Less than a year after Francis and Eleanor Coppola acquired this beachside refuge in 2001, it was swept out to sea by the forces of Hurricane Iris. Turning disaster into triumph, the Coppolas led a two-year reclamation project, creating a magnificent resort that is consistently ranked among the best in Central and South America. With its friendly, attentive staff, two restaurants, a rejuvenating spa and idyllic seafront setting, Turtle Inn is a perfect refuge for those seeking a stress-relieving getaway. This unique location also provides a wealth of exciting activities. The coral reef just offshore offers some of the best diving and scuba in the world, and our dive shop can accommodate the needs of both beginners and experienced divers. Inland hikes to hidden lagoons, canoe trips up the Monkey River and the short bicycle ride into our local, typically Belizean town will also enrich our guests’ experience of this magical country.

Typical Length of Stay

Packages of any length of stay can be arranged. Please call Yellow Dog for details.

Accommodations and Lodging

Turtle Inn AccommodationThe Cottages
There are four different cottage locations on property. The Garden View Cottages are Nestled in our lush gardens and a few paces from the Caribbean Sea. The Poolside and Seaview Cottages all have spectacular views of the Caribbean Sea. The Seafront Cottages are just steps from a beautiful stretch of beach and the Caribbean Sea. All cottages have a private screened porch, spacious bathroom with Japanese bath, and private walled garden with outdoor shower. All rooms feature Balinese hand-carved doors and décor.

The Villas
There are three different Villa locations on property. The Garden View Villas are Nestled in our lush gardens and a few paces from the Caribbean Sea. The Seaview Villas all have spectacular views of the Caribbean Sea. The Seafront Villas
have all been carefully placed on a beautiful stretch of Caribbean Sea beachfront. These Balinese themed 2-bedroom/2-bathroom villas provide luxurious proportions with living room, separated seating areas and an extended screened porch. Each is surrounded by private walled garden with outdoor shower. All rooms feature Balinese hand-carved doors and décor.

The Family Pavilion
This exclusive Balinese-inspired pavilion is designed to maximize privacy and is located at the southern edge of the property, surrounded on three sides by a high walled garden. There are two bedrooms with en-suite bathrooms and a third loft bedroom accessed by a bamboo ladder. The Pavilion features antique hand-carved wooden doorways and detailing, stone sculptures, and artwork selected by Francis and Eleanor Coppola. The two spacious bathrooms feature indoor showers and in addition one of the bathrooms incorporates a luxurious steam room. Beyond the airy bathrooms are private walled gardens with outdoor showers. Between the two bedrooms is a living area and screened porch with comfortable sofas, writing desk and wet bar area with Delonghi espresso machine and fridge. Overlooking the pool is an open air, thatch-roofed dining terrace with unbroken views over the beach to the Caribbean Sea. Below the dining terrace is the private pool crafted with original tile art and surrounded by a tropical walled garden. Guests at the Pavilion also enjoy monogrammed bathrobes and wine glasses, locally produced organic bath products, goose down or hypo-allergenic pillows, iPod docking station, Wi-Fi Internet access and a Shellphone intercom system linked to the resort’s front desk. The Pavilion also has a full time attendant to anticipate your every need. The attendant is on call using a walkie-talkie radio system.

Lagoon Bungalow
Enjoy complete privacy in the comfort of a handcrafted, nautically-themed cottage set on the shores of the Placencia Lagoon. Features a full kitchen, an expansive living room and bedroom as well as a private pool and deck offering spectacular views of the sunset.

Beach House
The Beach House is a one-of-a-kind modernist-tropical hideaway just steps from the Caribbean Sea, which shares a beach and all the luxury amenities of Turtle Inn. Designed by architect Laurent Deroo as a stylish but soothing getaway, comprising an open-plan main house and two guest bungalows, the Beach House opens to the ever-present sea breezes while connecting to the romantic, Balinese-styled resort it adjoins.

Each of the Turtle Inn accommodations includes the following amenities:

  • Bathrobes
  • In-Room Dining
  • Safe Deposit Box
  • Refrigerator stocked with water, wine, soft drinks, Belikin beer and local snacks
  • Shellphone for communicating with Reception
  • Ceiling fan
  • Writing table & chair, Sofa & coffee table
  • Coffee & tea making equipment
  • Umbrellas (2)
  • Organic, locally sourced, hand made toiletries
  • Copy of Zoetrope: All-Story magazine

Food and Beverages

The Mare Restaurant
Fresh seafood and traditional Italian cooking come together at Turtle Inn's flagship restaurant. Local fish is brought in daily from the fertile reefs just offshore and fresh vegetables are delivered from Turtle Inn's very own organic garden. The changing daily menu offers such dishes as ceviche and gazpacho, fish cooked in a sea-salt crust and a selection of pizzas made to order in our wood-burning oven. The Mare offers a relaxed dining experience beneath the towering vaulted thatch roof, with incredible views out to sea.

The Gauguin Grill
The Gauguin Grill beachfront restaurant features fresh, charcoal-grilled seafood including lobster, jumbo shrimp and snapper all served on woven plates accompanied by a choice of Balinese-inspired sauces and spices. Tables are set just a few feet from the sea giving fantastic views of the offshore cayes and starry night sky. The sandy-floored bar and lounge also offers an excellent selection of Belize-brewed beer, wine and cocktails.

Auntie Luba's Kitchen
Turtle Inn's own authentic Belizean diner, Auntie Luba’s overlooks the calm, shallow waters of Placencia Lagoon. The menu of our rustic-style restaurant is filled with regional fare like curry chicken, coconut shrimp and hearty beef stew, all served in a fun and friendly atmosphere.

The Laughing Fish Bar
Just steps from our luxurious infinity pool, a towering thatch roof provides a shady retreat to enjoy a wide selection of drinks. Bar stools sit directly in the golden-sand beach, offering panoramic views over the sea to the offshore cayes.

Skip White Bar
Named after the charismatic original owner of Turtle Inn, the Skip White Bar displays antique microscopes used by Skip and his Marine Biology students. This open-air bar offers an excellent selection of drink options throughout the day and into the evening and is an ideal place to chat about the day’s adventures over a glass of Coppola wine or a Belize-brewed beer.

Fishing Information

Belize PermitPlacencia is perhaps best known for the large numbers of permit that inhabit the southern area’s huge chain of cayes and flats, most of which are a +/- 45-minute run from town. Surrounded on all sides by deep, blue water, the healthy sand and turtlegrass flats are home to some of the largest permit found anywhere. A number of the mangrove islands and mainland lagoons hold good numbers of snook, as well as tarpon ranging in size from 10 to over 50 pounds.

Schools of bonefish can also be found throughout some of the cayes for those anglers interested in pursuing the elusive grand slam. This area of Southern Belize is blessed with a wide range of fishing contexts including extensive saltwater flats, mangrove islands, the largest Barrier Reef in the Western Hemisphere, and a plenitude of backcountry rivers, lagoons, and lakes. There are few places in the Caribbean that offers a greater variety of fishing locations than Southern Belize.

Yellow Dog has been booking guides in the Placencia area for years. We will gladly arrange any number of guided fishing days to compliment your stay at Turtle Inn. The guides that Yellow Dog works with are experienced and professional local guides. Select fly fishing gear is available to loan from the Turtle Inn tackle shop, however, we recommend bringing your own gear. Please Call Yellow Dog for details.

Boats and Equipment

The guides fish from 23 foot super-pangas, boats that are ideal for both polling the flats and running over open water. All of their boats have polling platforms and are designed for fly fishing, with spacious casting decks and clean interiors.

Non-Angling Activities and Options

Turtle Inn DiningTurtle Inn has a number of complimentary beach and mountain bicycles available to guests who would like to pedal around the beautiful surroundings. Also, the best beach swimming in Belize is located in Placencia. The sandy beach and calm, clear waters create perfect conditions for swimming and snorkeling as well as a host of other water-related adventures. The onsite Dive Shop can help with more information on renting sailing boats, snorkel gear, and kayaks. The sunset over the distant Maya Mountains is nothing short of spectacular and there is no better place to see it from than the calm waters of the Placencia Lagoon. Guests can arrange a Sunset Cruise. The cruise generally lasts from 60 to 90 minutes and includes hors d'oeuvres and Coppola wines.

Turtle Inn has an amazing diving program that is dedicated to providing you with the best diving experience possible, regardless of skill level. In addition to their diverse selection of tours, they also offer a wide range of PADI (Professional Association of Diving Instructors) certification courses. All diving equipment can be rented at the Inn.

Turtle Inn also has several tours that can be arranged to experience local Mayan ruins and the beautiful jungle surroundings. Guests can arrange to tour the Nim Li Punit Maya Site and Blue Creek Cave and/or the Lubaantun Maya Site and Rio Blanco Waterfalls. Wildlife viewing tours in the Cockscomb Basin Wildlife Sanctuary and the Monkey River Wildlife Adventure can also be arranged.

The Sunset Spa is set in an open-air Balinese Rice House featuring hand-painted murals inspired by ancient art, the Sunset Spa boasts some of Turtle Inn’s most stunning views of Placencia Lagoon. All treatments use only locally-sourced organic ingredients and at the request of Francis Coppola, our spa specializes in traditional Thai massage practiced by a professional staff that has studied the ancient techniques at the Sacred Wat Pho Temple in Bangkok.

How To Get There

International flights to Belize (BZE) go through Miami, Dallas, Houston, Atlanta and Charlotte. The major airlines that service Belize are American Airlines, Continental / United, US Air, Delta, and Taca.

Arrival and Departure Details / Times

It is best to arrive into the Belize City International Airport (Phillip Goldston International) before 3:00 PM in order to make your necessary in-country connections and allow ample in-country travel time to Placencia. Please contact Yellow Dog to set up your domestic flights.

2012 Rates / Package Costs

Accommodation rates are per room, and do vary depending on specific accommodation and time of year.. Prices DO NOT include taxes or a 10% service charge that is added on to the price of the rooms and meal plan for staff gratuities. Due to the detailed nature of Turtle Inn and the many activities and add-ons, package rates will be customized per guest. Please call Yellow Dog for details and custom package pricing.

Accommodation # Rooms / # Baths Price
Cottages 1 / 1 $330 - $560
Villas 2 / 2 $510 - $855
The Family Pavilion 3 / 2 $1,600 - $2,500
Lagoon Bungalow 1 / 1 Call YD
Beach House 2 / 2 Call YD

Meal Plan (per person, per day) ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------- $89.25
Daily Guided Flats Fishing (per day, 1 or 2 anglers ) ------------------------------------------------------ $500
Scuba Diving (Classes and Excursions Offered) --------------------------------------------------------------- Call YD
Daily Snorkeling Tours (per person, per day) --------------------------------------------------------------- $52 - $122
Sunset Cruise (for up to 4 persons) ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- $275 - $332
Mayan Ruin and Jungle Tours
(per person, per day) ---------------------------------------------------- $75 - $110

* Remember that Yellow Dog's services are completely free! When you book a trip with Yellow Dog, you never pay more than when you book directly with the lodge or outfitter.

What's Included

  • A continental breakfast of coffee, juice, pastries, bread, conserve and fruit
  • Use of on-site mountain and beach bikes

What's Not Included

  • International flight to Belize City
  • Round trip air transfers between Belize City and Placencia
  • Bar tab at resort
  • Gratuities for guides and staff
  • Guided fishing, diving excursions, mayan ruin and jungle tours, etc.
  • Spa services
  • Meal Plan

Travel Arrangements

Yellow Dog has a full in-house travel and reservations system, and can assist with airline tickets, hotels, transfers, and all travel logistics for every destination that we offer. Contact us at 888-777-5060 or for more details on airfare ticketing, travel services and trip insurance.

Other Information

A Word From Francis Ford Coppola
“Turtle Inn is a personal joy, it was built out of the rubble of a hurricane’s wrath and rose up entirely under my supervision. It features any number of original ideas and details, which, I confess, continue to delight me. I made the resort as rustic as I love, and as luxurious as I could.”

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