Francis Ford Coppola unveils private island hideaway in Belize

By Naomi Leach

If you really fancy getting away from it all, consider heading to this private island paradise off the coast of Belize.

Coral Caye lies 13 kilometres off the coast of Placencia, Belize, making it the perfect place for beach lovers who really want to get away from it all. Photo / Benedict Kim, Supplied
Coral Caye lies 13 kilometres off the coast of Placencia, Belize, making it the perfect place for beach lovers who really want to get away from it all. Photo / Benedict Kim, Supplied

Film, wine and holiday resorts - is there no end to this man's talents?

American screenwriter and film director Francis Ford Coppola has unveiled a new location in his hospitality portfolio, in the shape of a private island.

Beach lovers can now castaway at Coral Caye, an idyll 13 kilometres off the coast of Placencia, Belize, that's only two acres, meaning a stroll around the perimeter would only take about five minutes.

The rustic two-acre retreat is a 20-minute boat ride from the Family Coppola Resort's Turtle Inn, making it the only accommodation on the Belize mainland to also offer a private island.

Groups of up to 12 can indulge their Huckleberry Finn fantasies with a stay at the island's two wooden-clad cottages.

Or a couple can rent out the Apocalypse Now director's entire island as a romantic escape.

However, if you're keen to watch The Godfather or one of Coppola's other film classics during your stay you may have to wait until you're back on the mainland.

With an emphasis on getting away from it all, there are no televisions on Coral Caye, although WiFi service and mobile phone reception are available.

Groups of up to 12 can stay at the island's two wooden-clad cottages. Photo / Benedict Kim, Supplied
Groups of up to 12 can stay at the island's two wooden-clad cottages. Photo / Benedict Kim, Supplied

Instead guests at this tropical address can totally unwind with spa treatments and beach lounging.

The island is stocked with hammocks, canoes, suntan lotion, bug spray, mosquito nets, lounge chairs, games, shaded picnic tables, outdoor showers, music (drums and guitars) and kids' toys.

For tourists still seeking the finer things in life during their island experience, optional extras include a private butler, private chef, alcohol, spa services and guided fishing tours and diving boat trips. Photo / Benedict Kim, Supplied
For tourists still seeking the finer things in life during their island experience, optional extras include a private butler, private chef, alcohol, spa services and guided fishing tours and diving boat trips. Photo / Benedict Kim, Supplied


There is also equipment for guests to enjoy a spot of fishing or snorkelling during their stay.

While holidaymakers will be made to feel like castaways they won't have to hunt for their supper, instead the island's on-call caretakers, Alberto and his wife Pauline are on hand to provide all meals from Belizean breakfasts and sumpuous lunches to seasonal seafood dinners.

For tourists still seeking the finer things in life during their island experience, optional extras include a private butler, private chef, alcohol, spa services and guided fishing tours and diving boat trips.

The island is stocked with hammocks, canoes, suntan lotion, bug spray, mosquito nets, lounge chairs, games, shaded picnic tables, outdoor showers, music (drums and guitars) and kids' toys. Photo / Benedict Kim, Supplied
The island is stocked with hammocks, canoes, suntan lotion, bug spray, mosquito nets, lounge chairs, games, shaded picnic tables, outdoor showers, music (drums and guitars) and kids' toys. Photo / Benedict Kim, Supplied

Just a boat ride away is the group's resort, Turtle Inn, a 25-room seafront haven with guests accommodated in thatched cottages decorated with Balinese furnishings and overlooking the white sands.

Not only is Coppola the mastermind behind the Turtle Inn and Coral Caye in Belize, he also owns Blancaneaux Lodge in San Ignacio in the same country.

Blancaneaux Lodge's luxurious, secluded villas comes with its own private pool and a personal attendant.

Nestled into the country's breathtaking Maya Mountains, guests can take in the stunning scenery - including waterfalls - from the comfort of their rooms.

The property was originally a Coppola family retreat, where the A-list clan went to escape the stress of Hollywood, but opened to guests in 1993.

With an on-site spa, riding stables and two dining options, you never have to leave the resort if you don't want to, though staff are happy to arrange excursions, including to the nearby Caracol Archaeological Reserve and Tikal ruins.

Further afield the group's portfolio includes La Lancha in Guatemala, Jardin Escondido in Argentina, and Palazzo Margherita in Italy.

- Daily Mail

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