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“La Joya del Caribe”

Written by Kelli Furgason.

I was lucky enough to go on a Travel Agent Familiarization trip to the Riviera Maya in Mexico. My resort, “The Marina El Cid Resort & Spa”, is located in Puerto Morelos – nicknamed “La Joya del Caribe” or “Jewel of the Mexican Caribbean”. Puerto Morelos is nestled between Cancun and Playa del Carmen, a short drive to both.

To start, I must mention Apple Vacations and USA 3000. Believe it or not, this was my first experience with a charter company. I can’t say enough about them. The folks at the airport were wonderful. Their system is a bit out-dated but they made the process run very smoothly. The Flight Attendants were the best I have experienced in a long time. There was a medical emergency in-flight and they handled it with the utmost care and compassion for everyone on board. They were friendly, helpful and even cracked a few jokes! I highly recommend Apple Vacations and USA 3000!

Ok now for the trip – first let me tell you that we experienced a weather phenomenon – it rained almost all day everyday! This never happens – however, for our short vacation it did. We kind of expect that though. Ever since I married and changed my name – these kinds of freak things seem to happen every time I travel. It worked out well though as I had time to fully experience the resort and truly have a relaxing vacation, just what the Doctor ordered!

The Marina El Cid Resort & Spa just opened about 8 months ago. We walked into the lobby and we were awe struck. It was beautiful! My favorite part of course was the huge, brightly decorated Christmas tree. The main building is home to the lobby, gift shop, 2 restaurants, gym and tour desks. Obviously we spent quite a bit of time here since we were on the all-inclusive plan.

Our room was a Junior Suite. We were in a building that was a pretty easy walk to everything. The view from our balcony was of the beach area and the Adults Only area – equipped with outdoor massage areas, Jacuzzi and wet bar. We enjoyed the Jacuzzi – though it was not warm – whenever there was a long enough break in the rain to get down there.

One of the most amazing places at the resort is the pool area. Not only is the pool huge (22,000 square feet), it also has a tropical display in the middle – including a water slide, waterfalls and tons of greenery. We didn’t get to enjoy the pool as the water was freezing and we were not brave enough to get in! There were many people that enjoyed the pool and all it had to offer – did I mention the swim up bar and in the water lounge chairs?

The resort also offers tons of activities and water sports. My husband really wanted to try snorkeling, the resort is on one of the best natural reefs in Mexico – and take a Hobie Cat out for a spin, however the weather did not allow that. We had dangerous water conditions each day – red flag and all.

The resort did have a few “bugs” to work out, as do all new properties, but all in all it was a wonderful trip and I would recommend the resort to anyone seeking a relaxing and enjoyable getaway!