I just read this yesterday, so it may be another option for you.
"This month's edition of Flotsam and Jetsam brings news that The Moorings has opened a new base in Belize. Unlike TMM's base location in the northern part of the reef, Moorings will operate from the mainland at Placencia, about 115 miles south
of Belize city. You will still fly into Belize City International and then take a commuter down to Placencia, about 45 minutes. Plans are to have the base fully operational in November, in time for the busy winter season. The popular 3800
3-cabin and 4500 4-cabin cats will be available, with about 4 of the 38's and 8 of the 45's planned to be in service by
early next year."
Also, Grand Expeditions, Inc., of Boca Raton, Florida, recently announced it has acquired The Moorings.
I looked at one of TMM's cats in San Pedro last week - made my little sailor's heart go pitter patter!! Only a year old. Pricey, but what a beauty!! From talking with them, I think you are making the right decision in hiring a skipper - they won't let you go outside the reef without one, and who wants to spend all their time watching for coral heads not marked on the charts. TMM is opening a base in Placencia, but I don't know when.
Good luck - I'm VERY envious.