The towering white all-inclusive vacation hotel sits in Manzanillo Bay with spectacular vistas of the Pacific Ocean and back by the mountains of the Sierra Madre as is a great place to start exploring real Mexica via the province of Colima.
Here you will discover authentic Mexico with traditional foods, service and hotel excursions which include ancient Mayan ruins, volcanoes, amazing colonial architecture, a sea turtle rescue habitat and a mangrove filled with wildlife, not to mention the spectacular beaches all along the coast.
The Tesoro is a small all inclusive resort hotel with a single large tower offering stunning views, especially during sunset. The resort offers one large pool directly on the Pacific Ocean and overlooking the beach. The beach is crescent shaped with powdery sand and on calm days it is swimmable. Keep in mind, however, there is a drop off and a current that can pull you out. There is a designated swim area for children but even so, it is best to keep them near the shore.
The Tesoro has 287 rooms of varying quality which are kept clean by attentive staff. The sound proofing in the hotel is not the best, so if you are a light sleeper, consider bringing ear plugs. If you are lucky enough to have a west facing room, your balcony will endulge you with a perfect view of the Pacific Ocean and stunning sunsets.
The land around the bay is rocky making for amazing photos and stunning vistas. Behind the Tesoro and a short walk is the town-site where you can walk around, explore shops, indulge in icecream and visit a local market. This is not your typical Mexican tourist area, so you will find authentic wares and food here.
The Tesoro buffet, the main restaurant, is located right above the shoreline of the bay, again, making for stunning views found no where else. The food at the buffet is authentic Mexican and it is rather low quality and does not change very often. There is also a snack bar with hamburgers, hot dogs and fries for when you crave a little something before meals.
The Tesoro has two restaurants that can be reserved every two nights. The first is The Adobe, where Mexican cuisine shines. This is by far one of the best Mexican restaurants I have ever been to with not only great appetizers, but deserts as well.
The Adobe transforms into the Il Navigantti restaurant on alternative days where you can find Italian cuisine and light fare.
If you find that you need a change of pace in terms of food, there are many restaurants within walking distance of the hotel that are moderately priced. There is a fresh seafood restaurant right on the beach if you are so inclined.
As the Tesoro is a hidden-gem among vacationers outside of Mexico, you may find that many of the other hotel guests are Mexican coming in from Mexico City or other metropolises. On our trip there was only one other Canadian family and no other nationalities besides Mexican.
With that in mind, language can be an issue if you leave the hotel as no one really is expecting other nationalities to visit the area.
But this is what makes this area of Mexico great to visit. Not only do you get a fabulous hotel, you get an authentic experience that is unlike ones you will experience say in Cancun or Puerto Vallarta.
There are a few excursions you can take to explore the area and we decided on taking three various types.
The first was a cruise along the bay to explore the waters, snorkel and meet some interesting sea creatures. The boat ride was loud and in Spanish so we did not understand much of what was going on. The snorkelling was poor, but the divers brought up a sea-star and a puffer-fish for us to interact with.
The next excursion was more relaxing and we visited an ancient Mayan ruin called La Campana. The tour then took us through various villages up to the Colima Volcano and then into a spectacular city square where we had a fabulous authentic Mexican lunch.
The next excursion we decided on was to visit a Turtle Sanctuary. Here we had a boat go through Mangroves and viewed wildlife and then disembarked to see how the locals are helping Sea Turtles. In the end, we got to release baby sea turtles into the ocean and watch them swim away. This was an amazing, life-changing experience.
On our next adventure we decided to rent a taxi to take us to Playa Miramar, a spectacular stretch of beach. Here we rented chairs and ordered food delivered right to the waves crashing on the beach. The taxi was about $20 roundtrip and the food and chairs was about $20 also. Here the beach extends out softly and is perfect for swimming, even for the little ones.
The Tesoro hotel is a great property for couples and families and you will find yourself wanting to explore more of this region to experience real, authentic Mexico.
The best part is, nothing is every busy here. The beaches were not crowded, and along 8 miles of beach we saw 3 other people one day! The excursions are not overbooked and often you are on private or semi-private tours - just you and the guide! If you are looking for adventure and relaxation where you don't need a vacation after your vacation, you may want to consider visiting Manzanilla and the Tesoro Hotel.
Overall Experiences: 71.1%
Maid Service 5/5
Friendliness of Staff 5/5
Activities & Amenities 3/5
To find the cheapest rates at the Tesoro, follow the links below:
Here are some videos from our time in Manzanilla, Mexico: