Mayan Princess Beach & Dive Resort:
April 01 - 15/13
WARNING: This is VERY long!!!
We have been taking winter getaways for almost 20 years. This is only my second “trip report” after reading thousands! We are an “over 60” couple who enjoy an annual two week vacation to a hot, sunny destination. We are not hard to please, enjoy meeting people, having a good time, and love to snorkel.
When researching, I found there weren’t many reviews from Canadians who go “all inclusive”. I think that not many do a review because they don’t want anyone else to know how great this place is!! This was our first time to a smaller resort and our first visit to Roatan. We hope it is not our last!
I hope you find this informative.
Flight and check in: Flight out of Toronto was with Sunwing. We had upgraded for more legroom, but the seats were no larger. The flight left on time, 8 am, and breakfast was served shortly after 9. We had no complaints of the service or food. All was quite pleasant including the hot towel service. There was a lot of cloud cover so not too interesting looking out the window. It cleared as we got closer to Florida and we could finally see the beautiful shades of the Caribbean. It was gorgeous flying into Roatan, the reef, the beaches and the colors of the water. There was only one woman there to put us through Immigration, but it went quickly. We got our luggage, and then had to line up again for a screening of all our bags. Our suitcases got piled on a separate truck and we were directed to a bus. We weren’t happy with this situation, being use to our luggage in the same vehicle with us, however, all went well. The drive from the airport to the resort was about a half an hour. The road was interesting – uphill, around corners, downhill. The landscape appeared very lush. Check in at the resort was friendly, fast and efficient. Cold drinks arrived with smiling faces. Wrist bands were put on; rooms were not yet ready, so we made our way to the buffet. Our first time along the walkway, from Reception to the buffet, was breathtaking. The gardens, the pools and waterfalls, then the beach!! We were in our one bedroom condo before 2:15 pm.
Rooms: Not just a room, but a full one bedroom condo. Gorgeous and kept clean on a daily basis, by our wonderful maid, Anna, who also kept us well supplied with towels and bottled water. We were more than pleased with the complete set up. Our bed was the most comfortable that we have ever had and also the most comfortable pillows. I didn’t even use the one I had brought from home. The wood around the bed made it a bit difficult for getting in and out, but we managed. Perhaps a small step stool would help, for those of us with shorter legs. The closet is very large, with lots of extra pillows and blankets. The safe is regular size, and there are about a dozen hangers. There is also an iron and ironing board – which never got moved because I do not do that while on vacation! There is a large bureau (6 deep drawers) and two side tables each with four shallow drawers. The bathroom is a good size, with double sinks and a glass with ceramic shower. The water pressure is fine and lots of hot water. No complaints whatsoever. The kitchen appliances are a little worn, but that didn’t matter to us. No cooking being done while there!! It was great having the full fridge to always have ice cubes and keep any treats or left over’s that we wanted to have later. Also able to keep a lot of cold bottled water. We hardly turn on the TV while away, so can’t speak for channel availability. We did watch the news sometimes, but that was about it. The sectional couch was very comfortable. There is lots of storage space wherever you need it. The dining area is great, with a round table and four chairs. We used the patio area a great deal. It is very large with a full size table and four chairs. A pan with water, to wash off any sand, is on the deck as you step on it, from the walkway. There is also an outside tap.
Grounds: Gorgeous!! They are kept immaculately. The gardens are beautifully manicured throughout the resort. It is breathtaking, especially the first time you see it.
Pool: There are three pools of varying size, with waterfalls separating them. They go most of the length of the property and were always very clean. Usually there was no problem to get a lounger any time of the day.
Activities/entertainment: If you are use to an “Activity staff” that play games, loud music and entertain each evening, you will not find that here. Most evenings there is some kind of entertainment brought in. As an example, one night there was a fire show, another night a singer. You make your own entertainment during the day with the beauty around you – in and out of the water. It’s usually quiet by 10 pm, as most divers, etc, want their rest.
Beach: Awesome! And the most buoyant water we’ve experienced. With varying hues of blues, the water was mostly calm and warm. Rafino did a great job of looking after us. He always had our lounges and umbrella ready for us and would take time for an enjoyable short chat. He had the beach raked early morning and we had no problems with bites. Both my husband and I had maybe a half a dozen. We used insect spray in the evening if we were eating near the sand or walking the beach and sometimes while sitting on the patio.
Some complain of how crowded it gets when the “cruise people” visit. It does get crowded, but we did not find it unbearable nor bothersome. We quite enjoyed chatting with the people when the opportunity presented itself.
There are a few stalls along the beach where you can purchase various souvenirs. I highly recommend Karla and Marco’s “Karma Jewelry”. Each piece is one of a kind.
Bar: There seemed to be some confusion, from day to day, what cocktails were “all inclusive” and what were not. While I hardly have any alcohol when at home, I do enjoy having good, mixed cocktails when on vacation. Some days when I asked for a particular drink, I was told it was not included. Other times it would be. Most times, whatever I chose was tasty. My husband had a problem with one bartender not wanting to pour a “double”. The bartender seemed to think that would be too strong. I don’t think it is up to the bartender to tell the client how strong a drink he should be drinking. Drinks are served in paper “glasses”, larger than the standard “all inclusive” plastic cup. But next time we will take our own mugs. The wait staff was great, always around to get us a refill or whatever we needed. Joe, Danny, Engel, Darrin and the others continually checked to see if there was anything we wanted. And they did it with such handsome smiles.
Food: This is really an individual preference. My husband had no problem whatsoever, and enjoyed every meal. He seldom eats fish when away from home, as we live in a small fishing community and we have access to fresh fish. Here he ate fish often, even if just to try a small piece. He enjoyed it all. I was spoiled with shrimp being served often and in various dishes. I am a dessert person, so missed having a large selection. I am use to a larger resort; however, what was prepared was fresh and to my liking. Sometimes, it was too much to my liking. Belinda often was our waitress and was excellent. Elvis did a phenomenal job at the skillet, and prepared everything exactly as we requested. I’m sorry, but we don’t remember the other guy’s name, who worked at the skillet, but he too was great. We enjoyed the meals and atmosphere at both of the a la carte restaurants. It was especially nice when the waiters were dressed in their formal wear.
Staff: They were phenomenal! Everyone was very accommodating (except the one bartender) and the wait staff was great. The front desk staff was always helpful and anything that required attention was looked after right away. Thanks to Fernand and Raphael, also Belinda and Jan.
Guests: Most of the quests were from the U.S or Canada. Many were returning quests, and we can certainly understand why.
Snorkeling: The best ever! We completely agree with those on the “travel forum” of Tripadvisor, who have said that it is not only the fish, but all of the life under the water here that is so wondrous. We saw so much!! The fan coral is amazing. All of the various corals are amazing. The various sizes, and colors and shapes of not just the fish, but of everything is amazing. Pictures do not do it justice at all. We snorkeled the reef from shore and did not go anywhere else.
I feel I need to speak about a “near drowning incident” I had. I feel fortunate that I was in Roatan when this happened. I can honestly say that I don’t think I would have gotten the immediate and skillful care that I got, if I had been elsewhere – such as the many other Caribbean destinations where we’ve snorkeled. Within minutes there was a doctor beside me, also Juan, the manager of The Mayan Princess along with his security staff to aid in any way. Thank you to Richard and the team. I was put in an ambulance and taken to the clinic that is situated about 5 minutes away. I was there a few hours then transported by ambulance to the hospital. I remained there for most of three days and two nights. There was a bed in the room where my husband could stay with me. The doctors and nurses were fantastic about explaining things to me. Most spoke excellent English. I was greeted back to the resort by friends and staff. It was very heartwarming to be told that they and their families prayed for my safe and healthy return. A special thank you goes to Carlos for transporting my loved ones back and forth to be with me. The manager, Juan, was there for us every step of the way. Thank you seems so menial.
Summary: We had a great vacation at the Mayan Princess and would highly recommend it. We had good experiences at the resort and with the employees. From the minute we got there, we had first class service and hospitality. The staff was always accommodating to our every request.
And…please remember, a request with a smile and a thank you goes a lot further than a pushy demand! Go with a positive attitude, ride with the flow and accept things as they come. Enjoy the fact that someone else is making your bed, cleaning your bathroom, cooking your meals, and serving your drinks. Also remember to appreciate the different culture and the difference between their lives and ours. We are guests in their beautiful country!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- An elegant Roatan resort on the island's best beach, Mayan Princess Beach Resort features waterfront hotel accommodations and service. Just steps from your luxurious condo, a white sand beach leads to sparkling turquoise waters, perfect for scuba diving Roatan's spectacular undersea gardens. Nominated for Honduras' Leading Hotel Award in 2007-2010, this Roatan beach resort offers a variety of vacation activities, first-class amenities, and beachfront restaurant. Welcome to paradise and comfortable relaxation in a tropical oasis. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Mayan Princess Beach Hotel West Bay
- Hotel Mayan Princess Beach
- Mayan Princess Beach & Dive Resort Roatan, Bay Islands, Honduras