This was my 4th trip to Mazatlan, 3rd stay at the El Cid Marina Beach, but my first solo visit. My experiences as a solo vacationer other places have varied from safe and happy, to lonely and difficult. This was totally safe and super happy. The staff at the Marina Beach has always been exceptional, but if it was possible to exceed their prior excellent service, they did. Special thanks to Nadia at reception, who was helpful and courteous about multiple lost keys and who helped me with my Wi-Fi connection. I also want to mention Jose Manuel at the Iguana bar (poolside restaurant), who remembered my preferences from day to day and who took it upon himself to help me me stay on a diabetic diet without getting into a rut of the same things every day, suggesting foods to try and arranging some off-menu preparations. The staff went out of their way to introduce me to some of the other older single women repeat visitors at the resort, and when I went out inquired very politely and kindly where I was going and when I expected to be back. They treated me the way my grown children would.
On my other visits there have been more families with children than this time. The resort is very family-friendly. Children particularly enjoy feeding the iguanas, and the variety of pools (one is large and relatively shallow, great for lap swimming, water aerobics (daily at noon), and water volley ball. The other is actually divided into several distinct areas, connected by water slides and swimmable tunnels: huge hot tub, sloping area with plenty of ladders, rails and hand-holds for the kids, deep "diving" pool, and another intermediate sized pool on the other side of the caves. There is also a small playground, a rudimentary mini-golf course, and shuffleboard. The "kids club" is located between the other El Cid hotels, but welcomes children staying at the Marina Beach.
The atmosphere of a resort built around a working marina, with boats moored both long and short term, and home to a sports fishing fleet, adds to the feel of the place. I sat out on my balcony late at night and listened to the waves breaking on the beach and at the same time to the gentle lapping of water in the protected harbor, and the hushed sounds from the residents on the yachts. What a way to unwind! If I got up early, I watched the army of busy landscapers who keep the grounds looking pristine. One morning, I watched them harvesting coconuts from the tall palm trees.
There were two changes in Mazatlan itself from prior trips. First, it continues to grow to the north. The Marina used to be one of the northernmost resorts. Now, hotels extend a long way past the Marina. I have always enjoyed that the Marina was close enough to get to either downtown or the "golden zone" of older beach resorts quickly and for a negligible cost, and yet was still away from the bustle. That continues to be true, as the new developments are across the inlet from the Marina, but there is much more development now. The other change was that there was a more visible, but apparently benign, police presence in the areas frequented by tourists, (and there were fewer pan-handlers and time-share sales shills on the streets).
Finally, the highway connecting Mazatlan and Durango has opened, after two decades of anticipation, cutting an 8-hour drive to less than 3. Spectacular bridges and tunnels. I highly recommend any of the tours that take you to Durango. The drive itself if worth it.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Enjoy the tranquil atmosphere and impeccable luxury of one of Mexico's finest beachfront properties located just five minutes from the cultural epicenter of Mazatlan's Golden Zone with attractive shops, restaurants, nightclubs and El Cid Golf & Country Club. This premier Mediterranean-style hotel is the preferred secluded spot for families who want to reconnect or couples looking for romance. Defined by our unparalleled hospitality, amazing marina-front location, inviting swimming pools, peaceful private beach and tantalizing cuisine, El Cid Marina Beach offers a memorable vacation experience. • Beautifully Appointed Suites • European, All-Inclusive & Elite All-inclusive Plans • Upscale Atmosphere • Secluded Golden Sandy Beach reachable by a quick water taxi ride • Two restaurants • Two pools and a spacious Jacuzzi • Two Snack Bars • Full Service Marina with Aries Sports fishing Fleet • Access to facilities of three nearby El Cid hotels and El Cid Golf & Country Club by complimentary shuttle • WIFI Internet Access (fee) • Only 20 miles from Mazatlan Airport • Pronatours Tour Desk in the lobby. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Hotel Marina El Cid
- El Cid Marina Beach Resort
- Marina El Cid Hotel
- El Cid Mazatlan Mexico
- El Cid Marina Mazatlan
- Mazatlan El Cid
- Hotel El Cid Marina Beach