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“A lot of potential”

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Fantasy Island Beach Resort
Ranked #5 of 5 Hotels in French Harbour
Reviewed 21 February 2012

My wife and I, along with 18 others, just got back from a week stay at Fantasy Island.
Our first impression when driving up to the resort is that it needs a lot of TLC. The Fantasy Island Resort signs were worn, peeling and faded. The building where the gift shop is located has rotting soffiting, and the abandoned guard house is an eyesore.
Check-in was a breeze for us and we hiked over to our room. It was located past the dive operations and far from all the activities. This for us was a plus. We didn't have far to go to dive, and it was quiet around our rooms.
Our room -- Our room reeked of mold. The air conditioner didn't work consistently. Everything felt damp all the time. The shower water was rarely more then warm, sometimes cold, but on two days it was hot. On two separate days we had black water (literally) coming out of the shower head. It was a very fine dirt that came out for about 3 minutes each time. It was the first time I took a shower and came out dirtier then when I went in. The bed was comfortable, the lights worked (the ceiling fan did not), we had a room fridge stocked with a pitcher of cold water, and the maid was good. (As an aside, half of the other members in our group had to be moved from their rooms, some multiple times, because of problems with the rooms -- no water, leaking ceilings, bed problems, etc. )
Food -- In a word it was "sufficient". Neither stellar nor boring. It was mediocre. Some days were better then others, but most of the time the food was not great. To me it was not a big deal. I go on vacation to dive, and the food is usually a bonus
Drinks -- the bar was also o.k. I like to drink beer but their selection was not great. My wife likes mixed drinks as she was happy. They always had water and soda (diet soda was $1 extra) available.
Grounds -- the beach area and most of the guest areas were kept in very good shape. Trash and debris were swept up and cleaned up every morning (there was a lot of trash along the rocky areas that had washed ashore -- I am not sure why they never cleaned this up -- it is an eyesore). One of the things we did not like is that throughout the property there are signs of neglect. Light posts have rotted and fallen over. Electrical outlets with bare plugs laying on the ground. Signs knocked over or leaning askew. These things could be corrected in days and would give this place a polished, finished, cared for feeling.
Monkeys -- I don't find monkeys cute. I may be in the minority here, but I don't like them. The monkeys would steal pool balls, they stole clothing from our friend's balcony, and they would scatter trash around the beach. They would also run across the bar and steal from the bar. On more then one occasion they came in to the dining room and would run across the tables and through the food area. Some people found this amusing and delightful, I found it to be gross.
Service -- Now this is where the resort starts to really shine. For the most part the service was great. Even though quite a few of the staff didn't speak English, between their poor English and my poor Spanish, hand signals, and smiles, communication wasn't too difficult. I would give the service staff an A for all they did for us. Even the groundskeepers were very pleasant and friendly. The only complaint I have about anybody were some of the girls at the front desk. They were far from friendly and when we were checking out, they were not sending us off with a smile.
One last comment before we get to the diving. Almost every morning between 6 and 6:30AM, we were awakened by a worker spraying insecticide outside of our rooms. If you can imagine the sound of a leafblower waking you up, then in a few minutes the smell of insecticide coming in to your room. Also, we had a lot of our equipment and wet clothes out on the railings out front and all of it was sprayed with the insecticide. The poor guy spraying everything only had ear protection, no face mask.
Diving -- this is what the vacation was all about. Here is where we got our money's worth, and a lot more.
Boats -- they were clean, they worked, and we never had problems
Crew -- Amazing. We had Kevin as captain and Derry as DM. They did what ever they were asked to do. They helped make the diving great. These guys are an amazing asset to F.I. diving. The other boat also had great guys (according to our friends) and we were all very impressed with the service. Little things like fresh melons and pineapple between dives make a big difference.
Derry really impressed us with his ability to find seahorses. He found us turtles, eels, seahorses, toadfish, and even dolphins. He did not deliver on his promise to find us a manta ray, but we forgave him. Derry says the manta ray never received the text he sent......
The seas were fairly rough and some of our group had difficulty getting back on the boat. The ladder caused a few casualties during the week. Derry and the other DMs would stay in the water and help take divers' fins off if they were having problems in the water. This was stellar service.
My final comments would be that this place is a gem in the rough. If they would concentrate on fixing it up, it could be a classic vacation spot. We think they have too much going on, stretching limited resources, leaving too much unfinished. If you are coming here to dive, and you don't mind rooms and food that aren't great, this is the place to be. If you are coming here for the beach, the food, and the rooms, you'll be only 33% satisfied. Thanks again to a wonderful staff and a FANTASTIC dive operation.

  • Stayed: February 2012, travelled with friends
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4  Thank Gumby&PokeyDivers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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342 - 346 of 860 reviews

Reviewed 18 February 2012

We went with a large dive group June 2011, we had 3 boats for our group,11days with diving. I was not impressed, I would not recommend or go back. I wrote the following for our dive tour manager to pass on to the new owners, for constructive purposes. I started with the good and tried to be nice with the bad. (But FYI most of our group had problems with their room & got sick from the food, taxi's are expensive & the dive boats stayed pretty close, pretty boring)

The Bar: Narisa is an amazing employee!!!!! She was friendly, remembered our names, room numbers and drinks. She always had a smile on her face, best employee I encountered at the resort. I liked that most of the drinks were included in our package and I did not mind paying the nominal fee for the top shelf and blended drinks. I had read this was the policy from trip advisor and came prepared.
The grounds: I was impressed with your grounds keepers. Everything outside was very tiddy. The beach was raked every day and sprayed for bugs. The animals are an entertaining touch and I never saw any animal waste nor did it smell of animals…good job grounds people.
Animals: I loved watching the monkeys!!! Please keep them, they are great entertainment. Though I am concerned that the monkeys are given too many alcoholic drinks, which make them intoxicated monkeys, this cannot be healthy for them. Some of the monkeys are becoming a bit aggressive because some guest interacts with them inappropriately. I think at the orientation they should explain proper interaction with the animals, for the animal’s safety and health mostly. Some people deserve to be bit and they did. With this said, I personally did see the monkeys take personal items from people near the bar and beach, the monkeys seemed to return the items back to the human after a game of keep away. But some of our friends were missing items from there decks, that were never to be found. When they asked if they or someone could go to the monkeys “nest” to see if the missing items could be recovered the hotel employees played dumb. We kind of think perhaps the monkeys did not take it or some is reselling what the monkeys take back home.
Pool: I did not personally get in the pool, it looked nice, but loved the outdoor showers by the pool. The one closest to the bar, the shower drain did get backed up often, but still a great place to rinse off after the beach.
Beach: Lovely, both of them, clean, did not smell, the water was great. The reef was fun to explore and had a decent amount of life. I did not use the kayaks but they were there and others really enjoyed them. The swim up dock is a great touch and a lot of fun, but the ladder my need some repair. Yes there were no-see-ums, but it seemed like your grounds staff was trying to keep them under control, personally I only had a few bites from them, but I never went outside without deet on. Plenty of lounge chairs and the beach towels were much nicer than the room towels. I’m usually not a beach/ sand person because it stinks, I really enjoyed your beach!!!!
Front Desk: The staff is not very friendly, they acted like they are being bothered if you ask them questions, try to get the TV remote from them (no they do not leave it in the room), clean towels and extra room key. This part of your staff is basically your second point of contact after arriving, and is well the front of the house and they set the tone for many people’s perception of the resort. At check in they were lifeless and almost rude, I do remember a guy who brought us a welcome drink…nice touch. They gave no directions to the room’s location, what time food was served nothing. I realize there was almost 20 of us, but come on, crack a smile, nobody was pushy or demanding, we are here to have fun. I think with some training the front of the house can shine for you, even if there are problems, if they acted like they cared hotel guests will over look a lot. They should at least smile when people come to the front desk or walk by.
Store: There is a nice selection. The first time we tried to go in a staff member was walking out, he made it seem like it was closed ( asked in English & Spanish), but we found out later it was still open. On another day I finally went in, the sells person did not say hola, hi, nothing. Here is the thing I had money, I wanted to spend it on souvenirs, did I NO, why am I going to waste my time in smelly store where the sell people don’t want to sell stuff.
BURNS the activity guy: This man wears many hats, he is a great asset to your resort. He gives a good massage, helped us with all our questions, helped us with activities, greeted us throughout the day and just looked after us.
Rooms: Our room 125 was ok.
The Bad: the floors did not seem clean so I wore my shoes or sock when I walked around. Our shower was nasty I always wore my flip flops to take a shower. The shower floor was slimy; there was old soap in the corner on the floor, and black mold on the walls. The water temperature fluctuated from hot to cold, it was annoying and we almost got burnt. We had to have a maintenance person come 3 days to fix the toilet because it would not flush. After diving I want to come back to a clean room and take a nice shower. The shower at the boat dock was better. If you went out on the balcony it kind of smelt like sewage, this should be addressed. The dresser is a little broken down, so I did not unpack my clothes. They use a top sheet on the bottom of the bed which are too small and you end up on the bare mattress in the middle of the night. Which is gross because the mattresses looks old, I think ours had a hole but I refused to look, I knew I would want a new room. But I knew if asked to be moved we would be punished and put is a worse room. Also I saw that they drag the mattresses on the floor in and out of the dingy storage room to change the bed configurations. It was nice that they put water in the room but the glasses did not appear clean and open picture is just asking to get sick. But after hearing some of the horror stories of our friends we decided not to complain to management. (air conditioners not working, showers flood into the bathroom, walls/ ceilings needing repaired, no shower head) Also the room towels were old, on our last day we got a plush white towel, only to find it was still dirty, with blood and feces. I think the rooms or the patio should have a clothes line or a place to hang swim suits & towels, it is a dive resort.
The air conditioner worked, the room was kept cool, and the size of the rooms is nice and large. The view was great. Having the mini fridge in the room was great. Again with some training and changes you have the bones of a really nice resort.
Entrance to the island, I appreciated the armed guards at the bridge checking people before they were allowed to go on the island.
Dive shop: Your dive operation is great. The gal that works in the dive shop another wonderful employee I think her name is Annia, she was friendly, smiled and was knowledgeable. There was a nice selection of dive necessities and snacks. Thankfully for the snacks at the dive shop, we lived off of the Pringles and Snicker bars, because the food was just ok. The locker area was clean, plenty of spots but needed better lighting and a few more hanger for wet suits. Dive Boats, only one day we had towels on the boat, I always brought a towel so it was not a big deal, but other dive boats has towels and robes. Miguel & Richard we great, they always had cold water and fruit for us.
The food: First of all I think if you had a few vending machines that we could get drinks and snacks any time; it could alleviate some of the food complaints. The food that was served was ok, many times they would run out of certain items. Breakfast and lunch was basically the same every day, and was too repetitive. Many in our group got sick from the food.
There are much better choices on the island for rooms, location to town, food & dive operations.

Room Tip: Try to get a room closer to the dive boats if you don't want to walk to far after you dives. It...
  • Stayed: June 2011, travelled with friends
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3  Thank DiveDivaDJ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 February 2012

This resort is amazing if you like the water! Great for little children and adults. The ocean out front of the resort is like a big bath tub so calm due to the reef a little ways out. The snorkeling off the resort is the best we have ever seen! We seen just as much snorkeling as we did diving so it's a perfect get away! The food was pretty good not too spectacular but we sure weren't hungry, and the room are clean and spacious although they are a little older. Monkeys galore to entertain you.We have been here five times and would definately go back. We were there in january 2011 however my travel date will say march as it wont go back any farther.

Room Tip: Beside dive shop is the most tranquil except for the dive boats. night time is great
  • Stayed: March 2011, travelled with family
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4  Thank freenoe
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 January 2012

We were staying in Fantasy Island for one week, so want to say it is good place to stay...
I don't like only loudly horrible music there in the bar and very bad cold lights in restaurant...
Very beautiful nature and many animals made our stay memorable...

  • Stayed: December 2011, travelled with friends
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3  Thank Sashaman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 January 2012

We returned to Fantasy Island for a two week dive trip, and we were not disappointed. Daren, the Manager of the dive shop was great as usual, and he continues to ensure that all the divers are happy and that everything is working properly. The water was a little cooler than we have had before because of the amount of rain, but the diving was still good.

The hotel has made some improvements since our last vist, and it seems to be a work in progress with a lot of little things being upgraded all the time.

  • Stayed: December 2011, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank ScubadiversM-M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Fantasy Island Beach Resort

Address: Carretera Pavimentada Ppal, French Harbour, French Harbour, Roatan IB3110, Honduras
Region: Honduras > Bay Islands > Roatan > French Harbour
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 5 Hotels in French Harbour
Price Range: ₹ 10,589 - ₹ 18,580 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Fantasy Island Beach Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 115
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Enjoy the best of the Caribbean at Fantasy Island Beach Resort, Dive and Marina! Our Roatan, Honduras resort is located on its own 21 acre private island. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Fantasy Island Beach Hotel Roatan
Fantasy Island Beach Roatan
Fantasy Island Roatan

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