The Lodge at Chaa Creek ‘s recent recognition as one of the world’s best 100 hotels by the authoritative Fodor’s Travel guide is a win not only for the Belizean eco resort, but the tiny country’s tourism industry as a whole, Chaa Creek owner Lucy Fleming said today.
“We were very happy indeed to hear that Chaa Creek was selected as one of the world’s 100 best hotels by such a highly regarded source as Fodor’s,” Ms Fleming said, “It’s a win not only for us and our staff, but for Belizean tourism as a whole, which has been growing side by side Chaa Creek since Belize became an independent nation in 1981,” she said.
Fodor’s Travel has been one of the world’s leading sources for travel information since 1936, and currently covers over 7,500 destinations worldwide through its popular guidebooks, website and articles. The company recently released its second annual list of the world’s top 100 hotels, culled from a list of over 4,000 nominations taking in 41 different countries.
In acknowledging Chaa Creek, Fodor’s said that, “Affordable luxury, sustainable practices, and the best… natural offerings come together at this 23-room, all-inclusive villa hotel spread over 365 riverside jungle acres in Belize’s Cayo district (Guests share the vast property with monkeys, jaguars, and more than 300 bird species.).”
Another Fodor’s review stated that Chaa Creek’s “…gracefully landscaped grounds, surrounded by 365 acres of rolling hills above the Macal River, are magnificent. On the grounds are the Rainforest Medicine Trail, Natural History Centre, butterfly farm, horse stables, Maya organic farm, one of the best spas in Belize, as well as a gorgeous bi-level swimming pool. “
Ms Fleming said that Chaa Creek’s success was the result of several factors, “We’re blessed with incredible natural beauty in Belize and are lucky to have the best staff I’ve seen anywhere in the world. When we started on a shoestring over 30 years ago, everyone pulled together to make it work, and that feeling that we’re all in this together has never faded. We really are like one big family, now with over 135 members all working together, and guests see and appreciate that.
“Since we evolved slowly over time we built Chaa Creek in harmony with the natural surroundings, and that shows. My husband Mick and I have gained a love and respect for the natural environment that only comes from living here, so I think we blend in and work with nature, rather than trying to subdue it. We’ve been able to show that you can provide a luxurious experience with sustainable Green practices by paying very careful attention to the needs of your guests and your surroundings,” she said.
Described as Belize’s first true eco resort, Chaa Creek contains fourteen thatched roof cottage style accommodations, seven suites, four villas and ten bungalow style casitas at its Macal River Camp, and offers horseback and mountain bike riding and hiking through miles of secure jungle trails, canoeing, guided tours and a range of activities as well as a pool and a fine-dining restaurant with a spacious jungle lounge. The Eco resort is known for its affordable all-inclusive Belize vacation packages, some combining a Caribbean island vacation with Chaa Creek’s rainforest and Maya experiences.
“By offering so many different activities and experiences we’ve become a destination within a destination, which allows us to offer casual luxury at affordable rates, and this, combined with our friendly attention to service has set us apart,” Ms Fleming said, and added that, “It’s great when your guests say that you’re the best place they’ve stayed, and when such a respected source as Fodor’s says that you’re among the very best in the world, well, that’s just icing on the cake.”