Portofino Resort- Now with a new BEACH BAR!!
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#15123 - 05/13/02 08:21 PM Ek' Tun or Chaa Creek?
chevin Offline
Ive' been trying to decide between these two places to stay in Cayo. We'll be on our honeymoon! Any input?

#15124 - 05/13/02 08:30 PM Re: Ek' Tun or Chaa Creek?
susangg Offline
This is so weird...but I knew a guy named Vince Terlep. He was a DOJ attorney in Washington DC, and he died a few years ago....are you related to him? Or is it just a coincidence, two people with the same name?

As to your question: Both places are great, but if it were me and had a chance to go to Ek Tun I would do it. Its really unique and surrounded by hundreds of acres of wilderness and is incredibly beautiful. I correspond with the owner, Phyllis Dart, on the bz-culture list and have been promising myself to go there the next time I have a chance to visit the mainland.
Susan Guberman-Garcia, Attorney at Law. Phone: 510-792-2639
Fax/Voicemail:: 510-405-2016 Email: susangg@garcia.mpowermail.com

#15125 - 05/13/02 10:12 PM Re: Ek' Tun or Chaa Creek?
chevin Offline
WOW! This is so crazy. Vince Terlep Jr. that worked at DOJ is my father, Im the III. I wish he could be here for the wedding. Thanks so much for the advice. We've been debating for a while now, but I think this settles it! Thanks so much, and what a crazy coincidence.

Vince Terlep III

#15126 - 05/13/02 10:53 PM Re: Ek' Tun or Chaa Creek?
d-jon Offline
I suggest Chaa Creek. It' a BEAUTIFUL setting there for honeymooners.
Hi, trina I would suggest the Orange Walk area. There is a lot to offer there. In particular there is the Lamanai Outpost lodge that offers exactly what you're looking for. You can contact me if you need more info at djones@btl.net

#15127 - 05/14/02 09:16 AM Re: Ek' Tun or Chaa Creek?
KimBehindDoorNbr3 Offline

I've seen portions of both properties (staying at Ek' Tun in Nov--YES!!!)...you'll be overwhelmed by the beauty in both locations. Bottom line: it's a "win-win".

However, from a honeymoon standpoint, *I* would prefer the romantic isolation of Phyllis' place. (<-Please note that I am ENTIRELY a social creature at heart, but this place is SOOOO beautiful and serene that I knew we'd have to come back to stay on our next trip.)

We canoed *upstream* (dang, I'm gettin' old!) from duPlooy's to Ek' Tun and were amazed at how the beauty only increased the further upstream we got. And, geez, the area around duPlooy's is GORGEOUS to begin with!!!

Either way, maybe take a day trip or make a pit stop at the other. (You'll be back again!) If you're canoeing, stop at duPlooy's for a beer and lunch. Maybe you'll catch the flock of toucan-relative birds dining near the bar. (They are spectacular!) And love-up Kaya the wonderdog! (She looks a bit like a cartoon character and legend has it that she's survived a boa squeeze. She'll break your heart begging to float into town with you!)

Have a fabulous trip!


#15128 - 05/14/02 10:43 AM Re: Ek' Tun or Chaa Creek?
Lan Sluder/Belize First Offline
I'll add my two shillings worth:

I've stayed at both, Chaa Creek a number of times and Ek'Tun once.

They're both really great places, but different.

Both are on the Macal River but Ek'Tun is more isolated. You can't drive all the way there -- you have to park and go across the Macal river on a little boat.

Ek'Tun only has two cabanas, whereas Chaa Creek has a couple of dozen units, mostly in duplex cabanas but there also are deluxe garden suites.

Ek'Tun was until recently run almost entirely by Phyllis and her husband (they've split up) with part-time local help, whereas last time I was there Mick Fleming told me they employed about 70 staff altogether at Chaa Creek, including grounds and spa workers.

So it's two very different experiences. Ek'Tun is more like a B&B. Chaa Creek is more like a small resort. Some people like the B&B atmosphere, where you eat with the owners and do about everything with them, and with the maybe two other guests who are there at the time, but others may find it a bit claustraphobic, especially after a few days. At Chaa Creek, there are always a number of other guests, whom you may get to know over drinks or dinner, and you're not locked into a tiny group of people with whom you may or may not share anything.

There's also a lot more to do at and around Chaa Creek -- there's a beautiful spa, the medicine trail (though it's temporarily closed), horseback riding (Ek'Tun may offer that again but when I was there they weren't), a Maya farm, a butterfly centre and natural history centre and lots of planned hikes and tours.

However, there's a lot you can do a Ek'Tun, especially for active, fit people -- hiking to remote caves, for example. And Phyllis can arrange just about any kind of tour.

Ek'Tun does have something that Chaa Creek doesn't -- a fantastic natural swimming pool. Really one of the best pools in the country. You can probably even skinny dip there, just you and the howler monkeys.

The grounds of both are beautiful. Ek'Tun's are more natural, but lusher and more like a jungle. Chaa Creek's are carefully manicured.

Food at both places has been good when I was there.

I really like them both and would go back to either in a New York minute. I guess I would say that Ek'Tun is in some ways more special, unique and small, but not everybody would like it.

--Lan Sluder
Belize books and publications by Lan Sluder:
Belize First Magazine (http://www.belizefirst.com)
Fodor's Belize & Guatemala Guide (new 4th edition coming this summer)
Adapter Kit: Belize (the first and only comprehensive guide to living, retiring, working and investing in Belize -- a best-seller on Amazon.com)
San Pedro Cool (the first and only visitor guide to Ambergris Caye)
Belize First Guide to Mainland Belize
UpClose Central America
Belize Book of Lists
Lan Sluder/Belize First


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