Belize’s Ultimate Retreats: How the Coppola Hideaways Transcend the Ordinary

by Larry Waight
seafront cottage turtle inn coppola

When Toronto film school graduate Angela Morrison was asked to pay tribute to people she admired, she had no trouble picking her first subjects: The Coppola Family. Titling her essay “If Hollywood Royalty Exists, It Begins With The Coppola Family,” she unearthed a trove of biographical material related to this respected dynasty.

Following her research, her completed essay covered creative talents that include acting, directing, producing, screenwriting, entrepreneurship, and music. In fact, family members never met a genre they couldn’t tackle, contributing to all manner of projects that include comedy, drama, horror, gangster films, and “countless teenage coming-of-age tales,” Morrison writes.

While leaving an indelible presence in Hollywood, the scion of the Coppola family, Francis Ford, turned his attention south to Belize where he set about opening two of the nation’s most elegant properties, lending the family name to projects that are so lush and beautiful, movie sets pale in comparison. If Belize is on your must-see list, here’s how staying at either of Francis Ford Coppola’s top-tier resorts—Blancaneux Lodge or Turtle Inn—impresses even the world-class traveler.

Blancaneaux Lodge
Morning coffee on your private lawn? Yes please. Image via Aaron Colussi/Blancaneaux Lodge
Mare Restaurant at Turtle Inn
Sofia Coppola's Beach House at Turtle Inn

Come to Blancaneux Lodge…

…if sequestering amid Mother Nature’s most beautiful environs is on your bucket list. When Francis Ford Coppola spotted this location in the early 1980s, he was struck by this abandoned property’s potential, turning it into a family retreat before morphing the site into a dramatic hideaway inside the verdant rainforest. Renovations and architectural modifications took years to complete. But when guests first got the chance to vacation within this rarified haven in 1993, it immediately became a sensation.

Privacy, exclusivity, and personalized service make this enclave unique. Waterfalls cascade into languid pools, thatched roof digs inspired by the area’s Maya heritage soothe and inspire guests to submerge themselves in surroundings while sequestering in the privacy of garden or river view, family, or luxury cabanas. The Enchanted Cottage offers fantasy beyond measure.

Blancaneux visitors often find themselves enraptured at the Waterfall Spa, where they encounter personal services borrowed from Asian cultural traditions. For those eager to stay active, horseback riding, complimentary birding, hiking, river tubing, bike riding and property tours are all included.

Guests are also invariably impressed by the resort’s cutting-edge ecological methods: the backbone of this resort’s conservation mission.

Photo by Coppola Family Hideaways

For foodies, Blancaneaux offers culinary nirvana, where guests enjoy delectable meals served at several sites on the property. Guests call this Coppola Hideaway paradise. You will too. Is this the 2023 Coppola property that has won your heart? If so, call this toll-free number to book your stay in paradise: (866) 356-5881.

Reserve Your Place in the Sun at Turtle Inn…

…if the vacation of your dreams requires access to a tropical beach! The Coppolas acquired Turtle Inn in 2001. Soon after, they spared no expenses when turning it into a seafront sanctuary dedicated to luxury and a degree of pampering usually reserved only for celebrities and royalty. Sequester at leisure within a romantic cottage crowned by a signature thatched roof and interiors filled with exotic Balinese furnishings and art.

turtle inn sea front cabana

Photo via Instagram @alagreutaphotography

Since the Caribbean Sea is just footsteps from your luxe digs, your dream of falling asleep to the rhythm of ocean waves kissing the shoreline promises restorative sleep and with bicycles at your disposal, you can ride into the village of Placencia where a mix of old-world fishing village charm, boutiques, shops featuring handcrafted items, pubs, and eateries are in abundance.

You may not want to eat too much because Turtle Inn guests are spoiled by the artistry of classically-trained chefs at the property’s Mare Restaurant, where seafood and traditional Italian recipes showcase organic produce grown onsite and seafood freshly caught each day. In addition to the delicacies chefs create, an impressively-stocked bar includes a selection of Coppola wines best enjoyed while marveling at ocean waves just feet from your table.

Avail yourself of services performed at the Sunset Spa, enjoy the resort’s refreshing swimming pool, and turn to experts at the Turtle Inn Dive Shop where everything from gear to PADI instruction and aquatic adventure tours are yours.

francis family pavilion turtle inn private

Francis’ Family Pavilion maximizes privacy at Turtle Inn.

Further, the resort’s concierge team will help you sort out a menu of activities that meet your unique needs. Best of all, Turtle Inn staffers deliver personal service that is unparalleled, so if this haven sounds like paradise, you’re not imagining things. Make it happen by calling this toll-free number (866) 356-5881.

Two Choices and Both Are Fabulous

Whether Blancaneux Lodge or Turtle Inn meets your vacation criteria and sensibilities, you can be certain that these Coppola Hideaways will spoil you for all future Belize vacations. Besides, you owe it to yourself to make 2023 the year all your sojourns are extraordinary.

Blancaneaux Lodge. Image via @saskia_rabbit

You may feel conflicted because deciding between the two seems impossible—which is why putting both on your 2023 schedule seems like the brightest idea you’ve had since you last watched your favorite Coppola film!

Featured Photo: A seafront cottage at Turtle Inn in Placencia, Belize. Courtesy Coppola Hideaways

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