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“Home away from home” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Xaman Ek Resort & Spa

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Xaman Ek Resort & Spa
Ranked #48 of 53 Hotels in San Pedro
Hopkins, Stann Creek, Belize
2 reviews
“Home away from home”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 13 December 2011

The resort is relaxing, the service is excellent you can't ask or more , the newly renovated Jambels Jerk Pit now located at the resort offers you a twist of Jamaica ,Belize.
Prices are affordable Quality is the best.
Staff are so friendly and at your call
I had the best massage ever
you will not regret booking here it's a real get away

Room Tip: We stayed in the beach front suite 1 it was amazing
See more room tips
  • Stayed December 2011, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Tiffany J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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54 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
    36
    7
    2
    5
    4
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6
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (2)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 July 2011

Ramshackle: Likely to fall to pieces; so poorly kept up that disintegration is likely; rickety

We decided to re-name this resort the "Ramshackle Inn", and with good reason.
I was looking forward to the seclusion and quiet of Xamen Ek for my husband and I's diving trip, but we were sorely disappointed. First of all, the website (both pictures and information) are very outdated. It is very obvious that Mike (the owner) has let the place go. There was mold and dirt in the common areas (most of the light fixtures had dirt collecting in the bottom of them). Mike also passed on quite a bit of falsified information to us, both before we arrived and while we were there--we are both divers, and since his website boasts Scuba Steve as the local divemaster, we used that information to choose this resort. Mike told us via email that "we can figure out the diving when you get here" and upon arrival, we were told that Scuba Steve moved to a different resort because he wasn't getting business at Xamen Ek. Mike did recommend White Sands resort and dive shop, which was excellent, but we would have stayed there had we known. We both wish we would have rented a golf cart because the resort was very far away from town, but we were able to get there via the boat ferry, though that took about 45 minutes each way. We also discovered 3 nearby resorts that had menus significantly less in price than the resort restaurant. In fact, Portofino (1 resort to the north) actually let us use their swimming pool, towels, and snorkeling equipment at no charge, and we spent as much time there as possible. While the food at Xamen Ek was pretty good, they were often out of things because "it was the off season", and the kitchen was very unclean. We were able to find someone to get us a drink 1 time in the entire week we were there, and we eventually gave up and hung out at Portofino's pool and bar. The gardens are very beautiful, but the junk and trash that accompanies the plants do not exactly enhance the beauty. Finally, the rooms---we stayed in one of the poolside cabanas. Evidently, a couple coming to the hotel 3 days after us were much more important and got the more updated cabana--when we arrived, our cabana did not even have toilet paper. There were 3-4 leaky holes in the roof, including one that was nearly as large as my head. The staff had to be aware that they were there when we arrived, because the furniture was arranged in a fashion that made absolutely no sense...but avoided all the water leaks, so when it rained, the water simply pooled on the floor. The shower hadn't been cleaned in months, the bugs overtook everything, and the shower drain had pieces of metal shards sticking out of it. The website boasted queen size beds, and instead we were greeted with a full bed that was full of bugs and slightly softer than a piece of plywood. The resort boasted wireless internet, yes, but when we used it to stream music in the room, Mike asked us to stop because it slowed it down too much.
Mike recommended some excellent tours and experiences, and we very much enjoyed that part, but we tried to spend as little time at the resort as possible. I realize that the resort was relatively inexpensive compared to some other neighboring resorts, but I would have gladly paid extra to know that we didn't have to haul all of our valuables everywhere we went because we didn't feel safe leaving them in the room. I would have probably give this resort a "fair" rating (because the location is beautiful, even if there is no beach), if it weren't for the misinformation we were given before we left and during our stay. Perhaps once someone else buys the resort and fixes it up (give it at least a year, trust me), it will be a nice place again, but right now, stay away. When we told locals where we were staying, we were smirked and laughed at quite a bit, and with good reason. We didn't let our resort influence our vacation to Belize--the country is beautiful, and the people are very friendly. However, we could have found a much nicer resort for the same price. Trust me....go somewhere else.

  • Stayed June 2011, travelled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank ctinkham
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Vash83, Manager at Xaman Ek Resort & Spa, responded to this review, 14 December 2011
I must say that xamanek now has a new management and a new restaurant and spa going
now open here at our location is Jambel Jerk Pit with affordable prices and the quality is on the high end.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tyler TX
Level Contributor
2 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 March 2011

This was actually my second stay. I stayed here last year, and came back again this year because of the great service and location.
The owner, Mike, is very friendly... it feels more like staying with an old friend than at a hotel. The resort is relaxing, scenery is breathtaking. You can easily stroll along miles of beach, almost empty of people finding the perfect shells. Take the kayak provided out to Mexico Rocks (popular snorkeling destination at Ambergris) - you can actually see it from your room! A quick paddle and you are there on your own adventure. The water taxi's come frequently, and it's a quick 15 minute boat trip into town.
Mike has lived there for years, and always has the very best guides leading his excursions. I've snorkeled the reserve many times on trips he's set up - always seeing sea turtles, baracuda, nurse shark, sting rays, eel, sea cucumber - getting to interact and touch most of these creatures with a very experienced guide. The price for this is about $40 per person - about a 3 - 4 hour trip - very reasonable! I also did an all day tour to the Aztec rouines... Lamanai. This was amazing! It's a boat adventure, jungle adventure and temple adventure all in one - exotic birds, monkeys climbing in the boat, crocs, bats.... the guide was just amazing. He prepared an authentic Belizean lunch for us.... it was an experience of a lifetime.
You will not regret booking here.... it was the perfect get away!

  • Stayed March 2011, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank Calleyrenee
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tannersville, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
28 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 November 2010

Our stay at Xaman Ek provided the perfect start to a week of adventure, exploration, and relaxation. From scuba diving to island cuisine and Belikin beer, we experienced all that Belize has to offer in the comfort of a cozy, user-friendly resort.

My partner and I stayed in one of the beautifully thatched-roof cabanas by the pool. We were greeted by beautiful, fresh-cut flowers in our room. We especially enjoyed the breezy, quiet nights... it was important to catch up on sleep after days full of scuba diving. And slept we did: Xaman Ek is very secluded. No rowdy neighbors here!

Mike and his divemaster Steve both did an outstanding job organizing awesome scuba trips! We got personal attention, stunning dive sites, and invaluable training at an amazing price.

Mike, the owner and operating manager did an incredible job overseeing our stay. He frequently made sure we were comfortable and pointed out all the amenities available to us. Mike also has quite the green thumb! The grounds around the resort are a testimony to Mike's love of gardening... Xaman Ek is surrounded by breathtaking flowers, palms, and other native plants.

We ate a few breakfasts, lunches and one dinner in the Resory restaurant. No complaints! We experienced great service and delicious food. For dinner I ordered a whole fish (red snapper, I believe...) and it was out of this world! Breakfast was the best... Eggs and black beans, served with hot coffee and fresh tropical fruit... Perfection.

Xaman Ek's wonderfully secluded location makes it necessary to catch the water-taxi into San Pedro. Be prepared to pay for the round trip when you want to go into town. (Costs are similar to cab fare in any major city.)

Our favorite parts of our stay at Xaman Ek? Carribean-style breakfast on the beach-front patio, Scuba Steve's scuba trips, relaxing in the hammocks lining the perimeter of the resort, and the bright, tropical flowers!

  • Stayed March 2010, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank cmsvln
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
The Woodlands, Texas
Level Contributor
115 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 18 August 2010

For the 4th time, I visited Xaman Ek and am planning my return trip in October.
I love this place. Seclusion, caring staff, beautiful views, close to great dive spots, complete services offered at one location and great personal attention from the owner!

I'll keep going back to this island secret!

Stayed August 2010, travelled with friends
Helpful?
Thank Eric D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Fort Worth, Texas
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 August 2010

Mike greeted us on the docks in San Pedro with a big smile. We were staying at the Xaman Ek for three nights, and attended a wedding at a nearby resort which was booked. We felt fortunate to have stayed at the Xaman Ek. Mike was a very pleasant and thoughtful guy, who provided us with some great conversation. Anything we needed was attended to, right down to a crib for our six month old little girl, and bananas for her to eat.

The food we had were great. Conch omelette is a must ... pina coladas are also a must try!

I'd go back to the Xaman Ek again just to visit Mike. He's a chill guy who cares greatly about his guests.

Stayed May 2010, travelled with family
Helpful?
1 Thank mirahan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Statesboro, Georgia, USA
Level Contributor
7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 8 August 2010

If you are looking for a place where you will be waited on hand and foot then stay away! My fiance and I were looking for a honeymoon location to just relax for a few days and not be bothered by anyone...which was exactly what we found. When you want a beer you go in the fridge grab a beer and leave the bottle cap in your cup to be counted and paid at the end of the stay.
The beer policy directly reflects Mike (the owner's) personality- he is laid back! If you have any issues he isn't going to come running immediatly to fix it. He will sit with you have a beer with you and chat about the island, but he runs a small joint where the cabanas have thatched roofs and back up to the bush- so if you see some small furry friends scurrying arund your roof or some bugs on the floor, he isn't going to say much other than- 'well we're in the wild out here' or 'I can maybe try to put some traps out.'

If you are looking for a beautiful beach to lay on, stay away...the beaches aren't very big or particularly beautiful on the entire island because of the reef. Access to San Pedro is slightly limited. We had a water taxi pass included with our package, but the company had gone out of business. Mike did his best to accomodate us on that issue but it is about a 20 minute ride. We were happy with our one day that we spent walking around town and didn't need anymore than that.

So far the review sounds fairly negative, but my wife and I had an AMAZING time here. Bessie and Merrium in the kitchen were fantastic. The meal schedule was a little varied since we were the only two staying at the resort and occasionally the kitched staff would be working on other projects, but we never waited long and when we did wait the food was always worth it. For such a small operation we were amazed at the variety and quality available for breakfast lunch and dinner. Bessies homeade bread is not to be missed. My wife was partial to the homemade belgian waffles with banana's but my personal favorite was the french toast made with Bessies bread.

Ebony's spa treatments left me in some sort of elevated state of consciouness. Her little cabana sits about 10 yards from the ocean with a window facing that direction so that the cool ocean breeze lends a hand massaging out any ounce of stress that might be left after 2 days of sitting in a hammock on the ocean. Get some spa time included in your stay!

We did have some time with Scuba Steve as well, a true Islander who took us on a little scuba diving adventure. After about 30 minutes in 3 feet of water Steve felt we were ready for the reef- my wife wasn't so convinced, so she waited on the boat while Steve took me to the reef for a 30 minute dive- I've never been before and I could not stop marvelling at the scenery! When we got back to shore we realized that there had been a miscommunication in regards to what was included in our honeymoon package. We were supposed to have paid extra for the scuba, but when I told Mike that I felt like he had made it sound like it was included he took care of the issue with no extra cost to us.

Steve then proceeded to take me out on the water kayak to fish for lobsters with him and his trusty harpoon- a truly local experience that you will never get staying at a big resort. After fishing my wife and I sat on the dock with him while he cleaned up 10 lobster tails and several conchs- he even offered us two fresh lobster tails even though I didn't do any of the work catching them.

The weather was perfect while we were there despite consistently warm and humid days, the ocean breeze was pretty constant and made it feel cooler than Oralndo FL at the same time of year. The bugs stayed away as long as the breeze was present- the few times where it faded we needed to retreat inside or at least fight back with a little bug spray.

Overall we were very pleased with our relaxing island gettaway.

  • Stayed July 2010, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
Thank zizoo1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Xaman Ek Resort & Spa

Property: Xaman Ek Resort & Spa
Address: 5.5 Miles North of San Pedro | PO Box 227, San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize (Formerly Playa Blanca Beach Club)
Region: Belize > Belize Cayes > Ambergris Caye > San Pedro
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#26 Top resorts Hotel in San Pedro
#44 On the Beach Hotel in San Pedro
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 4
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Xamanek is located 5.5 miles north Ambergris Caye, Belize Central America. We are what you can describe as Paradise. Home Away from home. Our New and friendly staff and management awaits you to make your vacation a very reasonable and memorable one. We have a Spa and a Jamaica, Belize Cuisine restaurant {Jambel Jerk Pit} Our Prices are affordable and our Quality is on the high end. Book with us and you will experience what it is to be pampered. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Xaman Ek Hotel
Xaman Ek Resort & Spa Belize/San Pedro

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