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Ramon's Village Resort 3.5

San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize

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Review Summary

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Pros

  • Only resort in San Pedro proper, near shops, bars, and restaurants 
  • Beautiful beachfront location with manicured grounds and a relaxed vibe 
  • Cute Belizean-jungle theme carried out in rooms and common spaces 
  • Freeform pool in the center of the property is a popular hangout spot 
  • Large (manmade) beach with cushioned lounge chairs and hammocks  
  • On-site restaurant, Pineapples, serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner 
  • Pool bar serves speciality coffee in the morning and all-day cocktails 
  • Top notch, hotel-run dive operation on-site  
  • Free Wi-Fi 

Cons

  • Kitschy theme may feel too contrived for some travelers 
  • Budget rooms are located across the street at another property

Bottom Line

The upper-middle-range Ramon’s Village Resort is the only resort-style property in the town of San Pedro, offering both resort amenities and easy access to local venues. Its jungle-meets-Polynesian-island theme can feel cute or cheesy, depending on perspective. The 71 rooms are decorated with dark woods and tropical prints, while thatched roofs and tiki heads dot the property. Acting as the hotel’s central hub, the pool draws guest throughout the day. On-site dining options include Pineapples, an all-day sit-down restaurant, and Tropic Al’s a coffee shop and bar. Travelers should note that the hotel’s most budget-friendly rooms are actually located across the street at the Belizean Princess, a separate, different-looking property that’s managed by Ramon’s Village. Travelers in search of a more intimate property may prefer Caye Casa, a boutique hotel with nicer rooms but fewer amenities.  

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Scene

Quiet beachfront resort that attracts all types of travelers 

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Anyone who’s ever been to Ambergris Caye has probably seen Ramon’s Village. A massive red-and-gold medallion emblazoned with the hotel’s name sits atop a faux Mayan temple at the entrance of the property -- so it’s pretty hard to miss from the road. From the entrance, a sandy, palm-covered pathway leads to the lobby, a simple room with a front desk and a small seating area. Lush foliage surrounds the hotel’s thatched roof buildings and sandy pathways, giving the property a remote jungle feel. Tiki heads and carved totem polls make random appearances around the pool and in the restaurant, and add an interesting South Pacific flair. Some travelers may find the hotel’s thematic elements a bit contrived, but others may find the quirkiness endearing. Travelers drawn in by this look and atmosphere should note that the lowest-category rooms are actually off-site and across the street at the Belizean Princess.

But apart from its look, Ramon's Village distinguishes itself by being the one and only resort within the town of San Pedro, so it can offer both resort amenities (like its own dive operation) and easy access to everything the town has to offer. 

Guests at Ramon’s Village are a mixed bag. During our visit, we encountered families, couples, and solo travelers who were visiting Ambergris Caye primarily for vacation. The hotel attracts a lot of scuba divers -- from professionals to those seeking certification -- thanks to its on-site dive operation. 

Location

Excellent location within walking distance of San Pedro's attractions

Map of Ramon's Village Resort

Ramon’s Village is ideally located for travelers who want to be close to San Pedro town without sacrificing the privacy and amenities that a resort can provide. Ramon’s is within walking distance of local shops, bars, restaurants, and even the airport, but it has a quiet, mellow atmosphere -- which is almost impossible to find at some of the smaller hotels in town. 

San Pedro is the largest town on Ambergris Caye, Belize’s largest island. Ambergris Caye is best known for its proximity to the Belize Barrier Reef, which is a mere 20-minute boat ride from the island. The Belize Barrier Reef is part of the larger Mesoamerican Barrier Reef, which extends from eastern Mexico to Honduras -- making it the second largest reef system in the world after Australia’s Great Barrier Reef. Needless to say, travelers visit Ambergris Caye to experience its rich marine life and exceptional dive sites, such as Hol Chan and the Blue Hole. Ambergris Caye is an ideal destination for divers and avid snorkelers, and is an excellent place for those seeking scuba certification. It’s not an ideal destination for travelers in search of beautiful beaches (check out Placencia or Hopkins instead). Nearly all of Ambergris Caye’s beaches are manmade, including the one in front of Ramon’s Village. 

Like many parts of the Caribbean, Ambergris Caye is currently dealing with a massive seaweed problem. Due to rising ocean temperatures, large amounts of seagrass accumulate along the shoreline and wash up on the beach. The piles of dried seagrass are unsightly and foul smelling, and the problem seems particularly bad on the northern end of the island. The stagnant seaweed prevents a lot of people from swimming directly off shore, and the sulfurous smell may aggravate some travelers more than others. This is a natural phenomenon, and there isn’t much hotels can do to get rid of the seaweed, but it’s something travelers should anticipate when visiting Ambergris Caye.  

Rooms

A multitude of room types with jungle-inspired decor 

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Ramon’s jungle theme continues in its rooms, which feature lots of dark wood, bamboo accents, and floral-print fabrics. Wood floors and ceilings create richness, while dark wood wainscoting adds a textural component. Beds are dressed in red-and-gold floral spreads -- a color scheme that’s continued in the canvas artwork of toucans and Mayan etchings. Bulky wood furniture is wrapped with faux bamboo, furthering the jungle vibe. In-room amenities include mini-fridges, microwaves, coffeemakers, and safes, but not TVs. Room layouts vary; the Jungle Deluxe room we visited has a bathroom partially open to the bedroom space. The vanity is adjacent and open to the bedroom, while the shower and toilet are housed in a separate enclosed space. Bathrooms feature granite countertops and more bamboo accents, and most units only have shower stalls, not tubs. Some rooms have private outdoor balconies, while others have access to shared patio spaces. 

There are a multitude of room types at Ramon’s Village, but the three major room categories are beachfront, seaside, and jungle. Beachfront rooms are -- you guessed it -- beachfront, and most offer unobstructed views of the ocean. The hotel’s largest and most romantic rooms are part of the beachfront category, including the Presidential Suite and the Honeymoon Cabana. Seaside rooms are just off the beach; they still offer ocean views, but they aren’t directly on the sand. Jungle rooms are the farthest from the beach, and are often surrounded by the property’s lush foliage. The jungle category includes family-friendly options like the Jungle Standard Family and the Jungle Deluxe Family, which have three beds and extra floor space for guests traveling with little ones.

It should be pointed out that Ramon’s cheapest, budget-level rooms are located across the street at a separate property known as the Belizean Princess. Once a standalone property, the Belizean Princess is now managed by Ramon’s Village. The Belizean Princess is located directly across the street from Ramon’s and has a completely different look and feel. Rooms are housed in colorful colonial-inspired buildings and interior decor is dated. Guests staying at the Belizean Princess can still use all of Ramon’s amenities, but some travelers may not appreciate being separated from the rest of the property. 

Features

A pool, a manmade beach, an on-site restaurant, and free Wi-Fi 

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Like many resorts, the heart of Ramon’s Village is its pool. Guests gather around the pool deck throughout the day to enjoy the relaxed atmosphere and near-constant sunshine. The pool deck also serves as a gathering point for divers and fishermen before they head out on excursions. Ramon’s freeform pool is surrounded by palm trees and flowering hibiscus, which makes it feel like a hidden oasis. The pool deck is lined with cushioned loungers and large adirondack chairs. There aren’t any umbrellas, but there’s a thatched roof cabana where guests can find some shade. Beyond the pool, the beach stretches in both directions. Though it’s manmade (like most on Ambergris Caye), the beach is beautiful. Orange cushioned lounge chairs contrast nicely with the bright blue ocean water, and hammocks hang beneath thatched huts like something out of a tropical dream. There’s a mid-size seawall on one side of the beach, but the other side has a natural-feeling sandy incline into the water. Seaweed is a major problem across Ambergris Caye, so guests should expect to see some along the shoreline here. 

Pineapples on the Beach is Ramon’s on-site restaurant. It serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and has indoor and outdoor seating areas. Inside, the hotel’s Belize-meets-Polynesia theme is prominently on display, thanks to a ceiling mounted tiki head, tall totems, fake toucans, and faux Mayan etchings. It’s a bit Disney World-ish, but the food is pretty good. All three menus feature lots of local dishes like Belizean fry jacks, salbutes, and ceviche, but also feature American favorites like coconut shrimp, burgers, and BLTs. Next to the restaurant the on-site bar, Tropic Al’s, serves drinks and light snacks throughout the day. Tropic Al’s makes speciality coffee drinks and smoothies in the morning and serves cocktails throughout the afternoon and evening. There’s a small seating area and a flat-screen TV that’s usually playing American sports. 

Ramon’s Village is one of the only resorts on Ambergris Caye with its own dive operation. Ramon’s maintains a fleet of four skiffs ranging from 28 to 34 feet, and offers three daily dive trips for guests and non-guests alike. The dive operation offers PADI certification courses and accepts referrals from several organizations for divers who have mastered entry-level techniques. Guests are welcome to bring their own dive gear, or rent gear from the dive shop. 

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Address

Coconut Drive, San Pedro, Belize Cayes, Belize

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