More about Portofino
I'd pick a different resort, no pool.
My husband and I stayed at Portofino for our honeymoon. The rooms were nice (we stayed in the Royal Orchid Suite) but dated. The bed and pillows were very uncomfortable and the Jacuzzi tub wasn’t big enough for one person to have a comfortable bath. Also the Le Bistro was so-so; there are a few things on the menu that are good. But we only ate there when we didn’t want to go into town. I wish I would of check the reviews before we made reservations. If I were to go back I’d stay at the Mata Chica Beach Resort.
We really enjoyed our stay at the Portofino, but would probably stay somewhere else the next time we visited Ambergis Caye. The rooms were clean and comfortable, but not too private. The biggest negative about the rooms were the salt water showers. I really did not like that. They were located, however, right on the beach which was terrific.
I thought that the food at the restaurant was fresh and delicious. There was not a lot of variety as far as the type of fish served (snapper), but they managed to prepare it a lot of different and tasty ways. It would be comparable to a lot of 5 star restaurants in the United States.
The beach was private and well kept. The only negative was there was a lot of beach grass, so you could not easily go wading right from the shore.
The staff was very attentative and polite. Lorraine (the Manager) and Rafael (the Bartender) were great.
felt like royalty!!!
Was the first time we booked our own vacation 'package,' we found the Portofino booking process to be above and beyond for helpfulness and flexibility! Once we arrived, (after a VERY long journey) we felt instantly energized with such a warm welcome at Portofino! Since we wanted peace and quiet, with the option of 'town/night life,' Portofino was absolutely perfect! they even served us fancy drinks on the beach! the staff is wonderful, and my husband can be very high maintenance, but the staff always greeted us with smiles, and by our names throughout our stay. the accommodations are elegant, stylish, and clean...RIGHT on the beach and I do mean RIGHT on!!! the most beautiful sight is watching the full moon rise over the horizon of the sea, with the colors of the sunset still in the sky!!! the restaurant was wonderful, and we also enjoyed the 2 restaurants we tried (based on front desk recommendations!). yes, the boat rides seemed a little slow, but once we had a day to realize we were 'on vacation,' and not in any hurry, we thoroughly enjoyed this time as well! the staff is very knowledgeable with regards to activities and tours, restaurants, well...EVERYthing...and we experienced some VERY memorable tours! we highly recommend the mud bath at Maruba!!! the whole experience was truly wonderful, and we've traveled to many Caribbean destinations...will DEFINITELY return to Portofino!
Not As Advertised
A beautiful location, walk out the door onto the beach- and a staff that is very friendly....but the casita was dark, scruffy, with mismatched furniture and window coverings, no regular siting chairs or reading lights, or luggage rack, and poor lighting.. there was no "style" here..clean --but basic..not worth the price.. Breakfast was ok, but dinner food was so-so..and you had to eat there.. too much coordinating to get back to the main town by boat to find food..and forget walking anywhere- as you leave the property in either direction you have to walk a narrow path yards and yards through garbage and debris... can't swim from the beach..too shallow/seaweed --and water that touches the pollution..strictly for people who leave everyday to dive. .otherwise you're stuck.
Can't say enough, the best !
I felt that I had to write this and tell everyone what a beautiful resort this is. My wife and I stayed at Portofino in Feb. this year for the 3 rd. time. What bothers me about the things that are posted on here is that the people who do the complaining are the same people that you could not make happy in their own home town ! The staff were there every day to cater to our every need. I don't know why people come to San Pedro and expect New York City ! The water taxi beats a taxi cab ride any day. The owners, Jan & Sandra, have worked their butts off to make Portofino such a beautiful, quiet piece of heaven. Their managers Marlon and Lorraine will bend over backwards to accomodate you. Rapheal the bartender, what a saint he is. The most polite guy in the country. Roselie, Sadie, and last but not least Moh the captain are so thoughtfull and helpfull. Face it, it isn't New York City, but that is why you came here isn't it ??
Portofino is where we will spend our hard earned money !
If you like watching beautiful sunrises over the ocean then Portofino Resort is a must for you. Our vacation was exactly what we had anticipated. The resort is very private and about 6 miles from town which got us away from the hustle and bustle of San Pedro. The owners Jan and Sandra, and thier cute little girl, were very interested in making our stay enjoyable. The staff was also committed to our enjoyment. Big thank yous to Lorraine, Rafael, Mo, Rosalie, and the many others who catered to our every whim and ensured the beach and our room was clean. One of the things we enjoyed was the tropical feel of the cabana we stayed in. It was exactly what we expected and wasn't a typical hotel room you would find anywhere in the States. We enjoyed the food in the restaurant and the views are incredible too. The ocean is the main attraction and world class snorkeling, diving, and fishing are right there. We plan on returning soon.
marvelous stay, beautiful resort
Two visitors from Belgium / EU
We stayed for two weeks at the new mansion (first floor).
The accomodation was just perfect : clean, comfortable , peacefull, cosy and well situated.
The view from the covered terras on the seasite was breathtaking!
We really enjoyed the breakfast and several meals at the restaurant.
The bar, recently extended with an outdoor bar was just the thing for having a nice Belikin beer, a cocoloco or any of the many coctails !
We would like to congratulate owners and staff for the efforts they make every day to indulge their guests!
We felt like being in paradise!
We will certainly visit Portofino again!
We have just returned from our first trip to Belize and it will not be our last thanks to Portifino! It was exactly what we were looking for- private and beautiful, very personable and comfortable. Every meal of our 7 day stay was great as well as the accommodations at the bar and our cabin.
The owners have really put a special touch on every aspect of the resort to make you feel like it is there just for you! -We liked it so much we decided to get married there!! Thanks again Portifino!
Already planning a trip back!
We just returned from a wonderfully romantic week at Portofino as our honeymoon. I cannot say enough about the friendliness of the staff and the way we were treated.
We were in a cabana right on the beach(there are two rooms per beachfront cabana, but had no problem with noise) with the sound of the surf lulling us to sleep every night. We spent one night in the Honeymoon(Royal Orchid) Suite and wished we could have spent more days there. The rooms were well-appointed and are getting a fresh facelift. Showers and sink run off of well water, which can be SLIGHTLY brackish, but that never bothered us.
The food was better than we expected. The seafood was good(couldn't afford the lobster), but the filet de boeuf and the pork tenderloin were amazing. Nachos for lunch were filling enough for two. Wash it down with a few Belikins and you're set! Being as far north of town as Portofino is(about 6 mi), you can feel trapped into eating there every night, but there are plenty of options. We ate at Mata Chica one night and were disappointed at the quality and service. We went into town a few nights and nibbled at various places. It's a shame they're paving the streets. I like the nostalgia of walking on the sand streets. We had lunch at Victoria House and it was fabulous. I highly recommend eating there at least once.
Activities at the resort are a little limited. The swimming area free of the protected sea grass is small, and the only watercraft are a few kayaks, but if you're here to relax, you've found the right place. Some days we were just content to sit in the hammock outside our door and watch the world go by. Snorkeling off of the kayaks at one of the many tie-off points near the reef is a free way to enjoy the underwater world.
The excursions were nice. Dove the Blue Hole(beware-the trip there is a long-2 1/2hrs and equally as long going back) which was fabulous. Rum punch made the ride home more enjoyable. Went to Lamanai to see the ruins(beware again-45 min. boat ride, 1 hr. van ride, no a/c, on ROUGH roads, then another 1 hr. boat ride just to get there and the same going back). Ruins were fascinating, but question the amount of time getting there vs. enjoyment factor.
The star of the resort is the staff. I cannot say enough about how friendly, outgoing, and willing to do anything to please the customer they are. From the time Mo picks you up at the airport, and Raphael greeting you with a tropical drink, you feel pampered. Lorraine bailed me out of so many pinches(got us a dive trip in 5 minutes from phone call to boat launch, cut some Aloe Vera for my wife's sunburn, arranged all of our interisland flights, just to name a few) I felt embarassed. Roselli, Melani, and everybody else on the staff(I'm sorry everybody there, but I can't remember names the way you all do!) all deserve high merits and thanks. Jan(and his wife Sandra, the owners), you have a great crew and should be proud of everything they do for the customer.
Portofino, A must-go resort!!
We travelled all the way to Belize from Paris, France. It is definitely worth the trip...we really lived there an experience you only see in a movie!
Mo, the captain, picks you up at the San Pedro Airstrip and gives you the ride to the resort. He is very charming and always helpful. If you need someone to travel you around the island, he's the man. Always there!
Once you arrive at Portofino, the staff waits for you on the pier and welcomes you with a refreshing drink and explain you all you need to know to enjoy your stay. We stayed in a beach cabana. They're great: clean, comfortable, perfect A/C and individally furnished with care in the local style. Flowers everywhere in the room, not only for your arrival but every day new fresh flowers. It is great and really gives you the feeling you are in th tropics. The view on the ocean from the rooms is indescribable...You also get the same view whether you sit at
the bar or in the restaurant. The white sand paradise beach is clean and taken care of every morning by the staff. Beach accomation (beach chairs, hot tub, ocean cayak...) is perfect.
The resort offers a great deal of privacy. The location is away from the busy town of San Pedro and other crowded resorts. For those of you who want to enjoy a romantic getaway or an amazing honeymoon this is the place. The resort was full house (only 3 exclusive top suites and 8 beach cabanas + the mansion) and still you feel like you are alone at the resort.
Staff is so gentle and fhe front desk so helpful. Don't bother about
anything, just ask Lorraine or Rosalie. They book restaurants, boat ride, massages, golf kart, diving or snorkeling and island trips... They just do anything to make you stay easy and enjoyable.
The restaurant is good. Food is well presented and service perfect. The beach bar is so cool to enjoy your rest on the beach laying down in the sun. The bar tender is always there at the right moment to ask if you need something refreshing. The outside bar in the evening is a trap! Once there you never take off and end up around the local Belikin beer or cocktails with the other guests...
The owners spend much time with their guests. They are really friendly and invest a lot of time and money in their resort to make it always more luxurious. The swimming pool will be ready for september. Some previous "so-so" reviews on this website are totally outdated and not justified.
We will definitely go back to Portofino and hope that soon direct
flights from Europe will be available...It is a good value deal...
Belize From Above
A good spot to people watch
Find a tree to sit under and relax