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“If you know what your getting, you'll enjoy this more”

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Maruba Resort Jungle Spa
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Maskall
Certificate of Excellence
North Fort Myers, Florida
Level 6 Contributor
152 reviews
59 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 96 helpful votes
“If you know what your getting, you'll enjoy this more”
Reviewed May 29, 2013

We flew into Belize City Airport on a non-stop from Miami. Great flight and easy to get through security. Very nice Duty Free shop in the airport and friendly people. As promised, we had a driver awaiting us as we cleared customs. Let the adventure begin. From the airport to Maruba, Belize is a 3rd world country. The one hour ride to the resort was over a road that must have been build in 1928 with a mini Mario Andretti driving the truck. We drove past men on bicycles with shotguns strapped to their back and houses made of old school busses. I'm not being a rude American, I'm just telling you what to expect. And then you arrive at the resort.

Maruba is a hand made jungle resort located in the rainforest in the middle of nowhere, Belize. They will treat you very nice and welcome you with a very good homemade Rum Punch. While your checking in, your bags will be placed in your suite and you'll be given a tour of the resort. There are two main pools along with a hot mineral pool. These all look "made by hand" with mosaic hand cut tiles. To me, beautiful. Waterfalls, lounge chairs, relaxation places, quiet and tranquil. Watch out for the Doctor Flies!. The resort is rustic and my wife and I loved it. We were in a junior suite that had an amazing tube / shower that fit us both and again was of mosaic tile and glass. One huge issue was the lack of a comfortable bed. This was more like sleeping on a large futon bed then on a Hilton hotel mattress. If you don't mind that, you'll love the rooms. No regular television, but movies are available to use from the main office.
The food... You have no choice here, you'll eat at the resort and like it. Breakfast was OK, lunch was not, Dinner sort of made up for lunch. Everything is made fresh and mostly from what is grown on the property. That alone is worth some props, so give them a little extra for that. If you get a chance to order the Yukon Snook Grilled Fish.. please do!
Tours and events. We took advantage for the Couple Mud Massage. YES!! I'd do that over and over again. Even though I had to wear a disposable men's thong, the best experience on a massage table ever.
We also took the Snorkeling trip. There is way to much they don't tell you and a bone of contention for me and my wife. The problem here was a lack of information, I'll help you with that. We left at 8:15 for a 15 minute ride in the Scooby Doo Van to the water taxi. Please note, the water taxi is a nice motor whale boat with twin Mercury Motors attached. It also boasts a good boat captain. However, it is an hour ride to the island you'll snorkel at AND there is no cover on the boat. When it rained (remember, we are in a rainforest), you will get soaked. The ride across the carribean sea actually hurt from the bumpy ride and rocky ride. The actual snorkeling time is less then 2 hours. You'll be given 3 hours to tour the island and grab lunch and a few trinkets. BRING MONEY ALONG WITH YOU. The island that you would see is about a mile long dirt road with a few nice lunch stops and nothing to occupy your time for 3 hours. On the ride back, we hit such large swells, everyone was soaked for the 30 minute ride until we got back across the open water. Once you get back to the water-taxi landing, you'll have 15 minutes to shop for local carved wood offerings. Save Money for THIS. If we had known about what they made here, we would have brought additional cash (They don't take Visa, Master Card or American Express)
Here is the bottom line. This is a very remote resort. What you find here is what you get, and that's pretty good. Take advantage of the tours, just know what they are. You will be treated very well from friendly people. The food is good and the cocktails are reasonable in price and quality. If you want some quality alone time with your spouse or close friend with quiet time to read a book and relax, you will not be disappointed in anyway. If your looking for action, look elsewhere. AND THAT'S OK!
On a very important point... They also have a school here for local kids with the motto "It's Cool to be Smart". PLEASE bring books and or school supplies to donate to this school. A very worth while and heart felt thing to do. It is very much appreciated.
I am so glad that we took advantage of this opportunity. Will I go back? No. Would I recommend this resort to someone looking for all this place has to offer? Absolutely. Just be sure to bring along a few snacks along with bug spray and suntan lotion.
Finally, Melanie loves what she does here and it shows. I did not meet one person who didn't feel it was their responsibility to take care of you. Isn't that what we all look for in a relaxing getaway?

Room Tip: Did you pack the bug spray and a couple snack to enjoy in the room. Bring a book and a deck of cards...
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  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank PeterV54301
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 (66)
Date | Rating
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English first
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed May 23, 2013

They tried to make up for their disaster... but it was beat beyond repair. Kind service. Beautiful resort. Great Spa. Middle of nowhere nauseous bumpy roads to get there.

what we wanted from Belize. Sunset wedding for two isn't that difficult to plan...

  • Stayed November 2012
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Helpful?
2 Thank Goodnight_teresa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Merickston, Owner at Maruba Resort Jungle Spa, responded to this review, May 24, 2013
The Sunset beach wedding March 2009. Sorry it didn't happen as planned. The weather wasn't good (rain) and the site had been turned onto a heliport since we booked that venue.

Much has changed at Maruba since then including ownership and management. Maruba Belize can plan "more then Expected" sunset wedding as reveiwed March 2013 at a Maya Ruin or in a lush jungle garden setting or An afternoon seculed beach wedding but not will not commit to a Sunset beach wedding, to many varibles and there are no roads to a nearby beach, boat access only.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tempe, Arizona, United States
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed May 8, 2013

We stayed for four nights at MarubaA driver was waiting for us at the airport and Melanie, the owner, greeted us with two rum punches (the unofficial drink of Belize) upon our arrival. After a tour of the grounds, she took us to our suite. With the Groupon, we were assured a junior suite but Maruba decided to celebrate our honeymoon and upgraded us to the honeymoon suite.

Tim and I both gasped a bit when Melanie opened the door to our suite. The bottom floor was a sitting area with a bathroom and porch but that is not where our eyes went. The suite was a loft stye and a beautiful wooden staircase stared us down. With red mood lighting guiding us, we walked up the stairs. Te bedroom area (the bed itself!) was massive, the wooden beam ceiling was stunning and the bathroom, complete with a spa was breathtaking. The place was covered with beautiful hibiscus flowers that were replaced every morning. Never in our dreams did we imagine a Groupon deal could get us such a wonderful space to stay.

The Groupon included breakfast, which was delicious. My favorite was the crepe, filled with local fruits, coffee and pineapple juice. There was nothing around Maruba so we had dinner there every evening and it was always local and delicious. Plenty of rum punches (only $2.50 USD) were consumed as well.

We spent most of our afternoons there away from Maruba on excursions but we did spend one full day at the resort. We took advantage of the renowned spa and received two different treatments: the Aroma Therapy and Maruba's signature Mood Mud Massage. Both were incredible.

The staff at Maruba was fantastic. Melanie was as sweet and as helpful as can be and Nicky, Melanie's husband, was fun and entertaining (Viper shot, nuff said). If you are ever interested in going to Belize, I would recommend Maruba in a heartbeat... and I hope to one day return.

Room Tip: If you are going for a honeymoon or anniversary, be sure to let them know!
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank SunDevil805
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Niagara-on-the-Lake, Canada
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed April 29, 2013

We came home from Maruba relaxed and rejuvenated which was exactly what we needed. I have been able to travel quite a bit over the last few years and have to say that Maruba was such a unique and wonderful experience.
I read many of the reviews on this site and so was prepared for the experience that we had.
This is a resort in the middle of the 'jungle'...there are (I believe) 18 rooms...all of the staff go out of their way to make sure you are comfortable and happy.
We pre-booked all of our excursions ahead of time. All of our outings rated above our expectations. We were able to do things that I consider out of the ordinary...things that took my breath away.
Melanie was such a gracious hostess (I don't think this woman sleeps) always making sure that our needs were met. Melanie runs a camp for children in the summer. Bring school suplies if you have room in your luggage. It is nice to know that a few dollars will translate into smiles and education.
I was not expecting a "North American" trip...I was thankful for a vacation that I couldn't get back home.
If you have an open mind...and adventurous spirit...a love of nature and a desire for the extraordinary, book a trip to Maruba.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Cherie R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Columbus, Ohio
2 reviews
Reviewed April 28, 2013

First off we didn't know until it was too late so please bring school supplies, they help the local schools and you will get in good with the care-takers ;-)

My wife and I are the adventurous sorts, so when we go places we are not looking for the traditional over-comfortable bed and bland decor. We want to be out experiencing a place, and there is no better way to experience Belize than at Maruba resort. This resort has an eclectically comfortable feel with funky decorations that makes for a romantic experience.

For those of you that are like us, we wanted to go somewhere memorable for our honeymoon. After searching around for a while I can across a deal on Maruba. Now, this resort is not all inclusive, so you do have to spend some money. But as long as you stick to the local specials, everything is pretty inexpensive. The food feels fairly expensive, but that is because it is in Belize dollars (Which is another interesting part of Belize I will write about later) it isn't that bad (Also due to local sourcing please be patient if things run out!). The beer is the worst so it might be good to grab some from back home (I will talk more on beer later). Wine, is expensive so pick a bottle up at duty free along with champagne.

The staff are the most amazing people, very accommodating and nice to speak with. The tours are worth it every time and there is so much to do it is hard to relax. But when you do the Mud Massage was wonderful (although I would recommend getting it done BEFORE going to the beach). Be sure to tip and tip often, I had some confusion over the tipping rules and probably should have tipped better but my service was still wonderful. They accepted my AMEX which was nice. The decor makes it so a family trip is not the best idea, however, there is a playground. The other guests were all really cool too and about 80% American.

The experience is just so real and I highly recommend it, however, now I will get into what I would have done differently. The Cayes are really pretty and we are divers, so I would probably plan a day or so in either Caulker (Backbackers), Ambergris (Upper class), or San Pedro (Casino Night Club). We spent far too little time there. Also, for the divers out there, the blue hole is an over-night stay so plan that out as well.

The Beer situation is abysmal but that is not in any way the fault of the hotel. I am a beer snob and I am only into Ales, so I was out of luck. In fact no real hops to speak of until you get back to the states. Probably the only reason I could never live there.

Finally the currency situation... So in Belize, the exchange rate (according to google) is something like $2.02bz to $1usa. Despite this EVERYONE uses the old 2 to 1 rule. Now I am not sure about the big casinos, but this really did seem to be everyone. I even asked about the banks and they said it is $2 to $1. Being a business student, it seems really weird to me but that is the kind of thing you get in a foreign area. Especially one where the weather makes you not want to do math.

This resort is a great portal into learning a lot about the people of Belize. We had a great time and will definitely be visiting Belize again, as soon as our little one can dive :-).

Room Tip: There are only 18 rooms so all of them are really good. Look out for the incense and Mosquito coils...
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
Thank partyk1d24
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed April 26, 2013

We booked Maruba for six nights in March, 2013. They told us, in advance of coming, that we would be able to go snorkeling, diving, caving, etc. any time we wanted because they had private drivers to take us there. We arrived on Tuesday and wanted to snorkel the next day. They said they couldn't take us until Friday because they didn't have enough people to go. It's not our fault that no one was staying there! At dinner that night, my steak was like shoe leather and at breakfast my coffee cup had someone else's lipstick still on it and our table was filthy. There is nothing spa-like about Maruba. It is an old, dirty place in the middle of nowhere. We left after one day and will never go back or recommend it to anyone. They refused to refund us any money for the other five days even though they failed to deliver anything that was promised.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
9 Thank Turtle1949
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Merickston, Owner at Maruba Resort Jungle Spa, responded to this review, April 27, 2013
Maruba Belize is a Jungle Resort & Spa with lots of land based adventure tours to maya ruins, caving, hiking and horseback riding and offers a snorkelling safari tour down a mangrove river to the great barrier reef.

Maruba ask that guest be flexable on tours so all guest can do the adventure activities they want at reasonable prices. In this case the guest reqested upon arrival to do snorkeling the following day which was not an activity that was scheduled for a couple of days. Snorkeling requires a boat, licensed tour guide, and commercial boat captain. Maruba did have other tours those days that were orginally requested and offered to send them with a private driver to Belize City and snorkel that way,

The guest purchased promotional Maruba accomidation nights through a travel auction site. Since these guest wanted sea based tours we assisted them to find accomidations close to the sea
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Smith Mountain Lake, Virginia
Level 5 Contributor
50 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
Reviewed April 19, 2013

If you go to Maruba expecting a Ritz in the jungle you will be disappointed. If you go to enjoy the 4 R's, especially the rum punch, you won't come away disappointed. My wife and I spend four very enjoyable nights at the resort. Everyone we met was very friendly and always trying hard to make our stay memorable. The food overall was prepared well and there was adequate variety to suit pretty much anyone's taste. Most of the friends we made while there went cave tubing and had a great experience. We went on the snorkeling and Lamanai excursions and can highly recommend both. If you like rum and go with someone you "trust" you must participate in the viper rum experience! We went in mid-April and bugs were not a big problem. Stay in at least a junior suite if possible. If you have an issue with anything, go see Melanie immediately. I assure you she will do her best to help you.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank Simmerman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Maruba Resort Jungle Spa

Property: Maruba Resort Jungle Spa
Address: 40 1/2 Mile Old Northern Highway | 30 Miles North of Belize International Airport (BZE), Maskall, Belize
Location: Belize > Belize District > Maskall
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Hotels in Maskall
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Maruba Resort Jungle Spa 3.5*
Number of rooms: 18
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Prepare yourself for the ultimate experience in adventure & relaxation at Maruba Resort Jungle Spa, Belize. A short two-hour flight from Houston or Miami transports you to a place where you can fully immerse yourself in nature and truly relax. Maruba offers a great vacation escape in casual elegance.Voted the Best Boutique Spa by Spa Finder Readers’ Choice Award, and One of the Top 10 Spas in the Caribbean & Central Americas by Maco Destination Caribbean & Central America Magazine, the resort’s neo-primitive style with a touch of jungle urban flair makes it an eclectic and hip place to stay while indulging in everything a modern spa has to offer. Its restaurant boasts a nouveau jungle cuisine, best described as a fusion of “east of Paris meets the Caribbean”. Your room will be one-of-a-kind and features rich hues and textures, vaulted hardwood ceilings, mosaic tile floors, exotic fabric and beautiful carving made by local artisians. Signature bungalows offer 900 square feet of private space with an indoor lounge room, indulgent hot tubs, and incredible jungle views.Maruba is one of the first spas in Central America and offers a variety of exotic treatments which revitalize, detoxify, and reestablish the skin’s natural pH balance while leaving your skin feeling silky smooth. A must-try treatment is Maruba’s Mood Mud Massage – take your camera along for pictures! For those seeking adventure, several day tours available, such as exploring Maya Ruins, the rainforest and caves ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Maruba Resort Jungle Hotel Maskall
Maruba Hotel Jungle
Maruba Resort Jungle Spa Belize/Maskall

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