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“Idyllic Ilse”

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Turneffe Island Resort
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Turneffe Island
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 21 August 2007

My girlfriend and I, both divers, stayed at TIL for a week this past May. This was my second trip to this resort, and it probably won't be my last. There just wasn't much to complain about, and a lot to rave about.

The resort itself is well maintained, clean and inviting. We had one of the private cabanas, C1. That upgrade was a bit pricey, but we had our own outdoor shower that came in handy after each dive. The food is good and plentiful. I would have liked a more extensive wine list, or a wine list at all. The house stuff left something to be desired, but we were on a tiny island, after all. The deck outside the restaurant was the meeting place each evening, with the divers and the fishermen swapping stories of the day's efforts. Everyone was pleasant and classy without being snooty or arrogant.

The reef and the various dive sites are in good condition and only minutes from the resort. We would do a dive, and then return to the resort to relax until the next dive. The dive boats are small, but the number of divers was too, so there was no overcrowding. The staff has your gear on the boat, assembled, prior to each dive. You only have to bring your mask and fins from the storage room adjacent to the dock. The divemaster was the same fellow who was there ten years earlier. He knows his stuff, but may be a bit burned out. The entire dive staff was friendly, helpful and fun. Same for the rest of the staff.

Getting to and from the resort was fairly easy. Fly into Belize City. The resort staff picks you up at the airport, takes you to the dock, loads your gear on the big boat, and an hour and a half later, you're in paradise.

Overall, this is a somewhat expensive place to visit, but you get your money's worth. We never had the impression that the management was scrimping on anything. Five stars!

  • Stayed: May 2007, travelled as a couple
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Thank Cetus
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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369 - 373 of 404 reviews

Reviewed 8 August 2007

The Lodge at Turneffe is truly a five star experience. Despite the fact that they are out in the middle of the ocean, on an otherwise deserted island, they catered to our every need. I don't know if it was the Swiss and German management, but it seemed that they thought of absolutely everything! Their extreme organization made our vacation extremely relaxing. The food is great, the main lodge is comfortable, shiny and clean. The cabanas were awesome with the most amazing views from your front porch. They deliver coffee (or tea or hot cocao) to your front porch every morning. It's definitely makes the schedule (breakfast at 7:30!) easier to handle. We are NOT morning people but we were so excited to go diving, we found we easily adjusted to the schedule. Besides, the yummy meals made it easy to get going. Meals are served family-style so be prepared to socialize with the other guests. When we went in May, there were less than 20 of us on the island. Their maximum capacity is just over 40, which means that you feel like you have the island to yourself.

The diving was as beautiful as everyone says it is. We went 2-3 times a day and were thrilled to see schools of grouper and snapper, turtles, eagle rays and the most beautiful coral formations.

We played on the Hobie cat, strolled the beautiful beaches and felt like we had two weeks worth of relaxation packed into only four days! We were so blissed out by the time we left, we didn't even need the rest of our vacation! If you have a chance to stay at the Lodge, GO! It's expensive compared to other places, but it is absolutely worth it.

A couple of caveats in my otherwise glowing review: Don't forget bug-spray - there are mosquitoes that come out at night. The beaches are not soft sand. They are hard packed: pretty, but not terribly comfortable. There is eel grass just offshore so swimming off the beach is not possible.

  • Stayed: May 2007, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank Beaches74
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 June 2007

My sweetie and I were so confused about where to go on our Belize dream vacation. TIL could not have been more perfect. We were greeted by a most friendly manager, shown to our glistening cabana and it only got better from there. As divers, one of our greatest concerns was how experienced the dive masters were going to be. We had nothing to worry about, they all had years of experience, gave us first class care from handling our gear to keeping us safe and showing us the beauty of their waters.
Everyday we looked forward to freshly baked breads and sweets, well balanced meals and more food than we could eat. We were served coffee to our rooms before the sun came up and between meals always had tasty snacks to choose from. Not all guests were divers so it was fun to have free seating during the meals to meet and get to know the other visitors.
We would return in a heart beat and hope to do so in the near future.

  • Stayed: April 2007, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank jogee1234
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 April 2007

If you have read other reviews about this resort, you will see that this is a very nice place to “relax”. I put relax in quotes as we came home tired. Our course, after diving, diving, diving, what you expect? The other reviews are right on target with their comments, but I would like to say a few negatives that just bothered me for a resort in this price range. Nothing big, just bothered me. We had a cabaña (#C4) which was very nice, but not sure it was worth the extra $$$$ as the regular rooms are the same, just in a set of four. The beach is very hard sand (coral), OK for walking on and laying in a lounger, but not a soft sand beach. You can not walk into the water because you will sink in the “mucky” sand. The hammock outside our cabana was full of holes and the mats to wipe off your sandals at the dining lodge were worn out. Not something I would have expected. I would return, but may look for a better value first.

  • Stayed: March 2007, travelled with family
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6  Thank OldDudeDiver
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 March 2007

We HIGHLY recommend getting out of Belize City ASAP! if you have to stay one night, go to the princess hotel, there is unlimited wireless free access. Its dirty and ghetto, but right on the peir pick up point. They also have 2 free movies theatres and a casino. For convenience and amenties it can be beat. But really get out of the city as fast as you can. We took our trip 30 miles off the coast on a private island via yacht. We stayed a week at the Turneffe Island Lodge which was absolutely fantastc from the fresh hot chocolate/coffee each morning, divemasters with over 3000 dives logged, shark encounters, quiet peaceful beach, less than 20 people checked in to the lodge, adventures on the hobie cat, to the kind, helpful and very friendly staff. Meals were great, home style but not gourmet. Always plenty to eat. Diving was superb! Very helpful dive masters, crabs, sharks plenty, turtles, spotted eagle rays, mantas, eels, stone fish, parrot fish,sponges galore, fish a plenty, walls, rocks formations to swim under and around, drift dives! 5 star diving for sure! One thing that is good is that its only 1 hour from the blue hole which was a fantastic dive marine-life-wise. Ambergais Caye takes 3 hours to get to the blue hole, so Turneffe Island lodge is definitely the way to go! BTW the outdoor shower was to die for, and we thought our room #5 was the best location on the island. Also, we had heard to "definitely upgrade to a private cabanna" however, when we got there the privates looked the same, and all room had been upgraded with the private showers, and there is no hearing through walls problems, so I would recommend to go for room 5. Also, everyone goes to sleep by nine-not a place for wild nights!

4  Thank besttravelguru
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Turneffe Island Resort

Address: Turneffe Atoll, Turneffe Island, Belize
Phone Number:
Region: Belize > Belize Cayes > Turneffe Island
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Shuttle Bus service Spa Swimming Pool Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Turneffe Island
Price Range: ₹ 40,757 - ₹ 70,569 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Turneffe Island Resort 3.5*
Number of rooms: 22
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Turneffe Island Resort is a secluded 14-acre private island located 35 miles off the coast of Belize. We offer 7 night, 4-night, and 3-night Diving, Fishing and Resort packages. Packages include airport transfers, deluxe lodge accommodations, scheduled activities, all meals and hors d’oeuvres served throughout the day. All accommodations are located on white sandy beaches. All rooms include indoor and outdoor showers and spectacular ocean views. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Turneffe Island Hotel Turneffe Islands
Turneffe Island Lodge

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