“Never Gonna Give You Up” in Ambergris Caye, Belize.

Wanting to make sure that we get the tiles how we want them in our bathrooms I sent an email yesterday to Daniel Camal, our building contractor, asking if it was possible to meet him at our build in Ambergris Caye, Belize. It wasn’t too long before he replied and we had the meeting set up for 11.30 am at our house (no better place to describe what we want). With the meeting organised I headed off for breakfast, yes long time readers, at Estel’s.

With breakfast completed I then went to Atlantic International Bank‘s branch in Pescador Drive to withdraw some money (don’t you just hate having to do this) and then headed home to prepare for our meeting.

With a stop off at Gekko Graphics to get a print out showing which tiles we had chosen for which room we got to our build in Ambergris Caye, Belize shortly after 11.30 am where Daniel was waiting for us and we proceeded to “tour” the house specifying in what room we want which tile. And the direction we want the tiles to ‘run’ in.

The meeting lasted just over an hour and we then set off to visit Daniel’s wood shop in the DFC (Development Finance Corporation) area and got there shortly after 1.15 pm where Moses (brother of Angel and Nicholas) showed us the work that has been carried out so far. All thirteen doors have been made and most have been stained and varnished. All are red mahogany. And, all look very good.

Good progress has also been made on the cabinetry (kitchens and bathrooms) and work has recently started on the pantry. We knew it was big (obviously because we gave the specifications/design to Daniel) but we didn’t realise just how big. Are we ever going to have enough stuff to fill it up (I hope not).

On the way out of the wood shop as we were saying goodbye to Moses Rose saw a head sticking out of a truck. She immediately rushed to it and turned to Moses to ask if she could have it. Moses nodded in the affirmative and Rose grabbed it. I groaned and said “You don’t want that” and Rose, turning towards what I then realised was a dummy, said “Never gonna give you up” and placed it in our golf cart.

All three of us (by now the dummy had been named Dolly) then went home and we (Rose and I that is) had lunch.


“Dolly”. Needs a clean up but…

In all seriousness Rose is a very keen and (in my opinion) a very good seamstress and when we left the UK she jettisoned her dressmaker’s dummy. She now has a replacement that will take pride of place in the bedroom (Rose’s handicraft room) on the First Floor of our build in Ambergris Caye, Belize.

With lunch over we headed back (gluttons for punishment) to our house to have a look at progress (for the build watchers here’s where today’s edition really starts for you) and got there around 3.45 pm.

At Ground Floor level they were making great progress laying the second coat of cement for the floor in front of the self-contained apartment.


One section to go and then the finishing coat.

Not far away Martin was working on the last section of the steps.


Again, nearly ready for the finishing coat.

Up the stairs to the First Floor where we were ‘greeted’ by the very pleasing sight of the sliding windows (doors) leant against the wall in the hallway. Yea, they are going to be fitted – and soon!


Our PGT WinGuard windows.

As we walked in to the house we saw straight away that two of the frames had already been fitted.


Northern frame fitted (apologies for poor quality of the photo).


Centre frame in place.

And work was underway grinding and chiseling away excess cement for the third frame.


Inside the house Christopher was still at work laying the tiles for the dining/living room areas.


Slowly but surely covering the floor.

In the Utility Room the boards for the ceiling had been fitted and the screws were being covered with filler.


Outside on the northern veranda José was applying joint compound for the ceiling having already covered the screws with filler.


Thirty screws are used to fit each board. Imagine how many indentations José has filled. And rubbed down.

Before climbing the scaffold to the Second Floor we popped in to the bedroom (Rose’s handicraft room) to find that work on tiling the shower ‘tray’ had virtually been completed.


Up on the Second Floor much of the ‘action’ was painting. Alfonso was applying the first coat of emulsion for the inside of the eastern veranda wall .


Loading the roller.


Cutting in.

And around the corner on the northern side of the house I ‘found’ Alfredo applying the second, and final, coat of emulsion to the wall.


Really bright now.

Before leaving the floor I had a look in my bathroom to see if they had started on laying the tiles for my shower ‘tray’. They hadn’t but had started preparing for it by marking out where the mosaic accent tiles will be laid.



The mosaic tiles for my shower ‘tray’.

Really, really pleased with progress Rose and headed off home both looking forward to the sliding windows (being fitted) by the time we make our next visit.

Today’s headline in based on the single released by Rick Astley which in 1988 reached number one in the UK Singles Chart and the US Billboard Hot 100.


  1. Alan Slater says:

    Hi John & Rose, I would have thought that your headliner would have been, ” Hello Dolly,” after Rose finding her dressmaker’s dummy and coming up with the name!!!!!! I keep looking at your daily temps. and find that you are far cooler than us in Western Mass. We are in our 16th day of high 90’s and high humidity, with in the sun temps of around 105 or so.!!!
    Quite a record, but not very nice to experience. Even in the U.K. they are finally getting summer with temps in the low 80’s. Watching the British Open Golf from Scotland and their temp. is low 80’s!!!!
    Keep up the good work,

    Alan S.

    1. Hi Alan. Actually did come up with “Hello Dolly” but just after I had published. Still time though for it to feature in the headline.

      Had seen the temperatures being experienced in some parts of the USA. I like it hot but…

      Been getting emails from family and friends in the UK and some are actually moaning about it being too hot. Next summer they will complaining about it being too cold. Its raining here as I write this. Kind regards John

  2. Andy says:

    I wonder if you was able to see each other with your meeting with Daniel your builder….. I quote…. 11.30 pm where Daniel was waiting for us.. Unquote…

    1. Going to have really serious thought to switching to a 24 hour clock. Just can’t cut it with my ams and pms!

  3. Jim westhead says:

    Hi John Jim here from Victoria BC Canada and my wife and I are in the crunching numbers to see if we can pull the pin and make the move to Belize. My wife was wondering what your finale cost will be with the build.

    1. Hi Jim. Since starting the blog I have shared lots of information but one of the things I never intended to share was costs.

      How much a house will cost will depend on so many things. What type? Where? What type of fixtures and fittings. So, what our house costs could have no bearing on what another house might cost.

      The best way of getting an idea is to contact a builder with an outline (and a fairly accurate one) of where and what you want to build. I am sure that if you plan to build on Ambergris Caye Daniel Camal (our builder) would give you an indicative price. Kind regards John

  4. Kris Jensen says:

    Very nice work. I look forward to meeting both Rose and yourself. Will see you likely mid Oct. when our build will be ready for sign-off. Do you know if the Town of San Pedro issues an actual occupancy permit?

    1. Thanks Kris. We are pleased with the way things have gone. Went past your build around a week and a bit ago and it is progressing very well.

      As to an occupancy permit being issued by SPTC, you need to apply for permission to occupy within 7 days of the completion of the building. Do not know yet if there is a form for this or if a fee applies (sure there will be!). Will post this when I get clarification.

      It will be good to meet when you get here in October.

      Kind regards John

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