My wife and I decided to go someplace warm for Valentine's Day this year and found this deal on CheapCarribean.com for El Cid Castilla Beach. The price made us decide to give it a try and we are glad we did. The hotel is nice and clean and in a great location for shopping and excursions. It is half way between Old Mazatlan and New Mazatlan so you get the best of both worlds. The food at El Cid was better than almost any other all-inclusive we have visited. The adult beverages were also very good which was a great surprise. We have been to other resorts where we had to go off resort to get a good drink or meal. Not here - they do a great job at both! The people were extremely friendly and took very good care of us. One thing to note is that they also have time shares there so they will want to give you a presentation on that. We did it and got 2 free tours and a free bottle of liquor. It was a little over 2 hours long. If you are OK with that then you can get some freebies while you are there so go for it. All in all we had a great time. Mazatlan is a bit older for a vacation spot but the beaches are great, the people are friendly and the town has a lot of charisma.
I was on the regular all-inclusive plan. Only one beer is available, which is Modelo, I think, and we get tired of it after a few days. The hard plastic cups don't help much either. Would be nice to have glass mugs in the lobby bar. I had room 0103. I could see the pool, not much else. A little bit of paint peeling from the tub. I always got bath towels, but I didn't always get hand towels. Bed was comfortable. TV was ok, CNN, Fox News, and a few other US channels. Most staff was friendly and helpful. No hot tub, but the pools were heated to a nice temperature. Have to go out at 7:30am to claim chairs.
This is during our stay March 9-12, 2013 (All Inclusive Stay & Airfare) Surprisingly to most guests, it was windy and cold on the 9th & 10th, started to warm up a bit on the 11th, but of course it was the hottest on the day we left the 12th. During the day around 9am to 2pm it was moderately warm, but from 3pm-12am it would get increasingly cold. It seemed like as the tide came in, the winds would kick up and increase the cold/breezy feeling. The hotel is located on the Beach. Once we got to the airport, we were approached by a gang of folks who all had activities, time share events...etc. to sell, but feel free to shop around and negotiate with more than one person. I am glad we did! We attended a time share event, which I am glad I went with someone who knows how to stand their ground. Out of that event, we were able to get a few "freebies". We picked a boat ride (that was a lot of fun) to Stoney Island. Once we got on the island, there was lunch (delicious) prepared which we could choose when we wanted to eat (before or after your previously picked activities). We choose ATV's and horseback riding. Loved the ATV riding the most, I wish the horseback riding person could speak English and maybe point out some things along the trail??? Although it was one of the choices, we were not into water sports/activities. We walked around the local streets and I believe because I was with a tall & stocky guy, I felt safe, until this one guy came up and was quite persistent (with a very American accent) that he could get us "things" for cheap. Be careful of anyone coming up to you off the street saying that they can exchange money or offering discounted packages. We were told they are not legit. Internet connection was horrible. It kept kicking us off, extremely slow or did not work at all. You pay PER device. Per the customer service dept (in the hotel) it's provided by a 3rd party, but we were given a partial refund. There is a business center that has 3 desk top computers with a much faster internet connection which I found more useful than trying to use my personal device. Most of the staff are helpful and friendly. The hotel felt a little "Miamish"/Art Deco, but modern. The buffet was fair and the dining choices were average to good. Just had to fight off the Pigeons. You have to wear color coded bands, which you have to wear the duration of your stay, that made me feel like we stood out as CHEAP (all inclusive) but we got over it. I wondered why they have a customer service dept in the hotel that handle complaints/issues. Do they get that many complaints that they have to have one onsite? I was relieved they were there though and appreciated them when I needed to use their services. The hotel is walking distance to some restaurants, & local vendors, but we found taking a ride on the buggy/go carts more beneficial (price can ALWAYS be negotiated) to get to the night life areas. We had to take a cab to the mall (it was about a 15 min drive). I like the little "plaza" that they have inside the hotel with a about 7 or 8 vendors. It was convenient when needing some last minute things (clothing mainly). It was unexpectedly cold so I was able to purchase a cute stylish poncho. Everything I packed was for warm/hot weather. There is a Senor Frogs restaurant next door which is not quite like the Senor Frogs I am used to (in Ensenada or Cancun). Ask the driver of a buggy/go cart what club/bar/lounges have what kind of music and on what nights. Our driver was very informative and it helped out a lot. He even gave us his phone number and we would call him after the club or whenever we needed a ride. The hotel has more than one building. The main building has the biggest pool, with a bar, and music. Our hotel room (4th flr) had an excellent view of the pool and the beach. You can go to the other pools in the other bldgs. but they are not as lively. The hotel is a descent place to stay, the night life is just a buggy ride away (7 to 10 mins), the Stoney Island trip was the most enjoyable, but with all inclusive and airfare, I could not beat it for the great price. Would I go again, not to this particular hotel but I would/will use CheapCarribean that's for sure! I would give this hotel a 7.5 out of 10 (food was lacking) but the trip was a 9.5 out of 10.
This was our first trip to Mazatlan and we really enjoyed El Cid Castilla. We stayed in late March, booking just about 30 days earlier. Pools: There were a lot of pool options and I'd recommend checking out the atmosphere right away after you're settled in the room - even if you don't intend to go to the pool day one. Each pool has a little different vibe and you'll want to get your towel out on a chair before you head to breakfast if you decide on one of the traditional pools. We chose to spend most of our days at the Adult Quiet Pool - it is truly quiet, no music plays. The pool is beautiful and the service was great after about 11 AM. Before 11 the pool is mostly in the shade so there aren't really any guests there so grab a water and a book! We popped into the traditional pool (the one without the water slide) for a few hours a couple of times. There are always activities going on and music playing. The activities team was really great and always checked into to see if we wanted in on the fun. We didn't have any concerns with the kids and the service was ok here. Food/Drink: I'd recommend the upgraded All-Inclusive Option if you like to have a lot of sit-down options for dinner. We did and were glad that we paid extra to be able to access the oceanfront breakfast option and added variety. We weren't concerned about making reservations the day before. We took the shuttle to the Maria and really enjoyed our dinner there. Room: The rooms are pretty standard - they're exactly what you see on the hotel overview. The housekeeping staff did a nice job and visited every day without issue. I found the bed to be a little to hard for my tastes - so much so that I'm putting it in a review. Overall, service was great and we'd recommend El Cid Castilla to others and would visit again if we found the same deal.
Just returned from Mazatlan. We enjoyed our time but not enough that'd we'd go back to that resort. The positives of the resort was def the serving staff and the pool. The servers made our time so much more enjoyable. The pools were great, large, with lots of chairs available but got a bit windy and cool at times. The beach was ok, we stayed for 8 days and out of those we only spent 1.5 days on the beach. The peddlers got really annoying, I don't mind being asked once or twice but it ruins your mood after being asked 20 times a minute. You could be relaxing, lying on a chair, with your eyes closed and they'll still whistle at you to get your attention and don't take no for an answer. The couple beside us got up and went to the pool to get away from them. They also informed us that they stayed at a different resort last year and where they wouldn't allow them on the beach. I would highly suggest El Cid doing the same. It was upsetting to see the staff and security standing around not doing anything about it. There are also many of shops on the resort where you can shop on your own time. We travelled from Canada, which seemed to be the majority of others staying at the resort. I didn't realize how lucky we are to not be surrounded by smokers! As a nonsmoker, I don't enjoy lying by the pool having smoke in my face. I grew up having bad asthma, not having any episodes for at least 15 years, I had thought it was completely gone. After automatically getting place in a room, I quickly realized it wasn't. We got placed in a smoking room and I started to realize the smoke was bothering me. We called the front desk and asked for a room change but they said everything was full. I tried the next day and got the same response. A tried opening the window and doing things to air the room out but it didn't seem to help much. Again, I went to the front desk and asked for a nonsmoking room. This time he informed me that all rooms were non smoking but quickly told me that the 12 floor was a nonsmoking floor once I told him our room had multiple ashtrays, smelt like smoke, and I was reacting to it. He told me they didn't have a room on the 12th floor until the next day and to come back around 3 when the room would be cleaned and ready for us. Doing so, I was then informed they had nothing in the system showing that I requested a room change and once again, had nothing available. At this point, I was upset, the supervisor at the front desk took me to view a room that was on the 4th floor where there was only smoking on the patio. I'm pretty sure nobody follows that rule, if it's even one because the room was musty and smelt like smoke as well. We ended up staying in our orginal room. I'll def be aware of smoke free rooms the next time I'm booking a vacation. The food was pretty good, although at the buffet it never seemed to be hot and we quickly realized making reservations at the restaurants was a must. The food at the 3 restaurants( included in our all inclusive) were great, as was the service. We also ate at them for lunch where no reservations were needed. The entertainment was a bit cheesy but good overall and kids seemed to really enjoy it too. We travelled during spring break and assumed it was going to full of young people who were enjoying beverages. We were def surprised to see the average age was 50-60 and there were very few people under the age of 30. Our room wasn't clean when arrived or after the maids cleaned it. The bathroom, mirrors, table were pretty dirty. A receipt was still in the cabenet of the room from the previous vacationer which makes me wonder how much it got cleaned. There was also a big rip and stain on the comforter and the beds weren't the best and would of perferred a queen instead of 2 doubles. The ocean view was great tho!
Service was impeccable! Loved the ability to use all inclusive benefits at all 4 El CID properties. Staying in the Golden Zone was a perk. Very clean and comfortable.
Overall we were pleased with the resort. There were a few items that were not appealing: 1. The various dining options - some had additional cost (room service, El Moro pool side lunch service) this is why 3 trees versus 4 trees. If a place is all inclusive it should be all inclusive no matter where you go. 2. We did not have the option to purchase transportation when booking the trip online. I contacted Cheap Caribbean about this (as this is how we've made arrangements in the past) and was told transportation was included in price that is why it was not an option when booking/paying. We arrived in Mazatlan and it was not included (cost was $31 USD each way for cab ride + tip). Good things about resort - Great variety of food - Italian, Mexican, Argentine, Sushi, Buffet. We found tasty items at all locations. Pools are interconnected, heated and spacious with good swim up bars. Pool Tip: find a chair by 8-9AM and hold it with your towel or you will not find a spot to sit at later. Beach was nice although there are lots of venders selling items. They do respect when you say "no". Francisco and Paulo (pool staff) were fabulous - very speedy with drinks and remembering what you like! Overall all the staff were quite attentive and friendly! Felt safe and comfortable walking around resort, walking on beach, and outside of resort within close proximity. Room was spacious and cleaned daily. Highly recommend booking a sailing trip with MiCasa Viajes - Captain Eduardo. The resort is impressive to see from the sailboat and the sunsets are amazing! Was a good value, would recommend this resort and would probably book a trip again to this resort.
I found overall people in this resort not that great, I would give full marks to the people in the sports bar,pool and pool bar. The food was below average and the choices were very limited, the dining area was just one big room and set up for families or minimum groups of 6 or more and had no single or d2 seat tables. My room was so far from anything I needed to pack a snack and water to go anywere, no bar in the room made things very bad as well. This resort is spraed out and laid out poorly, I was very unhappy with the whole experience at the El Cid. Thank god I could lay in the sun and have a few drinks as there was nothing for a single person to do there. Also just to rub a little salt into the woyund Nexus Tours did not pick me up and take me to the airport on my departure date. I waite for 20 mintutes and then had to take a cab, someone owes me 370 pesos and the cost of the bus transportation I never got. David
We had a great time at El CID! Great staff wonderful hotel and food was great! I will be returning!
For the cheap price including airfare and inclusive, it's still a deal. The rooms were nice with a little balcony that I can see the ocean from. Views were fantastic. Besides the bed bugs, spiders and roaches (bring bug repellent) everything else was fine. After this experience I do not think I will do all inclusive again, the liquor was very poor quality, and there was never anything to eat. We had to go out to eat most of the time. The buffets were very limited. There was no Mexican food. The lines were always long. The a la carte restaurants were to order but food was not good at all. Like I said going out to eat and drink is way better. But for the price of it the all inclusive part was just an extra perk if you did want a small quick bite of nothing lol. They do have nice huts right on the beach that was comfortable besides the people coming every other minute trying to sell you a shirt or braid your hair. I do have to say that the customer service here was impeccable! Nice people everywhere. There's not much to do here so if you want a quick getaway to relax by the pool, read a book and sleep then this is the best deal.