Unquestionably the highest end resort on Roatan, Pristine Bay continues to develop and evolve. Located about mid-island, on Roatan's northern shore with beautiful sunset views over the Caribbean, this massive, three-phase project is remarkable not only for its signature Black Pearl golf course, but also for its continuity and momentum. Seemingly immune to the ebb and flow of the global economy, Pristine Bay development simply, impressively marches on.
We stayed at the resort with family and friends over the last week of July and first week of August, and we had an amazing time. We golfed, paddleboarded, played tennis and dove locally with Black Pearl Divers. We ate at all three restaurants in the phase 1 development, and we ate at the new restaurant at Las Verandas - the hotel which makes up the centerpiece of the phase 2 development. In short, we really used the place, and our experience was very positive.
Without question, the best part about Pristine Bay is the accommodations. The site is spectacular, and the villas are very nicely built with high-end furnishings, finishes and design. We stayed in our own place, Beach Villa 0101 while our friends stayed a couple of doors away in Beach Villa 0104. Waking up every day to this view from our patio...
... was nothing short of amazing, and the privacy, peace and serenity of Beach Villa 0101 is unmatched. Yet it's just steps away from the private beach and the Beach Club.
So what's the problem with Pristine Bay?
Two words: the drive. Despite all the great things the resort is doing to be a "one-stop shop", we found ourselves drawn to other parts of the island (especially the West) for a variety of reasons: two of our kids were in Dolphin Scuba Camp at Anthony's Key Resort, one of our children was volunteering at the exotic animal rescue hospital on Maya Key, we needed to buy some nice artwork for the villa at Waves of Art in West End, and we wanted to have a nice dinner at our favorite Indian Restaurant in the world, Ooloonthoo (I know what you're thinking, but all I can say is "trust me and try it".)
In fairness, we aren't your average visitors to Roatan (with kids in summer camps and doing volunteer work while mom and dad do a makeover on a vacation home) and two weeks is a long enough chunk of time that any one location can get old. If you are looking for high-end accommodations for a week and don't really intend to be in and out of the resort all the time, this concern does not apply and Pristine Bay is clearly the nicest place to stay on Roatan.
If, on the other hand, you want to be reasonably close to the vitality and variety of Roatan's West End, you will need a rental car, and you will find the drive to be a hassle (at a minimum) and possibly prohibitive because driving 45 minutes in the dark on the main road is dangerous. It's simply too hard a drive with all the pedestrians walking and cars stopping unpredictably on the poorly-lit, winding, guardrail-less turns. One time over the course of a week, maybe. Multiple times is asking for trouble.
The Bottom Line
Pristine Bay is beautiful, peaceful, and safe with a lot to do and more being added all the time. For many, it is all they need or want on a Roatan vacation. Its one potential issue is proximity to the Western part of Roatan where there is a lot more activity, humanity and variety of shopping/dining/nightlife options. If that matters to you, Pristine Bay is not yet worth the drive. Look into high-end options in West End like Coral Vista Villas. If, however, your priorities are peace and quiet and luxury, Pristine Bay is the must see resort on Roatan Honduras.