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Marina El Cid Spa & Beach Resort

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Our Opinion

Ideal resort for families of all ages. Facilities are nice, clean and well-maintained. A great mix of food items in both the buffet and a la carte restaurants. The resort set up definitely caters more to kid-friendly activities, so there is never a shortage of things to do. The beach area is great, with the exception of some rocky parts felt a few feet from shore. The drink menus are OK and vary in quality, as they very rarely served top-shelf alcohol. Overall however, this is still a great resort option for families.


Overview
Hotel Marina El Cid is a low density complex composed of a mix of colonial and modern style architecture, ranging from spacious Junior Suites to luxurious Three Bedroom Suites, in low rise buildings a maximum of four floors. Consisting of shopping areas, a 300 ship state-of-the-art marina and yacht club, a museum, botanical gardens, and an Eco-Tourist Park, all set in the picturesque fishing town of Puerto Morelos.

Location: Located in the Puerto Morelos area, 20 minutes from Cancun International Airport, 35 minutes from Playa del Carmen.

tripadvisor Traveler Reviews
  • tampamum : Tampa, FL
Enjoyable enough but plenty of room for improvement

Family of 4 (2 45+ parents and 2 boys, 9 and 12) spent 4 nights at El Cid last week. We have been fortunate to visit many resorts, some all inclusive, many not. We choose AI from time to time because it's just easy. Arrival to Cancun was fine, immigration no problem. We were met promptly by Canada Transfers, who we've used previously, and were transported quickly (privately) to the resort. While Puerto Morelos does not have the finest beaches it's location from the airport (15-20 mins) is unbeatable for convenience, particularly with a short trip. Transfers, round trip before gratuity and beverages were about $90.We arrived at about 2pm and were pleased that we received immediate access to our room. We did not upgrade to the Platinum level as we just didn't see the value for this family trip at this resort (with limited Platinum specific amenities from what I could tell). We were in building 12, 3rd floor - we didn't pay for an ocean view but were pleased to have a partial ocean view. That was about the only positive comment I have about the room. We booked a Jr Suite which is really just a room with bedding for 4 and an odd and unnecessary kitchenette. The room was dated and dark with a musty smell. We had to fend off ants on several days. We did appreciate the double sinks, the higher end toiletries and the large, walk in shower (no tub but fine for the ages of our children). A murphy bed was the bedding for the kids and it was large enough and comfortable. The TV was small. The floors were tile, sandy upon arrival and in poor (cracked) condition. Overall the rooms were underwhelming at best.The grounds were lovely - well kept and clean. It's a relatively small resort and even though at capacity while there, never felt crowded. I did have to be at the pool by about 7:30 to "reserve" a few chairs in the area that we preferred but there seemed to always be chairs available if you weren't picky about location, etc. This was true at beach and around main pool (didn't spend much time at the infinity pool). The slide and rock jumping area were big hits with our family - really a lot of fun and the rock jump unique. The beach is mediocre - rocky and not the typical caribbean blue. We used the sea kayaks a few times but the hobie cats never seemed to be operating (too windy). Windsurfing only available if you were a highly competent windsurfer.Food - this was by far our biggest disappointment. We have no illusions that food at any AI will be excellent but our mediocre expectations have always been met....until the El Cid. The breakfast buffets (there are 2) were fine and quite good if you stick to freshly prepared eggs, and pancakes. Some of the fresh fruit was delicious, some not. Other buffet items at breakfast were alright - not hot, generally (warm to tepid scambled eggs. other items in catering type pans). Bread was always good and fresh, at all meals. Lunch was buffet only (I think) and alright - grilled fish at the mexican restaurant excellent, burgers, not so much, prepared medium rare at one point which we just won't do in Mexico. Chips and various salsas and guac abundant and good. Salad items worn looking, not always cold. Kids enjoyed the ice cream and crepes, otherwise pastries underwhelming. My husband and I tried the a la carte restaurants twice - and believe me that was enough. It was so bad we were laughing, filled up on bread and drinks. We had one meal at the marina restaurant where my fish was wildly overseasoned and his "pan seared" shrimp was deep fried mini shrimp in a basket. Second meal at mediterranean equally poor - won't bother with details but really didn't eat! I am so surprised at the positive reviews regarding any food at this resort. Kids did room service a few times - pasta with butter was fine and service quick. Also regarding food, there is essentially no outside eating space for meals - there are about 10 tables at the main lobby buffet - no view but nice to be outside (although there was serious construction noise every morning we were there). There is no snack bar, etc to grab a quick bite when between a meal not wanting a full meal - all all inclusives we've been to have at least a coffee / snack shop or stand where you can grab a quick bite, maybe for a kid who wants something but noone else feels like sitting down in a proper (indoor) restaurant. I found that odd and inconvenient. You can, however, purchase chips and snacks from a stand near the main pool. I found that particularly annoying. Service was very nice and we found employees kind and helpful (we tip well and frequently but I'm not sure that would have mattered). Plenty of bars, drinks were fine and abundant. Rooms were cleaned well and service was prompt. Yoga on the pier was nice and the instructor good. Workout facility small, some broken equipment. Tennis courts looked nice though we didn't use them. Enjoyed plenty of ping pong around the pool daily. Kids didn't use kids club. We said no thank you to the time share sell. WIFI at $15 per day per device ridiculous - not even free in the lobby to check texts quickly, etc. I really don't get that. We're not big on entertainment but it seemed limited here. Most occurred in lobby. Mostly families at the resort. We enjoyed our time but were definitely disappointed in several aspects of our stay. I would not return for the price we paid but would consider returning at a price point closer to $300 / day for our family of 4.

  • Kevin B : Manotick, Ontario
One of the better resorts we have visited

Our first time here, although we are El Cid members. Avoided it before as we generally don't like all inclusives as we like to eat at other restaurants in the area. This particular location is very remote though and any other decent restaurant is a good cab ride away. Our room, a one bedroom suite, was very large and well appointed. Furniture was fairly new and comfortable. The bed mattress was perfect for us. Two large bathrooms. There was a small kitchenette with a fridge, but it was only stocked with two light beers and they would only send up four at a time via room service. Everything was very clean, staff were great. One annoying practice was they would come by 2 or even 3 times in the late afternoon checking if everything was all right, or to turn down the bed, or to offer more towels. Putting out the "Do Not Disturb" sign did work though.Resort was large. Drinks and bar were good. Premium liquor at the bar in the main building. Nightly entertainment here and around the resort. Buffet food was generally good, except for the Italian night which was so-so. The four restaurants were very good. Particularly the Mediterranean one.We went snorkeling on the catamaran tour and went diving one afternoon. The reef off shore is excellent, lots of fish and live coral. Locals are very strict about keeping it that way. The resort backs onto a jungle and so there are mosquitoes. They do sell repellent in the gift store.Also went to Xenotes (sink holes) tour that was excellent! I will review it separately.Did one trip into the local town, Puerto Morelos. It's a little rundown but has it share of tourist shops. Be sure to know your prices if you do go into one. We ended up paying about 30% more for vanilla that we could have gotten in the resort store.We would go back.

  • Chereyl S :
A piece of heaven!!!

This was my second time to visit and the second time was as wonderful as the first. Everyone was very accommodating, the grounds are beautifully kept, and the rooms are fantastic. The five different restaurants are exceptional and the food was great at all five. There are many activities, not to mention lying on the beach!! Our butler, David Rangle, was always helpful and made our trips in and out of El Cid very easy. It was, again, a very relaxing, wonderful experience.

  • JUDY A :
Family Spring Break

We spent 1 week ourselves plus another week with son & his wife and 4 teen grandchildren of blended family. Everyone LOVED it and all the activities day and evening PLUS outside tours and inside swimming with porpoises as well as snorkeling trip to reef

  • ShariMichigan : Michigan
Nice place - needs improvement

Visited in February. Pros: pretty grounds, rooms are spacious and housekeeping is very thorough, food is consistently good at the buffet and the restaurantsCons: No shuttle service. They need to up their game; cab rides are exorbitant. I.E., a cab ride into Playa Del Carmen from the resort was $36 ,we hailed a cab for the ride back and it was $21. Do the math. Inadequate safety precautions in both pools - people slip all the timeYou supposedly have upgrades when you are Platinum Club Members. The Club is purported to be for members only - almost every night there are people and frequently kids in there who are not wearing the appropriate bands. Why are we paying a premium??? Put a sign on the door in big letters - FOR MEMBERS ONLY. Might help.The adults only jacuzzi rule is not enforced; we've seen kids in there frequently and some of them bring food in; gross.We were told families with kids are to be seated in the restaurants and be out by 6:30. Never happens. Nothing like sitting down for a nice meal and having some screaming kids in the background. Definite minus.Their entertainment menu - great saxophone player some nights; they also featured a harpist one night. Seriously? No one in the bar that night. The current band which is there 3x a week is ok, not great. Why not have a DJ one night? Casino night is fun - usually alternate Wednesdays.For a kick back and relax atmosphere, it is nice. Not for people who want beaucoup activity and events.

Vacations packages include round-trip flights, accommodations, round-trip transfers (unless outlined below) to and from the hotel, and tourist cards (if required, unless outlined below).

If selecting an all-inclusive resort option, the package will also include the all-inclusive features as outlined by each resort.

Items not included:

  • Travel insurance (mandatory if traveling to Cuba)
  • Tourist cards ($10USD)if traveling to Dominican Republic with Sunwing Airlines
  • Departure taxes ($20USD) if traveling to Dominican Republic with Sunwing or Signarture Vacations
  • Hotel transfers for packages with WestJet to USA (with exception to Honolulu)
  • Hotel transfers for packages to Europe
  • Items of a personal nature

  • Buffet or a la carte breakfast, lunch, dinners
  • All domestic and imported beverage brands
  • Waiter service at the pool and beach areas
  • 24 hour room service
  • Pillow menu
  • Tennis courts and equipment
  • Windsurfing
  • Hobie cats
  • Boogie boards
  • Kayaks
  • Bicycles and biking tours 
  • Daily activities
  • Nightly entertainment and/or theme shows
  • 350 room beachfront resort
  • 22,000 sq ft pool
  • Buffet & a la carte restaurants
  • 24 hour room service
  • Bars
  • Tennis courts
  • Fitness centre
  • Spa (fee)
  • Marina
  • Golf nearby

Luxury Room:

  • A/C
  • 1 king or 2 double beds
  • Satellite TV
  • Bathroom with shower only
  • Mini bar with drinks
  • Coffee maker
  • Private balcony, ocean or pool view.
  • Max. occ. 4

Junior Suite: Same as above with 1 king bed plus 1 Queen Murphy bed.

Platinum Room: Same as Luxury Room with Platinum Club access.

One Bedroom Suite: Same as Junior Suite with separate bedroom.

Kids Stay Free - 2 Children Stay & Eat Free 4 years & under.

For the Kids - Kids' Club for ages 4-11, 9am-9pm.

Honeymoon, Anniversary & Birthday Bonus - Complimentary bottle of domestic champagne in the room and room upgrade (subject to availability upon check-in). Must show proof, marriage certificate, birth certificate or passport ID, upon check-in at the hotel.

Platinum Club - Upgrade available, guaranteed Ocean Front or Ocean View accommodations, extra comfort beds and linens, dedicated check-in and check-out areas, late check-out at 3pm (subject to availability), reservations for palapa huts on the beach, butler service, welcome wine & fruit basket, guaranteed reservations in the specialty restaurant, special turn down service with hors d'oeuvres and petit fours, room aroma menu, bathrobes and slippers, umbrella and beach bag, scale, complimentary access to the Platinum Room Lounge (beverages, snacks, fruit, internet access, TV, newspapers and books.)

Early Booking Bonus - This hotel may offer early booking bonuses at certain times of the year. If early booking bonuses apply to your vacation, prices shown online have already been adjusted accordingly. Please inquire for complete details.

Resort Location Map


  • Marina El Cid Spa & Beach Resort
    Riviera Maya,Mexico

  • Hotel Contacts
  • Extra Info
  • Disclaimer
Hotel Marina El Cid Spa & Beach Resort
Boulevard El Cid Unidad 15, Puerto Morelos 77580 Mexico

Some restaurants may be open for certain meals only and limited visits may apply. Reservations required and dress code in effect for a la carte restaurants. Time restrictions may apply for water sports.

Child pricing may only be available with select tour operators and valid for select dates and durations. Child pricing rules are subject to change without notice. Please contact one of our vacation specialists if you require assistance with child pricing.

Photo identification and/or credit card or cash deposit may be required at check-in for incidental charges.

Extra-person charges may apply and vary depending on hotel policy. Rollaway beds and cribs (infant beds) may be available and should be requested at the time of booking; fees may apply.

Special requests are subject to availability upon check-in. Special requests cannot be guaranteed and may incur additional charges upon check-in to fulfil.

Hotels do not condone unruly behavior, parties in rooms, excessive noise or any other actions that violate the hotels terms of use. Guests may be removed from the property at their own expense in the event of any disturbance or complaint from other guests or hotel staff. Escapes.ca cannot be held responsible for any guests who may be removed from the hotel due to a violation of rules.

Escapes.ca makes every effort to ensure that the information on this page is accurate, however, all information on this page is subject to change without notice. Escapes.ca is not responsible for any changes, errors or omissions that may occur.