Rates include all meals (but not drinks), and there's a good happy hour
Waterfront bungalows with en-suite bathrooms and hammock-strung balconies
On-site activities include diving, snorkeling, and dolphin encounters
Tranquil pool surrounded by tall palm trees and next to a bar
Free dive trip and afternoon on resort's private Maya Key (for beach access)
Free stand-up paddleboards and kayaks to borrow
Medical clinic and hyperbaric chamber on-site; doctor on call 24/7
Free airport or ferry transfers
Free welcome rum cocktail or fruit punch
Fast and free Wi-Fi throughout the resort
Fully self sufficient power, potable water, and sanitation system
All-inclusive rates don't include alcohol, and no snacks between meals
No beach, but there is a small sandy shoreline for dive access
No TVs in room, only at the bars (a plus for some)
Not all rooms are air-conditioned
Most rooms on Anthony’s Key, requiring a water shuttle to reach
Lots of stairs to get around the resort
Anthony’s Key Resort is a three-pearl dive resort on Roatan’s Sandy Bay. It’s 61 bungalows are rustic and dated, though they do have hardwood floors and furniture, mini-fridges, and ocean-view balconies strung with hammocks. Air-conditioning isn't standard and some rooms require a water shuttle to reach. The resort is known for its massive dive operation and every day a dozen boats head to offshore dive sites. Other features include a beautiful outdoor pool, pool bar, a spa, and dolphin encounters. The restaurant gets mixed reviews and has a set menu that changes daily, though keep in mind that all-inclusive rates don't include drinks. Freebies like round-trip airport or ferry transfers and a welcome cocktail are nice perks. Travelers who prefer a fabulous beach and tasty restaurants to diving and dolphins should price the Mayan Princess Resort.
Dive-focused resort with humble, beachy style and beautiful sea views
Anthony’s Key opened in 1968 and is a family owned and operated diving resort. The restaurant and dive center are set along the beautiful oceanfront. In the mornings and afternoons, it's like a city of neoprene, with a dozen boats loading up gear, compressors hissing, and divers prepping to depart. The resort’s lobby, restaurant, and main bar are set on a lush hillside only reachable via stairways that can get slippery (though the payoff is the ocean view). From up top are gorgeous views of turquoise ocean and Anthony’s Key, a 10-acre island where a majority of the resort’s villas and guest rooms are located. Reaching Anthony's Key requires a short ride on the water shuttle that operates 24 hours a day. Sandy pathways are framed by a canopy of towering palms and complemented by orange, lime, and almond trees. The collection of humble wooden buildings that hold guest rooms are set along the resort's rock and mangrove shrouded shore, but there’s no beach. A nice plus are views overlooking the resort’s dolphin experience (where its possible to see dolphins breech) on the island’s west side. Hotel guests are mostly groups of mature divers from the United States and Canada, although we saw quite an international crowd during our visit.
On the sea in Sandy Bay, close to Coxen Hole, ferries, and the airport
Anthony’s Key is located in Sandy Bay, a beautiful bay that’s a 15-minute drive from Coxen Hole and 20 minutes to the airport. You'll need a car to get anywhere, as there's little within walking distance except for a smoked-meat restaurant that's 10 minutes away on foot. There are Asian fusion and Jamaican restaurants within a five-minute drive. A bit farther afield is West End, the island’s nightlife hub that’s full of restaurants, shops, and small markets (an eight-minute drive). It's also has a beach. The best beach (when it’s not crowded with cruise ship day trippers) is West Bay, which is a 17-minute drive away and has resorts, bars, and restaurants. Getting to Utila, the nearby barrier island with amazing diving, requires an eight-minute drive to West End followed by a 40-minute ferry. The jetty for boats to La Ceiba, on the Honduran mainland, is a 20-minute drive from Anthony’s Key followed by a 75-minute ferry ride.
Rustic hardwood bungalows with mini-fridges, balconies with hammocks, and fans or air-conditioning
Rooms at Anthony’s Key are a mix of hillside and stilted seaside bungalows made of Honduran pine wood. A majority of the units are located on Anthony’s Key, the private island that’s part of the resort and only reachable by the free 24-hour water taxi. The overall look has a beach-cottage vibe, with brightly patterned fabrics and simple furniture, though they are a bit tired. All bungalows have ocean views. The choicest rooms are the air-conditioned Deluxe Suites with their vaulted ceilings, spacious interiors, giant windows, a king and a double bed with hardwood headboards, and desks. They also have ceiling fans, mini-fridges, and huge private balconies with cushioned chairs and hammocks. Air-conditioned Deluxe Rooms are similar, but a bit smaller, and have either one king or two double beds. These also have shared oceanfront patios (although some are shrouded in mangroves). Standard Rooms are the cheapest and most cramped, and they lack air-conditioning. Louvered windows in these fan-cooled rooms look out onto shared balconies. Other standard amenities include coffeemakers with free coffee, safes, coolers, and alarm clocks. Free Wi-Fi is available in all rooms. Bathrooms are set up similarly across all categories, with stall showers, pump toiletries, just a bit of counter space, and hairdryers.
Full-service dive shop, dolphin experience, restaurant, gorgeous pool, and lots of freebies
Without a doubt, the resort’s five-star PADI dive ship is its biggest draw. The resort’s waterfront is a full of dive-related features: classrooms, lockers, an underwater photo shop, and a dozen big boats that make the resort feel like a small city. A wide range of diving options are available, including daily dives and various levels of certification. Dive and stay packages are also offered at Anthony’s Key, but equipment rentals aren't included with the packages.
The resort's gorgeous freshwater pool is located on Anthony's Key, and is surrounded by lounge chairs and tall palms. Next to the pool is the bar for happy hour drink specials and one of the few TVs to be found at the resort. Ixora Spa is also on the island, and it provides services like massages, manicures, pedicures, waxing, and facials. Free stand-up paddleboards and kayaks are available. Every Wednesday, there's an island fiesta with live music, crab races, and barbecue dinners. Back on the mainland (well, back on Roatan's shores), a restaurant serves seafood and international cuisine to mixed reviews from previous guests. Next to the restaurant is Frangipani Bar, which also serves a happy hour special and has TVs. Coffee and tea are available for free all day, but keep in mind that all-inclusive rates here don't include alcohol. There are also no free snacks or food between meal times.
The Roatan Institute for Marine Sciences is the resort-run educational facility that works in tandem with the Dolphin Encounter program, where you can meet and experience Atlantic bottlenose dolphins. There’s a kids' summer camp and a game room with an air hockey, table tennis, and a foosball table. The resort has a huge gift shop that sells everything from sundries to souvenirs and swimsuits. The resort’s medical clinic is a nice plus and includes a pharmacy, hyperbaric chamber, and 24-hour doctor on call (just in case).
Anthony’s Key also has a ton of freebies. Arriving guests get a free rum punch or cocktail, free airport or jetty transfers, and parking. The best freebie of all is probably the snorkeling or diving excursion to Maya Key, the resort’s private island that has two beaches, pool, a zoo, and wonderful diving. The resort can arrange taxis, car rentals, trips to mainland Honduras, babysitters, and tours. It’s also fully self-sufficient (and off the grid). All water (including from the tap) is drinkable and there’s uninterrupted 24-hour power. Fast and free Wi-Fi is included with all stays.
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