The pool was great for relaxing in, and we used the complimentary bikes to ride into Placencia one day. There is also a desktop computer with a printer and Internet access for guest use. There were a lot of sandflies on the beach when we were there, so make sure you use lots of bug repellant on your legs especially.

The main restaurant was closed for renovations while we were staying here, so we had all our meals under the beachfront palapa. The food was simple - it was ok, but not amazing. If we had stayed longer we probably would have gone into Placencia for dinners. The kitchen did a good job of working around my gluten intolerance, which was really important for us.

Overall, the service was great from everyone that we met, the resort and rooms were beautiful, and we would definitely recommend Turtle Inn to any friends that are travelling to Placencia.

Room Tip: Since the rooms don't have A/C, I would recommend choosing an ocean front cabana so you have the...
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank Ali S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 3 Contributor
21 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed October 5, 2012

Favourite hotel Ive ever stayed in. Had an excellent 6 days here during our honeymoon in January 2012. Perfect. Great watersports and excellent coconut mojitos! Food was brilliant and all the staff very friendly. Seemed like there were 2 staff for every person! Amazing.

  • Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Johnsie66
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Turtle Inn

Property: Turtle Inn
Address: Placencia Village, Placencia, Belize
Phone Number:
Location: Belize > Stann Creek > Placencia
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#2 Luxury Hotel in Placencia
#2 Spa Hotel in Placencia
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Placencia
#4 Family Hotel in Placencia
#6 Romantic Hotel in Placencia
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Turtle Inn 4.5*
Number of rooms: 25
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Luxury and unspoiled beauty on a pristine white-sand beach.Turtle Inn is a true labor of love. Less than a year after Francis and Eleanor Coppola acquired this beachside refuge in 2001, it was swept out to sea by the forces of Hurricane Iris. Turning disaster into triumph, the Coppolas led a two-year reclamation project, creating a magnificent resort that is consistently ranked among the best in Central and South America.This 25-room seafront hideaway combines natural wonders with luxury style. Accommodations are in individual thatched cottages, decorated with handcrafted Balinese furnishings and naturally cooled by the ever-present sea breezes. Just steps beyond your private deck, the white-sand beach dissolves into the clear Caribbean ocean. In addition, the resort has two infinity swimming pools for enjoying the day. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Turtle Hotel Placencia
Turtle Inn Belize/Placencia
Belize Turtle Inn

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