May 28th 2010 by Cori Sterrenberg
Located 6 miles north from the centre of San Pedro town, Ambergris Caye, lies this rustic and truly romantic resort Portofino. Nestled on stretch of 330 feet of private white sand beach, and immersed within 4.5 acres of property, Portofino offers travellers the ultimate in peace, tranquility, romance, and relaxation. Each of the 17 rustic beachfront accommodations offers thatched roof, wide plank natural hardwood floors, free WIFI ,television, dvd/cd player, AC, fridge, lush towels, soft linens, and luxurious bathrooms. The exteriors offer chairs, hammocks, and patios to relax, and enjoy the breeze. There are 6 beach cabanas, 2 Junior suites, 2 VIP suites, which offer expansive views of the caribbean sea, 1 honeymoon suite that is truly the room to book if you are wanting a romantic getaway, and if you are a large group they also offer the “mansion” which accommodates up to 10 people.
My partner and I came here for a little get away, and we were truly blown away by the accommodations we had. The resort is private, and tranquil and offers couples an amazing place to be together, as well as enjoy the stunning scenery of the caribbean sea. We were in the top floor honeymoon suite, and it offered unparalleled views of the reef, and the clear blue waters. The suite itself was stunning. Rustic, roomy, and sexy are for sure the adjectives that come to mind. The deck off the suite offered lounge chairs as well as a hammock, and it was the perfect way to enjoy the view, the breeze, and one another.
The resort offers a full restaurant and bar, with exceptional staff, and great food. We had a very satisfying lunch the day of our arrival. I ordered the chicken burger, which came on a house made bun, and really yummy crispy fries. I was actually still a bit tired from the night before, so ordered a bloody mary to help replenish myself. It was fantastic, spicy, hot a full of flavour, the bartender really knew how to make the ultimate cure for my “condition.”
For dinner that night we were seated at the end of the deck overlooking the stunning pool, and started with a caesar salad, and a delicately marinaded beef tenderloin strip, which was tender, and very tasty. The waitress was extremely helpful in helping me decide what to order as my main. I ended up ordering the grouper with a caper wine sauce, and my partner ordered the pork tenderloin. Both dishes were presented in a creative array, and offered a well balanced flavor. Portofino is well know on the Island for having lobster year round as well, so if you are a lobster fan, then this for sure is the place to get your fill.
The owners of the resort live onsite, which in my opinion is outstanding. Both Sandra, and Jan van Noord are there to greet you, and really make you feel welcomed. Their passion for the Island, fishing, diving, and the living the life here in San pedro is certainly refreshing especially if you are looking for some real honest direction as what else to do while you are here on your vacation. They will take care of all the bookings for diving, snorkelling, fishing trips, and also mainland trips to the zoo or the ruins. If you just feel like hanging tight at the resort, they offer a small book library, free use of snorkel equipment, canoes, and kayaks are readily available, and at no extra charge.
For the gay and lesbian traveller this would be my pick of a resort to stay at. Never did we feel uncomfortable, and the setting allows for privacy, that I would think would be hard to achieve at any other resort on the island. Even with almost a full house, we were almost always alone, with the exception of meals time, and even then the seating options are great, and the staff is truly wonderful, respectful, and welcoming.
For more information on how to get here, and how to book your stay at Portofino, please check out the accommodations page and I can help make your gay destination plans a reality.