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“Great time at El Cid”

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Hotel Marina El Cid Spa & Beach Resort
Ranked #14 of 27 Hotels in Puerto Morelos
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Reviewed August 16, 2006

My family and I recently visited the Marina El Cid between August 5th and the 11th. Prior to our visit I had faithfully read the reviews posted here to affirm that we had made a good hotel selection. Our experience was positive and I wanted to share some information for those comtemplating a visit.

A taxi to the hotel from the Cancun airport cost us $15 each. The ride from the airport to the hotel is about 25 minutes.

When we arrived, we were pleasantly surprised that the hotel looked exactly like the photos posted on the site. We were promptly assisted, and told that our room was not quite ready but that it would be in 30 minutes or so. (We arrived at 3 PM and check-in is at 3PM, so this didn't seem out of the ordinary). This gave one of the staff members an "opportunity" to tell us about their grand opening specials and to offer us the benefit of going on a tour of the resort. (Mmmmmm hmmmm......I smell time-share sales here). He promised that we would be given a $50 credit for our time if we would attend the seminar. Ok...fine. I had read the other reviews and figured that we could spend an hour for a $50 discount toward an excursion.

When our room was ready (about 45 minutes later) we were taken to building 17. The room was a 1 bedroom suite with a HUGE dining room and full-size refridgerator. We immediately noticed, though, that the queen size murphy bed that we requested was not in this room. Initially, our thought was that we could push the sofas toghether, and that this would not be an issue. Then, we noticed that we didn't have any trash baskets in the room, and made a request for those. After coming back from a swim, the trash baskets had not yet been delievered and the shower was running cold.

We went to the front desk and requested an alternate room, with a murphy bed, trash cans, and hot running water. (As a sidebar - we were told that we weren't provided with a room with a murphy bed because our child wasn't 6 years old. I advised that we PAID for a murphy bed, and that they shouldn't have assumed that we would want to sleep with our 4 year old). We were quickly provided with an alternate one bedroom suite in building 10 with a slightly smaller dining area (who cares). This was close to the pool with a view of the pool and the ocean.

The crazy pool music starts at 11 AM and plays through 5 PM. After 5, there's still music, but it's subtle and not annoying as other guests have indicated.

The pool is clean, beautiful, and refresing (if slippery...be careful).

The food at the resort was good, and plentiful. The Andalus is a buffett with a variety to please most. Breakfast here is great, as there's a waffle/pancake station on one side of the restaurant, and an omelet station on the other. In between, you'll find a variety of Mexican/American foods. The Arrecife is good for lunch (poolside) with a decent selection of soups, starters, sandwiches, and full-blown entrees. The Alcazar is their "gourmet" restaurant. The atmosphere is nice, the food is good (wouldn't call it gourmet, but very nice), and the service is cordial. Plan to spend at least an hour an 1/2 eating dinner here.

We didn't bother with La Marina restaurant, and heard from others that it was "ok".

We did go on two snorkeling excursions....One that we got for free (after blowing off our "appointment" to talk to the timeshare folks day 1, they offered us a free snorkeling excursion for the three of us day 2), and one that we paid for on the 72' catamaran.

The free snorkeling excursion was done on a regular dive boat at the reef off the coast of Puerto Morelos. The reef appeared to be damaged from last years' hurricane, but the fish were plentiful and the guides were very pleasant. We booked the catamaran ssnorkeling tour, and to our surprise, turned out to be the only guests. What a treat. We snorkeled at a different location on the reef, and kayaked onto the beach from the boat. Again, the guides couldn't have been nicer, and we had a very pleasant trip.

A side-note about the timeshare meeting....it's a one-on-one sales job that you review a dorky power-point presentation for 15 minutes and are asked to hand over nearly $50,000 for vacation "points" to be used over the next 20 years. Every time you try to leave, someone else comes to your table to "survey" how you were treated and to evaluate what they can sell you. When we finally walked away, they were willing to give us a "trial"membership which would pay us back for our 6-day stay ($1,500), allow us to visit El Cid in Puerto Morelos twice (free), and allow us to visit their sister property in Costa de Sol, Spain twice(free) for the low introductory price of $3,500. We still passed.

We ate and drank everything at the resort, and are happy to report that Montezuma never came to visit. Hope this is helpful to you!

  • Stayed: July 2006, traveled with family
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17  Thank TZucco
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed August 13, 2006

I stayed at the Marina El Cid from August 4-August 11, 2006.

Marina El Cid is not located in Cancun although it is advertised as being in Cancun. The Hotel is located in Puerto Morelos 25 -30km from Cancun. We arrived at Puerto Morelos at 2:30pm and check in was at 3:00pm. We reserved Club Platinum room. We completed the check in at 2:53. Karina at Club Platinum advised us that our room was not ready and we should come back in 10 minutes. We hung around the lobby and returned to Club Platinum and as told that the room would be ready in 20 minutes. That was okay with us (we could have some lunch) upon our return we were informed that it will take another 30 minutes. To me this was not Platinum service. We were finally driven to our room and it was beautiful. The Platinum room is equipped with a living room, dining room, kitchen, two bathrooms and the bedroom and a jacuzzi on the balcony. The room overlooked a beautiful view of the ocean. Heaven!

The El Cid has excellent food and drink (you will not be disappointed). The wait staff was superb. They go out of there way to make sure that you are having a good time.

I did encounter a few problems with the air conditioner and my room key. The air conditioner was not working. I called Club Platinum (they rarely answered when you call) and they said that they would send someone up shortly. The short of it the AC was fixed five hours later. The room key was fixed a couple of days later.

The beach has a lot of seaweed. They do try there hardest to control the seaweed. The pool is clean and refreshing in the hot sun.

The Marina El Cid has a lot of potential.

10  Thank Hazelnutz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 12, 2006

Husband and I stayed at the Marina El Cid August 7-11. Had a wonderful time. The resort is quiet, beautiful (brand new), clean, and the staff goes out of their way to make you feel welcome. Most amazing swimming pool I have ever seen. The beach was nice, the hammocks and palapas in the sand are plentiful. However, we did not swim in the ocean due to the amount of seaweed. There were men working sun up to sun down to remove the seaweed from the beach but it seemed to be never ending and there were very few people in the water.

I would recommend taking the snorkeling tour from the hotel. Snorkeled in Cozumel last year and this was much better.

Also, we took a taxi for $8 to the bus station and rode the bus to Playa del Carmen where we spent part of the day before we took the ferry to Cozumel. Neat experience.

One other tip: take a major credit card OTHER THAN DISCOVER. No one accepts discover card.

would recommend to adults with or w/o small children looking for relaxation. Not for teens, people looking for lots of activity or wanting to be close to shopping or nightspots.

14  Thank awren
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 9, 2006

I read several reviews from this sight, so I was not surprised by the poor scenery surrounding the resort or the poor quality of the beach.

Overall my family and I had a nice stay. We enjoyed the hammocks on the beach. My two older daughters 8 and 5 loved the kids club and the pool. They weren't even bothered by the sea grass on the beach. I was disappointed by a foul smell from the beach near the marina. In spite of this, the the view was still quite beautiful.

The resort is still in stages of development. The spa was not yet built, so massages were available near the beach. This was nice, being able to hear the waves while getting a wonderful full body massage.

We brought our 3 month old, I was surprised that there were several families with infants at the resort. I worried about the water the whole time because I am nursing. She and I were fine, no stomach problems due to the food, or the ice in soft drinks, and I drank bottled water. I was disappointed that the individual bottles of water were not consistently available during our stay, but purified drinking water was still plentiful by the glass.

The best part was the food and the wonderful staff! Everyone was helpful and courteous. The only disappointment in this area was that there was a temporary power outage which affected laundry services, so there were no washcloths available for bathing for two days. We had plenty bath towels though.

We were 30 minutes from Cancun, that was disappointing as well, as the area was not as nice as Cancun in general. We endured the 90 minute timeshare presentation in exchange for a rental car, arranged by the infamous Cecelia.

If you are looking for a secluded beach, great fun for the kids and organized, variety filled fun adult activities, this is the place to be!

If you want pristine beaches and close proximity to great shopping, this is not the place for you.

  • Stayed: July 2006, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
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9  Thank Lady3-D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 8, 2006

This may be a little wordy, but bear with me. Hubby and myself stayed 7/30 thru 8/5 at this very nice, small and relatively new resort. After reading previous reviews, didn't know quite what to expect. Resort has great entry. We opted for the Club Platinum plan and this was a great plus for us. Check in was quick, smooth and sealed with a couple of Don Julio Tequila shots. Yes, the vacation has begun. After a review of our package perks, we were whisked off our oceanfront room. ROOM: Aaahhh....Pleasantly surprised at size and welcoming decor. Foyer, marble shower w/bench, double sink vanity, kitchenette including microwave, stove, frig (which was replenished with soda, beer, and water daily), king bed, sofa, table and chairs, and patio with furniture (I can still feel that sultry, salty ocean breeze). Not bad. FOOD: Restaurants were good depending upon your taste and expectations. This is our fourth time in this area so we know what to expect: Highs AND lows. This is Mexico....want Chili's, MacDonald's, etc....you can go into either Cancun or Playa Del Carmen. The food is good. The Arriciphe's breakfast was good for our taste (try the salmon omelette, yum); we also liked the chicken parmesan dish served at lunch (most tender chicken and flavorful sauce I've tasted). Hubby opted for the more spicer dishes. The Int'l Buffet was adequate with lots of choices. The LaMarina lobster dinner was a hit and miss for us. The room service was surprisingly very good (try the Sandwich Siciliano made with turkey ham or pepperoni). The desserts are incredible. The Lobby Bartenders were great (thank you Wilbert and Jovertti!); try the "Willy Willy" , "ABC", or the "flaming Mexican Flag" shots. So you don't drink.....try their virgins.....fantastic! The service by staff was uncompromising. Any concerning issues were resolved by our butler(s); completely stress free. ACTIVITIES: The animation staff oversees daily activities including water aerobics (Enrique is a lot of fun), volleyball, water polo, barhopping in Cancun, etc. We booked deep sea diving onsite. Was picked up at room by butler and taken next door to marina. (Caught two barracudas and a mackeral!). Also booked parasailing which picked us up at resort and took us to Marina Moroma, about 15-20 mins down the road. We returned within 20 mins after activity. TIPPING: This is an all inclusive. Use your own judgement regarding tipping. We tipped for extraordinary service. Some service staff expected and most did not. We still tipped accordingly. Overall this was a good family resort. This was our first time at a family all inclusive and we would definitely recommend for families. However, we prefer the all adult resorts and probably will not return to this one. There is an adult section at this resort, but the kids were still very much present in those zones. One more thing: Arrange your air terminal to hotel transportation online prior to arrival. Will save you much time and headache. We booked and after proceeding thru customs and the chaotic terminal gauntlet of hawking vendors, we were sited our transport with our name on placard and were immediately taken to resort without waiting for "additional passengers". Loved it. Questions, we're open to elaborate.

  • Stayed: July 2006, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
16  Thank Deborah134
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 6, 2006

We were a group of six girls (30 something, married with kids) on a quick getaway. We wanted to have fun, but not anything too wild and crazy. El Cid was a great resort for us. The rooms, food, pool were all great. We even braved the cliff and slide with only a few bruises! Mostly enjoyed the pool, drinks and relaxing. We ate well, I was still full from the previous meal when we sat down for the next one. The staff was wonderful, I can't remember all the names but Juan Carlos was such a gentleman, carrying even the smallest of plates from the salad bar for us. Bartenders were all fun and I have to mention Wilbur (we called him Willie) at the Lobby bar. I'm afraid we brought more activity to the Lobby bar than they are used to, but the shots were good and the three person band was fun!

The entertainment staff got us up our of chairs a few times. Water aerobics will never be the same without Enrique. They were all energetic and fun.

Don't miss the snorkeling trip from the marina! We would have liked more spa choices, but they have not built the spa yet. Massages were great, done outside in the quiet zone.

We talked about how much the kids would like this place, so we will probably return with the families sometime. Or, maybe just us girls again. I recommend this resort for a great getaway!

Longview, TX

Stayed: August 2006
7  Thank JenfromTX
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 5, 2006

visited the Marina El Cid 20th July to 3rd aug for 2 weeks! Had a wonderful holiday.
The hotel is immaculate, very clean and tidy.

We had a suite with one bedroom and a living area / bedroom and 2 bathrooms and it was beautiful. We were also fortunate enough to have the Platinum service which was excellent. We must say a special thanks to Karla from the Club Platinum who works really hard and bent over backwards for us.

The pool area is lovely although i did notice the pool was getting a little cloudy towards the end of our saty. The jacuzzi area is wonderful and there is always plenty of sunbeds.

We ate in all of the restraunts, Alcazar being the best, antonio is a great waiter (Cheers mate!) The buffet is very good for breakfast and lunch with plenty to choose from. The drinks were very good and you could get anythin you wanted!

SARAH AND LAUREN in the entertainment team work very hard and are great fun!!!!
Some of the activities are brilliant but there always seem to be more than on activity at a time which is a silly idea! The evening shows were ok but i think the entertainment manager needs a little more imagination in order to get some games / competitions going instead of just the activities consisting of mainly sports. I also hated the water aerobics class that one of the men run where you massage each other! this massaging reallly put me off!

The beach was nice but there was alot of seaweed as everyone mentions. I also found the location of the hotel to be abig letdown, it s 30km or so to cancun costing $30 in a taxi, the taxi drivers who are called by the bellboys also tried to rip us off on numerous occasions, ther are prices up in the lobby and we told them that and said thats the price we would be paying!

Puerto Morelos is a bit run down but there are some nice restraunts to eat in (Hola Asia and Porta Bello).

Overall this hotel is lovely but i probably wouldnt return for 2 weeks due to the location but i would go back for a few days stay and i would recommend this hotel to anyone looking for a quiet vacation away from the hustle and bustle of cancun. although there is loads of kiddies at this hotel!!! i think that the 12-16 year olds must find it a bit boring as the kids club seemed to be aimed at the younger ones, maybe a games room would solve this!

The guy a the watersports is also very good at his job (alberto) and took us in the catamaran which was fun!

  • Stayed: July 2006, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
9  Thank Sunseeker1984
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hotel Marina El Cid Spa & Beach Resort

Address: Boulevard El Cid Unidad 15, Puerto Morelos 77580, Mexico
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Puerto Morelos
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#3 Green Hotel in Puerto Morelos
#9 Family Hotel in Puerto Morelos
#10 Romantic Hotel in Puerto Morelos
#14 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Morelos
#14 Luxury Hotel in Puerto Morelos
#14 Spa Hotel in Puerto Morelos
#14 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Morelos
Price Range: $185 - $575 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Hotel Marina El Cid Spa & Beach Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 428
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Retreat to a luxury paradise of turquoise Caribbean waters, soothing breezes, Mayan cultural sites and beautiful, aromatic flora and fauna. Situated near the charming bohemian fishing village of Puerto Morelos, overlooking the world's second largest coral reef park, this family oriented, all-inclusive beach resort offers a quiet alternative to the larger hotels in Riviera Maya. Enjoy amazing snorkeling, diving, sailing and sport fishing directly from our shores. With a selection of diverse restaurants, fabulous pools, adults-only Jacuzzi, Mayan-oriented spa, complete fitness center, full-service marina and more -- there is everything to do or nothing at all. • Family & Eco friendly Ocean Front Resort • Exclusive large suites • Great All Inclusive & Platinum All Inclusive meal plan options • Four tantalizing restaurants featuring a la carte and delicious buffets • Macondo Ocean Deck Bar with infinity pool • 22,000-square-foot pool • Beautiful landscaping, expansive sandy beach, hammocks. • Convention Center. • Ocean Front El Cocay Spa. • Full-service Marina 120-slip marina • WIFI Internet Access (fee) • Kids Club Center • Fitness center with the latest cardio equipment, free weights and a spinning class area • Pronatours Tour Desk • Half hour from Cancun/Riviera Maya International Airport and 20 minutes from downtown Cancun/Riviera Maya and Playa del Carmen. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hotel Marina El Cid Spa & Beach Puerto Morelos
Hotel Marina El Cid Spa And Beach Resort
Marina El Cid Riviera Maya
Hotel Marina El Cid Riviera Maya
El Cid Riviera Maya
Hotel Marina El Cid Beach
El Cid Puerto Morelos
Hotel Marina El Cid Spa & Beach Resort Riviera Maya, Mexico - Puerto Morelos

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