Portofino Resort- Now with a new BEACH BAR!!
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#43043 - 08/15/01 10:55 PM My trip to AC
erikacoop Offline
General thoughts:
We were in AC July 25 –August 7. I loved this place. Usually it takes 4-5 days to relax, hence the 2-week vacation, but by the 2nd day, I was completely relaxed. Never have I been in a place so unassuming and so laid back. Nobody cared what you looked like or what you did (as long as you drove your golf carts in the right direction on the one-way sand streets). We met so many nice people from all over the place.

Where we stayed:
Tradewinds Paradise Villas – Wonderful. They went out of their way to make everything great. We loved being close to things and we walked everywhere. There was a lot of construction/renovating going on. This is their slow season and they have to do it sometime! Beware of the Paradise villas owned by private owners! More on this after I get my money back!

The weather & the bugs:
It was hot and humid. There was a strong breeze blowing most of the time that kept things cool. When the breeze died down it would get hot and the bugs started biting. It rained all day one day, but usually the showers were brief. We made a practice of putting bug spray on after 5pm. If we didn’t we were bitten.

Fidos – excellent
Estell’s – excellent breakfast; ordinary dinners
Captain Morgan – so-so and expensive
Elvis – very good
Palapa bar at Paradise Resort – very good
Caliente – Rick liked, I didn’t
Lilly’s – Terrible
Celis - so-so and expensive
La Margarita – I liked; Rick didn’t
Papi’s – Terrible
Victoria House – Very good and very expensive
Sweet Basil – Very expensive and you must like a variety of foods. It is not your ordinary menu, but it was good
Jambels – Excellent
Emerald Café – pretty good
Mangos – good appetizers. Didn’t eat dinner there

Hol Chan & Shark/Ray alley. A must do if you snorkel. Saw a green turtle, a green eel, snapper, grouper and of course nurse sharks and Rays. We snorkeled then Rick dove it on his first dive trip. He says to save your money and snorkel it only. You can see everything from the top.
Manatee trip with Searious Tours – Ricky was an excellent guide and lunch was great. Snorkeling was ok.

These are Rick’s opinions, as I am not the diver. He dove with Dive Paradise. On some of the bigger trips, they put him with other operators. They were very nice and organized everything.
Diving around AC was good.
The Blue hole and surrounding dives – Excellent. First time with Amigos Del Mar. They were very good with a good lunch and nice boat. Rick loved it so much he went again. I went along to snorkel the second time. Pretty good snorkeling, although it was expensive. Went with Hustler Tours. The boat was smaller and the seas rougher than Rick’s first trip, but Billy was a great dive master and was too good at bringing the sharks around! Unfortunately, this second trip was the same day as the death at the Blue Hole. Ramons’ group was going down just as Rick’s group was coming up. We later saw them at Half Moon Caye, just after the loss. It put a downer on the rest of the day. My thoughts are with the family.

Thanks to this board, our trip was one of the best. I knew what to expect. This trip is not for those that want to be pampered and overfed with gourmet meals. It is for those that want to have adventures around every corner and then die laughing!
Erika Cooper

#43044 - 08/15/01 10:58 PM Re: My trip to AC
B_b_f_b Offline
Papi's terrible? Please explain.

#43045 - 08/15/01 11:02 PM Re: My trip to AC
KC Offline
Ahhhhhhhhhhh..... I can't believe you thought Lilly's was terrible! I thought Lilly's was excellent! Oh well... ya know, maybe I was there on a good day, and you were there when the regular cook was sick! I dunno! Anyway, glad you enjoyed your stay!

"You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think."

#43046 - 08/15/01 11:18 PM Re: My trip to AC
seashell Offline
I'm definitely with Becky on this one. I ate at Papi's almost everyday, at least one meal. (It was very convenient to where I stayed but that wasn't the only reason I ate there). I *never* had a bad meal. Every meal I had was just delicious. It's not gourmet food; it's just wholesome and delicious. Normally, I try not to tell too many people about Papi's. Sorry about that Papi but I don't want the place to be ruined. I love the service. It's kind of like being at his house instead of his restaurant.
A fish and a bird can fall in love, but where will they build their nest?

#43047 - 08/15/01 11:25 PM Re: My trip to AC
Marty Online   happy
Yeah, musta have been an off day at Papi's, usually its so good...

I was in the restaurant biz for 25 years, so i know i served a few that didn't measure up....

#43048 - 08/16/01 09:18 AM Re: My trip to AC
Debbie Offline
I too thought Papi's was the best place ever..... Ate there almost every day, at least one meal..... He even fixed our catch for us. DIVINE!!!! Sorry it was on an off day for you.....

#43049 - 08/16/01 12:27 PM Re: My trip to AC
erikacoop Offline
Maybe it was a bad day. I do know one thing, many times a place was raved about on the message board and then I went and didn't think it was so hot. I told my truth so that others can take all the suggestions and make informed decisions as to where to eat. There are always going to be places that aren't up to par, maybe Papi's just did not appeal to us. I think readers should know that all restaurants can have bad meals and they should go into every restaurant with an open mind. These 2 restaurant experiences were such a small part of my trip, and in no way diminished the trip. That is just part of being on vacation and trying new places and things.

#43050 - 08/16/01 12:46 PM Re: My trip to AC
seashell Offline
Erika, was it the meal that you had at Papi's that you didn't care for or was it the location and the restaurant itself?

If it was the meal, what did you order?
A fish and a bird can fall in love, but where will they build their nest?

#43051 - 08/16/01 03:24 PM Re: My trip to AC
Bobber Offline
Hi Erika. We just booked with Tradewinds for the third year. Never had even the least bit of problem with them, and Marki is the greatest. I did hear some grumblings from guests at Paradise that were in the other (non-Tradewinds) units, normally problems with repairs or upkeep. Just put it down to normal tourist complaints tho. Anything specific? No names please. Just curious.
Been there, done that, the washing machine ate the T-shirt

#43052 - 08/16/01 04:49 PM Re: My trip to AC
lmarquis Offline
Erica: I am surprised you thought some of the restaurants you went to were expensive.

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