I just came back from a 10 days stay at Avalon Reef Club (I did like the old name better, Casa Caribe), I must say we really had a great time. I'll make a quick report about the place.
It is very isolated, I think as of right now, it is the last resort on the north side of the island. This is a good thing, we loved it. When we were passing by some of the other bigger resorts, some of the beaches had up to 20-30 people on them. At Casa Caribe, for one of the week we were there, there was only one another couple, spent their days diving, only saw them at night, in front of a few Belikins, the next week, we were the only guest, it was great, had the whole place for us, beautiful beaches, pool, nice dock to do some great night fishing, I caught snappers every night.
So, if you like to be alone, I think right now is a great time to go there, as the new owners haven't started advertising the place for this season, so there shouldn't be too many people there.
There is a little bit of construction going on, but you really don't notice it, mostly a little painting and small stuff, and they do it as far away from the guests as possible. The worst we had was hearing a hammer for a couple minutes one day.
Since it is so isolated, going to and from town needs a little preparing, but not much.
For one thing, the hotel has it's own boat, and they make two daily trip to town on a very fixed schedule, 6:30 am and 4:30 pm. The boat just does a round trip to drop off and pick up staff. We ussually tried to take advantadge of it for at least one trip, as the other alternative is $10 US a person, each way. For instance, if we wanted to spend most of the day in town, you can catch the ferry, at 8 or 10 am ($10US pp) then catch the hotel boat at Fido's dock at about 5:30 pm. Or spend the day at the hotel, catch the hotel boat at 4:30 to town, spend the evening there, and catch a ferry back. I think after 8pm they run every hour until midnight from Fido's dock, 1am and 2am trips on friday and saturday. It is a twenty minute small boat ride, and not covered, so if it rains.. well, it rains. The night ferry ride after a few Belikins is quite an experience (Ask Steve/Dave the managers about out infamous saturday night 2am ride back to the hotel, you'll have a good laugh).
The restaurant :
We ussually only ate breakfast there, and had dinner there a couple nights, and the food was great everytime. The thing is that the menu is very limited, about 6-7 items, always the same, so I'm sure you'll find yourself eating out alot. If you there for lunch, ask what the staff menu is, it's usually a delicious local dish (can be very very hot), and I think they won't charge a lot for it. Another thing we did was fishing from the dock, we caught red snappers everynight, and the cook will gladly cook it for you the next day. We always shared our catches with the staff, we sometimes came back with 5-6 snappers.
that was the best place
. The Dizzy Lizard is an outside bar, by the pool, with a gorgeous view of the ocean and the reef. The bartender, Marcel, was outstanding, I can't say enough good things about him, so I won't
. He'll help you with anything you need, great snorkling and fishing tips, day trips advices etc.
Nice clean spacious units, AC in the room, on the beach, with full kitchen, fridge, microwave etc, and all appliances. This was great, make sure you buy some food from town, and always have a little something, the kitchen is not always open. Also if you like Belikin, I would suggest buying a case in town, at the Belikin building, as they are a little pricey at the hotel ($5bz = $2.50us).
Day trips and Dive trips:
The hotel can organise any trips for you, it will be the same price that you would get by booking it yourself. Day long dive trips will usually start around 7-8 am, so you'll be able to catch the 6:30 am hotel boat to town. Other day trips usually pick you up at the hotel in the morning, if it's a short trip, you might have to find a ride to town yourself (ferry). I suggest Haltun Ha & Maruba day spa with Searious, Blue Hole day dive trip, and off course shark alley (watch out for pica pica right now, rub ALOT of lotion on you before you snorkle), and also, dinner at Capricorn, awesome food.
So, overall, great place to stay if don't want to be crowded,and be in a beautiful quiet secluded place.
Needs planning to get to town, might get expensive (you need to call the ferry to arrange pick up from the hotel, only at specific times) $10us per person each way, so $40 a day for a couple if you use the ferry every day.
Wheew that was longer than I had planned, I think that answered most questions.
Did I like AC? Well, put it this way, I got back two weeks ago from a 10 day trip, so now, of course, I'm going back again in two weeks to try to find a new place to live
. I'll be there for at least a month starting May 28th, so anyone interested in talking business...