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“Our stay at El Rio set the bar really high for our next office outings.” 5 of 5 stars
Review of El Rio y Mar Resort

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El Rio y Mar Resort
4.0 of 5 Hotel   |   Palawan, Palawan Island 5316, Philippines   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #10 of 16 Hotels in Coron
Singapore, Singapore
Senior Contributor
39 reviews 39 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
“Our stay at El Rio set the bar really high for our next office outings.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 12, 2009

Our company occupied the entire resort during our 3D2N stay. El Rio provided the perfect background for fostering camaraderie that wasn't "scripted." Everyone had something to do: snorkeling, swimming in the pool, billiards, beach volleyball, and of course, just plain lounging around. Those among us who did not opt to take the tour around Coron had a blast checking out the hiking trail and El Rio's sister resort, Club Paradise.

The food was just incredible! Not your typical Pinoy resort food but much, MUCH better! All our meals were buffet and we were served beef, lamb, chicken, lengua, prawns, steamed fish and chili crabs, among others. Very generous with their buffet too. Don't expect to still look fabulous in your bikini/trunks after a week here. It's *that* good! (and, may I add, the drinks are top notch too! the bar is well-stocked, and bartender Mackoi is adept at mixing your favorite cocktail and demonstrating their more unique ones. check out Shabu, Death Row and Good Grief Reef. don't worry... if you get smashed, the staff will either gladly escort you back to your room or let you sleep on the lounge chairs by the bar, but only after swaddling you in blankets, applying mosquito repellent and leaving katol by your side.)

As exemplified above, the staff made sure all our needs were met. For our triple/quadruple-shared cabanas/rooms, they provided towels and toiletries for everyone (versus other hotels that only offer 2 towels). Soap, shampoo and lotion dispensers in the bathroom! Everyone was just so warm and courteous. No haughty posh hotel attitudes here! The staff also puts together a highly entertaining cultural presentation made even more fun with audience participation, at least for our group. Even their resident MD, chef and architect were willing vict... er, participants!

Our stay wasn't as quiet as described in the other reviews -- they allowed us to use the videoke, and our laughter reverberated throughout the resort even deep into the night, but that was only because we were their sole guests. Otherwise, I can imagine how romantic, peaceful and serene El Rio truly is... which it was when everyone from our group was tucked into their beds (or lounge chair).

Thanks again to Alex and the rest of the staff for giving our HR a difficult time choosing a place that could surpass, or at least equal, our company outing next year!

  • Stayed July 2009
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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194 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    100
    64
    18
    7
    5
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49
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (39)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Russian first
  • Any
English first
NY
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 24, 2009

Our experience at El Rio y Mar is a memorable one. Aside from the obvious beauty of the location, with the cabanas right by the waterfront, the cabanas were clean, spacious, and comfortable. The hotel staff were attentive to our needs and saw to our comfort at every turn. Each and every one of the staff at El Rio y Mar were courteous, helpful and seemed knowledgeable not just of their own respective responsibilities but of their surroundings as well. The staff seemed genuinely eager to assist us and to ensure a pleasant and enjoyable vacation for me and my husband. We were in good hands from the minute we arrived at the airport where the guide that met us, made sure we were looked after. We received a warm welcome from the staff at the hotel and the hospitality never waned throughout our entire stay. We went island hopping as one of the many activities available at the Resort. Our guide gave an informative tour about the local wildlife of the various islands that we visited and made sure that we were always safe. We were pleasantly surprised to be entertained by song during dinner by one of the staff members of the Resort. The bartender, the manager and the chef have specifically outdone themselves in providing a rare experience for my husband. He was able to try various drinks as well as a sampling of the infamous mangrove worms - fresh from the trees. There are many things that make the El Rio y Mar Resort a great getaway location but above all else is the impressive personal attention we received from the staff.

  • Stayed May 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Manila
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 24, 2009

The resort is remote and receives a weak signal (Globe subscribers), making it ideal for leaving city life behind.

I loved the huge cedar cottage with a porch. The bed was firm and the sheets were smooth and cool to the touch. There are many functional elements. These include: a full-length mirror in the walk-in closet, soap dispensers near the sink and in the shower, a dipper, two golf umbrellas in case it rains, a foot bath to wash off sand, and lots of pegs for hanging wet clothes and towels. They even provide a thermos of tap water so that you don't have to buy bottled water at the restaurant whenever you're thirsty. There is a need for more white light inside the room, though. And the hot water in the shower never worked.

Beware if you don't like wildlife. Monitor lizards and tree shrews are wont to wander into your cottage through the crevices. Sometimes they wander on the restaurant deck. They won't bother you though. Even the bees are laissez-faire.

The food is abundant - about four or five courses per meal. The meat entrees are always cooked perfectly, but salads dressed in vinaigrette tend to be too sour. Bar prices are prohibitive so we didn't even attempt to get drunk. Which is a shame, actually.

All the staff are friendly and accommodating. They make sure all your needs are met, so just ask. They can also arrange a knockout tour of Coron island. (When they tell you it's a must-see, they are NOT kidding.)

  • Stayed June 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Manila
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 23, 2009

Everything is great in this resort! food, rooms the view, even the emloyees are very nice. Tips? Stay longer!! enjoy!!

  • Stayed June 2009, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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manila
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 22, 2009

After countless re booking days and fees, we finally set off to El Rio Y Mar Resort in Coron, Palawan. Our flight was three hours delayed than expected. When we arrived at the resort itself, the staff and Alex, the RM, greeted us with a song and complimentary mango shakes. From there, you can sense how hospitable the people are. The rooms are well maintained, the view of the beach is perfect and at night, you can hear the insects out in the nearby forest. Even squirrels, you can watch them running up and down the trees! The resort offers tour around nearby islands. We took the Coron Island Tour along with some couples. There we swam, snorkeled at some spots - Siete Pecados, Twin Lagoon, Twin Lagoon and Maquinit hot spring. After the tour however, for the next hours and days of our stay, the weather changed from sunny to rainy. Despite the cold weather, its fun to swim under the rain and still the view looks better and stunning, rain or shine. There was one night where the staff prepared a cultural show for all of us. Not only they are accommodating, but also entertaining. Abundance of food was sufficiently and satisfactorily prepared every meal. Even though it was enjoyable, my eldest son went home early to fix his college enrollment and my youngest still wants to have some more fun, so additional re booking days and fees! He even took a crash course on swimming alone in the infinity pool!

Living for a few days in an island was very relaxing especially in a place like that, where there is solace and tranquility, away from the buzziness of city life! My only regret and disappointment however, in going to Palawan, is the airport and the air transport system, but that is another story!

  • Stayed May 2009, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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san jose,CA
2 reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 11, 2009

When my sister came home for vacation from working overseas, we decided to spend our family reunion here. And it was the best decision we made! We had four days of wonderful tours, adventures, yummy meals, and being able to relax and enjoy the comfortable ambience of El Rio. The staff was amazing, everyone was really friendly, and Alexine the resort manager made us feel at home and made sure we didnt lack for anything. The rooms were beautiful, clean and super comfortable! Our first day,my brother and I went kayaking and crossed over to the mangrove forests facing the resort, while my mom swam in the infinity pool and sipped her margarita. My whole family's first time here, so we took the complete Coron tour and saw all the wondrous sites, went hiking, swimming, snorkeling, bathed in hot springs, and even fed giraffes at the Calauit Animal Preserve. On our last day, my sister and I tried out the FlyFish (like the bananaboat but you end up standing). Which was a lot of fun but also involved a lot of screaming from us! And every night we looked forward to a scrumptious buffet and musical entertainment from the staff. Over all, we had so much fun and had a wonderful time together as a family! El Rio Y Mar is really one of the best resorts Ive been to, I'd recommend this to everyone! And its also a great place for couples with its secluded location, quiet ambience, and sunsets at the infinity pool, so will definitely be back again next time with my hubby!

  • Stayed May 2008, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Manila
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 1, 2009

we stayed at el rio y mar for our honeymoon and it was truly a very relaxing stay! for me, the resort was the perfect place for chillin'. because it only has less than 20 cottages, you can really de-stress in this place! the food, people and service are great, not to mention the island tours that they offer (we recommend the coron tour for the breathtaking lagoons and hot spring). all in all, if you really want to get away from the hustle & bustle of the city, go to el rio y mar for a very unique experience :)

  • Stayed May 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about El Rio y Mar Resort

Address: Palawan, Palawan Island 5316, Philippines
Location: Philippines > Mimaropa > Palawan Province > Palawan Island > Coron
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Luxury Hotel in Coron
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — El Rio y Mar Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 26
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
El Rio Y Mar Resort is the perfect haven for those seeking an escape from the urban jungle. Nestled in a beautiful tranquil bay with a breathtaking view of calm waters and rolling hills, the resort offers the perfect ambiance for romantic getaways and retreats. With only fifteen cottages, guests are guaranteed personalized service with the trademark warmth and charm of native Palawe'os. The resort also offers scuba diving, hiking, water sports and tours around Coron. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
El Rio y Mar Hotel Coron
El Rio y Mar Resort Coron, Palawan Island

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