Best Private Islands: Belize's Cayo Espanto

| This hideaway in the cayes of Belize could practically grant any wish, except for smoked fish. So when a Cayo Espanto guest requested that, the chef constructed a smoker. Same thing happened when another guest wanted a Christmas tree. The resort flew one in. After all, a private island with only six villas — including the new over-water Casa Ventanas at the end of a 150-foot private dock — does have some limitations. So the real magic is in striving for no limits. See photos. Here's further info from the managers of Cayo Espanto: Overall, what do U.S. travelers enjoy most about Cayo Espanto? Guests at Cayo Espanto truly enjoy the exceptional level of service, the personalized attention to detail & the privacy the island offers. A guest preference survey is sent to each visitor before they arrive which allows the resort to tailor all aspects of the stay from the drink that is handed to guests upon arrival to the music playing in their villa and the snacks stocked in the pantry. Cayo's chef meets with guests each morning to discuss the menu for the day and it is that customized attention that our U.S. visitors appreciate.| View Larger Map

Which of your offerings do you think best celebrates the authentic island culture? Situated just off the coast of Belize, Cayo strives to incorporate local culture into their offerings as much as possible. The chef incorporates local ingredients and traditional dishes whenever the opportunity arises and they coordinate tours to explore the nearby ancient Mayan ruins. The massage therapists at Cayo Espanto have even created a unique massage tailored to the needs of soon-to-be mothers, with elements drawn from the local Mayan culture. What do you think makes Cayo Espanto unique among all the world's private-island resorts?Again, the level of service and attentiveness — the staff makes it their priority to grant any wish or whim. If a guest wants to celebrate Christmas on the island, they will do their best to fly in a tree for them. They've had visitors who requested smoked salmon, but since it's not readily available in Belize, the chef built a smoker and smoked it himself. Additionally, the island's location allows guests to feel like they are miles away from civilization, but the island is close enough to the main land that guests can go in for day trips and they have access to a number of activities including golf, fishing and diving at the Blue Hole, just to name a few. To find out more information and book your stay, visit