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Portofino Guest Book

Portofino Beach Resort's Guest Book...Welcome to our Portofino Beach Resort’s Guest Book…  If you have just returned from your well deserved vacation here with us,or have stayed a long time ago here at Portofino, we hope that you enjoyed your stay!!!
We welcome your comments and encourage you to post your experiences and definitely we look forward to welcoming you back!
**Please note: to ensure the integrity of our site, these will only appear once they have been vetted by the administrator.**

297 Responses to "Portofino Beach Resort’s Guest Book"

1 | By Kate T, London, United Kingdom said on January 26th, 2016 at 10:18 am

“If I could rate this 6 I would”

January 26th, 2016

We stayed here as part of our honeymoon,such bliss.
I have stayed in so many 5* hotels, this tops them all. We stayed in the jaguar suite which I highly recommend. It’s such a secluded and intimate resort, we definitely want to come back here.
We saw it as a time of relaxing so didn’t take part in the many trips the resort had to offer – we did however take a fishing trip which was awesome. I had sea sickness and the guide was really great about it. We were able to give the restaurant the fish we had caught and they cooked it for us for dinner – delicious.
The restaurant is brilliant with a great selection on offer – the seaview setting is also bliss.
All the staff were friendly and extremely helpful. Hope we get the chance to go back one day.

2 | by Marian C, Ellicott City said on January 25th, 2016 at 10:19 am

“A lovely Vacation”

January 25th, 2016

My husband Larry and I stayed at this resort last week, Jan 9-17, 2016. We enjoyed it very much and hope to return.

The staff are all lovely and helpful, we especially enjoyed our dear waiter, Rafael. Also, Clinton’s expertise in providing fishing and snorkeling expeditions helped make our trip really great.

Almost every dish we ordered in the restaurant was very good, only meal I didn’t like was some pasta dish w/ seafood and a cream sauce, but everything else is great. The smoothies were very good. Had the bouilliabaise (sp?) the last night, I think my favorite.

I went on 4 snorkeling trips, as I said Clinton was very accomodating. My husband doesn’t snorkel, but he went on one trip w/ me during which I snorkeled and then we both fished. We were able to have the restaurant cook our fresh-caught snapper for dinner, excellent. On another trip we got lobster and conch on a boating/snorkeling trip that the kitchen also prepared for us- also excellent. Be aware, I had lobster in some dish or other 3 or 4 times during our stay, lobster not the same as New England, not as sweet, but good. The snorkeling is wonderful, but I’m sure that has been praised and written up sufficiently elsewhere. One note, I always make it a point to tip tour guides, which I did do consistently. I was surprised to notice that others on the snorkeling tours did not tip the guide…people-TIPPING IS GOOD.

The setting, about 6 miles outside of San Pedro, is an asset in some ways and not so much in others. It has a nice secluded feel, but you really are close enough to get to San Pedro by boat and by golf cart, which you can rent there or in town for about $70/day. Now, that golf car/motor scooter/bicycle (and occasional car) road is interesting. Really primitive. Most of it is pretty well paved, but not all of it, some very bumpy parts, no lighting at night. Restaurants, other resorts and this and that are sprinkled along the road, more densely as you approach San Pedro. It can feel kind of lonely in the night time, but apparently it is safe, so I’m told. As I said it is a primitive road and you do see the “back door” of the resort life. You can also walk on that road to get to a couple other restaurant/resorts, but it takes about 15 to 20 minutes either way.

You can walk up or down the beach 15 to 20 minutes as well to those other restaurants, but the beaches outside of the resort areas are littered w/ quite a bit of trash, very unsightly. Where all that trash comes from, I don’t know, but while the resorts along the beach do their part to keep up the trash and seaweed in front of their properties, they can’t possibly keep up with the build up outside their premises.

Unexpectedly, the television was good. English language w/ plenty of decent movies available. It was nice to relax after the beach and before dinner w/ a cocktail or wine and watch some old dependable decent movie.

All in all, my husband and I would both like to return to this resort. It gives you a chance to experience a lovely place before it is over-developed…maybe a bit like the Yucatan 20 years ago.

3 | By Bernard G said on January 9th, 2016 at 10:18 am

“A great place to enjoy Belize”

January 9th, 2016

Located in the rather touristy and rather resort-choked island of San Pedro in Belize, the Portofino is actually a pretty good spot to get away from all that while still giving you access to the shops and activity, if one so chooses.

We selected the treehouse unit, which is really just a second story unit. But it offers a really good view to the beach. The rooms were comfortable.

Talk to the front desk people to see if you can hitch a ride with the hotel’s boat which serves to shuttle incoming guests, staff members, and supplies. You can actually walk to neighboring resorts (we did for dinner), or travel the back roads via golf carts – the transport of choice in San Pedro.

They’ve got a bit of a seaweed problem in all the resorts in San Pedro. But the Portofino’s staff diligently work in the am managing the incoming seaweed. That means that by the time one is done with breakfast, it’s a free and clear shot to the beach.

I highly recommend grabbing one of the complimentary sea kayaks and paddling over to Mexico Rocks – there’s great snorkeling to be had where one can see lots of rays, turtles, and fish. There’s an in-house dive shop where one can ask for snorkel gear, arrange a dive expedition, or take a fishing trip.

The restaurant is top notch. I seriously enjoyed everything they served. As with most of the region, things were simple yet well made. Fresh ingredients were the norm.

Above all, the staff – from the front desk to the bartenders, to the waiters all exude positivity, joy, and a genuine desire to make your stay truly world class.

4 | by Alyxandra R, Eastchester, New York said on January 7th, 2016 at 10:17 am

“Best Vacation…EVER”

January 7th, 2016

I want to write a long review to tell you about the awesomeness that is Portofino. But I’m going to put it short and simple. My boyfriend and I went there as a summer vacation for my college graduation. We had never been to Belize before and heard great things about Portofino so we decided to book it. We were picked up by water taxi and taken straight to the hotel when we arrived. Everyday with the staff was magical. I mean when you go on vacation you don’t always get star treatment, but at Portofino we were family! Jeni, Jovanny, Brittany, Jess and everyone else we met – we love and miss you all so much. We were so moved by our experience at Portofino we are already thinking about going back.

In short:
-the beds are comfortable and beautifully decorated each morning
-my favorite dish is the almond crusted snapper at Portofino
-the pool is so relaxing but try to go kayaking out into the ocean it’s absolutely stunning
-go into san pedro town and get papusas at the papuseria (they also have great shrimp coconut enchiladas)
-try sushi at the blue water grill
-wet willies has great drinks and an amazing view of the water for lunch
-there is this local restaurant (i cant remember the name) however it is on the back street of san pedro, if you ask any locals i’m sure they will know it. It has a little out door shack with picnic style tables OMG it has the best food in all of belize. Also the best ceviche.

Gosh we just loved it. Seriously, the best vacation ever. Thank you Portofino.

Ah wah know who seh Kriol noh gat no kulcha? Mi luv Ambergris Caye.

5 | by Mark r said on January 5th, 2016 at 10:16 am


January 5th, 2016

Thank you to all the staff. Marco, Jennifer, Juan,Giovanni,Raul and Action Divers!!! What a week of paradise you guys gave us!! I would not stay anywhere else!!! The place was clean, food was great and inexpensive, WIFI worked, and Staff was more than helpful. Thanks again for working the week of Christmas to give my husband and I a vacation in paradise.

6 | by Cecilia S, San Francisco, California said on December 27th, 2015 at 10:16 am

“A little slice of paradise”

December 27th, 2015

Wow! This place is absolutely stunning. Beautifully located right on the water, and tucked away enough to feel secluded. It is a bit of a ride from San Pedro via water taxi, but the resort will pick you up when your plane/water taxi arrives and will also drop you off when you depart. We arrived at night, and the ride from San Pedro to the hotel was beautiful. On a clear night, the stars just light up the sky.

Upon arrival, they greeted us with tropical drinks and presented us with an array of specialty local soaps for our stay. Our first impression of our room was just spectacular. We got a suite fit for a king – actually 4 queens! The room was so spacious and very ornately decorated. Fresh flowers also decorated every pillow, towel, and bedspread. We felt very welcomed.

The staff was very hospitable. I am very impressed with their level of attention to detail – our room was always in perfect order. It was like magic, you never knew when they slipped in! For example, we would slip out to the Portofino Restaurant to grab breakfast or lunch, and by the time we get back (maybe 30 minutes later), our room was entirely made, with flowers and everything! Our clothes and miscellaneous things would be folded and neatly placed in a pile in our own respective corners. It was amazing! And we would pop out to go to the pool, come back to our rooms, and all the petals were removed. Now that’s service!

I don’t think there’s a single room that’s not in a good location. Every room has a view of the ocean, palm trees, and the pool. You really do feel pampered here.

We loved Rahul, who took care of us for dinner and breakfast/lunch at times. He was friendly, welcoming, and gave us great recommendations.

They also have a dive shop onsite if you are interested.

Overall, we had a very positive experience at Portofino. I would highly recommend it.

Stayed December 2015, traveled with friends

7 | by Susanne B, Nunya said on December 17th, 2015 at 10:15 am

“20th anniversary and vow renewal”
December 17th, 2015

Portofino staff is awesome. They really did a great & beautiful job for us to be able renew our vows. The photographer Olivera Rusu was wonderful to work with and captured great photos. The minister and his daughters were also wonderful. The daughters did my hair and make up and did a beautiful job. I would highly recommend this resort and each person involved. David, thank you very much for making everything go so smoothly and stress free!! Oscar, thank you for a very exciting and beautiful snorkel and shark swim! Hope to see you all again for another great vacation.

8 | by dawson6600, Sand Springs, Oklahoma said on December 16th, 2015 at 10:15 am

“Where else do you need to look?”
December 16th, 2015

Amazing time at this resort! The staff will literally get you anything you need! Beautiful views, fantastic restaurant, and a dive shop on site, what else do you need?!?! We can’t wait to return. Close enough to town to shop if you like, far enough out of town that the stars from the pier are amazing!!!

9 | by Laura L said on December 14th, 2015 at 10:14 am

“Husband and Wife get away!!”

December 14th, 2015

This review is from the bottom of my heart..Portofino is my piece of’s Beautiful. .Peaceful..The staff is Awesome..Great service. .Delicious food. .I can go on and on!!! Portofino is’ THE PLACE’ to visit!! Thank you Portofino! !

10 | by HuskerJag, Omaha, Nebraska said on December 14th, 2015 at 10:13 am

“Great place to relax!”

December 14, 2015
If you are looking for a remote and relaxing beach holiday this is the place. Portofino is a very quiet and off the grid kind of resort for folks looking to really get away. The resort has excursions available on-site to take advantage of the great fishing, incredible diving and snorkeling opportunities that Ambergris Caye has in abundance. We went reef fishing with Clinton who did a fabulous job. We caught 20+ fish and were able to take them to the chef for him to prepare our red, yellow and black snapper for fish and chips for lunch and an incredible dinner of grilled Triggerfish. As other reviews have noted, there is a large amount of sea grass coming ashore during this part of the season, which makes the beach less than ideal. If you are looking for a limitless dry beach this is not it, however the number of activities and excursions available due to the unique barrier reef off-shore, somewhat makes up for that. Bar hopping down the coast is possible via water taxi or by renting a golf cart, but understand that most bars/resorts to visit are 15 to 20 minutes away – not really accessible by walking. San Pedro is 20 minutes away via water taxi and has groceries and staples and is fairly primitive, but with some lively beach bars and restaurants. The rooms are spacious (we had a VIP suite) though it could use a little more seating/tables, etc. All in all, it was just what my wife and I were looking for. Wifi is great.

11 | by Andrew R said on November 29th, 2015 at 10:14 am

“Great resort. Nice staff”
November 29th, 2015
My wife and I had a great stay at Portofino Beach resort. The staff was nice, specifically Nick the GM Who is very knowledgeable and impressive in his knowledge of hotel management in particular. Raul the bartender, what can I say about Raul he’s the ultimate bartender. :). Giovanni who was an extra special person. A private resort for those who are happy with each other and looking for a special time. I would come back to Belize for the resort, cabana 2. Beachfront, for the money one of the best places I’ve ever stayed. One day we may meet again. If you’re looking for a party place not your spot. If you’re looking for a place to enjoy who your with, definitely this is the place. The people that are whining about this place, it’s all perspective. If you’re coming to Belize this is where you stay.

12 | by John, USA said on November 28th, 2015 at 10:13 am

“Little piece of paradise!!!”
November 28th, 2015

Very small and quaint – staff extremely nice – food was good – fresh coconuts upon request – local soaps were a nice touch – no shoes needed :) – snorkeling was a blast – great guide – enjoyed the hammocks every single day!!! We will return!

13 | by Aaron, Louisiana said on November 17th, 2015 at 10:12 am

“Awesome hotel and staff”
November 17, 2015

This trip to Portofinos was beyond amazing. Awesome staff is an under statement. Great food. I can’t think of a single thing that would come close to a complaint.

14 | by Natalie, USA said on November 10th, 2015 at 9:31 am

“Beautiful and Friendly Resort”
November 10th, 2015

The staff make you feel completely at home and go out of their way to make your trip special. The location is 6 miles north of San Pedro, so it is out of the way, but the beach is more tranquil and clean as a result. We were always able to catch a boat ride to town from the resort whenever we wanted to go into town for something.

15 | by Penelope, Canada said on November 9th, 2015 at 9:29 am

November 9th, 2015

This place is memorable for all the right reasons, lovely staff and great service. They really get to know you and go the extra mile. Gorgeous secluded location and free pick-up from San Pedro in the private boat. Rooms are stunning, and great pool area to hang out in. Restaurant and bar are quality.

16 | by lizzieann53, Tombstone, Az said on November 9th, 2015 at 9:28 am

“Returning to my Happy Place!”

November 9th, 2015

This is our third visit to the Portofino in as many years. The staff is amazing, its small size creates a coziness that affords the ability to make new friends, the amenities are the best I’ve ever had, anywhere and the owners have become good friends. I recently read a negative review by someone called Tony H. I find it hard to believe the experience he had with Nick. This guy is polite, erudite and bends over to satisfy ones’ requests. As for the seagrass, this is new event this year (global climate change?) which is raked and cleared daily at great expense, and folks, this IS the ocean, not a swimming pool. If they wanted to sample local foods, just a short walk south is a cute little Jerk place. Moh goes into town several times a day and you can go with him for free or the Coastal water taxi stops regularly. San Pedro is a great little town with cute shops, local vendors, and many wonderful restaurants offering Belizian food. At the dock is the dive shop that offers various fishing, snorkeling and diving trips to some awesome places. Hol Chan is a place to not miss. If you fish,your catch is cleaned and for a small price the restaurant will cook it however you like and provide the sides. This year, we got caught in a huge stationary tropical depression and it rained for the first 6 days but did it ruin our trip? Nope! We were like Gilligan’s Island, meeting the rest of the guests, having a great time together at the bar, pampered by Raul and Marco and the rest of the staff! Oh, just a word of warning…..don’t forget to put sunscreen on the top of your feet!!! (a little inside joke there!) Are we going back? Heck, yeah! We have a wedding to go to!

17 | by Gloria, Italy said on November 8th, 2015 at 9:29 am

“Cleanest shore on the island”
November 8nd, 2015

Relaxing resort, nice pool and garden, the only place where they were taking good care of the shore constantly cleaning it from seaweeds.

18 | by calomino, Chicago, Illinois said on November 3rd, 2015 at 9:28 am

“Perfect beach retreat ”

November 3rd, 2015

We stayed here for 4 days on our honeymoon. Right on the beach, it’s perfect for a little r&r. The staff is so accommodating and friendly. They helped every step of the way. The manager was on site most days and a wealth of information. We loved the people of San Pedro and felt safe the whole time. The resort charges is USD so you’re not getting a deal per say, but it’s no more than in the states. The restaurant was solid. Go for the specials. Overall a wonderful stay!

19 | by Robert, Italy said on October 29th, 2015 at 9:29 am

October 29th, 2015

Great team, location and resort. Perfect for anyone looking to relax. Excellent restaurant (lobster bisque 10/10) and well organised and fun on-site diving centre.

20 | by Anonymous, USA said on October 26th, 2015 at 9:30 am

“Honeymoon heaven”
October 26th, 2015

It was a fantastic time for our honeymoon. The pool was beautiful as well as the facility. The staff was very kind and did a great job of serving us with what ever we needed. They even cooked up some fresh fish we caught that day!

21 | by Patricia, Canada said on October 24th, 2015 at 9:30 am

“Peaceful Retreat”
October 24th, 2015

The people were amazing, they were there to ensure you had a wonderful stay. Because it is a small resort many of the staff addressed me by my first name thus personalizing my stay.

22 | by Niki K, Atlanta, Georgia said on October 13th, 2015 at 9:27 am

“Ideal Anniversary Beach Get-Away”

October 13th, 2015

My husband and I celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary here, first time in Belize. It was just what I was looking for in terms of a small, authentic beach resort. We stayed in the VIP cabana and were greeted by real flower petals on the bed and a bottle of champagne. The food was absolutely amazing and delicious and the staff were always available to help (shout out to Moe, the boad captain, who was always punctual and efficient). We rented a golf cart and went to a secret beach that was free of turtle grass/seaweed that seems to be really bad on the side of the island we were staying. We also went on a travel agent pre-planned private snorkeling excursion that included swimming with sharks, sea turtles and even a manatee (our guides Pedro and Milo were the best ever with Pedro making lobster and shrimp cevichi that was to die for). The resort’s pool overlooking the ocean was the perfect place to cool off upon our return trips.

23 | by Dennis G, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania said on October 10th, 2015 at 1:13 pm

“Portofino Resort exceed all of our expectations!”

Portofino Resort exceed all of our expectations! The resort is exactly as the photos show it but in our opinion it is even better. You cannot appreciate walking out of your private bungalow and having a beautiful pool and the beach a few steps away from your front door, I loved the privacy when you wanted it but having their wonderful pub and restaurant just a few steps away when we wanted refreshments or food. They provide many tour options and golf cart rentals that are priced very fairly and offer incredible value as far as the price points and what you get to see along with the time spent. Also they provide free boat transportation to and from the hotel to San Pedro which is not only a great perk but fun as well.
So some notes about the staff, amazingly friendly staff that goes out of their way to make sure you are comfortable and have anything you need or want. Before we left we felt we made friends with so many of them. It became a personal relationship level of service! Nick the general manager was there to greet us upon arrival and made sure to stop by and chat with us daily. We enjoyed our chats with Nick very much and believe he has a book worth of personal stories in him waiting to be written! We just scratched the surface of this very interesting gentleman. My wife and I preferred hanging out at their pub for pretty much all of our meals, snack and drinks mostly because of their two bartenders, Raul and Marco who made us very comfortable and went above and beyond providing us the 5 star service daily. Again, we left leaving as friends to both. In not leaving out the rest of the staff, I have to say everyone from the front desk personnel to the room attendants and grounds keeping, all went out of their way to sure how welcome we were. United Airlines lost our checked luggage, the amazing young lady at the desk, and I feel bad for forgetting her name, called the airline and secured our bags for us which meant, coordinating 2 airports and boat ride to get the bag to us the very next day! She also gave us maps of the Caye and great guidance as to where things were.
So with all that said, we cannot provide any stronger recommendation for a resort than this one. Beautiful place, well-kept pool and grounds, great tour options, food and services is top notch, great prices and most of the people! We will without a doubt come back to Portofino year after year.
For the romantics, having dinner under the stars or on the beach will win you over with this resort! The thatch roofed bungalows are very comfortable and perfect for a couple to relax and enjoy quality time together.

Also on the way back to the airport and home, their boat captain not only got us back the city but found us a taxi, rode with us to the airport and made sure we made it to the gate agents! Amazing!

Dennis Geary
Pittsburgh, PA

24 | by Brandi P, Basile, United States said on September 29th, 2015 at 1:12 pm

“Honeymoon Trip”

Excellent resort and service! Restaurant is delicious! Breakfast and lunch all less than $12 per dish. Dinner is $20-40, and well worth it! We stayed in a cabana and it was very comfortable. It’s the rainy season but we only had one full day of rain and stayed in our room. Most other resorts and food options nearby were closed for the season so it was very quiet. I recommend renting a golf cart for the duration of the trip to venture out. Rates are better the longer you have it. There are water taxis and the resort has a boat that goes to town at set times during the day and no charge. There are kayaks and snorkel gear you can paddle out. Recommend the guided snorkel trips and the fishing, lobster hunting, and beach BBQ trip! We went inland for zip lining and cave tubing via speed boat but it was a lot of travel to get inland, 2 hrs total one way. The jungle is beautiful and the cave fascinating. We had a great time! The staff at Portofino are so nice and top notch!

25 | by 99abster, Houston, Texas said on September 22nd, 2015 at 1:12 pm

“Resort experience”

Our family of 4 had a great time at Portofino. We especially enjoyed kayaking to Mexico Rocks to see nurse sharks, sting rays and sea turtles. We took an excursion with the resort’s captain, Clinton, for a day of fishing, snorkeling and a b-b-q at Tranquility Bay.

26 | by Kimberley said on September 17th, 2015 at 10:12 am

“Great getaway”

September 17, 2015
Great resort and staff… was promptly greeted with cold beverage and cold towel. Check in was smooth and painless.. Food offered was okay, could of been better varieties. Very cool rooms and they offered different scents of soap bars. Daily room cleaning and complimentary daily breakfast and free boat rides in town. Highly recommend and will be back in the future.

27 | by Niki K, Atlanta, Georgia said on September 14th, 2015 at 1:11 pm

“Ideal Anniversary Beach Get-Away”

My husband and I celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary here, first time in Belize. It was just what I was looking for in terms of a small, authentic beach resort. We stayed in the VIP cabana and were greeted by real flower petals on the bed and a bottle of champagne. The food was absolutely amazing and delicious and the staff were always available to help (shout out to Moe, the boad captain, who was always punctual and efficient). We rented a golf cart and went to a secret beach that was free of turtle grass/seaweed that seems to be really bad on the side of the island we were staying. We also went on a travel agent pre-planned private snorkeling excursion that included swimming with sharks, sea turtles and even a manatee (our guides Pedro and Milo were the best ever with Pedro making lobster and shrimp cevichi that was to die for). The resort’s pool overlooking the ocean was the perfect place to cool off upon our return trips.

28 | by rdizzle2015, Los Angeles, California said on August 31st, 2015 at 1:11 pm

“Secluded and Relaxing”

The good news, this place is six miles out of town and feels very private. The bad news, this place is six miles out of town and very private. To be honest, I was a little worried about how far away from town this hotel is, but when I got there, my fears disappeared. It is like a private oasis. The courtesy boat picked us up from downtown upon arrival and even waited for us to grab a bite to eat at FIdo’s. The staff was courteous and professional and General Manager Nick is a fount of information. The complimentary breakfast was tasty and filling despite being comprised of toast, muffin and fruit. Booked many excursions through the hotel’s dive shop and was happy with all of them. Brought some fresh fish that I caught to the restaurant and the chef cooked them up beautifully – best fish I had on the island. I highly recommend this place and would absolutely go again, but be prepared for the “isolation” and taking the water taxi ($11 USD each way) every time you want to go into town.

29 | By Helenhjb, Hertfordshire, United Kingdom said on August 18th, 2015 at 1:10 pm

“Beautiful island retreat”

We booked Portofino Beach Resort as part of our holiday with Imagine Latin America and it was a great recommendation! It’s the perfect location if you want peace and quiet, away from the busy town of San Pedro. Transfer to the resort is by speed boat which takes about 20 minutes – there is a sandy, bumpy road but this is best avoided unless you’re in a golf cart! We were welcomed at the jetty by friendly, smiling staff and shown to our beautiful individual cabana which overlooked the pool and sea. The resort provided kayaks and snorkelling gear so we could make our own way to the nearby reef and swim with rays, turtles and nurse sharks everyday. It’s about 20 minutes of constant rowing to get there but good exercise and well worth the effort!

Stayed August 2015, traveled with family

30 | by Kathy B, Ventura, California said on August 5th, 2015 at 1:10 pm

“Fun Family Vacation”

Took our kids on their first international vacation to Belize and stayed at Portofino. We all had a great time. The staff is wonderful, Raul at the bar and Oscar in the dive shop took care of everything we asked for. The front desk booked our excursions, helped arrange groceries to be delivered to our room, we were very impressed with their friendly prompt service. The restaurant food is delicious but a bit pricy to feed a family of 4 everyday. It would be nice if they extended their lunch menu through dinner so if you just want a burger or sandwich in the evening instead of a more expensive gourmet meal you had the option so we did eat at other places nearby and since we were staying in the Lower Level Mansion we had a small kitchen and ate in our room a few times. The hotel is farther from town than some others however we never had an issue with either taking a water taxi or a golf cart and enjoyed being able to explore our way to San Pedro and back. Yes, the sea grass (sargassum) is thick on the shore but the hotel has about 5 guys there every day clearing it. You can’t fault the hotel for mother nature and when you see other places who are not clearing as diligently as Portofino does, you see a difference. This turned out not to be an issue for us since Raul at the bar directed us to a beautiful beach about a 30 minute ride away by golf cart. We went twice to “secret beach” to swim and snorkel and it was perfect. All in all we would stay at Portofino again, we fell in love with Belize!

31 | by Windy H, Houston, Texas, United States. said on July 28th, 2015 at 1:10 pm

“Second time at Portofino!”

This was my second time staying at Portofino in less than a year. Our trip was just a quick 4 day getaway for my birthday but it was excellent.
I constantly see the staff working on the property, cleaning up or assisting customers.
When we came back from a day trip, my room was decorated with balloons and there was a cake! It made my birthday very special!

Even if you do not stay here, you must eat at Portofino. There has not been a meal I did not like.

Room Tip: Room 1 was great, the wifi worked really well, it was close to everything yet felt very private.

32 | by Karina L, Santa Barbara, California said on July 6th, 2015 at 1:09 pm

“Great Resort”

Portofino was lovely and the rooms were very nice. Mo, the boat driver, was the best driver and riding with him was much smoother than the Coastal Xpress or other boats we were on. The only real negative about the hotel is its distance from town, and the limited amount of transfers they offer. If they were to offer a few more scheduled transfers, the place would be perfect!

33 | by Shawn H, Hillsborough, North Carolina said on June 15th, 2015 at 1:09 pm

“Great Trip”

We absolutely loved Portofino. The accommodations were beautiful. Staff was incredible (Jovani and Raffi especially). Food was nice. Kayaks and bikes are available for guests. We kayaked to a snorkle spot about 15 minutes from the resort, which was amazing. Staff set up for a private dining experience for us on the beach, which was also amazing. We had a great trip and would love to return. Thank you.

Stayed May 2015, traveled as a couple

34 | by Jodi T, Queretaro, Mexico said on June 13th, 2015 at 1:08 pm

“Lovely boutique resort”

Portofino is a lovely resort, ocean front, 6 miles outside of San Pedro. Picked up by the boat at the water taxi and greeted with cool towels, cold drinks and smiles. We were in the VIP room which was absolutely beautiful. The grounds are well landscaped and kept up nicely. The foot washing basin outside of the rooms is a nice touch as well.

35 | by Bob A said on June 3rd, 2015 at 8:54 am

“Belize Paradise Resort with Local Charm”

We booked this trip and hotel site unseen with the guidance of Trip Advisor and the reviews we had read from guest’s recent stay. Our stay turned out as planned and from the moment we were picked up by their boat at San Pedro our trip had officially started.

We arrived at the dock of the resort and were greeted by the front desk with warm fresh towels. This set the tone, along with the beautiful weather and scenery. We booked a Colonial Suite and it was exactly as the pictures had depicted. The walk in shower was great and they offer you bowls of shampoo, conditioner and body wash. It took me a few days to figure out which one was which until I noticed it was written on the wood platform they rested on. :)

The resort has 17 rooms and suites, ocean front location, PADI dive shop on the dock, kayaks, bikes and water taxis available to go to San Pedro if you desire. The three meal a day restaurant is well worth not having to leave the resort anytime. The chips and fresh salsa was outstanding and addictive. Fresh seafood and great bar scene which was exactly what we were looking for.

We had planned to dive during this trip and I was excited to talk with dive shop on the dock. I met Roberto (owner) gave him our background and how this will be my wife’s first diving experience and took over from there. He planned our dives that suited my wife’s new diving skills and the rest was history. We had such a fantastic time with the dive masters Blinky and Oscar. We totally recommend the Hoi Chan and Shark Alley dive…

This resort’s main charm is the associates that work at resort. Rafael (server at restaurant) was the standout along with Raul (bartender), Roy, Nick (new GM), Jerrilee, Jennifer (front desk) and the owners. If you are looking for a resort that offers charm, associates that care about your stay then this is your place! We’re looking forward to our next trip to Belize!!

36 | by Anouschka v, Nijverdal, The Netherlands said on June 2nd, 2015 at 8:54 am

“Best resort on Ambergis Caye”

We loved Portofino. The staff is very friendly and helpfull. One day we left at 5 a.m. for a daytrip to the Blue Hole and even then the cook served us a breakfast. The food in the restaurant is very tasty. I personally liked the most the appetizers and the tacos supreme. We stayed in the VIP suite, the room is spacious and clean and looks like it has an little house in it with also an palmtree roof, where the shower, toilet and washbassins are situated. It is an cosy resort where every room has its own hammock and is situated right on the beach. Portofino is an good base for diving and making daytrips. The staff is very helpfull by arranging it. We will definitely be back to this resort.

37 | by JansvanWieren, Nijverdal, Nederland said on May 31st, 2015 at 8:54 am

“Very relax.”

May 31st, 2015
Wat hebben we genoten deze 6 dagen. Goede sfeer, lekker eten en veel gedoken. Volgende trip naar Belize gaat ook via Portofino Resort.
Weinig mensen uit Europa maar dat gaat vast komen.
Groeten en bedankt voor alles.
Anouschka en Jans.

38 | by Rene p, Rotterdam, The Netherlands said on May 28th, 2015 at 8:55 am

“fantastische trouwlocatie”

May 28th, 2015
Wij zijn kortgeleden op het strand bij portofino getrouwd. Prachtige locatie, en een fantastisch verblijf!

Personeel is zeer behulpzaam en vriendelijk. Mooie duiklocaties met goede instructeurs.

Het resort ligt op een rustige locatie buiten San Pedro, wat te bereiken is per boot of met de fiets (uurtje fietsen).

Top locatie voor een heerlijke vakantie!

Stayed May 2015, traveled as a couple

39 | by ClarBear, San Francisco, California said on May 28th, 2015 at 8:53 am

“That Beachfront Bungalow Life”

May 28th, 2015
Loved Portofino! I always like to try out different places but if I were to return to the island, I’d actually be tempted to stay here again. The resort looks like a Caribbean paradise. We stayed in a bungalow which is the way to go. Very spacious, clean, super cute and right on the beach. And the soap butler service… so nice! Each day you get to choose from a selection of scented homemade soaps.

We used the resort bikes (no rental fee) to bike along the shore to San Pedro and had a blast – it’s a super fun way to explore the island and bar hop at the many resorts and bars along the way (some parts of the shore can be very difficult to bike though!). We also ended up booking all our day activities through the resort out of convenience. The diving and sailing companies in San Pedro may have been cheaper, but once you factor in the time and money to water taxi into town first, it just wasn’t worth it.

I’m glad we didn’t stay in or near San Pedro though. The beach and the resorts get nicer the farther you go from town. If you want a relaxing getaway on a private beach, then Portofino is it (and yes, you do want to swim in the gorgeous aqua blue water that is only knee deep for a hundred feet out). If you are there to party hardy though, you may want to consider other options closer to town.

40 | by Ronda P, Edmonton, Canada said on May 27th, 2015 at 8:55 am

“Everything we hoped for… And more!”

May 27th, 2015
This was our first trip to Ambergris Caye and it sure beat any other warm destination that we’ve experienced! Portofino has the perfect mix of laid-back, relaxed ambiance… The staff feel like friends and they are great source for ‘things to do’ while staying on the island. It’s only a short kayak jaunt out to Mexico Rocks and you can snorkel with nurse sharks, stingrays and turtles – for free! This is a perfect resort for anyone that wants to be treated to gourmet meals and a really comfortable cabana hut on the beach! We would love to go back!

41 | by CamilleALW, Calgary, Canada said on May 26th, 2015 at 8:52 am

“25 Year Anniversary Celebration and Photo Shoot”

May 26th, 2015
We celebrated our 25th anniversary at Portofino Resort with a ceremony on the beach.This was a small event with just the two of us but the resort staff (who are first rate) made it into a very special occasion and took great care with all the details every step of the way. We had an hour long professional photo shoot with Olivera (Oli) Rusu. She is fantastic! Her professionalism combined with her great sense of humor made us feel right at ease. This resort is exactly what we were looking for; romantic, secluded, quiet and we were not disappointed. Portofino offers a daily (pre-scheduled departures) boat service to/from San Pedro that their guests can take advantage of to explore the shops there and enjoy the local cuisine. We enjoyed our short stay at Portofino and look forward to our return one day.

42 | by Brandon G said on May 23rd, 2015 at 8:52 am

“Great Place”

May 23rd, 2015
Portofino Beach Resort is a perfect place for a Belizean get away/vacation. The staff and owners are very nice and personable.

It is secluded/away from the town of San Pedro by 6 miles but the resort gives free boats rides daily into town and/or you can ride their bikes into town as well.

For anyone looking for a tropical vacation spot with a little adventure in them, this is your spot!

The food was fantastic. However the price of the meals are what you would expect to pay in the US, and you are not getting a ‘deal’.

43 | by Hernando O, Bogota, Colombia said on May 22nd, 2015 at 8:52 am

“Hotel Portofino en Cayo Ambergris, Belice, linda experiencia!!!!!!”

May 22nd, 2015
A 10 minutos en lancha de San Pedro, este hotel en la costa del mar caribe, es un remanso muy especial para el descanso y disfrutar a plenitud la naturaleza, el mar y todo lo que le rodea. Construido todo en madera, tanto la sede central como las distintas cabañas, presentan un amable juego con el entorno y la naturaleza. Permanentemente se escuchan las olas que altamar, romper en la barrera de arrecifes naturales que protegen todo el Cayo. La gente del hotel es muy amable y se conjugan con lo demás para hacer sentir al huésped como en casa.
La comida del Hotel goza de buena reputación y muchos huéspedes de otros hoteles y resorts del área, pasan noches de deleite cenando en su restaurante.
Las playas por la época en la que visitamos el Hotel (Mayo), no son aptas para nadar en ellas ya que hay bastante basura de algas y semillas de cocoteros. Por lo demas el hotel es muy recomendable en todos los sentidos.

44 | by Kevin R said on May 21st, 2015 at 8:51 am

“15 year anniversary and get away”

May 21st, 2015
From the meet and greet at San Pedro airport to the warm welcome on the dock by Jerilee with eucalyptus scented towels we felt at home the whole week. What ever you want the staff will kindly see to it that you receive it. When we caught enough mahi mahi for more than three couples, the chef prepared it how each individual wanted.
We recommend getting a golf cart and exploring the island. We should’ve had it another day.
Back and forth to town on the boat was never a problem. Even when we had a late arrival from unexpected issues the owner was there to greet us and open the kitchen for a late night dinner.
All of the guests that we spoke to and became friends with seemed to be pleased with the resort. Hopefully life long friendships have been made because of the wonderful time at Portofino.
The treetop room ( sunflower ) was large and accommodating. The shower with bowls of fresh soaps and conditioner had wonderful scents. Two ceiling fans and air-conditioning made the room pleasant after a day of exploring.
The grounds are maintained very well and everyone knows your name.
Paddle to Mexico rocks on kayaks from the resort to snorkel, take excursions at the dive shop with Roberto, D, and Clinton. Dinner with Rafael as you server, drinks at the bar with Marco, and boat captain Moe, you will enjoy Portofino.
When you leave you get hugs, not hand shakes. :)
Kevin and Jennifer

45 | by Bhache said on May 20th, 2015 at 8:56 am

“Great Place to Stay”

May 20th, 2015
My wife and I just returned from our amazing vacation in Belize. This was our first time visiting the country. It is the most amazing place we have been to yet.
Portofino resort was incredible. The staff are all extremely friendly and accommodating, and met us at the dock to take our bags and help us check in. They also helped us book a couple of tours on site.
We stayed in the Honeymoon suite, which was beautiful. We had a spectacular view of the ocean and tropical trees. The bed was comfortable and the shower and soaking tub were also very relaxing. Another bonus is the homemade shampoo, conditioner, and soaps that they restock each day. It smelled like delicious tropical fruit.
They also had free cable, wifi internet and games if you ever got bored, which is rare with all the outdoor activities there is to do there. Most rooms are close to the pool and ocean, both of which are amazing.
There is a bar and restaurant on site that provides free continental breakfast with fresh fruit and bread daily. There are also very affordable breakfast options that you can add on if you prefer. The restaurant also serves lunch and dinner. I have to commend the chef, who is very good. They create a new special each night with the ingredients that are available at the time. I had a large stone crab with creamy dill sauce one night that was to die for! We ate here a lot during the week, and were never disappointed.

The bartender, Raul, was our favorite. He was always quick to attend to many guests and he was always friendly, and in a upbeat mood. You may even get to hear him sing along to the background music during an early breakfast. We loved that, although he might not have known we were listening. He just seemed to love his job which is always a good thing to see.
There are so many pros to staying here. The only problem we had with this resort is that it is located 6 miles North of San Pedro, and travel to and from the resort is difficult.
The resort offers free transfers into town on their private boat, but the boat only runs during certain times of the day, which makes it hard to plan a day in town. The last pickup in town is 6:30pm. It doesn’t give you much of a chance to stay later in town unless you want to pay for a water taxi which is $11 one way per person. However, the water taxi only runs until 10pm. Beyond that, there is not much chance to experience the night life unless you want to pay for a private charter which can be expensive.
The hotel also has bike rentals, but the roads at the time were still being constructed. We were told that once the road is complete, there shouldn’t be a problem getting around. So because of this, we did spend a lot of time at the resort, which was still ok with us because we were mostly there to relax. Relax is something you can definitely do with all the beach chairs, shady trees, and hammocks.

So, if you plan to have a wonderful, relaxing vacation, with great food, great drinks, good times, and top of the line service, Portofino Resort is the place for you.

46 | by Richard R, London, United Kingdom said on May 17th, 2015 at 8:27 am

“Brilliant, unpretentious hotel”

May 17th, 2015
We stayed here for two nights during our honeymoon. The service was fantastic, the room (seahorse) was brilliant and the grounds were beautiful. It’s so nice to stay in a place that doesn’t try too hard. We loved the unpretentious atmosphere. We really couldn’t fault anything with our stay. Being a bit out of San Pedro was really lovely, and the free transfers there and back were a great added benefit. Highly recommended!

Stayed May 2015

47 | by kayakutie, Austin TX, USA said on May 16th, 2015 at 8:27 am

“Amazing Girls’ Trip!”
May 16th, 2015

It’s difficult to translate experiences on paper. “You had to be there…” However, the staff and owners and a few special guests simply added to our girls’ trip experience at Portofino. We were loud, laughing 24/7 and simply soaking the sun and each other up. The atmosphere and attitude of the location and owners/staff enabled us to relax and truly enjoy our time and ourselves. We learned sea life from the owners’ precious children. Raoul (the bartender par excellence) was our iphone repairer (read: wet iPhone and a SIM car that went swimming). The attention of the housekeeping staff felt like family. Several mornings I left a pile of clothes on the bed (on top of the daily art of flowers) and they ended up neatly folded in my wardrobe chest. The waiters remember ed our (usual) orders – crispy crispy bacon, no cheese….. Any time there was a concern, or a repair (we were there for 7 days), they were quick and responsive. I was celebrating a big birthday and they set up a surprise dinner hatched by my friends on the beach. Blessed again by Raoul. Leaving we felt like family and more than likely will return.

48 | by Alice L, Roosevelt, Utah said on May 15th, 2015 at 8:28 am

“Wonderful Time.”

May 15th, 2015
The Portofino Beach Resort in Belize is a wonderful place to stay. The management and staff are excellent. They are always willing to help. The room that we stayed in was very roomy and kept very clean and tidy by the staff. From the moment that we were greeted by Jerrilee we were made to feel right at home and she went the distance to make sure that everything with our trip was to our expectation. We will definitely recommend Portofino Beach Resort to our family and friends.

Room Tip: We stayed in the Jaguar.

49 | by Ronda P, Edmonton, Canada said on May 15th, 2015 at 8:26 am

“Everything we hoped for… And more!”
May 15th, 2015

This was our first trip to Ambergris Caye and it sure beat any other warm destination that we’ve experienced! Portofino has the perfect mix of laid-back, relaxed ambiance… The staff feel like friends and they are great source for ‘things to do’ while staying on the island. It’s only a short kayak jaunt out to Mexico Rocks and you can snorkel with nurse sharks, stingrays and turtles – for free! This is a perfect resort for anyone that wants to be treated to gourmet meals and a really comfortable cabana hut on the beach! We would love to go back!

50 | by xandertrusheim, St. Petersburg, Florida said on May 14th, 2015 at 8:25 am

“Spontaneous Couples Getaway”
May 14th, 2015

My boyfriend and I decided three weeks prior to our stay that it was time for an adventure. We could not have made a better choice than the Portofino hotel located on the island Ambergris Caye. Jerrilee greeted us at the dock, and we immediately took a special liking to her. She put us on “Belizean time”, which can be equated to “Hakuna Matata” here in the states. She also was kind enough to guide our exploration in the San Pedro city, which focused our time, allowing us to see the key spots (instead of walking around aimlessly). Our stay lasted eight quick days, as we were not ready to leave when the time came! We spent hours underwater exploring the reef with Blinky, their on site dive master; a truly otherworldly experience. The local cuisine is deliciously fresh, and Jennifer helped us plan our reservations and made some great recommendations. The trip nurtured our love for one another, which was facilitated by the friendly staff, and the wonderful exotic location. We highly recommend the Portofino Beach Resort.

Room Tip: The Seahorse Suite was right on the beach by the pool, we definitely recommend this room.

51 | by Bhache said on May 12th, 2015 at 8:26 am

“Great Place to Stay”

May 12th, 2015

My wife and I just returned from our amazing vacation in Belize. This was our first time visiting the country. It is the most amazing place we have been to yet. Portofino resort was incredible. The staff are all extremely friendly and accommodating, and met us at the dock to take our bags and help us check in. They also helped us book a couple of tours on site. We stayed in the Honeymoon suite, which was beautiful. We had a spectacular view of the ocean and tropical trees. The bed was comfortable and the shower and soaking tub were also very relaxing. Another bonus is the homemade shampoo, conditioner, and soaps that they restock each day. It smelled like delicious tropical fruit. They also had free cable, wifi internet and games if you ever got bored, which is rare with all the outdoor activities there is to do there. Most rooms are close to the pool and ocean, both of which are amazing. There is a bar and restaurant on site that provides free continental breakfast with fresh fruit and bread daily. There are also very affordable breakfast options that you can add on if you prefer. The restaurant also serves lunch and dinner. I have to commend the chef, who is very good. They create a new special each night with the ingredients that are available at the time. I had a large stone crab with creamy dill sauce one night that was to die for! We ate here a lot during the week, and were never disappointed. The bartender, Raul, was our favorite. He was always quick to attend to many guests and he was always friendly, and in a upbeat mood. You may even get to hear him sing along to the background music during an early breakfast. We loved that, although he might not have known we were listening. He just seemed to love his job which is always a good thing to see. There are so many pros to staying here. The only problem we had with this resort is that it is located 6 miles North of San Pedro, and travel to and from the resort is difficult. The resort offers free transfers into town on their private boat, but the boat only runs during certain times of the day, which makes it hard to plan a day in town. The last pickup in town is 6:30pm. It doesn’t give you much of a chance to stay later in town unless you want to pay for a water taxi which is $11 one way per person. However, the water taxi only runs until 10pm. Beyond that, there is not much chance to experience the night life unless you want to pay for a private charter which can be expensive. The hotel also has bike rentals, but the roads at the time were still being constructed. We were told that once the road is complete, there shouldn’t be a problem getting around. So because of this, we did spend a lot of time at the resort, which was still ok with us because we were mostly there to relax. Relax is something you can definitely do with all the beach chairs, shady trees, and hammocks. So, if you plan to have a wonderful, relaxing vacation, with great food, great drinks, good times, and top of the line service, Portofino Resort is the place for you.

52 | by jvirgint, Corrales, New Mexico said on May 10th, 2015 at 8:28 am

“Lovely, Relaxing and Friendly”

May 10th, 2015

My husband and I just returned from a week long stay at Portofino. Its a terrific place to stay to relax in a quiet, friendly atmosphere. The pool is clean and lovely, the food is excellent, if a bit pricey. Every staff member was really helpful and pleasant. Several went that extra mile to make our stay even better (checking on boat departure times, grabbing an extra towel, getting that hot coffee). We took three snorkel trips, two short and one full day with the crew from the hotel dive shack. Snorkeling is wonderful and one site is literally a five minute boat ride away with turtles, nurse sharks, rays and eels. Crew was great. Nice enough to let us get off the boat first when they had a boatload of newbies when they knew we were experienced, allowing us some time to explore. Had massages in our room with Lillian that were not truly “deep tissue” but very relaxing. Certainly not a place to go if you want the party scene! Definitely the place for deep relaxing and quiet. Husband did one dive with them and one to the Blue Hole with outside group, also with the hotel’s assistance. Just a terrific place. Room is very nice but could use maybe a more comfortable inside chair or two when you are staying out of the sun and wind. A few suggestions – Because we are quite a ways from town having more items that can be purchased like sweet and salty snacks and your t-shirts would be nice. We stayed in Jasmine and are sort of modest old farts, so I don’t know if other bathrooms are like this, but a drape or something across the toilet area would have been nice. We would recommend this resort to anyone who knows and loves the Caribbean and is looking for simple, relaxing atmosphere, not mega-resort. A huge thank-you to all the staff members who made the trip so special.

Room Tip: We stayed in a second story with balcony-nice view, nice breeze, roomy, and clean.

53 | by Josmar H, Villahermosa, Mexico said on April 28th, 2015 at 8:28 am

“Perfect getaway”

April 28th, 2015

I stayed there with my family for 3 days and the experience was facinating. The staff really friendly and always willing to help, the room Orchid was absolutely stunishing, with a beatiful view to the beach, ample area and very clean (this is the first time i had stayed in a hotel where they clean the room twice a day).
The snorkling experience at the Mexican Rocks is something not to be missed. swiming with sharks, sting rays, turtles and of course fishes, amazing.
The restaurant is a bit pricy, but the food and attention is worthed. We sat one night at the “special dinner” prepared at the sand and we all loved it. We will return!

Stayed April 2015, traveled with family

54 | by lreinbold, Minneapolis, Kansas said on April 19th, 2015 at 8:25 am

“Beautifully relaxing, fun, and romantic”
April 19th, 2015

Once again Portofino has surpassed vacation standard. Not only did I have a wonderfully relaxing vacation I also felt like I was visiting family. The accomodations, cuisine, and staff were all amazing and we can’t wait to return next year!

55 | by Crystal G, Utica, New York said on April 5th, 2015 at 9:08 am

“Yes. Just YES.”

April 4th, 2015
If you like a giant resort jam-packed resort with excitement & non-stop entertainment, the Portofino is not for you. With that being said, the Portofino is everything my husband and I look for in a resort. Here are the cliff notes:

Staff – EXCELLENT. Top-notch in every way. Friendly, accommodating, and efficient. Jennifer, Ivan, Raul, Giovanni are definite standouts! Housekeeping deserves major kudos for the extra touches they added each day.

Food- AMAZING. I in no way felt that the food was overpriced. Every single meal enjoyed at the restaurant was fresh, generous, & delicious. Snapper and stone crab were among my favorites.

Resort- PARADISE. This is the perfect environment to relax and unwind. Quiet, laid back, adult-dominated, & low key- this is by far one of my favorite vacation spots. There are great touches everywhere- beautiful woodwork, nooks and crannies to disappear into to unplug and relax, and mixtures of tile, straw, and sand to give you that Central American feel.

Rooms- ADORABLE. We stayed in cabana 6. I don’t expect the place to be the Ritz. This is a small resort with 17 room options, however I can’t imagine that anything is lacking in any space chosen. Clean, roomy, and cozy- we had a large bathroom and generous bedroom space. Comfortable bed & pillows!

Ocean activities- FANTASTIC. Yes. There is sea grass. Yes. It’s everywhere. Ambergris Caye has sea grass- not just the Portofino. There is a spot at the end of the dock that is great for swimming should the sea grass not be appealing to you. There is also one of the biggest and best reefs directly across from the dock (Mexico Rocks) that you can kayak to or arrange a ride on the boat with the dive shop on the Pier. You will have no lack of ocean time, I assure you.

Transportation- NOTHING TO COMPLAIN ABOUT. The resort is a 20 minute boat ride from San Pedro. The Portofino will make sure you are picked up and dropped off upon arrival. There are several trips per day to & from town that you can try to catch based on arrivals/departures or you can use the boat taxi (Coastal Express). Keep in mind that this is a small resort with limited staff so you shouldn’t count on fail-proof transportation to and from town for your leisure.

Oh… One more thing…. Love love love the homemade soap! What a wonderful treat! I WILL BE BACK!!!
Stayed March 2015, traveled as a couple

56 | by Melanie H, New Orleans, Louisiana said on April 3rd, 2015 at 9:11 am

“We felt like we were part of the family!”

April 3rd, 2015
We stayed a few days in Belize before going to a wedding in Guatemala. Portofino was just what we needed. From the moment we got to there, we felt like family. Ashira is such a sweetheart. She welcomes you and makes sure you have everything you need. Raul, seemed to know a couple from New Orleans needed drinks all the time. Binky took me on my own private dive trip! Everyone at Portofino makes your feel special from the owners to the staff to the dive shop! It was so relaxing!

Room Tip: I don’t think you can wrong with any of them!

57 | by Larry, United States of America said on April 3rd, 2015 at 9:10 am

“Great people, nice facilities.”

April 3rd, 2015
Staff top notch, place was very nice. Dive shop was excellent.

58 | by Anonymous said on April 2nd, 2015 at 9:10 am


April 2nd, 2015
Price of food and drinks was a bit high but found this to be about the same at other places around Ambergris Caye.

The pool area was clean and beautiful, and of course our cabana walked right out onto the beach with a perfect ocean view!

59 | by Vijay_shah116, London, United Kingdom said on March 31st, 2015 at 9:10 am

“Exclusive, out of the way with excellent staff”

March 31st, 2015
We stayed at the Portofino for 5 nights in March 2015 after arriving by boat from Belize City.

We had arranged a boat transfer with the hotel by email which was complimentary. The hotel do offer a complimentary boat service into San Pedro and back and is worth it as a water taxi one way cost $11 (US) the transfer is around 25mins.

Arrival was wonderful, staff truely excellent especially Ashira who went out of her way to arrange tours with us.

Plenty of tours to consider from the hotel – free use of snorkles and kayaks – I would recommend a kayak to Mexico Rocks – a reccomended diving spot where we saw a turtle and other spectacular sealife- all for free!

I would also reccomend a day trip to Caye Caulker – we saved some money by getting the free boat to San Pedro and then the San Pedro Express to Caye caulker ($50 Belize return) where we did an eco friendly snorkeling tour of Hol Chan, Shark Reef and the wreck site ($65 US) which was amazing. Only one tour that goes at 8:30 am so gets out before all other tours and such an amazing experience – I can’t remember the name of the guy but he is the only one on the island that goes out at 08:30 (with a later tour at 10:30) and he is a pioneer of eco tourism. Limited numbers reduce the impact on the reef and he only goes when he has a minum of 4 people but 8 max. An unforgettable experience he was so knowledegable and for my first time snorkelling I was in awe! Saw turtles, nurse sharks rays and lots of other marine life!

Stayed March 2015, traveled as a couple

60 | by suziirish, Bristol, United Kingdom said on March 28th, 2015 at 9:09 am

“Beautiful and peaceful hotel but remote”

March 28th, 2015
Loved the layout of the hotel focused on the central pool and beach. I had a beach cabana which was very comfortable with a large bathroom, air con, fridge, TV and good wifi.
Very peaceful and the staff are all lovely and exceptionally helpful.
The hotel can only really be accessed by boat, this is free several times a day and tour operators pick up from the dock. This can feel isolating but after only a couple of hours in San Pedro was happy to return to the calm
Daily boat ran at 5pm into town, good for quick dinner, shopping or a drink, but return too early at 6.30. Taxi also an option us$11
Seagrass was covering all the beaches not just Portofinos, the staff do a great job raking it up every day, it’s actually much more unpleasant in town

61 | by JDullGurl said on March 24th, 2015 at 9:08 am

“Highly Recommend!”

March 24th, 2015
Gorgeous, relaxing setting, with excellent staff. It has everything you need to stay and literally do nothing, yet offers great excursions for those adventurous types. The staff assists with setting everything up. Our accommodations were lovely, clean with fresh flowers daily. It wasn’t overly pretentious like some chain hotel and resorts. It is very romantic, perfect to hit the reset. There were kids there, but it doesn’t bother me, so long as they aren’t mine. However, I could see making it a fantastic and cultural family vacay, by renting out the mansion. Part of the fun and excitement is getting there!

Stayed March 2015, traveled as a couple

62 | by NCastriotta, Los Angeles, California said on March 23rd, 2015 at 9:08 am

“Can’t wait to go back!”

March 23rd, 2015
My husband and stayed at to Portofino for 3 nights and had the best time! The staff are so helpful and accommodating and make you feel like part of their family. The hotel is fairly far from San Pedro- 6 miles- but this is part of why we chose it. The remote location made it very tranquil and relaxing and the beach was much cleaner than near town. Portofino took us into town by boat any time we wanted- so it was the best of both worlds. We went on some of the most amazing snorkeling tours along the barrier reef- which the hotel helped us to set up. Overall, I would highly recommend this resort for anyone looking for a relaxing and personalized stay on Ambergris. The rooms were very clean and modern, which still maintaining the rustic charm of the island. Also keep in mind that all of Ambergris has sea grass growing near the shore- so the water is brown for the first few feet. Seems like many are surprised by this fact, but it is the same everywhere on the island.

Stayed March 2015, traveled as a couple

63 | by Barbara P, Piney Flats, Tennessee said on March 17th, 2015 at 9:07 am

“Good choice of resorts”

March 17th, 2015
Portofino Resort in Belize nice place to stay. It is a small resort with only about 17 rooms. We stayed in one of the cabana rooms. I like the thatched roof style rather than some high rise modern type hotel. The staff was great and so was the service and the food. The only down side was the beach. Seaweed washed up on beach each day making it almost impossible to walk in water.the seaweed was raked up and hauled away daily but more washed in. This is just the way itis there-not the fault of the resort.

Stayed March 2015, traveled as a couple

64 | by EricksonMD said on March 16th, 2015 at 9:06 am

“Awesome service”

March 16th, 2015
Beautiful resort with pool, and awesome service!!!!! Boat taxis into and out of resort were great! Food was perfect! Also we loved the diving!!!!!!! Get diving certified while on vacation All the staff were very nice and helpful! We didn’t have to think of anything. They thought of everything!

65 | by kp19612015, Grosse Pointe Farms, Michigan said on March 15th, 2015 at 9:06 am

“Honeymoon suite was lovely”

March 15th, 2015
The spacious honeymoon suite with its 25ft. balcony overlooking the ocean was hard to beat. We turned off the ac, opened the doors and let the breezes cool us off. Great location a stone’s throw from the Mexico Rocks–which offered amazing snorkeling. Enjoyed the rain shower and the handmade soaps, too.
Staff friendly–not too intrusive–just don’t ask for anything right away. Better places on the island to eat, but breakfast was fine. We thoroughly enjoyed out stay.

Room Tip: Loved being on second floor.

66 | by KyleCA said on March 9th, 2015 at 9:05 am

“Great spot”

March 9th, 2015
This was a really relaxing place to stay. The room was clean and beautiful. Staff was friendly and helpful. The food is good and there is always a water taxi going to town if you want to get out. It is pricey, but worth it. Overall, I recommend it and would go back myself.

67 | by willworkforclothes, Minneapolis, Minnesota said on March 8th, 2015 at 9:05 am

“Can I live here?”

March 8th, 2015
I adore this resort. We stayed in a treetop suite. It was magical. Our daughter loved the boat rides to and from the city and serenaded the other passengers. The staff helped us set up a day trip on a glass bottom boat. We snorkeled at Hol Chan it was amazing. Sharks, Turtles, Rays, moray eels were the highlights.

The pool was lovely. Happy to see other families with small children. Food was pricey, but delicious. Drinks were great. Wish there were a children’s menu, but the staff was super accommodating (thanks for everything Ivan! Ruby still talks about you:)

We will be back.
Stayed March 2015

68 | by Carol T, Oakland, United States said on February 20th, 2015 at 10:13 am

“The Best 65th Birthday a Person Can Have!!!!!”

February 20th, 2015
After visiting Belize City and San Pedro my wife and I were a little skeptical about our choice of picking Portofino Resort as a place to celebrate my 65th birthday and check off one of the items on my bucket list. Upon our arrival we were greeted by warm and gracious staff in a very inviting and beautiful setting. We were fortunate to get the second floor honeymoon suite overlooking the beach and surrounding resort. The suite was very spacious, clean, comfortable and the view was very romantic. Learning to scuba dive was a bucket list item and our first stop was the dive shop on the property’s pier. There we met Roberto the scuba driving instructor and he treated us to one of the best three day experiences a person could have. Roberto’s instructions, patience and diving experience was unbelievable. After a few hours of equipment instructions and two hours in a COOL pool we headed out for our first dive. What a wonderful experience! Anyone who ever wanted to learn scuba diving needs to meet Roberto! Yes! we are now certified scuba divers!!! Portofino was GREAT! From the staff, the resort, the accommodations to the food you have to experience it! Thank you a memorable birthday Portofino Resort.

Room Tip: The honeymoon suite is private, clean and very comfortable with a great view.

69 | by oliverarusu, San Pedro, Belize said on February 19th, 2015 at 10:13 am

“Absolutely, YES!”

February 19th, 2015
I am a local photographer and I photographed many places on Ambergris Caye, including Portofino resort. I leave reviews only at the places I experience myself as a tourist and also, behind the scenes.
Portofino had always been amazing with their clients. Pristine atmosphere, very friendly staff, superb surroundings, I can say this is the perfect getaway. Ideal for families.. kids would have a total blast with the pool and sandy beach. Yup, you can go conch shells hunting right on the beach, stay on their pier and watch the wildlife is just a delight. The sunsets, are spectacular, as I really really love the tall palm trees around their beach. From a photographer point of view, great light around, anytime.
Yup, I will definitely recommend this place! UNPLUG here! You’ll be refreshed!

70 | by Lynn W, New Hudson, Michigan said on February 18th, 2015 at 10:14 am

“Just another day in paradise”

February 18th, 2015
Portofino resort was amazing. The accommodations were spectacular, the food was top notch, the staff made me feel like I was their favorite visitor. They all took the time to know you by name and great you with a smile and/or wave.
The rooms were very romantic, with the sweet touch of flower petals and deserts on your bed.
The menu was very good. I am not a foodie, but I thoroughly enjoyed everything I had tried, especially the Red Snapper.
I would highly recommend this resort to all my friends and family. I hope to someday go back to visit them again, with the hopes that Ivan, Rafael, Jovan and Mo are still there.

Stayed February 2015, traveled as a couple

71 | by Laura L said on February 16th, 2015 at 10:14 am

“Valentines Day weekend”

February 16th, 2015
Out visit to Portofino was Awesome, it was all about love at Portofino..The room was very everywhere, The service was excellent. The food was well prepared, we really had a awesome time..we will definitely recommend Portofino to our friends and family..Thank you for making our stay a unforgettable one!!

72 | by MissDaisyMae, Sewanee said on February 16th, 2015 at 10:12 am

“It was our 25th anniversary dream and it was perfect.”

February 16th, 2015
25 years ago we were married at a little resort on Raratonga in the South Pacific. We wanted to recreate the event, but not travel that distance.

We spent the time and effort to find the right place, the right small resort, the right island.
We did it! Our dreams were not just met, they were exceeded by the professional, friendly and caring staff of Portofino.

Everyone went that extra step, that extra friendly nod, the gracious smile, that follow up on our request, even to the last minutes of our last day. A young gardener saw that my bags were on the porch and he immediately laid his tools down and carried the bags to the dock. He didn’t look around for someone else to help me. He did it.

Our anniversary day was special, with our breakfast brought to our cabana and we ate on the porch and shared a little with the wildlife. (see photo) The afternoon while we were out,our cabana was decorate to the hilt; with hearts, flowers,tea lights, balloons and a 25th wedding anniversary sign. When I opened the door, I was surprised and giddy with laughter. Our dinner was served in a private lighted and palm decorated gazebo on the beach. They made us a special dinner, which was visually romantic and incredibly good.

We ate most our meals at Portofino. The continental breakfast was fresh fruit, fresh bread and good coffee. Lunch we sometimes missed or had in town. Once back at the resort, we had no reason to leave and we had the best seafood meals in years; Spider crab, Conch, Red Snapper filled with crab, Snow crab, usually served with grilled mixed vegetables and coconut rice. The resort’s rum punch was always tasty. They have a full bar and entertaining bartenders.
My husband enjoyed joking with the staff and felt right at home.

The dive shop staff were very helpful and friendly. Our two snorkeling trips were exciting and adventuresome. I swam with the sharks and stingrays and saw giant turtles and eels. Simon was our driver and guide and he was seamless with his help and smiles.

If you want a small resort with people who care, you will be delightfully satisfied. I dreamt about our trip for nearly a week after we came home. We would love to go back.

Stayed January 2015, traveled as a couple

73 | by Samapti, New York City, New York, USA said on February 14th, 2015 at 10:12 am

“amazing getaway for couples”

February 14th, 2015
We stayed at a beachfront cabana with hammock and it was amazing! the service is impeccable and rooms are comfy and clean. the beds are amazingly comfortable! We love that they gave us an unlimited amount of fresh made soaps. I also received a massage right on the beach that was great. The bar guys made awesome drinks and even brought us fresh coconuts to our room on request. They are really good about scheduling boats for you and I love how they don’t compete with other resorts. we spent time eating and hanging out at mata chica and coco beach resort where they helped us get transportation and make dinner reservations. I must say the best food was at Portofino- the dinner and specials are just amazing. the only downside to the trip was that boats into town are limited- make sure you make arrangements in advance!!! Also the water right in front of the resort is grassy/weedy but beautiful water isn’t far at all. this is a perfect vacation catered to you- whether you want to relax and/or party. tons to do and see- definitely walk around to the other resorts and explore san pedro. excursions are plenty and it is not crowded. belize is amazing because of the locals and the hospitality.

Stayed February 2015, traveled as a couple

74 | by Ardfernbob, Tayside said on February 6th, 2015 at 10:12 am


february 6th, 2015
We had booked a beach cabana. This overlooked the pool and, beyond that, the palm-fringed beach.

The cabana was spacious, equipped with a huge bed, ceiling fan and a/c. The bathroom was spacious, with separate shower and toilet. Overall, the accommodation was very comfortable.

The resort is small enough to allow a chilled out atmosphere but big enough to avoid the feeling of being hemmed in.

Access is via a 15-minute boat ride from San Pedro, which makes for an excellent introduction to the area and to the hotel. The hotel boat only really runs to meet incoming guests and take outgoing guests to the town/airport so there is limited opportunity to go to San Pedro unless one uses the water taxis. Complementary bikes are available and these are much more safely used along the waterside than along the road that runs to the rear of the Caye, as this is pot-holed, muddy and wet.

The food in the resort was good but pricey, compared to US and UK prices. However, the lobster was excellent as was the fish on offer.

When we arrived there was a lot of seaweed on the beach and this was gradually cleaned up during our stay. To swim in the sea, you really have to go to the end of the jetty. Even then, the water is still pretty shallow.

If I was coming back to the Caye, I would want the comfort and chilled experience that Portofino provided, but closer to San Pedro and The Palapa Bar. But I don’t know if I’d find any place as good?

75 | by Melisa S said on January 31st, 2015 at 10:10 am

“Excelente. Volveremos!”

January 31st, 2015
Google Translation
Excelente hotel, situado a pocos minutos del centro de San Pedro.
Ofrecen servicio gratuito de traslado desde el centro hacia el hotel en varios horarios al día, además del traslado al llegar y retirarse del hotel.
El alojamiento es muy bonito, tranquilo y está muy bien decorado.
El personal es extraordinario. Destacamos la excelente atención de Raúl, Roberto, Giovanni, el capitán, el personal del restaurante, front desk, house keeping y mánager del hotel.
Todos han colaborado para que nuestra estancia sea muy linda.
Sin duda, volveremos!

Stayed January 2015, traveled as a couple

76 | by katrinalan2015, Lausanne, Switzerland said on January 24th, 2015 at 10:10 am


January 24th, 2015
We really loved the place. Great place to be! I would go again anytime. The owners are very nice and the place is very clean. We even had homemade soaps as a goodbye gift. The restaurant is really nice also. Thanks to the helpful and friendly staff.

77 | by Shaun F, Denver, Colorado, United States said on January 23rd, 2015 at 10:09 am

“Let the honeymoon begin”

January 23, 2015
If you seek a true beach resort that is quaint and filled with authenticity, the only choice is Portofino. When you arrive, you are escorted by a friendly member of the staff. Once you walk into the lobby, you are served a tropical drink to welcome you to the island. The rooms are clean and modeled to present a feel like you are staying in a luxurious beach ‘hut’ with exotic flowers, fresh baked pastries and handmade Belizean soaps to use for bathing. If you don’t feel like taking a dip into the Caribbean Sea, they have a clean beach side pool that overlooks the sea. After a stay at the pool, or on your way back from an excursion, stop by the beach side bar to pick up a cocktail to take back to your room and lounge in the hammock on the patio. The staff are truly professional. They make you feel so welcomed and make the effort to know your names the moment you arrive. (Sadly, an art of customer service that no longer exists in the United States.) I have read some reviews on here from visitors that said the food at their restaurant was good, but speaking as a self proclaimed ‘foodie’, the food is beyond good, it is AMAZING! From conch fritters, conch chowder and ceviche to stone crab, fresh snapper and theliatelle alfredo, your taste buds will not be disappointed! During mine and my wife’s week long stay, we took in breakfast, lunch and dinner there 5 out of the 7 nights. The good news is that other delicious food options at places such as Matachica are just a mile long stroll down the white sandy beach. My wife and I plan on visiting Belize again and when we do, there will be only one resort we will choose to stay at; Portofino.

78 | by BunnyRay, Arizona, USA said on January 10th, 2015 at 10:09 am

“Great way to start 2015”

January 10, 2015
Just returned from a 4 night stay at the resort. It was impeccably maintained and the staff was very accommodating. The restaurant was great and a good portion of their clientele didn’t even stay at the resort but came for its 5 star reputation. First time ever traveling to Belize and it is now on my must return list.

79 | by Karolina516, New York City, USA said on January 7th, 2015 at 10:08 am

“Close enough to everything”

January 7, 2015
Portofino is about 15 minutes by boat from town. So it feels secluded and private. But close enough to go out for dinner or further down the island for snorkeling. Great staff, rooms, food. The bathrooms have no doors so not for everyone (open concept). Overall I recommend it!

80 | by Justin Z said on January 5th, 2015 at 10:08 am

“Very Well Done”
January 5, 2015
Dinner at Portofino is third only to the ATM cave and over-the-water yoga for my fiance and my most memorable experience in Belize. The ambiance and food have become our new standard for romantic dinners abroad.

81 | By Oetman, Louisville, KY said on December 26th, 2014 at 12:20 pm

“Epic X 2”

December 26th, 2014

Yet another epic vacation made possible by the great people at Portofino. We had such a good time the first go around we ended up going back a year later along with some friends we had met the prior time. If you want someplace to disappear, relax and be catered to–stay here. The owners are fantastic people who truly care about the guests and the staff will bend over backwards to make sure you enjoy your stay. The food is excellent. The location is great. Close to great snorkeling, close but not too close to town, and if you are adventurous and want to leave the resort there are other cool small restaurants to visit in a short walk. We had a blast, my girlfriend cried when we left (again) and we will be back in 10 short months with reinforcements. Thanks Jann, Sondra and the whole crew!

Stayed October 2014, traveled as a couple

82 | By Homesbyhalpern said on December 24th, 2014 at 12:20 pm

“Friendly, personable, and fun!”

December 24th, 2014

Our first trip to Belize, and we can’t stop telling our friends how much we enjoyed our stay at Portofino. We’ve traveled all throughout Central and South America, and have yet to find the type of truly genuine and friendly service we found at this lovely “barefoot” resort.
We stayed at one of the split cabins in front of the pool, and despite the A/C and the hot tub not working when we arrived, we still give it a 5 star review. Upon checkout we were asked if anyone made our stay especially wonderful. Um, yes! Raul, Rafael, Orville, Carlos, Clinton, Roberto, Moe, Amy, Charlie, and especially Giovani. All such friendly, genuine people. We will be back, and bringing the whole family.
Make sure you get out fishing and lobster / conch diving with Clinton. We had such a fun experience we ended-up going twice. The restaurant prepared the fish we caught “fisherman style” which ruined me for eating fish any other way. They also made us fresh ceviche with the conch we brought them. If you like hot sauce be sure to try their habenero version.
We also checked out a few other resorts while we were there. We wouldn’t be unhappy if we stayed at any of them, but would have missed the quaintness, and truly hospitable atmosphere of Portofino.
Lastly, they put on a great wedding for our couple friends who were there, so if you are thinking of a beautiful wedding site you will not be disappointed. Happy travels, all!

83 | By Jan1c3, Harrogate, United Kingdom said on December 23rd, 2014 at 12:20 pm

“Barefoot Elegance”

December 23rd, 2014
This a small resort, very intimate and personable, the ambiance is unpretentious (the owners call the vibe “barefoot elegance”). The resort is surrounded by palms and located six miles north of San Pedro, so you will need to take boats, bikes or walk to and from town (Six mile walk along the beach with plenty of bars and restaurants to stop off at). Water taxi availble if you miss the hotel boat. All the staff were amazing and so friendly from housekeeping to Raul and Irvin behind the bar. Also really enjoyed chatting with Carlos at breakfast. And best of all a Personal Scuba Instructor to show us the wonders of the reef, big thanks to Blinky and Roberto and Action Divers for making the holiday so memorable, and must not forget Clinto we may go fishing next time!

Stayed December 2014, traveled as a couple

84 | By ElizabethAC86, San Pedro said on December 23rd, 2014 at 11:04 am

“Wonderful Getaway”

December 23rd, 2014

From the moment of booking the trip to the moment we left Portofino was a great experience. The staff set up a boat to transfer us from town up to the resort. We were welcomed with friendly faces and escorted to a beautiful cabana near the pool. The room was very clean and inviting. I love the attention to details in the room and on the grounds. The pool and nearby area was very relaxing. Each meal that we ate at the Portofino restaurant was incredible and the restaurant staff was very friendly. The resort itself is located in a gorgeous area of the island and I could not get enough of the amazing view of the reef and sea. We were able to borrow bikes from the resort and take a ride to see more of the area. The resort is a quiet and relaxing getaway, but even if you want to head to town to experience some of the other restaurants and sights, Portofino offers free transportation. Overall I highly recommend Portofino resort to anyone in seek of a tropical destination and peaceful vacation.

85 | By Fred B said on December 23rd, 2014 at 11:00 am

“Another great stay at Portofino”

December 23rd, 2014

Came to Belize and lovely San Pedro in 2011 and brought our adult children with us for this trip. It was just as we remembered at Portofino – wonderful service, casual relaxed atmosphere and a staff that attends to your every need. (Everyone called us by name after the first day – who does that anymore!?)

We jumped in kayaks and paddled out to Mexico rocks multiple times to snorkel – (sharks, sting rays, and beautiful fish everywhere). My son was overwhelmed with how terrific it was – literally a kayak ride away from the resort.

We wouldn’t recommend staying here with young children (not that they wouldn’t be accommodated by the staff) but it is better suited for couples, singles, or adults. Special shout out to the bartending staff as they are just terrific.

There was one excursion we really wanted to take and the staff took the extra effort to make it happen for us. The entire staff goes above and beyond to ensure nothing is missed. This is truly relaxed luxury. Now we have another generation looking forward to their next trip to Belize!!

Room Tip: All rooms have a wonderful view of the water – literally can’t go wrong!!

86 | By Laurie M, Minneapolis, Minnesota said on December 22nd, 2014 at 10:59 am

“Amazing stay at Portofino”

December 22nd, 2014

There is nothing other than praise for this place. The owners are wonderful, warm and friendly; the staff works hard to accommodate your every need, the food was AMAZING. Would return in a heartbeat! Everything we had hoped for and more!

87 | By TeresaFrank_13, Farmingdale, New Jersey said on December 22nd, 2014 at 10:58 am

“Gem of a place”

December 22nd 2014

We stayed at Portofino in Nov. 2013.(I put 2014 below, because it wouldn’t let me go back further. I recently got this request to send in a review)
It was a lovely place.
The restaurant was delicious. Many folks from around the area, came to this restaurant.
The people friendly and easy going. The staff was very attentive and helped with ease to travel by boat to the the city area or to do water sports of sorts.
The room was very pleasant. Lots of detail put into making it a very tropical affair.
Had some issues with the TV, but resolved.
The sitting area inside the room, could use more comfort, the sloped down chairs, were sometimes hard to get out of. hahaha….
loved the deck and the lounge chairs, were all very comfortable.
the pool and bar area were always clean and inviting.

88 | By ISOIslandTime said on December 21st, 2014 at 10:59 am

“Very Romantic and Relaxing”

December 21st, 2014

Wonderful location if you are looking for a quiet and relaxing get-a-way. The resort is beautiful and clean; flowers on the bed each day and the tropical soaps added to the romance. The staff worked very hard to make our trip enjoyable often going the extra mile to be helpful! The food is very good and, as others have mentioned, expensive, but the servers are very accommodating and if you have dietary restrictions the kitchen is knowledgeable and flexible. This resort is 6 miles from San Pedro so most of the time you will need to take a boat ride if you want to go to town or visit other resorts, though there a couple of nearby resorts that are within walking distance. Mexico rocks is nearby and the resort will help you make arrangements 1for snorkeling, fishing and diving trips. We would love to return for another quiet and romantic trip

Stayed May 2014, traveled as a couple

89 | By Chris P, Columbus, Ohio said on December 21st, 2014 at 10:59 am

“Excellent place to vacation”

December 21st, 2014

The location is great, the resort is very nice and quiet, the housekeeping staff were so nice and went out of their way to make our room up with little extras everyday (flowers on the bed with decorations for our aneversary, as an example, which my wife loved!). The grounds and property are always maintained. The food at the restaurant was always excellent every night (recommend lobster bisque), and the wait staff were all very nice. The excursions booked through the hotel were all great. My wife and I had a great time at this resort with no complaints at all. We are looking forward to visiting again.

90 | By 2nddegree, Houston, Texas said on December 19th, 2014 at 11:01 am

“Extremely romantic”

December 19th, 2014

Hotel is owed by a couple. Very nice. A little ways off from San Pedro by boat taxi or golf cart. We suggest the golf cart but get a big one as some of the roads are not roads and can be very muddy so you want one with power. Suggestion is to do a pub crawl and stop at each resort along the way to see if you want to stay somewhere else when you come back (you will want to come back) Orchids in our rooam, Hibiscus on the bed shaped like a heart, flowers in the bath very pretty. Free rum drink upon arrival. You have your own little place with a hammock out front. Everyone is very friendly, helpful We thoroughly enjoyed our stay. Keep in mind – you are not in US, You are in a Tiki Hut on the beach but a well spent week here.

Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple

91 | By Katie G said on December 17th, 2014 at 11:01 am

“We ate at the restaurant”

December 17th, 2014

The food here was fantastic! The drinks were ok and the usual you can get anywhere. The prices were higher then some other places but the amount and quality of food was also higher. The server was also very accommodating and friendly! I would go back!

Stayed December 2014, traveled with friends

92 | By Els V said on December 9th, 2014 at 11:02 am

“My second stay at Portofino was amazing”

December 9th, 2014

My first trip to Belize was in 2006 and because of Portofino I fell in love with Belize!
That is why I decided to visit Belize again, and I’m so glad that I stayed at Portofino again. I was so happy to see Moh (the boat captain) meeting me at the airport, and when I arrived at the hotel, Orvil and some of their staff I met on my first trip were still there! It felt like I was home again!
During the years the island has developed a lot, for some good, however I liked Portofino’s location so much as it is nice and peaceful there. One day I went to town, and was so happy to be back at the resort as town has gotten very busy and everything I needed was right there at the resort.
The resort has a huge beautiful pool, with also a shallow area where you can sit with a chair in the water. They also have hammocks in the ocean, how cool is that! The guys from the dive shop are great! I went snorkeling and fishing with them and had a blast! Lillian Portofino’s masseuse gives the BEST massages I ever had! You have to schedule a full body massage with her!
The food from the restaurant was better than ever. They changed their menu and have delicious dishes. Everything is fresh and made from scratch. My favorite was their pasta as they make every day the pasta fresh! Also the chef has every evening a special, and Portofino’s completely cacao is so good!
The first time I stayed at Portofino, I stayed with my friend in the upper mansion and I loved it. I heard that the upper mansion got renovated so I wanted to stay there again. Because, they had other guests staying there I wasn’t able to stay the entire time, but let me tell you that it was awesome! The newest design and decorations are awesome! I also stayed in one of the Colonial suites, and liked it a lot. The Colonial is very spacious with hardwooden floors, bamboo beds and a nice.
When I was there I asked the front desk if they could show me a Beach Cabana as I hope I can make it to Belize again, and those rooms are also really nice. I love the palapa roofs, the decorations and bathroom!
Now, and this is what Portofino makes it so special… is the staff! They are awesome! Every day they come to work with a smile, and take such good care of you! When you arrive, someone is meeting you at the dock with a eucalyptus towel, they have a fruity welcome drink for you and what I also LOVED was their soap butler service!
For me Portofino is a 5 star hotel with a 10 star service! Be prepared that when you come to Belize, you realize that it is still Central America, so don’t expect things to get like for example in Vegas or Miami. But when you love nature, friendly people, no mass tourism, excellent service and beautiful charming rooms with palapa roofs, Portofino is THE place to go!
I hope to be back Portofino as you stole my heart!

93 | by Amy B said on November 27th, 2014 at 10:57 am

“Amazing Stay at Portofino”

November 27th, 2014

We booked the first week of our honeymoon at Portofino and had an amazing time. The quality of the food was excellent and we chose to eat there most nights despite having a lot of choices in town. Hector and Raphael took great care of us, cant go wrong with any of the seafood choices. If you like to relax at a small resort where you get to know everyone and feel like family this is the place for you. This is a place to relax outside of downtown, and takes about 20-25 minutes on their free water taxi from Fidos. Even with a few rainy days the staff made sure to go out of their way to make sure we had a good time. Had an excellent few trips with Clinton for both fishing and snorkeling. Be sure to book the Hol Chan/Shark Ray Alley snorkeling trip them as it was an unforgettable trip despite bad weather.
Stayed November 2014, traveled as a couple

94 | by Helen B said on November 26th, 2014 at 10:58 am

“Paradise on the beach”

November 26th, 2014

Portofino resort showcased the true beauty of the beaches found in Belize. Situated on a stretch of beach accessible from the main town by boat (a member of the staff is always willing to take guests to and from town), the resort creates a truly relaxing atmosphere.

The rooms are very well kept, being serviced twice a day, and somehow the large amounts of sand I always dragged in were swept away discreetly. If I had ever gotten tired of the beach, a large pool with loungers was just outside the rooms, so there was no shortage of area’s for soaking up the sun. There is also a dive shop just 2 minutes away, and the dive team that works there are great fun and very knowledgable about the coral and marine life in the area.

The staff were extremely friendly and helpful, I looked forward to seeing them every morning for breakfast! I did, after 5 days of eating at the resort, get a bit tired of their menu. Although everything I tried was delicious and well presented, a more extensive menu would be a treat!

95 | by Capt D, Fort Walton Beach, Florida said on November 24th, 2014 at 10:58 am

November 24th, 2014

Just to let you know if your thinking about coming to Portofino…think no more…BOOK the trip. You will have the time of your life. Staff is the best ever, Rooms are in above average condition, Food is Amazingly great and the views of the Water are breathtaking. By far the best resort I have ever been too.

Capt D

Stayed November 2014, traveled with friends

96 | by chrissy938, Minneapolis, MN said on November 24th, 2014 at 10:58 am

“Beautiful boutique beach resort”
November 24th, 2014

We honeymooned at Portofino and had a fabulous time. The rooms are very pretty – dark hardwood floors, thatch roof, and a comfortable bed. The restaurant, reception, and cleaning staff are all super friendly, hospitable and very responsive. The property itself is gorgeous with a ocean view pool and very clean beach. There is a dive shop on Portofino’s dock that took us snorkeling in Shark Ray Alley. This is a must-do experience and it was convenient to have the boat right out the door. And the boat taxi to/from the resort was excellent. All in all, a perfect location for our honeymoon!

No major negatives at all – really is a stellar resort! However, there were a few minor items from our stay: (1) The music choice in the restaurant and bar area(90s R&B or Top 40) didn’t align well with a Caribbean beach vibe; (2) It rained for nearly 60 hours straight during the middle of our trip and unsurprisingly, the thatch roof had some leaks that created puddles in our room; and (3) Portofino has its own restaurant but if you want some variety, you’ll have to venture a ways down the beach before you encounter additional options (a Jamaican hut and Mata Chica resort) or take a boat into Belize City.

We would definitely go back and would highly recommend.

97 | by travelingmom1114, Lakewood, California said on November 22nd, 2014 at 10:59 am


November 22nd, 2014

Beautiful resort – very clean and quiet with excellent service. Staff is exceptional and the food is way above average. Beautiful location – secluded and quiet.
One of the most beautiful places we have ever visited. Can only recommend staying there – especially if you like small, very personal resorts.
Boat service is a bit restricted during the off season but we found that not a problem at all.

Stayed October 2014, traveled as a couple

98 | by MDWAKE, Silver Spring, Maryland, United States said on November 21st, 2014 at 10:59 am

“Fantastic resort and wedding destination”
November 21st, 2014

We recently returned from our wedding at Portofino Resort. The resort was beautiful and the staff was exceptional. We couldn’t have imagined it any other way. Michaela thought of everything to ensure our experience was perfect. The entire wedding was planned out and the outcome was more than we imagined.

You are treated like royalty from the time you arrive. Portofino offered free transportation to and from San Pedro via boat. Moe (the captain) took care of everything and you had no worry in the world. The boat service to the mainland runs routinely. They truly want you to enjoy every minute of your trip.

We reserved the honeymoon suite which was romantic and the perfect location to watch the sunrise over the horizon. I would recommend breakfast in bed or sit on the balcony to really enjoy what this beautiful island offers.

The staff at Portofino is what makes the difference. Everyone goes above and beyond to make your stay special, they will even climb the tree for a coconut if you desire. The entire staff was second to none and you feel like part of the family.

Although the resort is a bit north of San Pedro, it was the perfect distance to feel isolated from the hustle and bustle. The food was excellent and pricing was fair.

Overall, I would rate the resort as top notch. We will be returning in the future and hope our stay is consistent with our initial experience.

Bravo Portofino!

99 | by Danny S said on November 18th, 2014 at 11:00 am

“Great Honeymoon”
November 18th, 2014

This was a beautiful place with GREAT FOOD. However, make sure you’re ready to spend A LOT. Also, make sure to take the boat into town for food, just catch a ride with Mo and its free. Once you’re in town, food is AMAZING and very inexpensive, make sure to go to Waraguma, a pupusas restaurant that is world famous for their lobster burritos. Overall great experience. I would recommend an all inclusive resort over this one, however. We will not be returning, solely based on how expensive it is, but it was truly a wonderful time and place! Certainly the top of the line place to stay in Belize. All the locals called it “The place where all the rich people stay”. The staff is EXCELLENT and very friendly!

Room Tip: The honeymoon suite is the only way to go!

100 | by rallen333, San Pedro, Belize said on November 17th, 2014 at 11:00 am

“Wonderful time”
November 17th, 2014

Can’t say enough about the management and staff at Portofino. Helpful, caring, exceptional all the way around. The food was outstanding. They cooked our “catch of the day” for dinner. Now that was fresh fish. Hope to go again soon.

Stayed October 2014, traveled as a couple

101 | by lizzieann53, Tombstone, Az said on November 7th, 2014 at 11:46 am

“Paradise revisited!”

November 7th, 2014

This was our second time to Portofino and we were again enthralled. From the minute we were greeted with a hug from Moh at the airport, to the beautiful “Welcome Back” in flowers on our bed to the gorgeous setting on the beach for our welcome back dinner, we knew we were “home”. The staff we knew had hugs for us and everything was perfect, as usual. I’ve read a few negative reviews, especially about bugs. Kind of makes me laugh. This IS the jungle, you know! The staff at this place are amazing. Their friendliness makes you feel like you are a welcome visitor instead of a paying guest. Ask Orville to surprise you with a special drink! The Dive Shop is awesome and Roberto and Clinton are very patient with those of us ready to explore unknown regions. Sandra and Jan, the owners, are on site and always ready to sit and chat with you. All in all, my husband and I are counting the days until we can return!

Room Tip: All the rooms are lovely. We like the VIP rooms as they are spacious.

102 | by chrisito58, London, United Kingdom said on November 5th, 2014 at 11:45 am

“Cant Really be Faulted”

November 5th 2014

We stayed here in october and apart from a few rainy evenings this place was excellent. the staff were very friendly, the hotel was great value for money and everyone went out of their way to be as accommodating as possible. the only slight issue we had was as had been noted previously by other travellers the dive shop, a price which was agreed in person then became more when we checked out to pay our final bill. I would say though that the manager at the time of us checking out took the extra off our bill so I really dont want to complain, i would just advise to make sure everything is 100% before you sign it, and make sure its noted whether youre paying belizian or us dollars.

aside from that you can only judge based on what the place has to offer and i loved it. there was a double kayak we made use of almost everyday and as stated before the staff were brilliant from the first communications of booking the hotel until being dropped off at the airport.

if I was in the area I would definitely stay again and I would recommend it. This isnt the maldives so dont expect that but keep an open mind and you’ll have a great time.
Room Tip: Beach bungalow #1 is the way forward!

103 | by Darby N, Charleston, South Carolina said on November 4th, 2014 at 11:46 am

“Great End to our Honeymoon”

November 4th, 2014

We had a great time at Portofino. The room was beautiful and staff was very friendly and helpful. Stefanie at the front desk was very patient with my husband’s thousand questions and Carlos the server was sweet and personable. We enjoyed our stay! Too bad the mosquitos were awful. Not the resort’s fault though!!!!

Room Tip: We had the Jasmine Treehouse. Wonderful.

104 | by Alley W, Phoenix, Arizona said on November 2nd, 2014 at 11:47 am

“Absolutely a trip to remember!”

November 2nd, 2014
My husband and I stayed here for our 11 th anniversary and had the best time. The manager, mikelle, is absolutely the hardest worker and so is everyone else at the hotel. Giovani and the waitress and bartender were amazing. They literally came through on every request and we were so impressed! My husband set up a private dinner on the beach and they went out of their way to make it special. The best excursion we did was free with the on site kayak and snorkel gear rental! We kayaked out to Mexico reef and saw fish, eels, sting rays and nurse sharks. Completely unforgettable. The little cottages are private and adorable. The turn down service is beautiful and a nice touch. We loved being secluded and away from the bars and sales people of the nearby island. It was almost like a private island. We loved the homemade soaps and shampoos. I can’t say enough about it all. My husband and I are world travelers and have been many places and this is one place we will actually return!

Stayed September 2014, traveled as a couple

105 | by TravelIngNoKids said on October 30th, 2014 at 11:47 am

“Getaway to remember”

October 30th, 2014
From the warm welcome upon arriving at Portofino to the constant friendly service it was amazing. We stayed in cabana Barracuda…oh spacious, romantic, clean and comfortable. The staff sought to meet everyone of our request even making sure I had snacks to fuel my early morning runs. The boat guides were great taking us snorkeling with sharks and rays, my husband caught a barracuda that the chef cooked for us. The meals were great. I truly felt we were alone on an island and could enjoy the peace. I cannot say enough about the whole team that made this trip unforgettable so much we are planning another trip. When we left it felt like we were leaving family.

Stayed April 2014

106 | by Susan B, Prospect, Canada said on October 21st, 2014 at 11:48 am

“Daycation on Ambergris Caye”
October 21st, 2014

Fabulous service from start to finish! My husband and I live on Ambergris Caye. We celebrated our wedding anniversary at Portofino for the day. The staff were extremely accommodating, friendly and courteous. We were able to use the facilities throughout the day including the pool. Having drinks by the pool was delightful. We were given a room for a few hours so that we could shower and change for dinner. Again very accommodating! Lovely rooms very romantic!
Dinner was exceptional! From the tree top view to coffee on the terrace! The menu was diverse with many great choices. The wait staff were friendly, knowledgeable and able to read their clientele. The food was delicious…best blue beef ever! I’d highly recommend trying it! Since we live in Belize it was great to have something we don’t have often…the homemade pasta! Delightful! And of course dessert was delectable! Who can go wrong with homemade chocolate brownie and ice cream!
Our daycation was fabulous from start to finish when the Portofino boat captain dropped us off at our dock while thanking us for celebrating with them. I look forward to our next celebration!

Stayed October 2014, traveled as a couple

107 | By Boberto214 said on October 12th, 2014 at 7:54 am

“This Place is Awesome.”

October 12th, 2014

This place really impressed us. The service is top notch. Everyone is so nice and welcoming. They pick you up from the airport in San Pedro, take you to the beach to board their boat and whisk you away to their hotel about six miles up north. You pull up and one of the front desk girls is there on the dock ready to greet you with a warm smile and some cool towels. She proceeds to show you around the hotel and finally to your room after handing you some rum punch from the bar.

The layout is great. It’s a small resort with only a handful of units so it makes for a very intimate experience where you really get to know the staff and other guests (mostly newlyweds).

The food is great. A bit pricey but very good. On average our dinner and drinks for two was about $100. Lunch and breakfast is priced much lower and the food is also great. Keep in mind that you’ll probably have to eat at the hotel a ton unless you plan on paying for the water taxi to go into town or waiting on the hotel’s boat to go which is pretty sporadic.

I recommend borrowing the hotels bicycles. They’ll take them to town on the boat and drop you off. We rode them all the way back which was an experience for sure. Mosquitos, mud, and beautiful scenery! Not for all but if you really want to see the island I recommend riding them back (not entirely on the beach- use the back road).

Overall, I am one satisfied customer and if I ever find myself in Ambergris Caye again I will definitely stay here again.

108 | By MichaelStein - Barrie, Canada said on October 9th, 2014 at 7:53 am

“Beautiful, unique getaway.”

October 9th, 2014

I attended a wedding at the Portofino a year and a half ago. The place stuck in my mind so much so that I chose the Portofino for my honeymoon this past week. It’s like something right out of Pinterest. It is small, intimate, beautiful, and has its own unique charm. My wife and I absolutely loved our treetop sweet. We wanted a quiet restful place to unwind after our wedding, and the Portofino was perfect. The food was amazing and over the four days that we stayed… We didn’t even feel the need to venture off and try other restaurants. The beach isn’t that amazing for swimming, but the pool was great. I travel often to all inclusive resorts for work, so the Portofino was a refreshing change from that style of vacation. The service is incredible, and everybody seemed to know who we were and what we liked. Coming from Canada is quite the venture to get to Belize… and then onto Ambergris Caye… but once we arrived we quickly realized that it was totally worth the extra travel. The Portofino is one of my all-time favorite boutique hotels and my wife and I will definitely hope to return here sometime in the future.

109 | By susyoz - Oldwick, New Jersey said on October 2nd, 2014 at 7:52 am

“Blissfull paradise”

October 2nd, 2014
We LOVED Portofino! It was very quiet during our stay, but we loved the peace & tranquility. It was so nice to come home to Portofino at the end of our excursions. LOVED the food & cocktails. Had a different fish dish every night & it was just delicious and incredibly fresh! I was recuperating from breast surgery so the water taxi’s were a bit of a pill with all the high speed bumps, until the driver kindly advised me to sit in the middle seat behind him – ahhhhh, much better. Everyone was so friendly and accomodating & the hotel’s excursions were wonderful. Yes, the water is full of sea grass, but we took a kayak out beyond the sea grass & swam in beautiful turquoise water. Relaxing around the saltwater pool was just heavenly. Room was very nice, a/c was dinky, but really who cares when you are in paradise? Husband & I started hiding the soap from each other it was so smooth & fragrant & we didn’t want it to get used up. Would DEFINITELY return. Snorkeling the reef & diving was fun, but it was So HOT I would skip shopping in San Pedro (and of course you are swarmed by little kids trying to sell you stuff by tugging on your heartstrings – just like in Cabo)
Room Tip: We has the treetop 2nd floor room & loved it. The bungalows surrounding the pool looked cute to…

110 | By Windy H - Houston, Texas, United States said on October 1st, 2014 at 8:42 am


I am already planning my next stay here! I have never seen my husband get sad about leaving a hotel.

The staff:
I just want to say THANK YOU to the entire staff!
Orville and Rafael are very helpful and informative! Such assets to this resort! The front desk girls were also very nice and helpful. They scheduled our snorkel trips, which were amazing. Somehow they know your name after the first day, I felt very taken care of and not just like a guest, they treat you like family! From the moment you arrive until you check out, it’s all so great.
I loved this property. They have bikes you can ride into town, the rooms are very spacious, the staff is amazing. I was reading a few complaints about this resort being far away from town but I never had an issue getting to and from town at all. It’s worth it, I would not want to be so close to all the traffic anyway.

The restaurant:
Even if you do not stay here, you must eat here! Everything tasted so fresh! I felt like the prices were perfect with how great the food was!

Room Tip: We had the tree top room, I can’t believe how spacious the rooms are!

111 | By discoking33 - Isle of Man, United Kingdom said on September 30th, 2014 at 8:43 am

“Little piece of paradise”

Credit for places, where credit is due. This is such a lovely small resort. The rooms are excellent. The beach is lovely. Mexico Rocks for snorkelling and swimming with sharks and stingrays is just a whisk away. The bar and resturant staff is friendly and helpful and possibly the best free WIFI I experienced on my trip to Mexico & Belize.

I have to mention the restaurant. The food is excellent, but it is very much on the expensive side. A main course and a glass of house wine is well north of 50USD, which is a bit too much for what it is. Then again the lunchtime bar menu is delicious and well worth it.

All in all a BIG thumbs up for this hotel!

Room Tip: If you can stretch the budget a little, then treetop suites are the best!

112 | By Lfranks13 - Houston, Texas, USA said on September 29th, 2014 at 8:41 am

“Great Place to Stay!”

Everyone at Portofino is so nice and helpful! From the moment you step off the boat, the experience is great! We went during slow season so there weren’t too many guests which was really great. The bartenders are very friendly as well as the front desk and all other staff. The food is AMAZING; always get the special! The rooms are nice and well-kept – we stayed in a smaller one but it was still big enough for the two of us. You have to take a boat to get to town but they are very helpful with arranging a ride for you. We enjoyed the seclusion of Portofino but also the ability to jump into town. The pool is very relaxing and the beach is swept and clean. We really enjoyed staying at Portofino and absolutely would recommend it to anyone!!

113 | By Francydipi - Roma, Italy said on September 26th, 2014 at 8:47 am

“Good place to chill and diving”

Portofino has a great ambient. The rooms are big and confortable. You can relax on the beach under the palms or close to the pool. The restaurant is very good, every day has fresh fish.
I’m a diver so I’ve chosen the Portofino also for that reason. They have the dive shop in the resort , so you can go diving or snorkeling whenever you want. They can also arrange you other dive trips as the Blue Hole.

114 | By Roger Z - Royal Palm Beach, Florida, USA said on September 26th, 2014 at 8:46 am

“Laid back resort”

For some reason this resort is not always listed when you search hotels/resort on Amberguis Caye?, But My friend and I had a great time staylng there. After visiting the interior of Belize we wanted to kick back and relax. Portofino is the place. The first thing that caught my interest was the fact that the only way to get to the Resort was by boat. Cool ! We caught an earlier filght to San Pedro, no problem, hotels boat taxi picked up at airport eariler. On our arrival we were greeted by hotel staff on dock with hot towels (sented with eucalyptus) & and a tropical drink , (non-alcohol), upgrade available. Portafino is a small resort but just the right size. On the beach, great pool. Staff is excellent they could not do enough for us. Food was excellent. All type of tours are available at the office. Loved our room, Jaguar. Went scuba diving, trip to San Pedro, visit to Shark and Sting Ray Alley. Excellent! Would recommend and go back in a hear beat.

115 | By Debbie T - Northampton, United Kingdom said on September 24th, 2014 at 8:45 am


Visited August 2014. The greeting party with cool towels is a lovely touch. The rooms are all a very short walk from the beach and the bar. They are of a good standard but the air conditioning is only adequate. The choice of scented soaps is great. They also sell them to bring home. The bar staff are great and can’t do enough for you. The restaurant was expensive and to be honest we found better in the town. The complimentary boat taxi only runs when guests are coming in or going out so was very restricted. However we did get the public water taxi. We couldn’t do all the trips we wanted from the hotel as they struggled to get the minimum number of people. The snorkelling trips were fantastic and probably some of the best we have experienced. We have travelled widely in the Caribbean, Costa Rica and the Maldives.
Overall the resort is now at the stage where it needs some TLC with thatch being replaced etc
However didn’t detract from the time we had there

116 | By JenBinSD -San Diego, California, USA said on September 2nd, 2014 at 8:39 am

“Great Honeymoon”

We spent five days at Portofino as part of our Honeymoon in June and we had a great time!! The dive shop is right at the end of their pier and Blinky was an excellent Dive Master with plenty of places to take us with lots of marine life and great coral reefs. The food was great at Portofino and we didn’t have any problems with mosquitos or sand fleas. In fact the only time we did get bug bites is when we walked down the beach to have dinner at Matachica one night. The staff were all excellent and very accommodating. I would definitely recommend this resort for a vacation.

117 | by GloriacFox - Chicago, Illinois, USA said on August 29th, 2014 at 2:23 am

“Paradise is highly recommended”

August 29, 2014
My sister and I just spent 6 nights at Portofino in early August. It was just what we were looking for even though we had no idea it would be so spectacular. We had flipped through reviews on Trip Advisor and were impressed by the recommendations for Portofino but still…we had no idea it would be so spectacular.??One thing to know is this is very rural. This was perfect for what we were looking for, but worth mentioning because we couldn’t really picture it from the time we were planning: very excited, searching online, (from Chicago). From Belize City we took a small flight to San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, and the airline company called Portofino to inform them of our ETA. Once in San Pedro, we were given a taxi (not necessary once we got to know the area) and we waited at the Fido’s Pier for Portofino’s water taxi. Within 1 hour we were in the boat happy to have the breeze on our faces, the view from the water, and the destination…finally…so close. The ride is about 15 minutes, but honestly I never wore a watch while I was there and seldom kept track of time.?There are no doors on the shower and toilet, so if you are sharing a cabina/room with another person, keep this in mind.?There is a 10% resort charge on all restaurant/bar service, but we tipped certain staff in addition to this, to ensure they received complements we had for them.??Portofino is refined, it is pleasant in all ways and an ideal location for relaxation, restoration and peaceful vacation. The food was fabulous, the staff was accommodating and pleasant, and the nature is gorgeous, welcoming and harmonious. The jasmine and lavender soaps were a lovely complement but of course, you’ll get to choose your favorites up on arrival!??Thank you to Ashira to helped us with all details we needed, to Ivan who served our meals with friendliness and courtesy, and definitely to Blinky who led our snorkeling tours. It was very convenient to have a diving/tour company there on the dock who were helpful and never pressuring or trying to sell us one way or the other.?The adventures/tours we booked that this company did not provide were scheduled with ease at the front desk, arrangements were made and we were packed an early breakfast and waited on the dock for pick-ups. I have to emphasize, all the details were taken care of.?Walking south down the beach we found a couple restaurant alternatives that were pleasing. ??IF I WERE TO RETURN, I WOULD: take the kayaks to Mexico rocks daily! Soak up more time in the hammocks in the water! Take a few more naps on the outdoor bed at the end of the dock (yes, this is as appealing as it sounds). And eat more seafood in Portofino’s restaurant.??ENJOY!

118 | by Norma F - Mildred, Pennsylvania said on August 26th, 2014 at 8:08 am

“Portofino delivered!”

August 26, 2014
Just got back and of course miss it already. We booked a VIP suite and the pictures are spot on for what you get.The resort is lovely. The pool is wonderful. The food was delicious, never left hungry. The staff is great! Brittany took care of our room and us, and was a delight. One of the things I really enjoyed was the boat into town. Mo will give you a lift and pick you up from the dock, just check at the front desk for times… The wait staff and bartenders are an asset to this resort. Make sure to get a snorkel and jump in at the end of the dock…amazing little environment right there under the dock!! This was our third trip to Belize and we will definitely be making another return visit!!

119 | by Iftah G - Tel Aviv, Tel Aviv, Israel said on August 22nd, 2014 at 8:07 am

“We loved it!”

August 22, 2014
stayed with the family four nights and didn’t want to leave. Portofino is a place that grows on you. it becomes better every day. You constantly discover more friendly stuff, more exciting things to do, and more delicious food. It is *the* place to relax. If you are traveling with kids go to Portofino. If you are traveling without kids – go to Portofino. Make sure to meet Raul and Jessica.

120 | by mixedcutie - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania said on August 15th, 2014 at 11:06 am


August 15, 2014
I enjoyed a fabulous dinner at Portofino and would recommend it to anyone! I had the lobster tail/filet special and it was awesome free water taxi from our resort as well. great choice for dinner and I would be back next time I visit Belize

121 | by Clhale22 - Akron said on August 14th, 2014 at 8:25 am

“Portofino is one of those resorts you return to time after time.”

August 14, 2014
We had such a wonderful vacation at Portofino which began the moment we stepped on the pier. Ashira met us with warm cloths and flowers. She took special care to make certain our stay was perfect. The entire staff genuinely made us welcomed and provided excellent service.

Our cabana was Island designed including thatched roof. Flowers were on the bed and handmade soaps were provided.

We loved our entire experience and look to return very shortly.

122 | by darling1111 - Vancouver, Canada said on August 6th, 2014 at 8:04 am

“couple getaway”

August 6, 2014

Stayed for 5 nights at this beautiful resort with the boyfriend. We stayed in a cute cabana with hammock on the porch and a mini fridge (although wished they provided a kettle/cups etc.) but we asked the staffs and they assisted us with it. Daily housekeeping was provided which was nice as the room feels/smells refreshed. New towels & complimentary water bottles were provided daily as well. The pool sized was good with a beautiful ocean view and with the breeze hitting you it felt nice. Chairs were always available either by the pool or beach (never a problem). Complimentary boat rides to town (about 15mins). Boat ride is bumpy and unpleasant but hey it’s free and it’s the only access to get around town. Much cheaper food in town and quite a bit of selections and every dish we had was pretty yummy. The food provided at portofino was much pricey but we had their rib eye steak for $36 usd and it was delicious. Their lunch/snack menus were priced between $10usd – $20 usd and they also offered daily complimentary breakfast which comes with a drink. toast and assorted fruits. We did cave tubing & ziplining for a good priced that we went to town and bargained with the tour company there. Overall, the resort is beautiful and clean, staffs were helpful and friendly. Definitely recommend!

123 | by Grahams202014 - Vancouver, Washington said on August 2nd, 2014 at 8:02 am

“our 20th anniversery”

August 2, 2014

We spent our 20th wedding anniversary at the Portofino. In July, the rainy season. We were a bit worried about the weather, but it was perfect the entire trip, even a bit hot one day. The beautiful Island breeze helped with the heat. The resort is beautiful, and well maintained. The staff is helpful and friendly.. It was a perfect couples getaway. We enjoyed everything, except the 6 miles from town. We would of preferred to walk to town, we did take the water taxi in and the Portofino boat a few times. The front desk arranged two different excursions for us, one to the mainland. Everything from pick up to drop off went smoothly. We will come back to Belize for sure!!! If we come as a couple we will stay at the Portofino again, but if we bring our kids, we will find a resort with more activities on site for the kids to do. As a whole, Our trip was amazing and the Resort was Perfect for our needs.. Thank You Portofino!!!!

124 | by Dotsonamap2014 - Washington DC, District of Columbia said on July 30th, 2014 at 8:01 am

“Perfect Honeymoon Get Away”

July 30, 2014
We stayed at the Portofino Resort for our honeymoon. What a great place to get away and relax. The resort is simply impressive and and the staff are so friendly. The cabana we stayed in had amazing views over the water and the staff went out of their way to make our room extra personable with rose petals and other personal touches. The staff even went out of their way to set up a dinner by the water for us on our last night there. The staff made it so easy to simply relax or do other activities in San Pedro or on the water. The dive staff by the pier were amazing and the snorkeling and diving was amazing. We definitely plan on staying here again on our next trip to San Pedro.

Stayed June 2014, traveled as a couple

125 | by Megan L - Chicago, Illinois, USA said on July 22nd, 2014 at 8:00 am

“Hidden Honeymoon Paradise but Very Remote”

July 22, 2014
We stayed at the Portofino Resort June 7-June 17th, 2014. Let me start by saying that the resort was BEAUTIFUL and absolutely what we wanted for our honeymoon. The cabana that we stayed in was close the water and the bar (!) which made for a great trip. We couldn’t have been happier with our accomodations. The people who work there are also great. We loved everyone we met and they were very good at making sure our time was enjoyable. It was very clean and well kept. The resort was very slow when we were there and we only shared it with eight other couples which was nice. I couldn’t say more about the cleanliness and ambience of the resort…spot on.

There were three main draw backs: First, by being so hidden it is very difficult to get into town. It’s definitely not walkable and biking on the beach is a feat given it is about six miles out. There is a water taxi from the resort but the schedule depends of arrivals or departures and they will not pick you up or take you at requested times. If you have a trip that you want to do at a certain you need to pay for the water taxi from town to get you which is $12 per way per person. Not a cheap jaunt into town and it’s definitely worth checking out the restaurants in town.

Second, the food doesn’t really change much at the restaurant aside from the nightly offering. It was well worth making reservations at other resorts to have them send their water taxi for dinner. We did eat at Portofino quite a bit quite and it was delicious but after seven days we needed something different. The staff was great at giving good recommendations for where to go in town for an enjoyable night out. We loved their recommendations.

Third, it’s hard to get to expeditions from this end of the island. They pick you up (most) to get you where you need to go but it is QUITE a bit of traveling. We did Lamanai and the Jungle River Tour and spent a good four or more hours travelling by boat, bus, and boat again. A recommendation would be if you want to do excursions book a few days somewhere on the mainland and THEN move to Portofino for the best relaxation you can get. I loved being on the beach and could lay there forever but my husband is an active guy and was chomping at the bit for things to do after a few days.

This was one of the best trips of my travelling life so far and I’ve been to quite a few places. I would definitely recommend going for a loved up peaceful vacation!

126 | by Sara O - Cordova said on July 22nd, 2014 at 7:58 am

“Get ready to be pampered.”

July 22, 2014 via mobile
We had been on the mainland for a week and were hot and tired. Arriving at Portofino was like a breath of fresh air. We were greeted personally with a cool wet towel and tropical drink. Ahhhhh. It is small so it is very personal. The staff were so friendly and knew who I was and my cabana number without asking . The food was marvelous. Sitting in the shade by the pool and looking at the ocean was wonderful. We rode bikes, and walked the beach. This was a first class hotel and location. I would stay here again , gladly!

127 | by PicklesnCookies - New York City, New York, USA said on July 10th, 2014 at 7:57 am

“Great Honeymoon”

July 10, 2014
My husband and I spent one week at Portofino for our honeymoon. We had a great experience and felt very at home there.

The hotel is located about 6 miles from the town of San Pedro, but take note, you will not want to stay in the actual town of San Pedro. The hotels in the town center are more motel like- small motels with balconies overlooking mainly the streets. The nicer resorts are all at least 4+ miles away…hence the distance of Portofino as well as some others.

The Beach: There is a ton of sea grass in the ocean and impossible to walk into the ocean from the beach. However, you can dive off the dock into 4ft water and swim in clear warm blue water from there. The sea grass issue is not an issue with the hotel, its an issue across all of Ambergris Caye- you will have it at any hotel you stay at. But trust me, you won’t miss out. The pool is great- larger than it looks in the photos and swimming near the docks in the ocean is great.

The Room: We splurged and stayed in the VIP Suite and it was worth it. Our ‘hut’ was super luxurious and massive in size. It was very private in comparison with the other huts which had 2 rooms as part of each hut. We had all the amenities and comfort we needed- an AC that cooled the entire place down perfectly, plenty of space to move around, a TV with more than enough channels, an awesome shower with great water pressure, a fridge, and lots and lots of windows facing the ocean and pool. Our room was cleaned twice a day and was never ever left undone. I loved coming back there every night after our excursions. It was very comfortable.

The Staff: Everyone was very very friendly. We enjoyed talking to all our waiters during breakfast, lunch or dinner at the restaurant. They always asked how our stay was and if we ever needed anything else. The front desk was very helpful with excursions and transportation to downtown San Pedro. Moe, the boat driver was great. He was always in great spirits and on time when dropping us off or picking us up. We never worried about our transportation.

The Restaurant: Excellent and delicious food. There is only one restaurant though. We ate a few different meals there and were always happy with them. The dinners are a bit pricey, but we are from NY so I would say the cost of dinner averaged what we would pay for a night out at home (about $125). It would be great to have a beach shack bar with some bar food options as well. I think creating an additional space for people to hang out and eat and drink will encourage them to stay at the resort vs venturing out. We ate at the Mata Chica resort about a mile away one night and while the ambiance there was great, the food was not good and again, rough cost was about $125 also.

Overall, we had a really great time at this hotel and felt very at home there. We would recommend it to friends and family.

128 | by Tim S said on July 3rd, 2014 at 7:54 am

“Very peaceful but difficult if you want to go to town”

July 3, 2014 via mobile
My wife and I celebrated our 40th Anniversary at Portofino and we were very happy with the extra service and personal touches the staff provided for us. The grounds are kept very clean and every evening the staff sprayed the area for insect abatement. The Tree Top room was very comfortable and clean. The in room soaps are awesome!

129 | by Dinos C - Baltimore, Maryland, United States said on July 2nd, 2014 at 7:53 am

“Where I popped the question!!!!”

July 2, 2014
We stayed a full week at the Portofino and was very satisfied with the experience. Our beachfront bungalow was very spacious and clean – actually they were cleaning the room twice a day every day! Staff was very friendly and eager to help. They also went the extra mile when we had to visit the doctor two hours before our flight departure and after we’ve checked out! Not only they scheduled the appointment but also paid for our taxi transportation to the doc and the airport to make sure we catch our flight! That’s what I call great customer service!

Although Portofino it is 6 miles away from the city, we found this to be better as it is much more quiet and personal. You can easily spend the whole day at the resort reading a book or hanging at the pool or beach without people passing by all the time. As with everything else in Ambergris Caye you cannot really swim at the sea (shallow, stale water due to the reef) unless you do a daily excursion by boat or go diving by the reef.

Resort’s boat runs back and forth the city usually twice a day but you can always catch the water taxi for $11 USD a person each way, or walk or bike on the coast line if you don’t mind 6 miles (we did that a few times and it was fun!).

This is the place where I proposed to my girl (she said yes!!!) so it will always have a special place in my heart! The staff helped me with the logistics and worked with me from before we arrived to ensure everything goes smoothly.

Overall – good value for money, very personal, great hospitality (staff makes you feel like home) and would recommend it without a doubt if you already decided to visit the island.

130 | by Allison K - Atlanta, Georgia, USA said on July 2nd, 2014 at 7:51 am

“Dream Honeymoon”

July 2, 2014
We had the best time at Portofino! Wonderful staff, beautiful little tiki hut, great pool, manicured beach. We said when we left that we would be back! Go to Palopa Bar for a fun afternoon outing. We enjoyed drinks a few doors down at rojos and did some amazing snorkeling.

131 | by Lilyshehadi said on July 2nd, 2014 at 7:50 am

“12 days of paradise”

July 2, 2014
Having never been to Belize, I wondered if 12 days would be too long to spend with our three kids (18,17, and 14). It turned out to not be long enough! After a difficult plane ride, filled with missed connections, having Moe meet us at the dock for the boat ride to the resort was great. It takes about 15 – 20 minutes to arrive at the resort. You have the opportunity to see other resorts and homes along the way. We were met at the dock with a cold eucalyptus scented towel and a refreshing fruit drink. We stayed in the lower mansion. It had 2 bedrooms, kitchenette, dinning room and they put another twin bed in the large living room for our son. Once in the room, the staff comes with a variety of homemade soaps for you to choose. New soap arrives like magic everyday. The staff is amazing. They go out of their way to make you feel like part of their family. They knew all of us by name, greeting us as we would come and go, knowing our likes, even anticipating them before we were aware of them. The five of us became PADI certified during our stay. Thanks to Roberto and Blinky for making the certification process fun and educational. We also went on an excursion to zipline and cave tubing. It was a long day but well worth it. The resort boat goes into the town of San Pedro several times daily at no charge. There are many restaurants and bars in town as well as shopping. We went into town a few times, but much more preferred staying at the hotel. The food is great, waiters are amazing (hi Tritian!). It is a very easy walk to several resorts if you want to try them for lunch or dinner. It is also possible to arrange for boat transportation from the restaurants. We were looking for relaxation and family time on this trip and Portofino did not disappoint. Our room had a hammock, swing and several chairs on the balcony. We all spent many hours reading, snap chatting (kids!), and napping in the shaded, breezy area. We had amazing massages on the beach. Our last night, Micheala arranged a lovely intimate dinner on the beach for our family. We did not want to leave and will be back very soon. Thanks Portofino for a terrific vacation!

132 | by Vanilla_Custard - London, United Kingdom said on June 15th, 2014 at 7:49 am

“Beyond our wildest dreams!”

June 15, 2014
Returning to Portofino after five years was a dream come true. We spent three nights of our honeymoon at the hotel lazing on the beach, reef fishing and doing the shark ray snorkle. Now we were returning on a three hotel trip to the island and we kept Portofino as our highlight. We did our 5 year anniversary vow renewals and everything and i mean everything was simply perfect. We communicated with Michaela (the Manager) ahead of our arrival and she simply assured us that everything would be taken care of, and it was! The wedding pagoda on the beach made from bamboo and whispy white curtains was adorned with eye pooping pink and white flowers, she arranged for a pastor to come from the capital Belmopan, arranged for the cake and every last detail. They surprised us with a palm frond walk down to the wedding spot for my wife to walk down and even the owners Jan and Sandra were sweet enough to remember us and to agree to be our witnesses. One of the staff agreed to take our photos and took great ones of the ceremony and then Sandra took the camera later and obviously has a complete talent. She was taking hidden shots which turned out to be amazing and for these and every last detail we will be eternally grateful. The entire staff from the welcome on the pier, the meals in the restaurant, the grace and accuracy of every last detail for the vow renewal to the million electric tealights and flower petals on our bed, nothing could be faulted. We were served dinner on the beach afterwards in the same wedding chapel with twinkling lights and it felt like we were in some movie set, everything looked so perfect and the food was off the charts. If you are in love, planning a wedding, doing a vow renewal or simply want the best you can get for your money, head down to Portofino. We certainly will not be waiting 5 more years for another visit, Michaela and team just ROCK, thanks to them we will have a day we will simply never forget. Gracias, thank you, amazing!

133 | by James C - Lexington, Kentucky said on June 12th, 2014 at 4:02 pm

“These guys know the meaning of service! Treated us like family!”
June 12th, 2014

Portofino was excellent from the moment we arrived. From the front desk to the dive crew to the restaurant guys they were all great!! Everyone too very good care of my wife and I. The food at the restaurant was great too. People came from several of the other resorts each night to dine at Portofino. My wife and I will be returning soon!

134 | By DeAnn S - Lexington, Kentucky said on June 11th, 2014 at 12:02 pm

“Breathtakingly beautiful…..”
June 11th, 2014

Portofino is a well kept secret!! A beautiful place to visit with an amazing staff!! The location is fabulous, the dock is awesome, and we all loved the front porches on the beach!! I need another week there VERY soon!! Enjoy!

135 | by Elanahandler said on June 10th, 2014 at 11:01 am

“Great Honeymoon!!”
June 10th, 2014

We had a wonderful time at Portofino Resort!! The service was good: professional and accommodating. While the resort is a little farther than others from town, the boat was extremely easy! The great thing was that we had the freedom to go to other resorts for lunch and dinner. Our only small complaint was we wish our room was a bit bigger!

136 | by Puppydogpaw - Puyallup, Washington said on June 7th, 2014 at 4:00 pm

“The honeymoon we didn’t have the first time”

June 7th, 2014

We came to celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary and found our trip to be better than we could have ever hoped. Every part was perfect; the service, staff, location, the resort itself, and the amazing country of Belize. Many places we visit, I leave having enjoyed my time but not having a strong desire to go back because I’d been there and there are still more places to see. Belize is different and I canNOT wait to go back! I want to explore more.?The resort is unlike any hotel I’ve seen. It feels like a B&B more than a resort giving the opportunity to make friends with other guests and the staff. This was an unexpected treat during our stay but added a very special memory and sweetness to our adventure. As people walked around for breakfast or in the afternoon or after an excursion was done in the evenings, we would all say hi by name and talk about our day, wave as we walked past and converse in the evenings and often link up for dinner. It was sad to see people leave as their trip ended. We have traveled all over the world (My husband has been to 33 countries, and 16 for me) and no where have we seen such hospitality. The resort staff was kind beyond their commitment to the job, frequently going out of their way for anything I might need or want.??The rooms are little duplex grass roof condos and there’s a couple larger houses too. It had all the elegant charm of the tropics without feeling cheesy or overdone with perfect attention to detail. Each evening we came to our room to find a special treat laid out for us by housekeeping. ??The location being 6 miles north of town made for a peaceful trip. It kept me on downtime when I could have wasted time wondering to stay busy (because I’ve forgotten how to relax in my busy life), but taking time to explore when I wanted. I returned home refreshed, rested, recovered and inspired.??Portofino is 1 mile from Mexico rocks, a perfect afternoon kayak or swim out to snorkel with nurse sharks and rays in the wild. The only warning I’d say here however is that the water is very shallow for 100 meters out or so with turtle grass. Once you get out a bit further you’re in water taxi traffic lane so having a kayak in tow is necessary for safety. But once you get out a bit further, the swimming is quite perfect and the water makes Hawaii feel cold.??We did the Blue hole dive which was an absolutely amazing experience. The blue hole itself isn’t about the color and fish, but about the features in the wall. Then the 2 following dives were all about fish, reef and color with the 100+ft visibility. We saw more than I can take time to write here but large variety of sharks, eagle ray, conch, and…and…and…??We also did Shark Ray Alley and Hol Chen and it was pretty great too..I have to say that Mexico rocks from the resort allowed me the time to play at my own pace and leave when I wanted. Despite having to leave before I was ready, I really enjoyed having the guide with us who broke us into groups and named all the life we were seeing as we went along Hol Chen. Nice since we can’t talk underwater when diving. I would most defiantly recommend this trip especially if you are not a diver.??If I have to give thoughts or ideas to add to this experience: some evening board games and/or cards would be a fun add …or more water toys (Paddle board, sail board, etc..)
Room Tip: Any room in this small home away from home would be an experience worth having.

137 | by: Lcduarte1 - Clinton, Massachusetts said on May 31st, 2014 at 11:51 am

“Trip to remember”
May 31st, 2014

I would like to start out by saying that for the people who wrote negative reviews for this resort must be miserable people. My fiancé and I got engaged and the staff was accommodating and amazing! especially michaela. They surprised us with a candle light dinner on the beach and a room filled with flowers! Overall our trip the portofino resort was our favorite vacation so far!

Here are some helpful tips:

The resort is on an island. So please know that you first fly into the international airport then take a 15 min cab ride to belize city which is $25 then take a 90 min boat ride to San Pedro. San Pedro is where Moe will pick you up and take you to the resort. You can also take a separate fight to San Pedro which is more money and might be worth it after the traveling. You can get round trip boat tickets at the dock for about each $30.

We stayed in the beachfront cabanas which had a view of the pool and ocean. The other rooms such as the treetops are set back behind the cabanas. The room was equipped with a nice cool a/c, mini fridges with bottled waters and homemade soap that you can choose. The bed was very comfortable as well as the hammock on the porch.

The resort as a whole was very clean and well kept. The beach is small and you don’t have to fight for a chair. the water along the beach is not swimmable but please don’t let that discourage you as there is a long dock that goes out to clearer and deeper water. I would suggest to swim and snorkel out there as there are many fish under and around the dock. Behind the resort is the unpaved road with a view of the lagoon. My fiancé also caught big lizards out back.

The food was good. The dinner is expensive but every night moe goes into town from 5pm to 6:30pm so you can eat in town or bring it back with you when you return to the resort. All the locals in town are nice and speak fluent english and Spanish. They do not bother you and are not pushy. They take american dollars.

We went to Mexico rocks, hol chan and shark ray alley. Mexico rocks is free as you can kayak there and very worth going to. If you snorkel or dive you must visit Hol chan and shark ray alley. Very awesome! We were going to do the cave tubing but found out that it is about a 2 hr trip into Belize city for only about an hour cave tub ride. Also the cave water is cold.

The weather was nice. The first day was windy but kept the bugs away. The last day it rained but was still warm. Bring big spray.

138 | By Keith L: Omaha, Nebraska said on May 29th, 2014 at 11:15 am

“The Portofino Experience”
May 29th, 2014

From the moment you arrive at Portofino Beach Resort, you notice something special. Your senses are aroused with the aroma of beautiful wild flowers blooming on the trees. You are greeted by a Belizean girl with eucalyptus scented towels served on a palm frond and soon after, greeted with a tropical drink while you wait for the room presentation.
My fiancé and I took a trip to Ambergris Caye (San Pedro, Belize) to find a resort to get married at in February of 2015. Online, Portofino ranked in our top five list of resorts to consider. It didn’t take long for Portofino to stand out head and shoulders above the rest of the resorts we visited. We travel quite often; so it is hard to impress us with scenery, accommodations and service, but Portofino Beach Resort delivered! Located just five miles north of the town of San Pedro, Portofino is only accessible via boat. Portofino also shares the same dock as Fido’s (pronounced “fee-dos”) restaurant and bar. Portofino can arrange for transportation to and from the airport in San Pedro or you can catch a cab to Fido’s for five dollars.
We stayed in one of the colonial suites a few steps away from the pool. The room was very large and spacious. The room was so spacious that it could have doubled as a ballroom dance floor. The bedding was luxurious and extremely comfortable. After a massage on the beach a few steps away from the ocean, the bed will certainly become your best friend. Everything from the sheets and luxury duvet covers screams comfort and relaxation. Part of the room presentation is choosing two pieces of homemade soap. The aroma of the soap filled the room day and night which added to the sense of relaxation and ambiance of the room. Another wonderful perk was the turning down of your bed. After dinner we came back to our room and the bed was turned down, our robes laid out on the bed and a personal message from housekeeping written on a palapa leaf along with homemade cookies.
We decided to eat dinner at the resort restaurant. The food was amazing! We were treated to a palate cleansing warm cauliflower drink before our meal. I don’t particularly care for cauliflower but I enjoyed the drink. I ordered a mix of lobster, fish and shrimp which was easily five star quality. Diane ordered a seafood pasta dish which I tasted and loved. The meal was so large that neither of us could finish our meal let alone dessert. If you choose to eat dinner at another resort, Portofino is wonderful at providing transportation via boat to the resort of your choosing. Just give them a time to pick you up and they will be there!
Everything at Portofino is always in place and very well appointed. The grounds are well maintained, manicured and the beach is raked every morning. We noticed that at any given point in the day or evening, someone was raking the sand to and from the cabanas. You would be hard pressed to find footsteps in the sand anywhere on the property.
The property at Portofino is very quiet and serene. Peace and quiet is certainly the theme here along with a backdrop of soft soothing sounds and scents inside and out. The resort offers free sea kayaks, bicycles and snorkeling equipment. Just check out what you like at the front desk and be on your way. A few of the guests mentioned that they saw more wildlife on the reef in front of Portofino than they saw on guided snorkeling tours. Along with the hammock on our cabana porch, you can also relax in a hammock over the ocean in front of the resort. If diving or excursions are what you are looking for, you can arrange day trips from the dive shop on the Portofino pier in front of the resort. One of the things we loved about Portofino is they didn’t allow pandering or vendors selling local wares to the guests. There was one person in front of the resort, but they were not allowed to approach the guests. If you want something, you can approach them, but they will never attempt to flag you down or call you over. This wasn’t the case at other resorts we visited.

Room Tip: Any room you choose is a great choice. The resort is small but charming and the staff is wonderful.

139 | By Nadia T, Izamal, Mexico said on May 29th, 2014 at 9:51 am

“Again one other fantastic meal and stay….”
May 29th, 2014

I been to Portofino several time and is getting better and better over the years. I love my room full of color and the romantic atmosphere and every details is a perfection, you just step few feet from your room and find the warm crystalline water a pleasant wake op ….Original breakfast and fast nice service, I am Italian and I love food there is a good good food make with love and experience
We wore a couple but next time I will cam with my family is a perfect setting for kids and oldest people very large pool and commodity. nice owner very friendly and there for any your needs

Stayed May 2014, traveled as a couple

140 | By: Jo G - Tracy California said on May 29th, 2014 at 8:49 am

“Heaven on earth”
May 29th, 2014

Our trip was April 16th – the 21st. Portofino Resort was a beautiful and relaxing place to stay. We were greeted on the dock by the receptionist, which I wish I remembered her name. She was very sweet and did her best to accommodate all our needs. We booked a beach cabana and are very pleased with the room we stayed in. It was very cute and made you feel very comfortable. The employees were very nice and helpful. The restaurant was top notch. Food was amazing.

On our first full day we took a catamaran snorkeling trip. We snorkeled at Ho Chin Marine Reserve and Shark Ray Alley. What an amazing experience! The guides were awesome and extremely knowledgeable. We did have an incident where one of the tourists on our boat decided to stand on a piece of brain coral and play Tarzan then proceeded to break off a piece of coral. He was reported and since the rangers didn’t catch him in action, they just warned him and he was unable to dive anymore. PLEASE PEOPLE show some respect for these fragile places!

We went to Caye Caulker for lunch. My hubby and I hung out at the Lazy Lizard. Such a beautiful island!

We then headed back to the resort.

The next day we took the resorts bikes out and rode to San Pedro. We hung out all day and rode back. We could do this everyday! Loved it! No waiting on or missing of water taxis. Although we had no issues with them when we did use them. Mo is very reliable. On the way back approx. 4 miles from the resort my husbands bikes chain broke. Being a mechanic and avid cyclist he attempted to fix it to no avail. So we just pushed the bikes back. Not being prepared for this we had run out of water. The bars on the way back were closed cause it was Good Friday. We came across a group of party goers in a bar on the beach that welcomed us with open arms and full cups! Our saviors! :-) They were some local bar owners, One in particular is Sue, a Canadian native, now owner of Coco Loco Bar. Sue was extremely sweet and hospitable. And, the No Rush, sailboat crew. They do snorkeling trips and are some great people! We would highly recommend them! We continued on our journey to the resort with quenched thirsts.

The next day we walked to town. By choice cause that’s the way we do it! We stopped at the Aji Bar and enjoyed some tapas and drinks. We met the owner and some of his friends. Very nice place to visit. We continued in and found Coco Loco where we hung out for a bit and visited with Sue. She gave some history of the island. We continued on our way. When in town we found a small bar with outside seating. We sat and had some drinks. We were met by the crew from No Rush and bought them some beer. We met some of their family and had a wonderful visit. We stayed in town for a bit. Had diner then caught the water taxi back to the resort for $10 US dollars a person.

On day 4 we took the resorts kayaks out to Mexico Rocks and hitched up to a buoy. We had our own snorkel gear so we snorkeled. It was almost as good as our first trip out but without the Green turtles and sharks. I need to warn you, we used a lot of sun screen, but still ended up sun burnt. Be advised that there is no such thing as too much sun screen! We had a great day otherwise.

On day 5, sunburnt and all, we took the bikes out again. This time we rode the back “roads”. It was fun riding along the lagoon. There were spots where the mangroves were on both sides. In one such spot we had to ride through about a 20′ puddle. I got my sandal stuck and was attempting to retrieve it when we heard the calls of baby crocodiles. No mistaking them. I grabbed my sandal and skedaddled! About 9 miles from the resort we came across Victoria House. We had heard great things about them from some friends we had met on the Catamaran trip. So we stopped there for lunch. We then rode around a bit more. It was Easter Sunday, so we went by the Catholic church and said a prayer. We did some shopping. No beggars in Belize! At least not anywhere we went. We even had locals come up shake our hands and thank us for coming to their country. We rode back to the resort to spend our last night at “home”. We had dinner there. Which was amazing! Spent the evening hanging out on the beach in the hammocks.

The next morning was checkout time. We were greeted with a thank you bag. It was a very nice gesture that we appreciated. Checkout was easy and they had us moving out quickly. Before we knew it we were on the beach at san Pedro with plenty of time to spare. We hung out a bit more and did some more shopping. Then headed out to Belize city.

If I had any complaints they would be that the bikes and kayaks need some upkeep. Quite a bit of it. But we were glad to have them there and more than happy to use them. The rooms could’ve been picked up a bit earlier. I would’ve liked a shower and nap before dinner, but oh well the hammocks were nice too. One more thing is lock your doors! No visible room numbers can make a romantic moment very embarrassing real fast!!!!!

Thanks for a wonderful Visit!!!! We would definitely return!

141 | by SurryElle: Washington DC, District of Columbia said on May 28th, 2014 at 11:49 am

“Off the Beaten Path”
May 28th, 2014

The Portofino is a great place to stay with a friendly staff, delicious drinks and comfortable rooms.

Our first full day there was a bit dramatic. A miscommunication regarding the water taxis to and from town left us stranded for two hours with no cash. As you would expect, this left us very upset and ready to cancel our whole trip or at the very least change hotels. Upon arriving at the hotel the manager calmed us down, refunded the money we had spent on the taxi home (btw do NOT take a ground taxi anywhere in Belize if you can help it) and gave us some free drinks. From that point forward our stay was wonderful. The staff truly felt bad about the miscommunication and did all they could to make it up to us.

The one downside/upside to this resort is the distance from San Pedro. While the hotel does offer complimentary transportation between San Pedro and the resort, the times are limited so you have to be very mindful with your time. Additional water taxis operated by a separate company are available as late as 10:30PM and will cost you $11US each way. On the plus side…the resort is very quiet and right on the beach, so if you are looking to be very secluded, this is the perfect place for you.

If you are an avid scuba diver/snorkeler then this is probably an ideal place to stay. The dive shop is amazing and was definitely the highlight of our trip. Portofino offers great dive packages and actually provided us with a free snorkel trip. Overall, the cost of diving is pretty comparable if not a bit cheaper than other dive shops, also – they are located on the hotel grounds (a 2 minute walk from reception) so you can’t beat the convenience. We had a ton of fun with these guys and loved our snorkel/scuba trips.

If you are on a budget I would recommend sharing food and/or eating most of your meals in town. The cost of transportation/restaurants definitely adds up. If you feel like splurging, the Matachica restaurant/resort is a 10 minute walk or so from Portofino and has amazing food and top notch service.

Overall, an awesome experience. Next time I would stay closer to town but that’s just a personal preference, the hotel itself is fantastic and the staff is very friendly.

142 | By Sintje_11: Brouwershaven, The Netherlands said on May 28th, 2014 at 11:10 am

“Pictures that dont belong to this accommodation”
May 28th, 2014

I have been to this beautiful accomodation Portofino many times and Im in shock to see there are bad looking pictures on TripAdvisor that are NOT taking in this resort. In this way people get a totally wrong impression about this paradise. Isnt there any control from the side of TripAdvisor if people are adding correct pictures or not? In this way this concept will harm a lot of hotel owners, dont think this is fair.

Portofino Beach Resort is an amazing place to stay, trust me. Go there and find out yourself!

Room Tip: All rooms are romantic and great!

143 | By KarenP - Lake Elsinore, California said on May 27th, 2014 at 2:48 pm

“Can’t wait to return”
May 27th, 2014

The check in process was simple. It started at the airport with a waiting taxi, an easy boat ride with Mo, our boat operator extraordinaire, a greeting at their dock with warm handtowels until we were walked to our room. Our luggage was waiting for us in the room. The wait staff, bar staff (you’ll love Rafael) and housekeeping staff are so accommodating! They make their own soaps and bath products. A selection will be in your room. . .try them all. . .you won’t be sorry! Go scuba diving or snorkeling with Roberto or Blinky. . .they’re great. All of the PADI guys were helpful and friendly. Tell Tristian, our favorite waiter, Karen and Tammi say Hi!! You’ll be planning your return trip before you leave. I have dietary restrictions and the kitchen staff was very accommodating.

Stayed May 2014, traveled with friends

144 | by Dgall2014 - Parker, Colorado said on May 26th, 2014 at 11:48 am

“Perfect Piece of Paradise”

May 26th 2014
I came with my sister and mom for a much needed get away and some relaxation….for no reasons of Porofinos our stay was off to a rocky start. The staff however made our time the best ever and took away any worries or stress. You have the same people on a daily basis working the resort which I found very comforting….Having never been to Belize I booked based off of previous reviews and from what I saw on the resort web site…… I was 200% satisfied with my choice…..I would definitely recommend Portofinos to anyone who is looking for a quiet and relaxing time. There is a bar and a restaurant on site as well as excursions available right on the dock….They have bikes on site to ride along the beach……Food is awesome…..staff was more than awesome….the owners live on site and were more than friendly and accommodating! I will be back and I will book here again! Thanks for the wonderful stay!

145 | by: gjdouglas, Anaheim Hills said on May 17th, 2014 at 9:23 am


May 17th, 2014

My husband and I just got back from the most amazing vacation ever, thanks to Portofino!?Everything was simply wonderful. Rooms, service, food, waiters and bartenders! We love every aspect of the vacation. We went into the town of San Pedro and I had a mixed drink at a beach café and got Montezumas Revenge, and the chef at Portofino made me a special veggie soup that really was not only delicious but cured my problem so I was able to enjoy the rest of our vacation. Everyone was so helpful and caring. Met lots of nice people poolside and at the awesome restaurant. Did not want to leave. Our last night was a night I will never forget! Full moon over the crystal clear ocean!!! Thank you Portofino for a vacation of a lifetime!!!
Room Tip: We stayed in a cottage facing the pool and ocean, steps away from both!

146 | by theandymanr, Cleveland, Ohio said on May 15th, 2014 at 9:25 am

“A taste of island life”
May 15th, 2014

from our first meeting with Portofino’s boat master Mo at the docks in San Pedro my wife and I new we were in for a special adventurer. The staff was awesome always wanting to help you make your stay at the resort enjoyable and worry free. They are very good at organizing and having a variety of excursions to offer guests. The rooms were well maintained quite extravagantly. I would highly recommend this place especially if you are in no big hurry you are on an island water is the main transportation this was awesome for me no cars no driving just the sea breeze in your hair riding the boat to town.

147 | by JessBoyd, Houston, Texas said on May 14th, 2014 at 12:25 pm

“Secluded but never too far from anywhere.”
May 14th, 2014

We chose the The Portofino after seeing a friend’s beautiful vacation photos. All of her hammock relaxation time really had my husband drooling.

We absolutely loved it. From being welcomed on the dock with cooling towels, to flowers on our bed, to choosing our own personal soaps, they really made us feel like we were staying in an upscale boutique hotel.

Even though the resort was booked solid during our stay, it never felt crowded and we really enjoyed the quiet pace and relaxation. We took the beach bikes up the way to X’Tan Ha for lunch one afternoon, walked to Rojo for dinner one night and Moe dropped us off and picked us up from Palapa Bar another afternoon. It was so nice to have options but not feel pressured to do anything. I also highly recommend the private dining. I surprised my husband with that the first night and it was lovely.

You may not think about waking up at dawn on your vacation but watching the sunrise over that water is truly something special and they have the self serve coffee set up at the bar for you to enjoy. I did yoga on the beach with a mat provided by the front desk and it was perfect.

We are already planning our return.
Stayed May 2014

148 | by MarcieBerlin_NJ, Berlin, NJ said on May 13th, 2014 at 7:45 am

“A Little Piece of Paradise”
May 13th, 2014

We stayed at Portofino May 3-10th 2014 and it was AMAZING. It was like our own little piece of paradise. Everyone that worked there was so nice, especially when we asked a million questions! The food was wonderful! They really made you feel like you were special. Every night our bed was turned down and there was a homemade treat. They decorated the bed with flowers. Because the resort is so small, you have the best seat on the beach and at the pool! Thank you Portofino for making our vacation so special, we will definitely be back.

Stayed May 2014, traveled as a couple

149 | by Betsy P, Raleigh, North Carolina said on May 12th, 2014 at 11:55 am

“Honeymoon in the Treetop!”
May 12th, 2014

We stayed in Belize for a week, Portofino for only 4 nights. We really enjoyed our stay, the staff is TOP NOTCH, the food is really great, and the vibe of this place is key. The rooms were cleaned daily, a/c, and left with flowers and fresh treats at night. We felt very safe with our belongings. The food (breakfast, lunch and dinner) was really fresh and the daily specials were worth the try. Most of all it is the staff that makes this place, get to know them and I promise there is not a thing that they will not help you with! We loved Orville and Rafael the bartenders, we enjoyed Tristian our favorite waiter, and both of the ladies at the front desk were very helpful with booking excursion and flights. We even enjoyed having drinks with the owner at the bar.

The pool was clean, the beach was well kept, and the massages by Lillian on the beach were prime!

If you are looking for a true resort feel but still want to enjoy the flare and taste of Belize this is it!

Thank you Portofino, we can’t wait to see you again!!

Room Tip: Treetop is very secluded, I would recommend anything on the top floor.

150 | by Alea B, Kansas City, Missouri said on May 12th, 2014 at 9:24 am

“Wedding at Portofino”
May 12th, 2014

We stayed there for 5 days preceding a destination wedding we were working. My husband and I were greeted like a honeymooning couple and ever got little candlelight surprises in our room! The staff was super accommodating and generous with their time. We ate at the restaurant several times and it was very tasty. They waitstaff there was also great.They organized all the activities we wanted to do during our stay and then when our clients had their wedding there the details where taken care of beautifully and we had a really great time!

Room Tip: We had the biggest suite and it was pretty nice.

151 | by Jim T, Birmingham, Alabama, USA said on May 11th, 2014 at 9:23 am

“Beautiful, peaceful,nicest people anywhere-Paradise!”
May 11th, 2014

From our arrival to departure, nothing changed-everyone there absolutely wonderful and honestly caring. We went to celebrate our anniversary and to enjoy ourselves in a beach atmosphere- we got that and more. They surprised us with a beach dinner for our anniversary, flowers on our bed- just because that’s who they are.Best vacation ever, fresh flowers daily, beautiful grounds, great room- not enough? How about a restaurant that would be 5 star in the states? Still not enough? How about the clearest water and sealife just outside your door? True, every word..So many trips and opportunities available, best food- had nothing bad and I tried something different every day, for breakfast and dinner- except for lunch- where I had ceviche several times- truly great conch ceviche.Grabbing a cup of coffee from the selfe serve near the bar at daybreak and walking the beach is a wonderful experience.The trees and flowers everywhere, fish around the pier, and the reef so clear and visible from the pier or porch outside your room.I’m known to be cynical, but Portofino is the place to relax, lose your watch,phone and worries. Get into “island time”- grab a pina colada or daquiri from the bar and kick back.And their bar is ample- margaritas, beer, whatever, including fresh fruit smoothies as well. The facilities are great- Nature provided a perfect canvas, someone carved out a beautiful, relaxing resort, but the staff, who become “family” make it what it is-paradise! I can’t say enough about the staff, because I have never been anywhere and treated as well or felt anyone was as sincere in their effort to insure you are happy and comfortable. We truly felt like family and hated leaving.

152 | by DMArborist, Smithville, Missouri said on May 6th, 2014 at 7:23 am

May 6th, 2014

We stayed at Portofino the week following Easter and really enjoyed ourselves, and had a wonderful honeymoon. One of the things we liked about the resort that I haven’t seen mentioned in reviews is it’s coziness. Portofino is relatively small (50 guests max), and has a B&B feel, in which you can get to know other guests as you cross paths on excursions, during meals, or even just sipping rum punch on the beach. Several of the previous reviewers are folks we met during our stay. If you want to avoid crowds, partying, and hustle/bustle this resort is a good choice. We enjoyed the relative isolation of being 6 miles north of San Pedro – with access being limited to boat or foot traffic.

Location: as I mentioned above it is isolated. We found this to be a PRO and knew from the Portofino website that this would be the case. It’s clearly mentioned multiple times. The water from Belize City to Ambergis Caye is abolutely breathtaking. I can’t imagine a better view.

Restaraunt: We ate breakfast at the resort daily and found it to be good. We usually had the continental breakfast of various fruit, toast, coffee, juice and added a side order of eggs. Also, tried the fried jacks and enjoyed those as well. We ate dinner on our first and last nights there. I would advise that guests look at the Daily Special. I found this to be not only the best deal but the best item on the dinner menu. PRO

We did try numerous other restaraunts on the island. We really enjoyed the Rojo Lounge which is within walking distance to the south of Portofino. They had great pizza, which was a nice change of pace, from the seafood heavy menu as most places on the island, for a couple of midwesterners. I also highly reccomend El Fagon, Elvvies, and Wagaruma all in San Pedro.

Staff: Couldn’t ask for a more friendly staff bartenders and servers were always smiling and polite. In fact almost all the local Belizeans were equally polite. Housekeeping did a wonderful job as well. Our room was cleaned 2X a day and we had flower petals and messages left for us each night of our stay. It added a very romantic touch to our honeymoon. PRO

Owners: We were very happy to see ownership on site. They were very approachable and down to earth. On top of that very generous. On our first night there we had an emergency come up from home. To avoid outrageous international cell phone costs, we attempted to use the pay phone in the resort lobby. It was out of service, however the owner immediately handed my wife her personal cell so we could call home. Our niece had been in a life threating accident. The generousity displayed by the owners was very much appreciated. They even caught up with us the next day to ask how we our niece was doing. PRO!!!

Action Divers: This is the dive shop located on the Portofino Pier. We booked a fishing trip through them for approximately $500. As an avid fisherman this was something I was greatly looking forward to during our trip. I was GREATLY disappointed. Our guide was pleasant and did his best to put fish in the boat. However, it is very difficult to catch fish with fishing equipment that is in terrible need of replacement. Only 1 of the 3 rod/reel sets that were on the boat functioned properly. The two others had reels that would barely crank due to corrosion and lack of maintenance. Additionally the functioning rod/reel had old line with lots of splices in it. I hooked into numerous fish only to watch the line fray, unravel and break. After speaking with other guests their experience fishing with Action Divers was nothing like ours (nice, new equipment, with lots of fish caught). Unfortunately that was not our experience, and I don’t believe Portofino is responsible as Action Divers is a separate business. CON.

Lamanai and River tour: We really enjoyed the excursion to the Lamanai Mayan site. We booked through SEArious and our guides Gus and Giovanni were wonderful. We saw monkeys, manatees and of course the ruins. A great trip!. PRO

Caye Caulker Day Sail: We booked this excursion through the concierge at Portofino and sailed with SEAduced. It included a snorkeling trip at Hol Chan and Shark Ray Alley. Great trup – Caye Caulker was a cool place. Check out Pat and Estelles Cafe on the island. Wonderful roasted chicken and barracuda steaks. PRO.

Drink lots of Belikins and rum punch – relax – go on a few excursions – and check out Portofino Resort on Ambergris Caye, Belize. We will probably go back someday down the road.

153 | by A verified traveler (expedia) said on May 4th, 2014 at 9:34 am

“The Hotel was great!”
May 04th, 2014

The staff was wonderful! Everone was very nice and accomidating!
Loved the hotel! The staff was wonderful and very helpful before we even arrived on the island. From the moment we arrived we were treated GREAT! It was a wonderful experience with the greatest staff! Each day had flowers on our bed.

154 | by Virginia T said on May 4th, 2014 at 9:22 am

“Exceptional Staff and a Beautiful Resort”
May 4th, 2014

My fiance and I stayed at the resort. The staff was very helpful and friendly. They booked all of our tours, as well as answered other questions. The restaurant food was great, but a little pricy. The only downside to the resort is that it’s rather far away from the center of San Pedro (about 15-20 minute boat ride). But other than that, it was a wonderful place to stay. I would definitely recommend it.

Stayed April 2014, traveled as a couple

155 | by stacyDismore, Sellersburg said on May 3rd, 2014 at 5:22 pm

“1st Class All The Way!”
May 3rd, 2014

I just returned from my 2nd stay at Portofino in less than a year and once again they did not disappoint! The resort couldn’t be more beautiful and the staff is AMAZING!! I recommend Portofino to everyone I know because I have no doubt their experience will be as fabulous as mine. I love that the staff learn our names & some of them remembered me from my 1st visit. The fact that the owners live on-site and are very visible is what I attribute the immaculate grounds and unbelievably accommodating staff. They built this resort from the ground up and are very proud of the relaxing environment they offer their guests. The resort manager Mikayla (sp?) is very detail – oriented and goes above and beyond for the guests while treating the staff with the utmost respect. Also, the restaurant on the resort is wonderful! They offer a delicious breakfast, lunch and dinner. I can’t say enough about the attentive wait staff!! The rooms are beautiful and extremely comfortable. You really want for nothing at Portofino. They know how to take care of their guests!! I would never even consider staying anywhere else on Ambergris Caye!

156 | by Julie D said on May 1st, 2014 at 10:21 am

“This is True Heaven”
May 1st, 2014

This was our second trip to Portofino in 2 years and we plan to return every year from now on.Staff is amazing, place is breathtaking and the food INCREDIBLE! Great to see owners! :) Orville, amazing!

157 | by Kristen M said on April 29th, 2014 at 9:21 am

“So Happy We Chose This Spot!”
April 29th, 2014

I can’t understand any of these negative reviews; we were thrilled by Portofino and would recommend to anyone staying on Ambergris. We almost stayed at X’tan Ha Resort — which is close by, gets similar reviews for a little cheaper — but after walking up the beach and checking out that resort, Portofino was DEFINITELY worth the extra cost. We also spent a night at the luxury resort Las Terrazas Resort, but we still enjoyed ourselves at Portofino more.

Portofino is more authentic, has more heart, and the beach side cabanas are beautiful. The staff really goes out of their way for you (especially if you do the “intro to scuba” — the dive master was great; I clung on to him for dear life and he was more than happy to help me through the experience). The vibe here is more upperclass romantic/coupley vs. X’tan Ha, which seemed like loud American families. There could be more food options (we enjoyed breakfast and lunch more than dinner), but if we ever go back to Belize, staying at Portofino is a no brainer.

158 | by Barry396, Calgary, Canada said on April 27th, 2014 at 9:10 am

“Pretty Portofino”

April 27th, 2014
Portofino resort is very pretty, and compared to some others we glimpsed during our few days on Ambergris, probably one of the best. The cabanas are nice and comfortable, and clean, with small issues (eg doors of the wardrobe stayed open, the curtain rail kept falling). The beach is small but a nice space to relax, yet the sea is unswimmable. I wish i had read my Lonely Planet properly before booking Ambergris Caye! you can just about have a swim at the end of the pier but the whole beach side is very shallow and covered in seaweed so not the place to swim or have a nice splash. Unfortunately the beach areas not covered by resorts or private homes are appallingly dirty which is a shame and very sad: so much litter it’s actually impossible even to walk nicely along the beach to the other resorts, which are all quite far in our opinion and in the heat of the day or darkness of the night, means you are pretty much stuck at Portofino. Water taxis aren’t very frequent and private taxis are expensive – we went to another resort for dinner one night and it was an extra 30$ just to get there and back. Portofino has a boat each day at 5pm which takes you to San Pedro for free, and comes back at 6.30, so to stay in town for dinner, it’s a water taxi ride. The dive centre on site is fine, but not one of the most organised or friendly we’ve been to, and mostly caters for occasional divers, not regulars (such was our impression). The dives sites are very near and just as well, as the boats used are small and not particularly comfortable: dives sites are pretty, with nice swim throughs and occasional nurse shark, mooray eels, rays and healthy coral reef. The resort staff are all very lovely especially Ashira at reception and Tristan at the restaurant: everyone is so friendly and helpful. The breakfast is fine, the lunch menu is also fairly good but not very extensive. The worse is the dinner menu which never changes apart from one special each day. Everything is absolutely lathered in garlic butter, after two days we had had enough. Swirls of tomato ketchup adorn each dish, from the ‘amuse bouche’ (usually a forgettable soup) to the mains, then it’s rice, garlic, more garlic. Shame as this was supposed to be one of the best restaurant in Ambergris! A pleasant stay, and for those wishing to come to Ambergris, Portofino is a great place

159 | by Stanton JR Staines, United Kingdom said on April 12th, 2014 at 9:20 am

“Treetop Surprise”

April 12, 2014
We spent 10 days in a Treetop Suite and on the whole enjoyed our time. The actual room is an experience in itself with a bit of the local wildlife seeming to share it with us! However, we had nothing nasty and having a lizard in your room, birds on the balcony and the occasional frog didn’t faze us. The resort is small and contained and quite a peaceful retreat. The main town of San Pedro is about 7 miles away and is reached either by the hotel boat, the coastal express boat or even by bicycle along the ‘potholes R us’ highway that runs all the way down to the outskirts of San Pedro where you finally hit paving stones (literally). We rode it one day and found it to be a great cellulite buster. Rafael and Orville at the bar were wonderful and very funny, Tristian in the restaurant very helpful in telling us about other places in the vicinity. The restaurant is top class and the daily special always inventive and mouth-watering. As with the staff, the owners were incredibly helpful and friendly. But, there are sometimes the smallest annoyances that make or break a holiday and at Portofino’s there were a few for us. The inclusive breakfast is not a buffet and the same every day, so we ended up having to pay extra for something different. The quality of some of the towels left a lot to be desired and on several occasions we had to ask for hand towels as they were forgotten. When we arrived we were told that our choice of Belize soap would be renewed every day, but again we ended up having to ask on many occasions. Our bill was wrong when we checked out with one ‘signed’ chitty that we were being charged quite clearly not either my husband or my signature. If the small details were corrected, I would most certainly recommend this hotel to others as apart from these, we had a wonderful time.
Room Tip: The treetop suites have wonderful views.

160 | by Charity Beyer from Los Angeles, Ca, USA said on April 9th, 2014 at 11:43 am

“We had such a wonderful time!”

April 9th, 2014:
The resort is small and quiet and the bartenders are fantastic. Upon check-in we were offered a soap concierge, where they cut us slices of wonderful smelling hand made soaps! The bathrooms were well stocked with shampoo and conditioner that were refilled for us daily. The food at the resort was good, and the staff provided wonderful service! The rooms were nicely appointed and comfortable, and right on the beach. Hammocks on the porches and kayaks that you can use to go out to Mexico Rocks and snorkel! The owners were there while we were at the resort, and they were super friendly and even had a drink with the guests down at the bar! About the reviewer mentioning the monkey grass on the shore and mosquitoes. This is just the way of things on the whole island, it is a tropical island things live and grow. FYI ALL of the resorts have monkey grass in the water so this shouldn’t make or break your experience because you’ll find it on all the shores on the island. You can wade out past it to snorkel, and there is a beautiful sparkling pool that you can sit in with your tropical beverage to enjoy the view. With regard to mosquitoes, this resort was soooo diligent about spraying the grounds for mosquitoes. They also provide mosquito repellent around the resort. They are really on top of things there in comparison to other resorts out on the Cayes. If you don’t like being outside, then you should probably vacation in somewhere like Mexico at a large commercial resort. The staff was amazing at helping us to find activities to do, we didn’t book any activities in advance and we were able to see the Blue Hole, Caye Caulker, Hol Chan, ATM Cave and Altun Ha all with the help of the staff making arrangements for us with local tour companies. They also arranged for an in room masseuse to come to the resort. INSIDER TIPS: When arriving to Ambergris Caye, the pier where the Portofino water taxi meets you is a few piers down from where the ferry terminal. Go out and to the right and walk a few piers down and you’ll see the Portofino sign. There is great Jamacian food a few resorts down walking on the beach. Cash only, and so so good! Bring a flashlight to walk at night so you don’t trip because it is dark.

161 | by Carla1958, Boston, MZ ,USA said on April 8th, 2014 at 8:42 am

“Romantic “practice” honeymoon”

April 8th, 2014:
My fiance and I are getting married in June but knew that Belize was best in the spring so we took a “practice” honeymoon! Portofino was EXCEPTIONAL. It is a small resort – just 32 rooms and our room was a cabana (smaller) room that is one half of a free standing thatched structure. This was plenty big with spacious room and bathroom – a nice feature is the one-way curtains across the front so you can see the beach but be invisible to the outside. The pool area is spectacular and fosters meeting new friends. Food was very good and large continental breakfast was included. Don’t miss Action Divers – we got certified. The diving and snorkeling is just mezmerizing with the huge local reef – San Pedro was okay but not great – glad we were 6 miles north off the beaten track. There is fairly convenient boat access to town and most upscale restaurants will send a boat for you. Best vacation ever!

162 | by TravelerK9276UZ, Oak Part, Illinois, USA said on April 7th, 2014 at 9:15 am

“An incredible week!”

April 7th, 2014:
We had a incredible week at Portofino. Our cabana was beautiful and every little detail was considered. We spent our mornings in the hammocks in the water, afternoons on the beach, and the evenings in the restaurant. The staff was always smiling, willing to chat and tell us all of their island secrets. We will go again!

163 | by Kedwardsmd said on April 6th, 2014 at 6:41 pm

“A beautiful resort on a beautiful island”

April 6th, 2014:
San Pedro is a terrific place to vacation. Specifically, the portofino resort offers a unique experience which is in-line with the great experience you will have on the island. The resort is small and friendly with great rooms on the water. We stayed in a really nice one bedroom cabana which was steps from the ocean and had beautiful rooms. We were greeted with hand-cut, handmade soaps of our choosing and by the extremely friendly staff (they offer free pickup upon arrival to the island, but somehow due to miscommunication we/other guests missed out on this and had to pay/wait for a water taxi, $11 US each). The rooms and the restaurant are great, clean, and again quite a nice break from reality. While I would recommend this resort, there are a few things perhaps helpful to know prior to booking or arrival – ?1) there are no doors on the bathroom?2) the shades do not block the light and you can hear the people above you (if you are in a unit with people above you) which does not facilitate sleeping in beyond 6 or 7AM ?3) the bikes are really great to have but are so poorly maintained that they are essentially unusable?4) they clean the rooms very frequently (sometimes it seemed like it was 2-3 times per day) which was both nice (to have rooms clean almost always) but sometimes seemed invasive??Overall our stay was great, the trip was great, the resort and the people that work there are top notch, we got a great deal there, and would 100% visit again.

164 | by Charlenewilkins - Adrian, Michigan, USA said on April 3rd, 2014 at 9:56 am

“A Little Piece of Paradise”
April 3rd, 2014

This was one of the best vacations EVER! We expected warm–we expected the beautiful ocean–we expected tropical breeze. And we got all that. What we didn’t expect was seclusion, uber-friendly service, quiet, extreme cleanliness. This felt like an undiscovered location. We loved it. Cannot wait to go back. To the same resort. In the same room. And we NEVER repeat a vacation. But this one we will.

Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple

165 | by Chapjan - Indianapolis, IN, USA said on April 3rd, 2014 at 6:55 am

“Loved it!”
April 3rd, 2014

I never reviewed this resort and it was wonderful! We were actually there in 2012 and there isn’t an option for that. We went to Placencia this year to try the southern part of Belize but Ambregris Caye and staying at Portofino resort was fabulous too! Food fantastic, the best staff, beautiful setting, fun taking the boat taxi wherever we went. Loved the evening visits to the area high end resorts for dinner although Portofino food was amazing. We did a Mayan ruins tour, fishing in a boat for a day and zip-lining. Had a great massage in the room as well. Everything was just wonderful.

Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple

166 | by JAG134 - Dallas, Texas - USA said on April 2nd, 2014 at 6:52 pm

“Paradise found”
April 2nd, 2014
Portofino was fantastic ! We liked how small and welcoming everything was. Not like a big resort but more like a private residence with great friendly people. Food was very tasty and the wait staff was so friendly and accommodating. The pool was refreshing and my friend wanted a drink out of a coconut and she laughed at the thought. Then bam someone climbed up the tree and in 3 minutes she was drinking a great rum drink out of a coconut. That to me, says it all . They want to please and it works. We will be back for sure. This was our first time to Belize but not our last. Every detail went on without any problems. Traveling by boat I thought was going to be an inconvenience but ended up being a great way to see the beach and coastline.

Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple

167 | by Kalamacouple - Kamala, Washington, USA said on April 1st, 2014 at 10:51 am

“Our definition of paradise”

April 1st, 2014
We felt pampered even before our trip. Email communication with Juan Carlos when we were fine tuning our reservations helped us feel we were ready for the trip. The greeting from Moe when we arrived in San Pedro and his boat ride to Portofino started our “don’t worry we will take care of that” feeling from the staff. Our greeting and room tour from Ashiera made us feel like we were visiting friends who had a wonderful place on a tropical beach. Ashiera and the rest of the staff helped us with everything we wanted to experience in Belize. From the flowers on our bed the night we arrived, to the amazing food and exceedingly pleasant servers and bartenders, to the beautifully maintained grounds and just amazing Caribbean environment, this Belize experience and Portofino will be at the top of our list of “best vacations ever”!! We will highly recommend Portifino to our friends and family.
Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple

168 | By DB from Chicago, USA said on March 27th, 2014 at 11:51 am

“Secluded Paradise”

March 27th, 2014
To get to this hotel we had to take a plane and 2 boats, but it was well worth the travel. The place is nice and clean, well-maintained, and the staff is incredibly friendly and helpful. It was a really cool experience to be so far away from any major cities and to just relax and take in the beautiful surroundings. The beach appears a bit dirty, but it is just plant life and you can walk down the pier and go swimming in the ocean from the end of the pier. The beach extends in either direction so we were able to take walks up and down the island and all the way to San Pedro. San Pedro and a couple restaurants are accessible by the hotel’s boat, which is available for use by the hotel guests at various times of the day. There is such abundant sea life that our niece all day just exploring the shellfish and multitudes of colorful fish. We took a couple kayaks out to the snorkeling reef (about 15 minutes from shore) and saw more fish.The restaurant on-site was just delicious.
Stayed April 2013, traveled with family.

169 | by J from New York, USA said on March 22nd, 2014 at 9:42 am

“Little Slice of Beach Life”
March 22nd, 2014
Excellent staff and activity packages. (you MUST swim with the nurse sharks and rays!) Small feel, not the giant overcrowded resort type of place.
Snorkeling is a MUST!! Also try the local ceviche in San Pedro, yum!
The setting of this hotel is what we were looking for – small boutique feeling with friendly staff and comfortable rooms. The pool is great, sitting in a chair IN the pool was very relaxing. The hot tub wasn’t working when we were there which is a shame, it would have been nice to sit back in there and look at the stars at night. If you want to swim in the ocean I recommend going out to the end of the pier (they have 4 loungers and a bed out there) and getting into the water there. They have cleared away some of the sea grass in this area and it’s a nice place to cool off. Only downside I can think of is that I wish the hotel was a little closer to the main town of San Pedro.

170 | by Jennie C - Fort Worth, Texas, USA said on March 18th, 2014 at 12:37 pm

“The benefits of a resort with the feel of a boutique hotel”

March 18th, 2014
I can’t imagine returning to Ambergris Caye and not staying at Portofino. From the moment the staff greeted us at the airport, then again at the dock when we arrived at the hotel, we felt like they were waiting just for us. We were greeted with complimentary cocktails and everyone knew our names by the end of our stay. The staff is just that accommodating and friendly. (Not to mention the dozens of emails I sent prior to our arrival, all answered quickly and graciously.)??The grounds were my favorite of the resorts we visited. Small enough to feel cozy and intimate, but the amenities (a dive shop, a delicious restaurant, a full bar, massage services, bikes, kayaks, tour arrangements) felt like a true resort.??Even though the resort is a ways from town, that never felt like an issue. They arranged for us to be on the boat when we wanted to leave for dinner, and they either picked us back up or arranged for a water taxi to. Bikes got us to nearby places for lunch or drinks, too. We felt like we got to relax while seeing and enjoying other places, too. It was the best of everything really.??One tip: I recommend you ask for private dining (which isn’t an extra charge for guests!) during your stay. Very romantic. ??We hope to come back to Belize one day and the first place we’ll call is Portofino.
Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple

171 | by Lesley C - Worcester, USA said on March 15th, 2014 at 1:55 pm

“Wonderful place paradise”

March 15th, 2014:
Lived up to all our expectations for my husbands 60th birthday, private dinning on the beach, nothing too much trouble,they produced a special cake, cooked all the fish he court from his fishing trips, really looked after us well.
And there’s no bugs there! We never got bitten once. They spray the sand so there’s no sand flies! The sea is clean and there are patches to swim in. Wonderful sandy beech nice pool shallow end – with deck chairs in the pool neat! Bikes to borrow and khakis and Trips to town frequently. The restaurant has daily specials and the food is very good but at the higher end for the area the portions are a fair size.
We would defiantly return.
Stayed March 2014, traveled with friends

172 | by MeleficentMac - Belize City, Belize said on March 14th, 2014 at 8:34 am

“A corner of Paradise!!”

March 14th, 2014:

I only had to get off the boat to fall in love. I needed a break badly and thought an island escape was just what I needed. It was like the staff knew why I was there. Amazing property, perfect location with just the right distance from the bustling San Pedro town. For a minute there I forgot where I was. A fantastic staff of professionals who really understands hospitality. Sigh! I totally wish I was there.

Stayed December 2013, traveled solo

173 | by Lynne D - Youngsville, Louisiana, USA said on March 11th, 2014 at 11:59 am

“The best of Paradise”

March 11th, 2014:
If you want to be pampered in a small, intimate resort, visit with friendly people for all over the world, and spend time in Paradise, this is the best place in the world! From the minute we arrived until the minute we left we were treated like we were the only guests there. If you want to just relax and soak up the sun you can do that on the porch of your room, on the loungers at the beach or in an Adirondack chair in the sparkling pool. If you want activity there are lots of excursions for snorkeling, diving, and going into the jungle on the mainland, as well as taking a boat to San Pedro to shop and eat. I can’t say enough about how much we enjoyed our stay here. We definitely will be going back. Chandel, Tristen and Brittney we hope you’ll still be there!

Stayed March 2014, traveled as a couple

174 | by Otis B - Chicago, Illinois, USA said on March 10th, 2014 at 10:06 am

“Portofino exceeded our expectations”

March 10th, 2014:
Jim and I arrived at Ambergris Caye March 1st. We were greeted with a friendly smile from Moe, who whisked us via boat to Portofino. Asheera was waiting at the dock with eucalyptus towels, so we were able to refresh after our long flight. The rest of our vacation continued like that. Everyone was friendly, offering information on whatever questions we had and ensuring our stay was very comfortable and stress free.
Jim and I were married on the beach at Portofino March 6th. I have to mention the women who made our wedding exceptional, Michaela. Michaela took care of every detail, from when I came down the aisle which was lined with torches and palm leaves, petals scattered along the path to a canopy of tulle and flowers. I felt like I was in a dream, this had surpassed my expectations. Michaela created memories that will stay with us forever.
Olivera Rusu, our photographer was professional, patient and a pleasure. Although, I don’t have our photos yet, I have seen her work and I know I will be sharing the photos with everyone.
I would also like to mention the Portofino restaurant. The food was very favorable and the staff attentive. A mention of Tristan one of our waiters, exceptional.
Lillian our masseuse was intuitive about our needs without us having to tell her where the problem areas were.
We went fishing, snorkeling and visited San Pedro, from our fishing guide to the towns people everyone was friendly. Jim and I bought our wedding rings in San Pedro from “Sagittarius” a jewelry store. I also purchased a bracelet the craftsmanship is excellent.
We stayed in the Honeymoon suite, the room was large and comfortable. Upon our arrival small electric candles adorned our bed. On the evening of March 6th our bed was adorned with candles and a heart outlined with flowers and leaves.
All in all, I have to say our experience exceeded our expectations and hope we will have the opportunity to celebrate an anniversary at Portofino.

Chicago Illinois

175 | by Shadowcreek2011 - Pearland, Texas, USA said on March 6th, 2014 at 8:15 am


March 6th, 2014:
We stayed there on a little get away. For 8 days we enjoyed the sun and sand. The water was clear as Gin and in some places you could just lay on the pier and look 50 feet down in the water and watch the fish. Great snorkels and scuba. The hotel had a true island motif. Clean, ( they even had little buckets of water outside your door to rinse your feet off so you wouldn’t drag sand into your suite). They even sweep the sand on the beach. Food excellent as well. A British couple along with their dog Sadie greeted us upon arrival. Sadie has balls buried in the sand everywhere so don’t be surprised if she puts one in your hand to throw. Loved the calm and quiet stress free atmosphere. Get a golf cart and go to SAN Pedro to explore. Eat at Elvys for great coconut rice. For a nominal fee the hotel provides the carts. I can’t say enough good things about this place. Found nothing negative there. Just wish it were closer and I didn’t have to work so I could go more often.

Stayed April 2013

176 | by mraseth - Denver, USA said on March 5th, 2014 at 12:05 pm

“The Perfect Stay”

March 5th, 2014:
We had such a wonderful time at Portofino and the staff made it special – especially since we brought our 8 month old baby. The place is beautifully maintained and is picture-postcard beautiful. We look forward to going back in the future. Would highly recommend to others. Stayed February 2014, traveled with family.

177 | by LMiller2013 - Toronto, Canada said on March 4th, 2014 at 11:04 am

“Portofino Beach Resort”

March 4th, 2014
Thank you very much for a wonderful stay at Portofino. I spent my birthday (1/28th) in complete luxury and relaxation. Your staff especially Tristan was very helpful and accommodating and I would recommend your establishment to anyone. The boat ride from San Pedro was fast and comfortable and the driver was very nice and capable.
Room Tip: Go for the beachfront rooms..the view over the ocean in the morning is sublime.

178 | by Palkun - Slave Lake, Canada said on March 1st, 2014 at 7:41 am


March 1st, 2014:

We really enjoyed our two week stay at Portofino! The meals are excellent, the staff are so friendly and go above and beyond to make your stay so good! We went fishing – which was excellent and the kitchen cooked our fish for us! We did a day sail through the Resort which was also so great! I would recommend this Resort to my family and friends!

Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple

179 | by Adrian G - Kelowna, Canada said on February 26th, 2014 at 9:40 am

“Excellent in every way”
February 26th, 2014:

Portofino resort is amazing. Especially if you are looking for fun, unique, quiet and friendly. It is 6 miles from town, making it easily accessible by bikes or water taxi, but also well away from San Pedro making it feel very private, remote and safe. Plus there’s only about 36 people max at the resort.

The facilities are really great with cool cabanas style huts, clean rooms (cleaned every day, but then touched up 2-3 more times per day), immaculate grounds, almost no bugs (unlike other restaurants and resorts we checked out) great pool, patio bar, balcony style restaurant, and great dock. The restaurant is one of the fine dining choices of outside customers (10-30 people would water taxi in each night), so pretty awesome to have 20 steps from your room. We enjoyed the simple breakfast every day included in package, and had dinner there 3 times. All were great, particularly on Valentines day when they served an amazing steak and lobster meal on the beach that was decorated beautifully.

Activity options are really good. They have some bikes and kayaks and snorkeling gear, and there own dive shop that can arrange a variety of tours. We did 3 tours and each one was unique and excellent (one was arrange through another company, but even they came and picked us up from the Portofino dock). You can also kayak 10-15 minutes and get to Mexico Rocks which is a popular snorkelling spot for tours, but for us it was nearby and free! Only thing I had wished for was a sailboat, but the front desk arranged one we could rent and was delivered to us at resort.

Among all these great things, it was that staff that really stood out. Mo (water taxi), Chandel (reception), Asheera (reception), Tristian (server) and Orville (bar tender) were all amazing. So friendly, always helpful and greeting you with big smiles, knew you by name, and each of them went out of their way to make our stay better. For example they cut down coconuts for special drinks, they cleaned and prepared a conch shell for us to take home, they arranged they sailboat delivery, and drew a map of all the best local spots and restaurants in San Pedro. I’ve never felt compelled to take a picture of the resort staff, but we definitely did, and we miss them now that we’re back home. We also chatted with owners a couple of times and they were great people too. Everyone was so personable, that to return there sometime would feel like seeing old friends again.

Overall, Belize was incredible, and a massive part of this was how the Portofino resort exceeded our expectations in every way! Highly recommend it.

180 | by Fiona M - Dunbeath, United Kingdom said on February 24th, 2014 at 10:39 am

“Great Property!”

February 24th, 2014:
We stayed at 2 other properties during our stay in Belize and this was by far our favourite. We stayed in the separate villa and it was large and beautiful. They were at full capacity, but even full, staff made each guest feel like they were the only guests – we were surprised that pretty well all of the staff knew the names of every guest! The food was good and there was enough variation on the menu for the 5 nights we were there. As these properties are only accessible by boat the daily trips to town are usefull and they ran pretty well on schedule here and if not they advised you of options.

There is only a relatively small public pool, but it serves the purpose. The property is well kept and well maintained.

Although we were very happy with our room, it was rally the staff here that made our stay so enjoyable, and there attitude that they wanted each guest to have the best stay possible.

Room Tip: We had the separate villa, but they all looked good and all had great views.

181 | by Rootrcin Warren- Ohio, USA said on February 24th, 2014 at 9:20 am

“Mrs . Root and Henry Fox”

February 24th, 2014:

Portifino San Pedro the most amazing place on earth. The people who work there are wonderful and courteous wanting to learn about our culture and very forthcoming with theirs. Pictures on line or even the ones that I took don’t do this place any justice. Cleanest beach on the island. .very clean and inviting. Rooms were amazing. Where on earth can you go sit down with the owners of a resort have a drink and talk with like a long lost friend. I’m very pleased with the entire vacation. While I was there I missed my kids but I became friends with Sam and Nicole we shared stories of our little ones. They will always have a special place in my heart and my life. Jan and sandra(the owners of the resort)are very down to earth and the proud parents of the most beautiful little children I have ever had the opportunity to meet. Thank you to everyone at the Portifino resort see you soon VERY VERY soon. Thank you so much from the cold end of the earth(Ohio) Michelle Root and Henry Fox

Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple

182 | by AllyM15 - Washington DC, USA said on February 16th, 2014 at 9:39 am

“Most relaxing vacation ever”

February 16th, 2014:
My boyfriend and I came here in August, 2013. If you’re looking for bells and whistles, this may not be your style. However the rooms are even more romantic in person than they are in the pictures and the hospitality is unparalleled because it is authentic. The staff truly wants to see you unplug, unwind, and relax….and that’s just what you’ll do. ?My boyfriend chose this resort for the snorkeling and it was perfect for him because he got a lot of one-on-one time with the dive pro and had a very flexible schedule. ?My profile picture was taken during a sunrise on the beach at Portofino. Need I say more?

183 | by Donna Y - Edmonton, Canada said on February 12th, 2014 at 3:14 pm

February 11th 2014:
On November 16/13 we arrived at the Belize City airport 4:18 pm and made arrangements to fly over to San Pedro with Tropic Air on the last flight. The sun was already setting and making our view breathtaking. We arrived at the San Pedro airport expecting someone there from the resort to pick us up. However, there was a delay and we were told by the airport to get into a taxi and we will be dropped off by Fido’s Restaurant & Bar and Moe would be picking us up. But who was Moe? A couple of locals on the beach were sure to help us out and make us feel welcome. As soon as Moe arrived…. in the complete darkness at the Fido’s dock for us at approx. 6:30 pm. We were escorted to a speedboat and our journey began to our resort. The sky was amazingly very clear with a giant full moon and millions of stars. Our 6 mile boat ride was amazing. We arrived with hotel staff greeting us and providing a welcome drink and fresh warm face clothes that had a nice fragrance. We had checked in for our 8 night stay and to celebrate or 30th wedding anniversary and our 50th birthdays.

We had the VIP Beach Suite called the Barracuda. When we first entered our room we had a selection of homemade soaps to choose from and use for our stay. The room was so large you could of held a dance party. LOL But we loved it. The staff had made and placed on our bed along with a welcome note written out our names on a huge green plant leaf and leaving us a homemade coconut treats to enjoy. It was delicious. Thank you housekeeping. PS And thanks for decorating you bed with a large heart shape made from pink flowers spread over our bed and a Happy Anniversary card.

Our grounds were groomed every morning and evening. And to keep the bugs to a minimum they were also sprayed. The staff took great pride in keeping the resort looking and feeling comfortable so everyone could be very relaxed. You are on vacation and they served you always with a smile.

The restaurant and bar tenders were amazing. We had been fishing and snorkeling with the Action Divers and Adventures a couple of times. We had brought all the fresh fish and conch we caught and it was grilled to perfection by our resort chef’s. They had made an amazing job on our last night preparing my husband’s huge Permit fish that was shared with the staff and some resort guests. Thanks for making our dinner so wonderfully delicious.

All around the resort has a perfect paradise spot to relax and enjoy. The only sounds in the morning you could hear was the waves splashing against the reef and the birds singing.

Moe our boat captain made a few trips daily into San Pedro but you can check the resort water taxi times posted daily to San Pedro in the resort lobby. If Moe was not going into town, then you can take a Coastal Water Taxi as well and pay per trip $11 US/PP.

Overall we had a fantastic vacation at Portofino and on the island. So much to see and do, we have to come back.

184 | by issM0nica - Princeton, New Jersey USA said on February 11th, 2014 at 8:14 am

“Gorgeous property with Warm Hospitality”
February 11th 2014:
I stayed for 6 days at Portofino, and was traveling alone. My beach cabana was beautiful and housekeeping carefully adorned it each day and left me treats. The most special thing about this resort is the attentive and very warm staff. I have never felt so looked after in my life! They were all very helpful in assisting me with arranging activities, providing information, sharing fun anecdotes about the area, and checking in to make sure I had everything I wanted. They couldn’t have exceeded my expectations more. I have to give a special shout out to Tristian (my favorite waiter), Orville (bartender extraordinaire), and Chandel (very kind front desk clerk) for their impeccable service. They all knew me by name and are so genuinely kind.

At the dive shop, Blinky and Roberto are phenomenal. I came on this trip wondering if I would be brave enough to snorkel and try a scuba dive, and I ended up learning and taking two wonderful dives at Mexico Rocks and Hol Chan, then snorkeling at Shark Ray Alley. Blinky helped me achieve something really amazing, and I will be forever thankful for this. I am now motivated to continue diving, and this experience gave me a lot of confidence.

Concerning any negative reviews about the resort: It is true that not everyone is looking for the same things, but I think some frustration could be avoided by doing some research before booking. Yes, the property is 6 miles north, so you will need to either take the Portofino boat (complimentary, schedule varies), or the water taxi ($11 each way). I adored the relaxing atmosphere at the resort, and the convenience of an excellent dive shop on site. The food was not cheap, but it was fine dining, and I am used to paying this much, often more, in NJ/NY area where I live. I particularly enjoyed the almond crusted snapper, the zucchini curry soup, and the conch trio sampler. I am not a big breakfast eater, so I did the complimentary continental breakfast most days and was happy with that, although there were many delicious looking other options. I tried the eggs benedict and enjoyed it. The Belizean breakfast with fried jacks looked awesome–will have to try that next time!

As with much of the shoreline in Belize (I am told), there is a lot of sea grass and it is very shallow. If you are looking for a swimming beach, this is not it. The way to really enjoy the area is to go out on boats and dive, snorkel, or take out a kayak or jet ski. The beach in front of the resort was raked every morning. People pass by on bikes or walking, and although I did not get a chance, it looked like a fun option to ride a bike down the shore a bit. The vegetation at the resort is nicely kept, and there are pleasant spots for both sunning and relaxing in the shade.

I can’t wait to return to Belize and although it is always nice to try different resorts, I would definitely stay again at this resort when in the San Pedro area because I enjoyed the warm welcome and lovely location so much.

185 | by BettsyBoop - Kirkland, Washington, USA said on February 7th, 2014 at 3:15 pm

“Good Recovery from a Poor Start”
February 7th, 2014:
Arrival confusion led to a frustrating check-in. The staff did a great job of getting back on track the following morning. Excellent, although pricey food. Beautiful setting. Our beach cabana was only about 100 feet from the water, with a nice pool in between. Adventure Divers on the dock did great snorkel tour to Mexico Rocks. Excellent service all-around.
Be forewarned-the ONLY way to this resort is via Portofino boat (limited schedule) or $22 per person round-trip Coastal Express boat. No taxis to this part of the caye. This was not relayed to us by travel agent. Plane from mainland, then taxi (short distance) then Portofino boat which had a schedule mix-up and 60 minute wait; rough ending to a long day.
Lillian does a great massage!

186 | by Dedewor - Anoka, Minnesota, USA said on February 6th, 2014 at 11:15 am

“Very relaxing”
February 6th, 2014:
The food and service at the restaurant was amazing(we had Roy all week) we would highly recommend him! The housekeeping ladies were sweet and left little gifts for us each evening. Our dive master was ‘Blinky’ – he was really good and fun. The pool was very cold but clean and well kept. People traveled right on the beach in front of where you lay as that was the path to and from town but it wasnt bad. If you are looking for relaxing and out of the way, its really good!

187 | by AA412008 - Portland, Oregon, USA said on February 1st, 2014 at 10:16 am

“Portofino Resort, Ambergris Caye Belize”
February 1st, 2014:
Stayed in the Royal Orchid Suite(honeymoon). Very roomy and well appointed and very clean with a perfect ocean front view. The entire staff was very polite and well informed on locat activities, and even caslled us by our first names. The restaurant dingin is 5 star and the quality of the food was wonderful. With tropical drinks and local dishes it quickly became our favorite spot to dine for three complete meals a day.
only reachable with a 30 minute launch ride from San Pedro, but we wanted the remoteness so it was very quiet. Have a on site dive and actvity shop, which knows about all the activities that are available around Ambergris Caye.Beautiful clean and well groomed grounds make it a great romantic getaway. Wait staff in restaurant are as good as anywhere we’ve been in the world. Kudos to the entire staff at Portofino Resort in Ambergris Caye.

188 | by Happy Honeymooner Nurse - Denver, USA said on January 31st, 2014 at 9:55 am

“Amazing getaway”

January 31st, 2014
We had an amazing stay at Portofino. Professional staff, friendly, personable, hands down some of the best. We were greeted promptly at San Pedro Airport by Mo who whisked us away to the dock for our boat ride to the resort. We were greeted at the resort with tasty island cocktails and a cool/refreshing towel. Everything was explained at check in, our bags were brought to our room. Reservations at their restaurant were easy. Our meals there were tasty, fresh, and appropriately sized. Coordinating day excursions was easy, even with weather delays. The desk staff was friendly, and coordinated reservations at other sites for meals easily and seamlessly. We will definitely return to Portofino on our next excursion to Belize.

189 | by vikinggal19 - Minnesota, USA - Portland, Oregon, USA said on January 17th, 2014 at 3:16 pm

January 17th, 2014:
I had stayed at Portofino in 2008 and LOVED it! Was very excited to return 12/2013. I was once again BLOWN away at the beauty and service here! They have expanded the property but still feels small and boutique with the excellent service and attention to detail in the rooms! You will not find a nicer place to stay on the island!

190 | by Liz A - Malverne, New York, USA said on January 15th, 2014 at 7:23 am

“best honeymoon”
January 15th, 2014:
We visited the Portofino for our honeymoon in September. It was truly an amazing place and had the romantic, private vibe we wanted. While we were there there at most 5 other couples there. We got to be friendly with a few which made it fun to go on excursions and such together.

There is one restaurant at the hotel and I thought we would get bored of eating the same food everyday but the food is soo good! They also change up the menu and have specials each day. Coming from New York I was weary to order the italian pasta dishes they offer because usually I am disappointed. But one night I was sick of seafood so I ordered the pasta and Oh my goodness it was delicious! SO you really cant go wrong with anything you order. We had the same waiter Alex each night who we loved!

You definitely have to plan some excursions or you will get a little stir crazy. This isnt a big resort with activities and such. It is very laid back and you really make your own experience. They do have kayaks you can take out to the mexican rocks which is a great snorkeling spot. we also did the day catamaran trip to caye caulker which was beautiful. Snorkeling at Hol Chan was the best snorkeling my husband and I have ever seen! absolutely breath taking. cave tubing and xunatunich mayan ruin excursion. a fishing, snorkeling and beach BBQ day. We booked all of these excursions through the hotel.

Over all the Portofino was an amazing experience. I would say from my experience it is not a family place and more geared towards couples. The cabanas were great. Staff super friendly. Food amazing! and we also loved the boat driver. If you want to leave the resort he will take you to different places like a water taxi… There are only certain times a day you can go certain places but they were all convenient times.

191 | McLean, Virginia said on January 1st, 2014 at 10:24 am

“Five Star Service and Food- Nothing Is A Problem”

This property is quiet–perfect for unwinding. Being six miles up from San Pedro by boat means that it is an effort to go off property–you can’t really walk to any other restaurants or bars at night. Luckily, the food at the restaurant and drinks at the bar are top notch. What makes this place worth going to is the service, food and ease of arranging activities. Since this was not our first time to Ambergris Caye, we didn’t take advantage of everything Roberto of Action Divers located on the pier, offered but he is one of the most accommodating people you will ever find. If you like fishing, ask for Jesse–we caught many more fish than we could consume. The staff anticipates your needs–I happened to mention my interest in birds and before i knew it–a bird guide was in my room. Take advantage of the spa services–especially the facial. The rooms are clean and pretty spacious, but should have a comfortable seating area and better lighting. You should also know that there are no safes in the room. So, while the rooms are not five star but comfortable, the effort the staff puts into this place and their guests makes this a five star property. First time visitors to Belize should know that Portofino puts a great deal of effort into keeping their beach clean and raked as do other properties. But that is not the case with the rest of the island–the trash that washes up on the shores is downright depressing. It is shocking that the Belizean tourism industry has not addressed this problem. Since the property is so small, it could benefit from a few activities that encourage interaction among the guests–like a welcoming happy hour or an owners’ reception. Traveling from Belize City to San Pedro on Tropic Air is stress free. The service and staff are really great. You can book directly with them.
January 1st 2014

192 | terryinlv said on December 27th, 2013 at 4:24 pm

“Personal service, loads of activities and just enough downtime”

We stayed at Portofino with another couple for my 1st anniversary in December. The property is smaller than I expected but that made things more intimate and the service was very personal. Immediately we got to know everyone around the bar including our bartender Orville. It was an excellent social atmosphere but you could easily get away to solitude on the beach, by the pool or on your own personal front porch complete with hammock. They cut fresh handmade soaps for you upon arrival and fresh flowers make for a very special touch throughout the room. The mosquito netting is both romantic and practical to keep the no-see-ums away. We brought bug spray but there was also some available at the bar. ??If you like snorkeling, there is a full-fledged coral reef right under the dock, complete with octopus, morey eels, and all types of fish. If you are a scuba diver, there is no place in the world quite like Belize….the local dives (2 dives, 3-4 hrs) with the property’s dive shop are truly amazing and my dive master and captain were patient, professional and very friendly. The dive to the blue hole was a full day adventure, so be prepared to be on a boat for a very long time, bring extra clothes/towels in case it gets chilly. ??We also did the Mayan ruins tour which was a full day journey. (hint: take the flights not the water taxi, totally worth it) You’ll get a little sick of boats if you don’t do the flights. ??There was no end to the diversions available to a guest and Yolanda was very helpful in showing us what the benefits/drawbacks were to the tours. ??We had breakfast every day at the hotel and twice we had dinner as well as appetizers on our down days. The ceviche was delicious! The food was fresh and delicious! ??The owners live on the resort and can be seen in the main lobby and are wonderful people. They truly love the resort and want the very best for their guests. What more can you ask for in personalized services? ??Overall I would definitely go back and I’m certain my favorite cocktail would be waiting!!
December 27 2013

193 | Sunny SD said on December 23rd, 2013 at 11:50 am

“Perfect place for an intimate Belizean getaway”

Portofino is an absolutely perfect place for an intimate Belizean getaway. They’re small but attentive staff will make you feel like you’re a long lost relative. And you have the run of this beautiful and private resort right on the beach. It doesn’t get much better than this.
December 23 2013

194 | Joriver said on December 22nd, 2013 at 12:49 pm

“Wonderful Wonderful Wonderful!”

It is such a wonderful hotel runs by wonderful people in a wonderful place.
People at Portofino make you feel at home. Any time we had a question or a request the front desk ladies (especially Michaela and Yolanda) were always very nice, patient and accommodating. Tristian, Jessica, Ivan, Roy, and everybody were very kind and friendly. Friendly staff is important to me and they were all beyond me expectations.
We stayed at the Cabana #2. The view from the room was amazing. You can wake up everday with the beautiful sunrise on the sea. The room was rustic (nothing fancy), spacious, clean, and the bed was very comfortable. The only negative for the room was the noise from the suite above. The first day we arrived the couple staying upstairs was kinda loud, probably walking with high-heels or something, but luckily they left on our second day. The subsequent couple that replaced them was completely the opposite.
Yes, there is sea grass in the water, it’s Nature, get over it! Take the canoe or the bicycles and explore. We did almost everyday. It was a lot of fun!
We took the ‘no worry package’ so we had breakfast and dinner included. The breakfast is decent, everything you need to start a good day. The dinner was exquisite. The lobster bisque (amazing!), the snapper (amazing!), the lobster (amazing!) and so on. Lunch is really good too, but we used to explore some other restaurants for lunch instead of stay at the hotel. Some people complained about the price but really if you compare the price to the quality of the food it is not expensive. If I want to eat the same quality of meal in Los Angeles I will pay almost twice the price.
If you want to go to San Pedro, ask the front desk they will tell you at what time Moe is leaving/arriving. We never had a problem with the schedule.
I really recommend Portofino. I will be back.
December 22 2013

195 | Kristine said on December 21st, 2013 at 9:50 am

“Terrific resort, location and staff…I’ll be back”

Terrific location, if you want to stay away from the crowds and enjoy natural tranquility and pampering. The grounds and buildings are beautiful and well maintained. The staff I found to be unmatched in their willingness to help, their knowledge of the area, professionalism and overall attention to detail. Probably best for couples than families with small kids, but there is plenty to do for all. The restaurant for dinner was good, but I don’t know if you really get what you pay for. After the first night, we opted for a few terrific in town options. I could absolutely get used to visiting Belize and staying at Portofino!
December 21 2013

196 | Li M said on December 19th, 2013 at 11:56 am

“Excellent place to eat”

We stayed at the Matachica resort and wanted to try a different restaurant. Portofino offered complimentary boat rides to guests with reservations for dinner. It was first class service and made the night that much more special and romantic. We had the lobster and steak, as well as the conch appetizer. All of which were delicious. The server Tristan was very nice and accommodating. It was a great night out!
December 19 2013

197 | Brian h said on December 16th, 2013 at 10:49 am

“Really great place to stay!”

What a great place! We stayed there for a week during my wife’s birthday. Besides the amazing tranquility of the property, the staff is what I remember the most about Portofino.
One other reviewer wrote “like family” is exactly true.

We had never been to this place before and everyone from the front desk to the wait staff and in my eyes even the grounds staff worked everyday day in day out to make sure that everything was in order. My wife and I were always addressed by name and even though it was the off season and things were slow we never had a request denied.

Since it was my wife’s birthday I wanted to mske sure the event was extra special. I had asked the staff for dinner service on the end of their pier. Just a table for two with candles, a blue moon and the open ocean. Wondering what the limited possibilities of actually getting a birthday cake was, I asked. To my suprise the chef actually baked an amazing birthday cake for my wife.
Furthermore the service was excellent. The table was set up at the end of the dock which was about 150 yards and two filghts of stairs from the kitchen. Service was prompt, polite and unheard of domestically.

For us this was a great place! Portofino offered free use of kayaks and the Mexican Rocks Reef was only a 15 miniute paddle to some great snorkling in shallow water.

We WILL surely be back.

December 16 2013

198 | Michel H said on December 16th, 2013 at 9:53 am

“A Rustic Gem In Ambergris Caye ”

By definition, if we you want to get away from it all, you are going to have to travel a long way. This is the case with Portofino. But if that is indeed your destination – away from it all, you’ve come to the right place. This is a wonderful place to unwinde. The accomodations are on the rustic side, but being in a Caye, it is to be expected. What made the experience memorable were the people. We took the time to learn the names of our hosts and treat them with dignity, and they absolutely responded in kind. Moe, Michaela, Yolanda, Danika, Orville, Roy, Ivan, Tristian, Jessica were genuinely accommodating, kind and generous. Thank you all for making it so pleasant and personal. Michaela loves what she does and it shows. Her attention to detail in helping us have the experiences we wanted was heart-warming. The food is fresh and delicious (if not Island-wide expensive) and at Portofino was consistently well made and beautifully presented. The flies that joined our meals are part of what to expect when visiting a remote tropical island. Bring mosquito repellent! The mosquitoes here are very tiny and nearly imperceptible – until you wake up with red bumps all over the place. Don’t scratch – treat with cortisone or some anti-itch agent. We got a fair amount of rain, but this is part of accepting that you are visiting a tropical island and this is how nature keeps it all as green as we want it!

The only reason this review has 4 stars and not 5 is because of the following:

This part is much tougher to report in that it has nothing to do with Portofino but seems to be largely absent in other reviews: One day we took out 2 complementary bikes and used them to ride across the Ambergris Caye beachfront – as many of the locals do to get from San Pedro to the respective resorts where they might work. We thought we might tour the beachfronts of other resorts. We travelled about 3 miles South toward San Pedro. The views are unbridadle beauty mixed with the horrors of neglect as mile after mile of beachfront was littered with untold amounts of plastic debris. The juxtaposition of this was so striking – it brought home what a miracle of beauty nature has created and what a mess we as humans have done with it. The resorts take care that the debris is picked up on each of their respective beachfronts well enough, but go a couple of yards on either direction and what we found is a collective dumpsite that nobody seems to talk about and should be an embarrassment to their nation. The good news is that it is fixable! The bad news is that nothing seems to be done about it! I for one would be happy to pay extra as a (relatively rich American tourist) say $10 more for my exit tax to help fund a recycling program that incentivizes the locals to collect the plastic in exchange for cash. We were wracking our brains thinking of incentive programs that could be put in place that would change the collective climate for locals to gain benefit from changing their habits and keeping their environment clean for them and others to enjoy – it would be good for all. Why this is not being done is an absolutely embarrassment to what Ambergris Cayes is versus what it could become. Since it was miles of this debris, and not just an isolated spot, this is about a climate of either indifference or outright neglect. If it is the tourists that are responsible for this kind of neglectful littering then there ought to be stiff fines associated with this behavior, but since we saw lots of dumping of motor oil containers and everyday products not particularly associated with short stay tourists, chances are the locals simply don’t have an understanding of just how much they are shi**ng where they eat and what an impact this will have on them not too far down the line. Is it unconsciousness, corruption, indifference? With proper incentive this could actually be turned around pretty quickly, in that if the plastic can equal money for locals, then they would have an immediate financial incentive, not to mention a renewed sense of pride to keep their beautiful home as prestine as it was given to them by nature. It is beyond me how this is not inborn into the population, but it just isn’t. Perhaps the laissez faire attitude that comes from island living contributes to this, but that simply cannot be an excuse for trashing paradise. I struggle as I write this to be respectful of the people in the island and mindful of the poverty that pervades many of the inhabitants. Many struggle to simply eat everyday, so asking them to clean up after themselves might seem anathema to them – this is why it would require early education along with these incentives to actually make it profitable for locals to clean up. We took to picking up some of the plastic ourselves, and quickly got overwhelmed by the enormity of the problem. Belizean government needs to intervene in a meaningful way as the represenative of their people and as the custodians of one of the most beautiful places on earth, to keep it that way. They haven’t thus far, and they ought to be ashamed of themselves. I was ashamed to be a human being as I walked through the dumped debris among the prestine beauty. Paradise trashed – profoundly sad amongst this kind of pristine beauty!

December 16 2013

199 | Erin2146 said on December 12th, 2013 at 11:46 am

“Our own escape, quiet and peaceful”

My husband and I stayed for 8 days for our 1 year wedding anniversary. The resort was recommended by a friend who stayed there 6 years ago. The moment Moe picked us up, I knew we were in for a treat.we got off the boat and entered into what seemed like a hidden gem, a quaint, beautiful nook hidden behind palm trees. We were met immediately by a female staff who checked us in, brought us to our room and cut fresh soap for us!?We would see the female owner in the evening at times and she was exceptionally nice and informative. We loved how the resort was quiet and peaceful, its definitely not a party spot, which was great for us. The welcome drinks were non alcoholic, which was exciting for us since we don’t drink. We were 6 miles from town which felt like we were away from any business and could just relax. Exceptionally friendly was our waiters Tristan, Roy, Ivan and the bartender Rafael. And of course Moe!! They were always smiling and asking us how our day was. My husband had some negative experiences with one of the front desk staff,(the same person who checked us in) whom he felt was short with him and that she seemed put out with any questions, I did notice it at one time. I chaulk that up to people having a bad day, but it seems unnecessary…you almost dont want to ask anything! There was one day we asked for more drinking water because we were taking a walk and it was hot. We were told by a front desk staff that we couldn’t have any until the cleaning ladies came by, even though we were leaving. The paperwork clearly stated we would have drinking water as needed so that didn’t sit well with my husband.especially since we drank the water from the day before already. The only other negative was that the complimentary boat ride into town had been leaving at 430pm, it was changed to 5 without any notice yet the return time (6:30) remained the same. We felt that if 30min got shaved off it should’be been made up for in the pick up. We took the coastal express back one night but we had to wait until 830pm. ?Any of the negatives we would have chatted with the owner about just for feedback.But we didn’t see her again and honestly all the greatness outweighed any of that. ?Other than that, our room was cleaned everyday….they even folded our clothes, the cleaning crew was quite friendly as well. I felt very safe an comfortable?there. Overall, the full ?experience made our first time in Belize amazing and we would definitely go back to Portofino.

December 12th 2013

200 | Tess R said on December 12th, 2013 at 10:06 am

“A Rest and Relaxation dream”

The Portofino Beach Resort was quite the nice surprise. The ambviance, the intimate surroundings, was just part of the Excellence rating. The staff all around was the nicest and most easy going folks. The Portofino Restaurant could not be beat. The quality of the food, its presentation, the restaurant staff from chef to servers were exquisite. The prices made it all come together nicely for a comfortable position since your restaurant is one you rely on for most of your meals. The shuttle servie and care of your captain from the Portofino was over and above. I will definitely recommend and return to the Portofino.

December 12th 2013

201 | Ron S said on December 11th, 2013 at 9:47 am


what a great place to go chill out. you cant get any better than Portofino. Just got back and it was like a dream. Everything about this place was the best. The staff just great no joking about that like family. The food just great no the best. you have too go and see for your self. take this trip and enjoy. I will return very soon.

December 11th 2013

202 | Liza Karlsen said on December 10th, 2013 at 12:02 pm

My husband and I were expecting a great vacation but instead we got blown away by this place. It was everything we needed but so much more. I am forever spoiled now and the bar has been raised very high, only Portofino will do. The staff seemed genuinely caring and helped us with whatever we needed. Even coming back to our suite was always a surprise as our room was made up so beautifully and this was a new experience for me that made us feel special. If you like fishing you will not be disappointed as we went out twice with Action Divers at the resort and Clinton our guide did an amazing job with the variety of fish we caught, which the restaurant cooked for us. Definitely a highlight for us. We are most definitely coming back, sooner than Later!

December 10th 2013

203 | Chris and Kristy said on December 10th, 2013 at 11:05 am

“Our Private Get Away”

Beautiful Private Hotel… Away from the busy downtown area, just a ten minute boat ride away (witch is stunning). Mo ( boat driver) and Rafael ( Bar tender) you two made us laugh and tailored everything to our needs . Thank You….. Great place to relax… Planning our next trip already

December 10th 2013

204 | John Paul S said on December 6th, 2013 at 7:15 am

“Perfect Island Escape”

This was the second trip to Portofino for my wife and I in six months. Yes, Portofino truly spoils you. The staff is second to none and takes care of your every need and want. Jermy, Loraine, Roy, Elida, Orville, and others on their staff help to make Portofino the quality escape resort that it is. The living quarters on the beach are positioned to view a perfect sunrise each morning and a perfect sunet each evening. The housekeeping staff maintains your living space beautifully clean and refreshing. The food at the restaurant is exceptional with a key lime pie that will tickle your taste buds. Portofino truly is a great escape. We will return again and again.

December 5th 2013

205 | Lindsay K said on December 5th, 2013 at 12:46 pm

“Memories that will last a lifetime”

My husband and I stayed here for a week for our honeymoon. We knew this place was going to be great after reading the reviews but had no idea how amazing it really was in person. Like everyone said you are greeted with a cold towel and tropical punch drink that they add rum to (if you want). After traveling all night and most of the afternoon we were in much need of a refreshment and it made us feel really special. The service is impeccable, we truly did not meet one staff member who did not go above and beyond for us. They will help set up any trip and activity you want to do and the dive shop at the end of the pier was the same way. The resort is much smaller which gave it a more intimate feel. It is super clean, they are always out raking the beach and cleaning the pool. Our cabana was #4 and was very comfortable, right next to the restaurant and lobby. The wireless was not working in our room which wasn’t a big deal because we wanted to disconnect from reality for awhile. The fresh flowers and hand written notes on leaves left on the bed were a very special touch. We decided to eat our meal in our room one night and they actually brought in a table and chairs for us to eat at. It was a hard adjustment coming back to reality and the trip went by so quickly, we already decided we are saving up to come back someday. San Pedro is a very special place that holds many memories and adventure to last a lifetime!

December 5th 2013

206 | LizaK233 said on December 3rd, 2013 at 11:45 am

“Perfect Vacation”

My husband and I were expecting a great vacation but were instead blown away by this place. I am forever spoiled now and only Portofino will do. The staff seemed caring and helped us with whatever we needed. Even coming back to our suite was a wonderful surprise as it was made up so beautifully each time and made us feel very special, something I’d never experienced before. Compared to the other resorts we seen or visited we would both agree we picked the best place on the island for us, worth the money and I can be very critical about spending dollars. If you like fishing you will not be disappointed. We went out twice with Action Divers at the resort and Clinton our guide did an amazing job with the variety of fish we caught, which the resort cooked for us.The snorkelling and fishing were definite highlights, even though we had to leave our piece of paradise for a brief time.

December 3rd 2013

207 | Belizeconcierge said on December 2nd, 2013 at 8:45 am

“Tropical island escape!!!!”

Portofino Resort is the perfect escape from the hustle and bustle of the busyness of life. My weekend retreat was short but relaxing and enjoyable. The entire Staff is excellent – very warm, friendly, hospitable and helpful. The Sunflower Room is super romantic – my comfy bed offered a restful sleep; great shower; make sure you try the Lemon scented soap; that was my favorite. The Food was fantastic – I had Almond Crusted Snapper and it was delicious. Super fast internet kept me connected when I needed to be. The night ambiance is truly romantic; star gazing from my private balcony was very meditating. This was a perfect getaway to unwind and relax. Thank you Sandra, Jan, Lorraine and the entire Portofino Team for your authentic island hospitality.

December 2nd 2013

208 | klpmrp2 said on December 1st, 2013 at 10:31 am

“Loved it”

We loved our trip to Belize & to Portofino the last week of Sept & the first few days of Oct 2013.?The place looks just like the pictures on the web sight! Jessica, Tristian & Raffael were always ready to serve us with a smile & a laugh. We really enjoyed their company.?The pool was beautiful & probably one of our favorite features! Everyone works hard to make the guest experience fantastic. The house keepers, grounds keepers, & office staff & massage gal should not be forgotten as we felt they were also fantastic!?The food was good. ?Our transfer to & from the San Padro/airport were flawless & just as described on the Portofino web sight!?Over all we were treated like royalty & love it. Hope to be back again sometime!
Room Tip: Cabana on the beach/by the pool is the way to go!

209 | Angie S said on November 25th, 2013 at 7:56 am

“Paradise on Earth”

We just returned from Portofino and I’m still in disbelief that I was actually there, it all seems like a dream. Such an amazing place. I came home so rested and relaxed. The rooms, the staff, the pool, the food, and the view could not have been better if I had designed it all myself. As I was posting pictures all of my friends back home kept asking me… is that real? They all thought I had photoshopped myself into a postcard! The beaches are kept raked and clean, the rooms are sparkling clean, the lobby is inviting and the staff is so friendly and helpful with anything that may come up or any questions that you may have. The dive company on their pier is really good too, especially if you have not ever snorkeled or may be a little afraid. They will take their time and make you comfortable before they put you in the boat and take you out. My time there went by way too quickly. I can’t wait to go back!

210 | Anthony F said on November 23rd, 2013 at 7:05 am

“great get away”

This resort was the highlight of our honeymoon. the rooms are beautiful bungalows on the beach but its far from roughing it. we had a California king sized bed, air conditioning and a porch with a hammock and deck chairs. the restaurant served the best food we had anywhere in the country. lobster season opened when we arrived and I think I had it there 3 nights in a row. the staff was fantastic and the bar tender, Raphael, did an incredible job. we got scuba certified while we were there by the resorts dive master, roberto, which was a great experience. the owners are very hands on and genuinely want everyone who stays with them to have a great experience. I will definitely return

November 23rd 2013

211 | smaestre said on November 19th, 2013 at 12:56 pm

“You will feel very, very special.”

Stayed the of November 9th 2013 for our 41st wedding anniversary.?We live in Belize City so knew it would be a rainy weekend and it was but Mo and Raphael were like sunshine and the dinner service provided by Jessica made our stay extra special. Compliments to the chef as well.?Someone took the time to make our stay very personal and memorable, thank you.?The rooms are large and nicely kept and the tropical gardens and poolside are warm and natural unlike the concrete,stainless and plastic of some resorts.?Unfortunately did not meet the managers/owners but thank you for a wonderful 41st.
Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple

212 | Filmbelize said on November 17th, 2013 at 12:57 pm

“Awesome Property, Awesome Owners”

Portofino Hotel & Resort, Where do I start, I have never met a sweeter couple than the owners of Portofino Hotel & Resort. This is the perfect partnership of husband & wife and business partners for life. The staff is top rate, beautiful rooms and a wonderful choices on the menu. I only wish this was a bigger property because it would dominate the island of San Pedro. I highly recommend this to travelers of all types.

Room Tip: All rooms are good since it’s a small property you can’t go wrong.

213 | Oetman said on November 12th, 2013 at 9:22 am

“If you hate awesome, this is not the place for you!”

First off let me tell you how nice the resort is. The rooms are comfortable and clean in addition to being quaint and charming with the euro-Mayan touch. Yes, they do look like the pictures. The grounds and pool are very well maintained. The attention to detail is immaculate. If you never leave the resort, you will have a great time at the bar and pool. The food was fabulous–portions were perfect. I read some people said the prices were high but if fine dining to you is Longhorn’s steakhouse-then it might be pricey. Where I am from I pay a lot more to get this freshness and quality. When you are ready to explore they will hook you up with snorkeling gear and kayaks or charter a diving or fishing trip on their dock. When you want to go into town hop on the boat and you are there in less than 20 mins.?With that being said what makes this resort truly special are the people. From the owners Jan and Sondra to Yolanda, Orville, Ivan, Jessica, Mo, Roy and Rafa (sorry if I left anyone out) they are what makes Portofino a special place that you will never forget. If you want a drink out of a coconut, they will get it. If you want lunch on the pier, they will bring it. Whatever you want just ask an I guarantee they can make it happen.
So again, if you hate awesome, this is not the place for you.

214 | lizzieann53 said on November 7th, 2013 at 11:50 am

“Found heaven!”

From the minute Moe picked us up at Maya Air we knew we were in for something special. After a short boat ride we arrived to be greeted with a refreshing towel and a lovely drink with a hibiscus floating in it (to which a healthy dose of rum was added!). After check-in, Yolanda escorted us to our cabana that literally took our breath away, it was so gorgeous. We then chose our scent for homemade Maya soap (can’t buy anywhere else). There were fresh flowers everywhere in the room, changed daily. From there we were treated like royalty for a week by the rest of wonderful staff which included Orville, Rafael, Jessica, Roy, Ivan and many more. We met the owners and their lovely children and spent many hours visiting with them. The restaurant was excellent, fresh food beautifully prepared and one night we had the fresh red snapper catch of our new friends prepared by the kitchen! It is obvious the owners are European as the little touches are what make this place so special. ??I heard complaints that the food and bar were pricy but considering the quality of the resort itself, I expected nothing different. My theory is, if you can’t afford to go on vacation, don’t go!! If you want cheap, go to one of the less exotic resorts. If you want pampering, go to the Portofino!

215 | DBrand said on November 3rd, 2013 at 6:09 am

Incredible. Perfect location, great staff and nice rooms. You can do everything or do nothing. They will take care of it. Everybody needs to experience this. You will not be disapointed. A dream vacation come true. No kidding.

216 | Aerograd said on November 1st, 2013 at 8:09 am

“Portofino Was Magnificent!”
Our 10th Anniversary vacation was spent at Portofino Beach Resort on Ambergris Caye in Belize. All the people at Portofino were helpful and very friendly. The gave us the “5 star” treatment without the uppity/snobby pushiness many 5 star hotels come with. They have a more a laid back, casual beach 5-star service model. The cabana (we had a tree top cabana suite) was decorated beautifully and had a great view and very comfortable bed. The pool was nice, clean, and has a great view of the ocean. The water off the coast of Belize is the most clear, beautiful ocean water we have ever seen. The bar and restaurant were fantastic – food was amazing! If you catch any fish the Portofino restaurant will cook it for you to your liking for twelve dollars per person with the side dishes for free. The free boat service to/from San Pedro was a nice benefit. They come pick you up at the airport upon your arrival and take you back for your departure, which makes everything so much easier. The Tour/Dive company that runs their office on Portofino’s pier was also incredibly friendly and helpful. They offer a wide variety of snorkeling, diving, fishing, etc trips which they will tailor to your particular experience and comfort level. We both loved our stay at Portofino. My wife is already asking when we can go back… this time with the 3 kids to let them experience the sites and crystal clear water in Belize.

217 | serabm said on October 31st, 2013 at 10:09 am

“Very relaxing, small resort on a gorgeous beach”
We picked Portofino based on the reviews and were not disappointed. It’s a very intimate little resort with only something like 15 cabañas/rooms, some surrounding a nice pool along the beach, some in a couple larger houses. We had one of the poolside ones, which had a very high, traditional palm thatch roof, wood floors, strong ceiling fans, AC, and a divider wall from the neighboring room. We were not at all disturbed by neighbor noise, even though our cabaña was next to the main restaurant/bar building. The rooms are very comfortable, a bit rustic, and although there was a mosquito net we did not end up having to use it. The staff were very warm and professional, and always willing to help with information or organizing. We had very positive experience with the dive master Roberto, in particular. Definitely take advantage of the reef and nature reserves! The only thing to keep in mind is that the resort is about 6 miles up the coast from the town of San Pedro, reachable mainly by boat (or a long bike ride on the beach), the resort has a boat that goes to town a couple time a day, captained by the ever-patient Moh. There are also water taxis running every couple hours. We didn’t spend much time in San Pedro, which is your typical island town with local shops and tourist dives, but rather found many nice places to eat and drink along the beach south of the resort. The food on San Pedro (Ambergris but no one here calls it that) is very good. The resort bar was great and the restaurant is fine but its nothing to write home about, and is a better value for lunch than dinner, we tended to wander down the beach for that, but it is dark so bring a flashlight!! We had a great stay, the perfect way to start our vacation and get relaxed, after which we headed to the mainland, rented a jeep and drove around seeing the amazing sites which we highly recommend over doing everything package tours. If you are a couple or with a family, Portofino is a perfect spot. If you’re single and looking for more action, better to stay closer to town I think! For us it was ideal and we will come back if we make it to Belize again!

218 | nyctraveler1111 said on October 9th, 2013 at 6:18 pm

“Perfect vacation!”

Absolutely fantastic service from everyone associated with this property. From the moment that we landed at the airport, we were 100% taken care of. The property was beautiful and well maintained. Loved that the location was a bit away from the town. Very, very impressed. I would, however, sugest that experienced divers look at providers other than those on the dock at the hotel. They are better suited to snorkelers or novice divers.

Thank you so much! WIll definitely be back soon!

Stayed October 2013, traveled with friends

219 | Ned P said on October 5th, 2013 at 3:18 pm

“Perfect honeymoon!”

If you’re thinking of going to the Caribbean, then Belize is the place. Once you have made that decision, where to stay is even easier to decide; Portofino. My wife and I went there and had a dream honeymoon!

Before I go on about all the fantastic excursions available, I should state that the best part of our trip was the people we met. Belizian people are some of the nicest and funniest people I have ever met, and the best of them work at Portofino and Action Divers and Adventures. All of the staff; the reception, the bartenders, the restaurant and kitchen staff, everyone were so pleasant and accommodating. My wife and I ran into Yolanda in San Pedro one day and she gave us a great lunch spot recommendation, she is a lovely lady. We also had a great time meeting and getting to know other people staying at Portofino, I think this is one of the big advantages of Portofino being a boutique resort. The resort is great scale for getting to know other guests.

The excursions offered through the resort are a blast! I really appreciated the ease of booking, you can book and pay for any excursion through either the front desk or Action Adventures dive shop. Our first day Action Adventures took us fishing and conch diving. It was very convenient and the dive shop took care of everything. My wife and I also did a couple of main-land trips; cave tubing and Lamanai Mayan ruins. Great trips, and the front desk took care of everything. Be careful how many rum-punches your drink on the way back, there is no bathroom on the boat, haha.

The food at the resort was absolutely delicious! If you enjoy fresh seafood, then yes, you have arrived at Nirvana. Again, they are very accommodating here. The kitchen prepared some of the Red Snapper and lobster we caught while fishing with Action Adventures. With our honeymoon package we were able to have a private, romantic dinner. A delicious, candle-lit dinner on the beach with the woman you love is about as good as it gets, thank you Portofino.

I went to Architecture school and now run my own residential remodeling company, which I only mention because of Portofino’s great vernacular. Some resorts look like they could be in the Rocky mountains or on the Caribbean coast, those places don’t appeal to me. I enjoy buildings that show an understanding of local materials and methods, Portofino delivers. Not all of this is evident on the surface, but I was fortunate enough to have a conversation about the resorts development with one of the resorts owners. Another rum and cola?

What else to say about Portofino? Booking was easy, the staff responds quickly. The website is very helpful and easy to use, Sandra says a new one is coming soon :) My wife and I had a great time, can’t wait to go back!!

Room Tip: The Cabanas are closest to the action, while the tree top rooms are a little more private.

220 | Gnatbug said on October 2nd, 2013 at 6:17 pm

“Perfection in Paradise!”

I hardly ever review but Portofino is so worthy of one. I was a little hesitant about staying at Portofino for our honeymoon as I wasn’t sure it was as luxurious as I wanted. Man, was I wrong Portofino was the best of the best. It was quality in every aspect. The food, the staff, the location and the scenery were all 5 stars. It is somewhat secluded and small, which we loved for our honeymoon and hardly any children. The accommodations were spectacular, rustic and luxurious. They have everything right there that there is no reason to leave the resort if you just want a pampered, relaxing vacation. Amazing beach massage, right off the resort snorkeling, kayaking, a pool, fantastic drinks, delicious food and above all the best staff I have ever experienced. Portofino is the best way to see the Belize and its beauty.

Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple

221 | IndygloFlame said on September 26th, 2013 at 9:01 am


Blissed out!!!!!! That’s all I can say. The place was just what we needed, with awesome fresh and healthy food, amazing and friendly staff, and wonderful, clean rooms. We have traveled to many places in the world, but by far this is my favorite. The people are what makes the place for us….and that’s what makes Portofino so special. The employees made us feel like we were part of the family.

As for what Old Dutch is talking about, we were there during the same time, and I observed none of what he spoke about. I would venture to guess that the world is not quite as sanitized as he feels it should be. If there was trash that he saw, I imagine it was down the beach from the resort. There are areas of beach that no one cares for and trash does seem to be an issue because of how much the wind blows around the equator, but that was not what we saw anywhere on the grounds of the resort. Really it was quite the opposite, we have much respect for the owners who keep their employees busy year round instead of laying them off like some of the other resorts. The grounds keepers were busy from the first light of day until the last rays keeping the place tidy.

222 | Sheri K said on September 23rd, 2013 at 11:00 am

“SO Awesome…Stay Longer!”

My week at Portofino was so wonderful that my only complaint was that I had to leave! The staff were, without exception, WONDERFUL in every way. Everything from tours and diving to the local scene, just ask! We met the owners who are living on site with their children. I can not recommend Portofino enough!

223 | Jill C said on September 8th, 2013 at 11:34 am

“Best Food”

Best food on the island. Expensive but worth it. Property is very remote, must take a boat to get anywhere. Not much of a beach, really no beach. Great location if you want to feel secluded. Friendly staff.

224 | Taricco said on September 2nd, 2013 at 11:50 am

Cool Friendly!

This is my second time to S. Pedro, and I stay again on this hotel to beach. Is been improve a lot so wonderful pool and casitas, the rooms they are very attention to details and clean, also the owner very pleasant at your arrival they remember my previous stay and they welcome me with a special attention, and take care of the guest organize all the trip at the island and any request is well taking care.I specially love the restaurant Italian food with a toque of caribbean,and the plates well down.Good job Sandra and Jan…

225 | Lennie21 said on August 25th, 2013 at 10:51 am

“Great place away from the hustle of San Pedro”

Stayed here for 5 nights at the beginning of August. It was our first stop in Belize. The staff are friendly and helpful. The food was good. My husband went fishing and the restaurant cooked us the barracuda and snapper which he caught; both were amazing. The trip the Hol Chan was great- turtles, sharks and rays, our guide was really good, managing a group of mixed ability and confidence. Overall a great place to start our adventure in Belize.

Stayed August 2013

226 | Mark M said on August 20th, 2013 at 5:51 pm

“In your own little world”

First of all I have never travelled anywhere where the whole staff was as awesome as what we experienced. The owner of the resort is indeed very fortunate have such employees. It was great experience and we would go back in a heartbeat. My wife loves the casinos and the staff set up a flight, taxis, and boat ride for her and it was a breeze. We did have a few minor issues. They gassed up the boat after they picked us up and the fumes were pretty bad. The air conditioning in the smaller cabanas had a hard time keeping up if they were turned off when you weren’t in the room. But the biggest thing you need to be aware of is that you need to plan your tours/plans with the boat schedules in mind. Being isolated means that you can only leave the resort by water. The resort has a boat that makes a couple of runs a day and there is a water taxi($11 American each way). As long as you know that then you will love it. The food is great on the island and some resorts will send their boat for you at no charge if you eat at their restaurant. Portofinos restaurant is great also. My wife bought some fish from a local fisherman on the dock and the restaurant cooked it up. Can’t get any fresher than that…If I had any suggestions it would be that the hotel offer bicycles for their guests to use. Also the AC unit’s could be beefed up a little. Maybe add few more runs of their private boat..especially the weekends. Gas being $13/gallon may mean they should charge a little for it, but it would give everyone a little more options. We would go back tomorrow!!!

227 | serabm said on August 11th, 2013 at 6:36 am

“Very relaxing, small resort on a gorgeous beach”

We picked Portofino based on the reviews and were not disappointed. It’s a very intimate little resort with only something like 15 cabañas/rooms, some surrounding a nice pool along the beach, some in a couple larger houses. We had one of the poolside ones, which had a very high, traditional palm thatch roof, wood floors, strong ceiling fans, AC, and a divider wall from the neighboring room. We were not at all disturbed by neighbor noise, even though our cabaña was next to the main restaurant/bar building. The rooms are very comfortable, a bit rustic, and although there was a mosquito net we did not end up having to use it. The staff were very warm and professional, and always willing to help with information or organizing. We had very positive experience with the dive master Roberto, in particular. Definitely take advantage of the reef and nature reserves!

The only thing to keep in mind is that the resort is about 6 miles up the coast from the town of San Pedro, reachable mainly by boat (or a long bike ride on the beach), the resort has a boat that goes to town a couple time a day, captained by the ever-patient Moh. There are also water taxis running every couple hours. We didn’t spend much time in San Pedro, which is your typical island town with local shops and tourist dives, but rather found many nice places to eat and drink along the beach south of the resort. The food on San Pedro (Ambergris but no one here calls it that) is very good. The resort bar was great and the restaurant is fine but its nothing to write home about, and is a better value for lunch than dinner, we tended to wander down the beach for that, but it is dark so bring a flashlight!!

We had a great stay, the perfect way to start our vacation and get relaxed, after which we headed to the mainland, rented a jeep and drove around seeing the amazing sites which we highly recommend over doing everything package tours. If you are a couple or with a family, Portofino is a perfect spot. If you’re single and looking for more action, better to stay closer to town I think! For us it was ideal and we will come back if we make it to Belize again!

228 | Amanda B said on August 8th, 2013 at 9:35 am

“Royal Treatment”

I have nothing negative to say about this fantastic resort. My boyfriend and I were treated like royalty, from the moment our boat pulled up and we were greeted with a welcome drink, to the flowers all over the cabana (picked fresh on the grounds), to the handmade soaps we could choose from to use during our stay, to the coconuts plucked for us to drink from, to the restaurant wait staff making every attempt to accommodate any whim or give advice on local day trips, to the handmade design of hearts imprinted on the blanket of the bed several days into our stay. (The fibers of the blanket allowed for a temporary design, like writing in the sand. I was so charmed when I saw it, I couldn’t believe it.) While some books and reviews note that Portofino is “remote,” we found that to be desirable: if you want to slum it at a hotel on the San Pedro beach–where you are constantly hit up for souvenirs or in the middle of kids playing soccer–go ahead, but if you want a charming, relaxing, paradise vacation, go to Portofino. Between Portofino’s free boat taxi and the willingness of tour companies to pick up and drop off at the resort (we had a great experience with Amigos del Mar and Amigos Jungle Tours), we did not once have to pay for the water taxi to take us anywhere over the course of seven days. This may involve staying slightly longer or shorter in San Pedro to catch the boat when it comes, but this was not too much trouble. If you can’t stand sitting at your restaurant for an extra 30 minutes and sipping another drink while waiting for the boat, then maybe you need to relax and actually behave like you’re on vacation.

The continental breakfast was delicious and filling.

If you stay at Portofino, be sure to ask about the Palapa Bar and Grill. You will see it every time you pass between San Pedro and Portofino with the word “BAR” in yellow capital letters. It worked out that the Portofino boat was able to drop us off on its 5 pm run to San Pedro, and then pick us up on its return around 6.30. Inquire about the same thing–it was perfect!

The free kayaks and snorkeling equipment were a nice touch–and it was the first time I had done either! I learned how to scuba dive in the hotel pool before heading out to nearby Mexico Rocks for my first successful ocean scuba dive. (I had actually tried with another company in San Pedro first, and they were so impatient that I was an unsuccessful and stressed out diver until I went backwards and tried again with Action Divers at Portofino. I was able to leave feeling that I had successfully learned how to dive and enjoyed it, and I want to dive again. If you are new to diving and want a patient teacher, use Action Divers. Still, they are great for experienced divers as well.)

Be careful about straying from the cabana path; I tried to walk around and explore and got bitten like crazy by mosquitoes. But in the normal areas, mosquitoes and other creepy crawlies were no problem at all (late July to early August; it may be different at other times of year).

I have never had such a wonderful, paradisaical vacation before. My boyfriend and I are already talking about coming again!

229 | nochum said on August 5th, 2013 at 7:35 am

“Top-notch resort for those seeking paradise and solitude”

I would enthusiastically recommend Portofino for those who are looking for a quiet, small resort in a great location with unbelievable service and a devoted staff that is second to none.

If you are looking for a large chain-type resort, than this may not be what you are looking for. However with 17 units it is not crowded, and since it is 6 km north of town it is far enough away from the hustle-and-bustle of San Pedro, yet close enough so that you can get there in 20 minutes using the resort’s complimentary boat service that runs several times a day, or with a water taxi.

My wife and I have very different vacation styles. Her ideal vacation is sitting near the beach, relaxing, and reading a book, whereas I can’t sit in one place for too long. Portofino worked out very well for us. Our beach cabana was about 100 feet from the water with a perfect view. While my wife read I was able to borrow the resort’s sea kayaks and visit Mexico Rocks, which is about 15 minutes out. Along with the sea kayaks the resort lends snorkel gear and life vests. Mexico Rocks is an area of the coral reef where there is a vast array of coral, sponge, and beautiful fish of all shapes, sizes, and colors. It is magnificent. I believe that Portofino is the closest resort to Mexico Rocks and the only one that I know of (or saw) that lends sea kayaks.

The staff is unbelievably dedicated, professional and attentive and go way out of their way to ensure that everyone’s needs are met. Some examples:
1. I mentioned to the bartender that it would be really nice if I could get some fresh coconut. About 5 minutes later he arrived at the lounge chairs where my wife and I were sitting with two *fresh* green coconuts with their tops sliced open and straws sticking out. These did not come from the resort refrigerator. They were as fresh as they come.
2. I met Tristian (a member of the restaurant staff) outside one afternoon, and he happened to have some native Belizean fruit that resembles a lychee (kneck?, knepp?). He offerd me and my wife. Not because he was expecting anything, but simply because he wanted to share some of the real Belize experience.
3. A couple was having an anniversary, so the resort arranged a special candle-lit private dinner for them at the end of the dock overlooking the water. From my lounge chair I watched the restaurant staff shuttle back and forth from the restaurant to the end of the dock to ensure that the couple had a special evening.
4. Upon checkout there was an item on my bill that I was not happy with although there was no question that I had agreed to pay it. I made note of it on the checkout questionnaire. Here’s what really floored me: I was standing at the Tropic Air counter in San Pedro to check in for my flight, and the phone at the ticket counter rang. The agent answered and handed me the phone. It was the hotel manager calling to apologize for the misunderstanding and explaining both how she would correct the issue on my account and prevent it from happening again in the future. To me this single incident shows the lengths that the hotel staff will go to in order to ensure that their customers are happy. All I can say is, “Wow!”.

Overall we were very happy with the accommodations that we had. As appears typical with beach cabanas in Belize ours was semi-detached so we shared a porch with another guest. The cabana also had a 2nd story. So altogether there were four units in the cabana building. For us this did not detract from the privacy at all.

Furnishings were casual and beach-style with a bamboo motif and coconut and conch decorations. Our cabana was clean and everything worked well, though some of the furnishings showed some signs of wear in places. No complaints at all about the bed though, which had a canopy.

Overall we had a fantastic stay here. You will not find a more caring team dedicated to making sure your needs are met anywhere in Ambergris Caye. We would most definitely come back and give it a two thumbs up.

230 | Laurie & Gary said on May 7th, 2012 at 1:54 pm

We stepped into paradise! What an amazing place to spend a week away! From the moment Moe brought us to portofinos dock we knew we found our sanity. The Resort and views were beautiful in every direction. The cabanas very charming, comfortable and clean. The hammock on the porch.. we fell in love with and bought one to bring home. Even as awesome as the resort are the staff who become your friends and make sure your stay is better than perfect. We looked forward to dinner just to hang out with Alex, Flor and Orville. Thanks for the amazing memories! And the peace that surrounds your place! We will be back next April!

231 | SimoneR said on April 12th, 2012 at 6:40 pm


This resort was perfect for us. If you are looking for the perfect combination of unbothered peace right at the water’s edge, and adventure, but still a fairly short boat ride from town, this is it. Great service, great food, excellent staff. The dive master, Roberto, was very good and took us on three wonderful dives. And you can take the kayak out to Mexico Rocks and snorkel at your own pace. Or just lie in the beach chairs and enjoy the incredible views as the sea laps at your feet…sigh. We want to go back!

Stayed March 2012, traveled as a couple

232 | Dan Heimbrock said on April 12th, 2012 at 3:45 pm

“Luxury & Privacy on Gorgeous Beachfront”

Portofino Resort in north Ambergris Caye is a fine example of a beach resort that really caters to their guests. The rooms are large and very well appointed…we stayed in the “Mansion” which is a two-story building on the left side of the property facing the Caribbean Sea. Huge space for a family or 3 couples, even if they brought kids along. Nice kitchen, cool walk in shower, and everything you need to enjoy your stay. Each morning my daughter and I would wake up early to watch the sun rise over the water — simply spectacular and I am not even a morning person!

The resort itself has a really nice elevated pool with lots of space for lounge chairs, you can even put one right in the shallow part of the pool itself. Shady palm trees and other places to sit and view the sea are all over the place and they have a pair of hammocks out over the water, very nice. The restaurant and bar were great, super friendly people and everything we ate and drank was perfect. I really liked the Belizean breakfast I had on 2 days…so yummy and looked to be quite healthy too with fresh fruits and tasty fry jacks on the side.

Jan and Sandra, the couple that run the resort are raising two beautiful children at their home on resort grounds, are just delightfully friendly people who work hard to make every guest happy and telling all their friends about this amazing resort called PORTOFINO.

I recommend the hotel completely and believe anyone seeking a exotic, upscale tropical vacation will find Portofino hard to beat.

Room Tip: If you are looking for a big place for a larger group, ask about the Mansion House….its perfect.

233 | Martin O said on April 2nd, 2012 at 11:55 am

“Great Staff”

The great staff at Portofino is what makes the stay there most memorable. It’s a speedboat ride from town (the only way to get there) but not secluded. Quite tranquil though. The restaurant served (as a special) the best potato-encrusted snapper I’ve ever had, and the breakfasts were delicious. Terrific service (thanks Flor and Alex!). A nice pool, relaxing areas on the beach to sun and read (but not swim — this isn’t a sandy-bottom area). Raphael will bring you drinks to keep you cool and happy. The desk personnel are very helpful (Lorraine and David in particular). Fantastic snorkel and dive excursions leave every day staffed with friendly experts from the dive shop on the premises — swim with the sharks and stingrays. Or you can kayak out to the reef with snorkel gear free of charge and take it in yourself as well.

Mo takes several trips in the speedboat to town daily (no charge) — if you need some hustle and bustle you will find it there, or perhaps you just want provisions for the mini-fridge in your room.

Wi-Fi works great in the lobby, a bit sporadic in my room, which was comfortable and spacious and had a veranda with a nice view of the beach.

There are bigger and newer-looking properties in the area, but I can’t envision any of them having a better staff.

Stayed March 2012, traveled as a couple

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235 | DallasPhotog said on March 8th, 2012 at 4:08 pm

“Over the top accommodations and experience!”

A 15 minute boat ride from Fido’s in San Pedro, we were greeted at Fido’s by the Portofino boat capt. Once we arrived at Portofino, a staff member greated us and walked us to the bar for a welcome drink and eucalyptus accented warm cloth to wash our face wile our luggage was taken to our room. The bartender had Caribbean white and dark rum options standing by for our drinks. The room was breathtaking. The view spectacular. The staff went above and beyond. I can tell they really enjoy working there. I stayed at three resorts in Belize and Portofino is by far the best experience. They literally have everything under control!!

236 | Sheila W said on January 19th, 2012 at 10:04 am

“I think we found Paradise!”

We stayed at Portofino mid January for 7 wonderful days. We felt so welcomed as we got off the boat that brought us from San Pedro to the resort (captained by Mo), met by Raphael at the door of the office with complimentary drinks (he makes an excellent Pina Colada!!), waited on in the restaurant by Flor, John, and Ivan, and had our tours to the Mayan ruins, cave tubing and jungle ziplining, AND a day of snorkeling, fishing, and a beach barbecue all booked by David and Lorraine! What an absolutely warm, helpful, and pleasant staff! The entire resort is gorgeous; we stayed in the beautiful VIP suite, with the immaculate pool just steps away from our front door, and the beach just steps beyond. The food at the restaurant was excellent; we did eat some meals at some other local places, but Portofino’s restaurant was our favorite. We highly recommend Portofino Resort, and we will be going back!

Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple

237 | TheFlyingNurse said on January 15th, 2012 at 6:02 pm

“Beautiful, private, quiet-we will return!”

We travel several times a year and to many international locations. Rarely repeat any, but will repeat this location. ??Location: Looking for quiet, private, lacking noisy children (only 17 suites) and away from town PERFECT. 6 miles north from San Pedro so walking to town for mayhem is not easy. Water taxi is $ 11 o/w however the resort has a boat which goes to town 2-3x a day which you can hop on. If you wish to hang in town, then stay closer to town. For us, San Pedro can be seen in a few hours. We looked at all the resorts during our beach bike cruise and defiinitely chose the RIGHT option.?Staff: Superb! Personable and will adjust what they offer to meet YOUR needs.?Restaurant: Steps to the water with great views. I was thrilled to see they also had a vegetarian selection menu. Complimentary continental breakfast-fresh fruits and homemade bread. Dinner menu $17-30 but well worth it. Exceptional sauces and flavors. We did not travel to any other rest location as this was perfect for us. Also play smooth jazz which was perfect with the caribbean trades gently blowing at the elevated dining area. Small and quaint.?Rooms: Side by side thatched cabanas that have caribbean views but the pool sits in front of the view. We booked last minute and stayed in the suite below the Honeymoon Suite. Closest to the water without a pool view. We were concerned over noise but knew the location would be ideal. 20yrds to toes in the water but be aware, the structure is simple frame and thatched roofs. You will hear others. Location with large glass double doors facing the caribbean was gorgeous. We lived in Hawaii for 20 years and really enjoyed this spot.?Dive Shop: at end of pier. VERY accomodating with whatever you desired. With lower number of guests, they can afford to be.??If you want true island feel and the total sense of relaxation, do not hesitate. If you want party and town, stay near town. Taking the water taxi is very enjoyable. We rented beach bikes from town and you can ride along the shoreline. The dirt road to town would not be recommended. Big pot holes would make a golf cart uncomfortable. Also, as soon as we got close to the road/marsh, the mosquitoes had a feast. No problems with mosquitos at the resort at all. They spray and we had stiff trade winds.?Owner lives on premise (Dutchman) and he is lovely to talk with. ?My only recommendation (and I would usually have many suggestions) is to put a mattress pad on the bed. Only to have a sheet against the actual mattress was not very hygenic in my opinion.?We are considering at the end of this year. The country is planning end of Mayan Calendar festivities. What a great place to be to experience what will be.

238 | CaseyAndMolly said on January 14th, 2012 at 5:49 pm

“What a fantastic place”

Portofino Beach Resort is a wonderful place to stay on Ambergris Caye. We chose this resort to have a destination wedding and it couldn’t have been more perfect. The resort was very clean and comfortable, and we spent 7 perfect days in paradise. The staff was absolutely marvelous, patient, and helpful and they treat everyone like old friends making you feel like there’s nowhere else you’d rather be. They covered all the aspects of our wedding and even despite a torrential downpour immediately before we were supposed to begin (it was a beach wedding), completely soaked they still pulled off a more perfect ceremony than either of us could have ever hoped for. Even if you’re not getting married there is more than enough to do. Any activities you would like to do they can arrange for you, from tours to Mayan ruins to scuba diving, cave tubing, zip lines, the list goes on and on. They also offer kayaks and snorkel gear free of charge which you can grab and paddle right off the beach and out to some of the best snorkeling in the world. If you’re not looking for adventure or just want to have a lazy day, there are plenty of chairs and lounges around the pool and on the beach to stretch out and relax in, all just a few steps from your door. Additionally, we loved the location of Portofino, not right in the middle of all the crowds but still just a short water taxi ride away San Pedro and all the attractions it has to offer. We were very sad to have to go as watching the sun rise and set over the Caribbean is an amazing sight of which we will never tire, and as we left we felt as if we were leaving good friends behind.

239 | Hensleys said on December 21st, 2011 at 4:04 pm

We stayed in November of 2011. Portofino is the perfect beach getaway if you just want to relax and don’t like being in town. Its isolated from town, peaceful, and on the beach with lounge chairs to lay on and a hammock outside your cabana. Picturesque views everywhere. The cabanas have the pool in front and then the beach so its a partial ocean view from the room. The staff memebers are very friendly. We had Lorain and David help us plan our week out. I hope David learns how to swim soon! You can catch a ride into town with Moe the boat driver for free but it changes every day so you have to plan your day on his timing if you want to go in town and is subject to change which was fine for us on a lazy day. The activities are all great we did the Blue hole dive, sunset cruise, and caye caulker sailing which were all excellent. They provide purified water in your cabanas and clean it daily which is nice. Small fridge but no microwave. I bought a papaya and they cut it up for me since we weren’t given kitchenware in the cabana which was nice. The room we stayed in for our Honeymoon package cabana was kinda small to us at first but that’s all you need bc you spend most of your time outside. The food at the restaurant was quite expensive for us but still good so we went in town to eat a lot because it was more affordable plus I’m on a strict diet for my medical condition so in town was easier to eat at rather than the limited menu at portofino. The owners are very nice as well they bought us a drink in town because there was a delay from our ride in town to Portofino. If we could afford it and have the time I’d definitely come back and visit! I wanted to stay longer but who wouldn’t.

240 | FrankBeverly said on December 19th, 2011 at 1:47 pm

“Beautiful resort – Excellent service”

A little vacatiion break for my husband and I before the holidays led us to Portofino on Ambergris Caye in Belize. The reservation process for our stay at Portofino was seamless: their staff (thanks, Lorraine and David!) booked our flight from Belize City to San Pedro, and then sent a taxi to pick us up at the San Pedro Airport which took us to the waiting water taxi (thanks, Mo!). After a short 10 minute boat ride. we arrived at this great resort where we were greeted with a cool towel and a refreshing glass of punch. ??We were not disappointed with our choice — the resort is beautiful and the service was outstanding! Portofino boasts a beautiful, clean pool and grounds. We stayed in the Barracuda suite which was heavenly. ??Addiitionally, the food in the restaurant on property (Le Bistro) is very good. We learned that many people come from other resorts to dine here! In fact while we were guests, a Belizean company held their Christmas party for 18 people at Le Bistro. As the saying goes, “Dine where the locals dine, and you’ll find the best food!”??Snorkelers have easy access to “Mexico Rocks” and scuba divers will love the onsite dive shop. In fact my husband was lucky enough to join the resort for their ‘Santa Dive’!??We will definitely return to Portofino — we can hardly wait!

241 | gogogogoVirginia said on November 28th, 2011 at 2:19 pm

Perfect romantic escape

We stayed at Portofino in mid-November and had a lovely time. The tree top suite is worth the extra money. The view from the private balcony and the overall privacy this room allowed for, was perfect. Staff were very friendly, accommodating and helpful. We took the kayak to Mexico Rocks for some fantastic snorkeling. I also recommend the day trip to the Lamanai ruins. If you decide to take the boat to San Pedro for dinner, Warugumas is a wonderful, small restaurant on Middle Street that was a nice alternative to the more fancy meals at Portofino.

242 | jeanne0206 said on November 17th, 2011 at 5:24 pm

7th heaven

Our first visit to Portofino Beach Resort in San Pedro, Belize, was in March 2002, just months after they opened. We found paradise from the moment we were met by Moh, the boat captain, for the private 20 minute ride to Portofino. Having researched places on the internet, we found exactly what we were looking for. Secluded, intimate, and steps from the beach. At that time, there was not a pool. We have visited in February, March and October for a total of 7 visits in 10 years time. Our recent visit was in October (2011), and we were again greeted by Moh with a great smile and hugs. Upon our arrival at the Portofino dock, we were greeted by David and escorted to the main lobby where were offered damp towels to refresh ourselfs, as well as a welcome tropical drink (alcohol added as desired) by Rafael, one of the bartenders that we have known for 8 years of visits. The restaurant has amazing food and presentation. They do have a vegetarian menu, and you may also ask for some subsitutions. The wait staff is friendly, the rooms were always well maintained and cleaned, and the bartendars (Raffael and Orville) are extremely kind, and provided poolside service, as well as dock service. And last, but not least, the owners Jan and Sandra, are like old friends. We certainly have come to feel quite welcome and comfortable at Portofino, and have had the pleasure of watching their family grow. I would recommend Portofino as a great place to stay. A place to enjoy the beauty of Belize, but also to be away from the commercialization, and be truly relaxed in paradise.

Room Tip: Any of the rooms are wonderful. For more spacious, ask for the larger rooms. We have stayed in the side by side cabanas, as well as the single size cabanas (twice the size of the others). Each cabana has a nice porce with chair(s) and hammock.

243 | LolasSanPedro said on November 15th, 2011 at 2:17 pm

Does it get any better i dont think so…

my boyfriend and i stayed at portofino early september for a week in the honeymoon suite, one word AMAZING!!! our own hot tub in the room,walk in shower and the view was to die for..this was my second time staying here and the last time i thought it coulndt get any better but it was slow season there so town was pretty slow, not much reason for us to spend to much time in town.. so we spend most of our time at the resort, their restaurant is outstanding and so is their roomservice 😉 the bartender can fix you up with some great cocktails and jan and sandra are great hosts.. everybody that works there is very helpfull and their main goal is to make sure that u have everything you need for a great vacation.
we look forward to our next stay at portofino.

244 | Dorothy N said on November 15th, 2011 at 10:23 am

Excellent Dinner

We only had dinner at this resort, but let me tell you it was amazing! My husband and I are foodies from San Francisco and the meal was delicious. Not to mention the views were breathtaking and the staff were extremely friendly! If you’re in San Pedro I suggest taking the ride to dine at this restaurant.

245 | NigelCoimbra said on November 2nd, 2011 at 2:12 pm

Stunning Resort, Stunning Location, Excellent Staff

I visited Portofino Beach Resort last week as part of a tour of Belize. I was lucky enough to visit some of the best hotels on Ambergris Caye and also in Placencia.
I can safely say that Portofino gets my vote!
The rooms are beautifully presented, extremely comfortable and show real attention to detail.
The restaurant is located above the bar area giving spectacular views out to the ocean. And the food? I do not think that I have eaten such well presented, well prepared food ANYWHERE! Seriously, the food is of a standard that any 5* hotel anywhere in the world, New York, London, Paris, would be proud to provide clients.
The bar area is clean, friendly and very welcoming. You are assured of a warm welcome and great smile when you pop in for a your dinner drink. Raffe makes the BEST Margaritas in the WORLD!
A great indicator to any resort is the guests who are staying there. Friendly, smiling, happy and eager to share experiences. They are the ONLY guests you find at Portofino. As I was there alone I was befriended by two couples, one on their honeymoon, and we shared a great time together talking of our travel experiences, and the occasional beer.
From the moment you pull up dockside and welcomed by a member of staff, often the lovely Lorraine, and the welcome cocktail to the sad moment you depart you will feel as though you are part of the ‘Portofino Family’.
A special mention to Sandra and Jan, the owners of Portofino, who made my stay pleasurable, memorable and most of all, to want me to return as soon as possible to this beach paradise and spend a little longer there! And of course, we cannot forget darling Lorraine. If ever there was someone you wanted working for you, representing you, providing total commitment to your business ethics then she is the one!

246 | BelizeStar said on October 5th, 2011 at 2:09 pm

An amazing experience!!

My boyfriend and I recently went to Portofino Resort and had the most magical moments of our lives. The “honeymoon” suite is exquisite with an enormous panoramic view of the beach with the worlds largest “living reef” right in front of our eyes. The suite was majestic with very high ceilings made out of a thatch roof that is called a palapa. The floors were hard wood and the bathroom and small soaking tub as well as shower were hand done in mosaic tiles. The bed was so comfortable and there was a table and chairs for room service dining whether you wanted to eat inside your suite or have your meals outside on the long vertical balcony that overlooked everything in sight. The windows were all glass so it felt like you were right outside even while inside watching TV on the flat screen or just relaxing and reading a book.??The restaurant and bar was lovely and you could see the beautiful pool in the day or night since at night it is lit up with soft lighting that made you feel as if you were in heaven in Paradise.??The owners are the warmest, kindest couple that are beautiful inside and out and could not do enough to ensure our wonderful stay, from booking our tours or renting a golfcart. The staff is incredibly kind, polite and helpful and it felt like I was with “family” being there.??The landscaping with all the tropical flowers and foliage was breathtaking.??This has got to be one of my most memorable experiences where one feels alive and at peace.??A must see and a must go. Please do…. so you too can share memorable moments be it with family, friends or just on your own.
Room Tip: We saw all the rooms and they were beautiful. I loved the honeymoon suite and the mansion was also something to be remembered, but all of their suites or villas were unique and perfect.

247 | escort bayan said on June 18th, 2011 at 6:28 am

Reality, Reality, and had a great holiday thank you

248 | Kathleen H said on April 29th, 2011 at 12:50 pm

Thank you for a wonderful vacation. My family ( Son Mike, daughter-in-law Julie, grandkids Britt and Sean, son John and friend Mary Kim) enjoyed Portofino and all that it offered. The picturesque setting, the friendly and courteous staff and of course the fabulous weather. I am sure there will be a return visit. Kathleen H

249 | escort bayan said on April 20th, 2011 at 10:37 pm

This has been an amazing trip ( honeymoon), and Portofino has made it the best!! You have all been so kind and thoughtful, and have truly made us feel welcome! We will miss you all, and wish you all the very best!

250 | Kathleen H. said on April 12th, 2011 at 1:55 pm

Thank you for a wonderful vacation. My family ( Son Mike, daughter-in-law Julie, grandkids Britt and Sean, son John and friend Mary Kim) enjoyed Portofino and all that it offered. The picturesque setting, the friendly and courteous staff and of course the fabulous weather.
I am sure there will be a return visit. Kathleen H.

251 | air max 2009 said on March 24th, 2011 at 10:06 pm

IF I recall correctly, Sandra calls it barefoot elegance and I think that is a very fair description.

252 | nike ari max said on March 24th, 2011 at 10:05 pm

Amazing staff and owners!! We now feel we have a new family at Portofino. I definitely recommend this resort to everyone. At first we thought it was a honeymooners resort but families, divers or just friends are all welcome.

253 | Carol & Scott said on February 26th, 2011 at 2:00 pm

Dear Willa,
We miss you all.  Really badly.  This is what we came home to instead of your pretty water and warm breezes.
Each one of your staff contributed to an excellent vacation for us.  On the way home on the plane, we discussed why we enjoyed our stay at Portofino so much.  We both decided that it was not just the beautiful resort or pretty waters, but rather the outstanding staff at Portofino.  You all just made us feel so welcome.  Portofino itself is lovely, the room was beautiful and clean, the food was excellent, the facilities just perfect.  But your friendly staff blew us away with their friendly manners.  A great big thanks to everyone.
Thanks to you, Willa, and to Lorraine before you,  for all the arrangements prior to our arrival.
Thanks to Mo for being such a great greeter at the airport, and for hunting down our missing bag.
Thanks to David and Roberto, who anticipated our every need and who tried so hard to keep us straight.
Thanks to Fior with the happy laugh, who feed us so lovingly, remembered our tea each morning, and brightened our every meal.
And to Alex, who, although not as pretty as Fior, brought us more outstanding treats and tempted us with all those specials of the day.
Thanks to Orvil, with the pretty wife and gorgeous daughter, who could prepare the very best end-of-the-day goodies.  And to Rafael, who took good care of us when Orvil was absent.
We can’t thank you all enough.
And now to the pictures we took.  Our brightest ones were taken Valentines Day with all the cheerful balloons and pinwheels.  I’ve attached 6 for you to share with everyone.  I’ll send  some more in another e-mail.  I only regret that I didn’t get pictures of you all since you were the best of Portofino.
May God bless you all this year.  And thanks for your loving care.

254 | C&HK said on December 12th, 2010 at 1:38 pm

This has been an amazing trip ( honeymoon), and Portofino has made it the best! You have all been so kind and thoughtful, and have truly made us feel welcome. We will miss you all, and wish you all the very best!

255 | Lovebug07 said on November 25th, 2010 at 10:28 am

Portofino Beach Resort was the most perfect place to spend our honeymoon! We stayed there for 7 nights in the Jasmine Suite ( as the Honeymoon Suite was already booked.. the most popular one )… What a great view!!! Every morning we went for coffee which is complimentary, back to our suite and just sit in the porch and enjoy a beautiful view of the clear water.
Most of the days we just enjoyed the resort and the beach but I must say the days we went out on excursions which were booked by the resort went pretty well. You just have to say what you want and they will take care of the rest!!!
The resort is located north of the main town which was cool as it is very private however easy access to get in town, it took us approximately 15 minutes in their complimentary boat transfer.
Amazing staff and owners!! We now feel we have a new family at Portofino. I definitely recommend this resort to everyone. At first we thought it was a honeymooners resort but families, divers or just friends are all welcome.
We miss you guys and we will be back soon!!

256 | nwpass said on November 25th, 2010 at 10:25 am

Well….what to say about the Portofino! We loved it! My husband and I spent our 20th wedding anniversary there. The people there are lovely and the resort is lovely. I have traveled a lot and the resort was perfect for us. The people just can not do enough for you. Sandra and Yan are fun and really want you to enjoy your stay. Roberto will find what you need no matter what. The continental breakfast was just what we wanted everyday. (coffee, juice, fresh fruit and toast and jam/peanut butter.) If you want something else they have a full breakfast menu. The restaurant is open for breakfast,lunch and dinner. There were a few times that we were in after the restaurant had closed and they still made us something which was really great.
They have the BEST ceviche I had ever had.!!! We tried a few around the island that was our favorite. The food was always good. Not always exactly the same as the name would get you in the states but you are in a different country so things can be different. we never had anything we didn’t like. They have the best Margaritas.

We snorkeled off the end of the peer. It was surprised at the number of fish we saw. They have equipment for you to use. We brought our own snorkel and mask. We did use the fins and they worked great. We used the kayaks and enjoyed them.
We had a couple night when we drank in the bar. Layed back but very fun.

Location: may or may not be what you want. We loved it but it is a bit remote from the little town so if you want to be in the town. This resort isn’t. They have a boat that goes into town a couple of time a day. That usually didn’t work for us. We took the water taxi. It was not too expensive and ran frequently. Just let Roberto know what you want to do and he will figure it out for you. Just check the times in town so you know when to catch your return boat.

If you want to do anything on the island, they will hook you up. We found that the companies that they worked with were very good and they will bill for you so you just pay them at the end of you trip. I didn’t find it to be any more expensive when booked through the resort and they seem to work with very professional knowledgeable companies. One day we wanted massages and the place they usually work with was closed so Roberto found us another place and booked it for us. It was wonderful. We had to pay directly because the resort didn’t have a billing relationship with that spa.
It was wonderful and Roberto made sure we got it done when we wanted it.
We also booked a private reef fishing and snorkeling trip on our last day. We really enjoyed that and when got back to the resort they cooked up our catch for us and we had an amazing lunch.
The cabanas are lovely. They are a bit on the rustic side.,. They have a hammock on your porch, which both my husband and I thoroughly enjoyed. They have a small fridge and a smal TV. No phone in the rooms. they do have WIFI and I had cell service. I haven’t gotten the bill yet so I don’t know how much I was paying for those calls and texts that I was sending. They have a really nice beach that they keep very clean. Lots of chairs and tables for relaxing.

What they don’t have….which we didn’t miss. work out room. spa on site, hot tub. I didn’t see a lot of hot tubs at the other resorts either. They don’t have a swim up bar. So if you have to have those things or if you want to be able to walk to the night life. This might not be the place for you. If you love to stay on the beach, and want GREAT service, this is probably the place for you. We went out one night and did the bars and dancing and San Pedro.
It was fun but one night was plenty of that. It is easy enough to get to town if you want to you just have the cost of the water taxi. We looked at other places when we were there and we really liked Portofino best.
There are other nice places like Victoria house and the Phoenix but they definitely had a different vibe. They were not what we were looking for on this trip.
IF I recall correctly, Sandra calls it barefoot elegance and I think that is a very fair description.

257 | Roy Smock and Lynn Todd said on October 25th, 2010 at 2:47 pm

Where do I begin? From moment one I was in awe of this place, and really don’t know if I have adequate words to describe it.
The rooms combine rustic with simple elegance that is so comforting. Flowers sprinkled around your room every day was so nice.
The atmosphere was whatever you wanted it to be. There were lovely people there to be social with if you so desired, or at times you could feel like you were the only person there. It was so quite and relaxing. The grounds were groomed everyday. You were allowed to go bare foot any where anytime. You never really saw many of the quests as most just go their own way or hang out on the beach.
I cannot wait to go back. The water transportation everywhere is great. Don’t worry about a thing coming or going. Moe takes care of everybody. The staff were the loveliest people. They know what you need before you do. Nothing is too much trouble. They help you with everything. The bartenders Orville, and Raphael were always ready to mix a drink or bring a snack down to you. Lorraine, David, and Roberto helped you plan anything. Last but not least my darling Flor who brought my hot tea with honey and lemon coming when I had a little congestion. Bye the time we left I felt like I was leaving my own family. Its hard to describe, but it was just wonder. It might be a little tame for those who wish to party all night, but if its peace, quiet, relaxing, and feeling special is what you need this is the place
Lorraine, I will spread the word about this place as best I can. If anyone does book I will tell them to mention our name.

Hugs and Kisses for everybody,

Roy Smock and Lynn Todd

258 | CHK said on September 8th, 2010 at 1:46 pm

This has been an amazing trip ( honeymoon), and Portofino has made it the best!! You have all been so kind and thoughtful, and have truly made us feel welcome! We will miss you all, and wish you all the very best!

259 | LJ said on June 6th, 2010 at 4:00 pm

We had a fabulous time in a glorious place, unforgettable.We had a beautiful honeymoon , and your staff and your staff helped make it so.
” till next time”

260 | FG said on June 3rd, 2010 at 1:44 pm

From our warm welcome to our good bye – Thank you for everything. My six month pregnant belly and I loved our four day stay here!
It was my first time getting comfortable around sand – and that alone was memorable.

Until next time.

261 | Nicole and Jameson Schroeder said on June 2nd, 2010 at 11:39 am

My husband and I just spent our belated honeymoon at Portofino, (late May 2010) and it was the most romantic, beautiful place either of us have ever been. The staff was truly amazing and really make you feel like you’re someone special. We can’t wait to go back and visit. We left feeling like we really made some lifelong friends, even just amongst the staff. Thank you Portofino staff for making our first vacation so wonderful and we can’t wait to visit you again!


Nicole and Jameson

262 | EA said on May 16th, 2010 at 3:53 pm

Thank you for your warm hospitality. Everyone was extremely friendly and helpful. The resort is friendly and intimate. Belize is gorgeous we were definitely recommending that our friends and family visit we will be back and maybe no definitely will have to be courageous enough to snorkel.We wish you all the best in the future.

263 | TR said on May 11th, 2010 at 11:42 am

To the family of Portofino:
Thank you all so much for the incredible vacation experience. Everyone was so wonderful and made us feel welcome and a part of our family. We enjoyed Marlin and his efficiency. We loved Beverly and Menelva they took great care of us. Raphael, James and Orvelle made sure our thirst was always quenched and Mo got us were we needed to be.Not to mention everyone else… thank you.

264 | LR said on April 8th, 2010 at 1:58 pm

What a beautiful place and wonderful people. Thank you for making our second stay just as special as our first. We’re sure to be back. Come see us in Kansas anytime. :)

265 | Mary and Michael Moore said on March 30th, 2010 at 6:02 pm

Mike and I just posted this on TripAdvisor; however, we wanted to also leave our comments here for those that may not see it on TripAdvisor.

SIMPLY PARADISE . . . It felt like we were welcomed home after a long trip!

My husband, Mike, and I just celebrated our 25th Anniversary at the Portofino Beach Resort for eight glorious days and 7 nights. I am struggling to find words powerful enough to describe the outstanding time that we had at the Portofino. We spent quite a bit of time searching for a location to celebrate our marriage before we settled on the Portofino. We were looking for a place that was not too big but quaint (where we did not feel like one of 500 guests . . . but more of one of 50 guests); a place not directly in the middle of the “city/nightlife” but close enough if we wanted to go party; a place that was clean; a place that had terrific food; and lastly a place that had a good contacts with the local/reputable tour companies. We found all of that and SO MUCH MORE at the Portofino!

We are extremely glad that we took the very few negative comments about Portofino with a grain of salt and did not let that deter us from going there. In fact when we re-read some of the negative comments after our stay, we are not sure that we were staying at the same resort as they described!

What did we like best about the Portofino . . . well like I mentioned above, it met all of the criteria that we were looking for. The rooms were very clean; the beds comfortable; and the property immaculate. Every morning, the staff was out cleaning up any debris that may have floated in from the sea or leaves that fell off the trees. The pool was a wonderful place to swim or just relax. We had read in some previous reviews that some guests had a problem with the water system at the Portofino – that it contained brine. Over the last year, they have upgraded their water system and we had no issues with not feeling clean after we took our showers. I would recommend that regardless of where you stay – and I hope you choose the Portofino – that you get yourself a good leave-in conditioner as the salt water can be tough on your hair.

We ate in town several times BUT we ended up eating for the remainder of our stay at the Portofino Restaurant – you just couldn’t beat the quality and the prices in town. The food there is five star and in fact nightly you would find guests from other resorts coming to the Portofino for dinner. My husband caught a barracuda and they cooked it up for us Creole style – YUM!!

We would recommend that when you are in San Pedro to try Mangos Restaurant and have an ice cream at Manelly’s Ice Cream (right next to Fidos). Our favorite stores in town were “Ambar” (located in Fidos courtyard). She carried beautiful jewelry. We also really liked “Graniel’s Dreamland” (located on Middle Street) for beautiful carved wood. AND if you want an outstanding massage and/or facial try “Sol Spa” in San Pedro! The best facial that I have ever had.

Back to the Portofino – they helped us to arrange several adventures during our stay and we were extremely pleased with the reputable groups that they hooked us up with. We went to Barton Creek and the Xunantunich Mayan site. While this was an all day trip – it was really worth it to see Belize and meet the locals! We also took two snorkeling trips – one to Mexico Rocks and the other to Hol Chan. We were able to see more wildlife at Hol Chan. Mike took an all day fishing trip with someone that he met at Fidos and NOT through Portofino. He was disappointed. While the price was somewhat cheaper than through the group referred to through Portofino – the boat was very small; they were not able to go outside of the reef area; and no lunch was provided. Next time he will go through the group recommended by Portofino.

And last but not least, our stay was made even more memorable by the owners and staff of Portofino! It felt like we had known them all of our lives – it felt like family! They did everything that they could to ensure that our stay was comfortable, memorable and enjoyable. I want to specifically mentioned Sandra (she and her husband own the Portofino); Roselie and Bertha (who worked in the office and managed logistics and trips); Mo (the Portofino Boat Captain); Orville and Rafael (the Bartenders and story tellers extraordinaire); Karla, Rachael and Marleini (who worked in the restaurant); Bella (one of the Chefs) and Carlos (who did our “wake-up knock knocks” so we didn’t miss our trips).

I think how a resort handles an “emergency” situation says a lot. While we were there, the ENTIRE COUNTRY OF BELIZE had a power outage! They ensured that all guests were present and accounted for; they had backup generators up and running in now time; there were a couple of rooms where the lights didn’t come on right away with the generator so they supplied candles and hurricane lamps. We were very, very impressed with how they handled this situation. We enjoyed some quiet time by candle light for about an hour until the power was restored.

THANK YOU SO VERY MUCH PORTOFINO for being a part of our 25th Anniversary. We will be back and miss you all already!

266 | TM said on March 12th, 2010 at 9:52 am

To the staff of Portofino we were so graciously treated, like if we were kings or queens. Our experience was great and made possible by everyone here. They have a great team. I will send as many friends to see you as possible.

267 | BILL AND SUSAN TICKHILL said on March 8th, 2010 at 3:34 pm


268 | Darryl Metcalf said on March 7th, 2010 at 3:59 am

This is our first time to your lodge and we are trying to figure out what the evening attire is at the hotel restaurant and bar.

REPLY from Portofino Beach Resort:
Dear Darryl, thank you very much for your email.
Bertha, our Reservation Manager will be in touch with you and is more than happy for giving you all the information.
Warm Regards,
Sandra van Noord

269 | SK said on January 12th, 2010 at 2:31 pm

To the Portofino Staff,

Many thanks for making our stay here in your beautiful country a memorable experience. Your friendliness and genuine concern for our comfort and happiness is very much appreciated. We will miss all of your happy faces!!

270 | Magaly Amores said on December 13th, 2009 at 10:40 pm

And I forgot to say that your food is delicious!! The grouper is extremely tasty, as well as other dishes. My husband, Russ, and I had to have the dishes more than once during our stay. :) Thanks again!

271 | Magaly Amores said on December 13th, 2009 at 10:34 pm

My husband and I had fun in Belize at Portofino. We were there from 12/5-12/12… amazing time. Thank you for the hospitality. You have a very good staff. Everyone there made it very enjoyable, BUT I have to say that Rafael, Marlene and Rachel were definitely GREAT! They always gave us great suggestions, especially on what to try and do in San Pedro. They were always sooo nice and fun to talk to! Please say hi to them! :)Our experience there was very nice and we will definitely go back!

272 | Forrest said on November 27th, 2009 at 4:18 pm

Thanksgiving greetings to Jan, Sondra, and the rest of the Portofino staff, including our gracious boat captain.
Many thanks for a superb Thanksgiving last night; the food, the service, the ambience, and the hospitality of all were totally wonderful and greatly appreciated.

Cheers to all! – Forrest

273 | BLM said on October 12th, 2009 at 2:15 pm

You guys are awesome!!!

We have been to other places in the Caribbean but this is the BEST!
Thanks so much for helping us and being a part of renewing our wedding vows. What a great way to celebrate our first twelve years!! We hope we can come back!
Thanks again.

274 | LTC said on September 14th, 2009 at 3:57 pm

Thank you for a wonderful second half honeymoon! You all have been incredibly hospitable, kind and fun!! You have made us feel very much at home, and cant wait for our next trip to lovely San Pedro.

Muchas Gracias

275 | Robert and Laurie said on September 12th, 2009 at 3:51 pm

We just returned from our honeymoon and stayed at Portofino. Words can’t describe how wonderful it was there. The resort was beautiful and very clean. Our room was spacious and with a great view of the beach and ocean. We ate at the resort often and really enjoyed the food. Portofino is a great place to go and relax, it is just a boat ride from town if you are looking for some more nightlife. The best thing about Portofino is the people that work there. Rosalie was so personable and down to earth. She organized so many wonderful trips for us and took the time to get to know us. She is amazing. Bertha was also wonderful. I wanted to go to the spa and she wasn’t getting an answer on the phone so she sent someone over to book an appointment for me. Raphael was enjoyable to talk to and we even got the chance to hang out with him in town. He is really funny and personable. Then there is Orville who we spent the most time with. He is the other bar tender at Portofino. He is an excellent source of information and a genuinely nice person. He is great to sit at the bar and talk to. I had gotten some sunburn and he cut some aloe off a plant for me. He also remembered that I like to take a coke light to my room when we went up for the night, and one night I had forgotten to order it. He knocked on our door and delivered it to me! My husband and I can’t say enough good things about Portofino itself but especially the people we got to know staying there. Customer service is beyond 5 stars. We are already talking about going back and our friends saw our pics and want to come too. Portofino is a quiet place to be able to hang out but there is so many activities you can plan from there and has great snorkeling too.

276 | Robb and Kirsten Hall said on August 10th, 2009 at 5:00 pm

My wife and I went to Belize and stayed at Portofino to celebrate selling a house. We were met at the airport and ferried by golf cart and by boat to the resort. The room they gave us was magnificent with what I think of was the best view of the ocean, (room 1). We ate fine cuisine meals there for breakfast lunch and dinner. We only ate in town I think after we had exhausted the menu at Portofino! The staff helped make all the arrangements for trips and where-ever we were on the property, they were always there to help or offer a drink. We were treated as family; we felt welcome, safe and secure. Portofino is a quiet place, away from the hustle and bustle of town, a perfect place for a romantic get away. Our stay helped strengthen our marriage and we hope to go back to Portofino soon.

277 | Sarah Turner said on August 8th, 2009 at 11:05 am

My husband and I stayed at Portofino for our honeymoon last August (2008), it was my dream honeymoon! I fell in love with Belize and Portofino, I think about it everyday since I left and cannot wait to return! The staff was fantastic!! and the food even better! I miss you Portofino and can’t wait to meet again!

Sarah and Mark Turner

278 | Bill Calvin said on July 20th, 2009 at 11:51 am

I’ve been there 3 times now… Happy to hear about the new additions but please keep it the sexist place on Ambergris

279 | Ernie Brannon said on July 15th, 2009 at 7:58 am

My favorite place to dine in San Pedro and visit with the wonderful people there. See you soon !

280 | Marc and Linda Reinbold said on July 11th, 2009 at 3:28 pm

We have been to your beautiful resort twice, once as our 20th anniversay-finally-honeymoon and the next with our college kids and cousins. Can’t say enough of how wonderful the service and accomodations are. The food and drinks were awesome. Thank you for being like family and keeping in touch through the years. We look forward to seeing you in March 2010.

281 | Jonathan Mullen said on July 11th, 2009 at 3:01 pm

Great to see all the new enhancements and love the new site. You were such great neighbors and have always treated my friends well too I’m told. Can’t wait to come up for dinner and see first hand soon all the enhancements. Gonna ask my friend David and his girlfriend to stay there when they come into town.

Thanks ……. I’m officially a Fan

282 | Britt Barrett said on July 11th, 2009 at 2:19 pm

The new site looks great guys! I’m sure you are happy to have it finished. We miss you all. Everytime I start to stress about life I close my eyes and imagine myself at Portofino with a ‘welcome Drink’ or ‘Red Fanta’ in my hand enjoying the sun, waves, beauty, and awesome staff & truly amazing owners. Awwww, now I can face another day knowing there is always a place I can go back to some day. I wish you all nothing but the best the world has to offer.

Love & Thanks Always,


283 | NM said on May 12th, 2009 at 4:05 pm

We had an amazing honeymoon here with you. The food was exceptional, a true culinary delight!! The hospitality was above and beyond our expectations!! It all has been beautiful and we have memories that we will never forget. Hopefully we will return soon!

284 | MR said on May 12th, 2009 at 2:19 pm

For the friends at Portofino:

I have always dreamt of coming to an island like this…thank you for helping my dream come true. You are all wonderful people & you always had a smile to share. Thank you so much for sharing your paradise! Also thanks for the “congrats Alice Cake”:) will see ya soon!

285 | KLMW said on February 10th, 2009 at 2:02 pm

Thanks to all of you for a great experience. Our family loved our stay here at your resort and We appreciated all of the great hospitality by everyone.
We have traveled to some beautiful places- but this ranks #1. Take care root for the KU Jayhawks ( NCAA Basketball).

286 | BP said on October 10th, 2008 at 4:30 pm

Thank you for a wonderful honeymoon stay! We had a fantastic time and wish all the lovely people at Portofino is the best!

287 | MS said on September 14th, 2008 at 1:56 pm

We had a wonderful time at this resort. We enjoyed and appreciated the warm welcome, the view, and the Cabana is so gorgeous and awesome.The staff are extremely friendly and made us feel like home!And a special thank you to Marlon and Orville, and Menel via them all made our stay here a blast!!

288 | KD said on July 3rd, 2008 at 10:09 am

Thank you so much for treating us like royalty – it was a very special time for us while we were here. Our honeymoon night will never be remembered as nothing short of perfect. The entire wedding party was glad i brought them here for dinner tonight, and to show off your wonderful resort.We will most definitely return here when we come back to Belize. Thanks again for making our perfect wedding dream come true.
We love you guys and this beautiful country.

289 | MC said on June 28th, 2008 at 4:18 pm

This place is absolutely gorgeous. We had so much fun. Everyone was so nice. We will definitely be coming back. We fell in love with the place and staff. Special friends were formed.We can’t say enough good things about Moe, Orville, James, Marlon,Julie, Minnie me and everyone else.

290 | CC said on June 28th, 2008 at 12:13 pm

You are the best. The food was ” wonderful”
the greatest time. ” Orville ” is the best bar waiter. Mo was a fun water taxi driver.

291 | AW said on June 23rd, 2008 at 4:10 pm

Totally Lovely!!

292 | SS said on June 23rd, 2008 at 1:09 pm

Thank you so much for an amazing honeymoon!
All the staff was so hospitable. Our stay was more than we would have dream of – what a beautiful room! We will be recommending you to all of our friends. Special thanks to Orville and James for keeping our fish well stocked and to Helda for showing us around town. ee you soon!

293 | CJ said on June 12th, 2008 at 8:26 am

This was such a fantastic place for a honeymoon.I have no words to describe how wonderful it was.I want to thank Moe, Marlon,Lucy, James, Oriville,Julie and the people who did our laundry. And anyone I didn’t mention who made my visit exceptional.
We both truly hope to return again. Stay happy and healthy till then.

294 | DG said on May 2nd, 2008 at 7:10 am

A wonderful holiday. All the staff are good and very helpful especially Rafael.( my brothers)the food excellent!!

At last I can get a word in. Everything was more than expected my thanks. To Ann the staff my only regrets is leaving 10lbs heavier than when i came. I am really envious for everyone that lives here.

295 | RM said on April 30th, 2008 at 7:01 pm

Just another day in paradise. We made the most of each day-kayaking & snorkeling to Mexico Rocks, sailing to Hole Chan, then a private fishing a snorkeling cruise to the north of the island.In between the big fun we tried to appreciate every moment. Weather we were waiting for our continental breakfast,or at the dock at 5:15 waiting for the 5:00 water taxi. Breath remember to turn off the Los Angeles brain and chill here island style with our new”brothers and sisters”. Hope you too are able to decompress and enjoy this wonderful gift.

296 | W family said on April 15th, 2008 at 2:48 pm

To all Portofino Staff,
Thank you for a fabulous vacation!
Everyone including the newest staff member Ted are extremely gracious.We couldn’t have chosen a better place to be married – it was beautifully or orchestrated, and very eventful. The only recommendation would be add meatballs to the menu ( and not the 3 day old ones that made it through customs!)

297 | RS said on April 6th, 2008 at 3:15 pm

We were spoiled here, the location, the rooms, the staff, ( Especial Rafael). Everything was nothing but the best, the only thing I would suggest is more choice on the dinner menu of things without fish in thanks for everything.

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Dear Portofino Friends, we have created a new brochure for you, which you can download when clicking on the link below:

We hope you enjoy!

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Paradise Found, Portofino Belize

We are so proud to share these amazing pictures with you, taken by Sondra Davis, who just started her own company called “Flash Focus Photography“.
Sondra was so kind for sharing her pictures with us, and we hope that you enjoy them as much as we do.

When Sondra emailed us, she also wrote us the following review:

“When I first met my husband, we went through the whole 20 questions stage. We discovered that vacationing on Ambergris Caye in Belize was on both our bucket lists. Now being a young married couple, we couldn’t afford it, but we were able to plan the most amazing 10th wedding anniversary trip to our “paradise”. While researching places to stay, I kept coming back to Portofino’s page. There was just something about the raw beauty of the property and I was drawn in. We visited in July of 2013, and it was by far the best vacation of our lives. The staff was extremely accommodating as well as congenial and simply amazing. I’ve in all my travels never encountered a staff like the crew at Portofino Beach Resort. They are ALL top notch. Our vacation was fantastical and effortless upon arrival. Our cabana was impeccably clean and fabulously decorated. The handmade soap was a very original touch, I fell in love with it as well as the fresh tropical flowers. And the food! Oh the food! Superb, we were never disappointed. We plan on making this a yearly tradition, so you should be seeing a lot of us. You may as well adopt us now ;-)”

For more information about Sondra’s work, visit her Facebook Fanpage as her new website will be up and running very soon!

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