The five-star resort of Secrets Maroma Beach Riviera Cancun is tucked away on a beautiful secluded beach, Maroma Beach, providing you with the ultimate private luxury vacation.
This adults-only all-inclusive resort provides opulence in the form of a private white sand beach, stunning ocean views, elegant suites with luxurious beds and tubs, 24-hour room service, daily refreshed mini-bars, an infinity pool, gourmet dining options, and chic lounges.
In fact, this resort has received some of the most prestigious travel awards and recognition in the world including the AAA Five Diamond Award, Travelers’ Choice Best of The Best in 2020, and the Travelers’ Choice Award from 2009 – 2020.
It’s no doubt the world loves Secrets Maroma Beach and that it looks great on paper, but is it really as great as it sounds? And even more specifically, is the food worth the money?
In this post, we’ll detail our dining experience at Secrets Maroma Beach Riviera Cancun and even rank them based on our order of preference. So without further ado, let’s dive into our Secrets Maroma Beach restaurants review!
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SECRETS MAROMA BEACH: OVERVIEW
In a nutshell, Secrets Maroma Beach Riviera Cancun is an adults-only AAA 5 Diamond Award Winner property with 13 outdoor pools, 7 different restaurants, and a cute little coffee shop that serves something a bit different every day.
There are a total of 412 rooms spanning multiple 4-story buildings. There are two main ocean-view swimming pools in the middle of everything, plus semi-private pools for guests who opt for swim-up rooms.
For most travelers considering this resort, one of the best things about this resort is the fact that it is for adults only. That means no crying kids, no loud restaurants, and no splashing havoc in the pools.
For others, it’s all about the food!
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THE RESTAURANTS AT SECRETS MAROMA BEACH
In addition to a daily breakfast buffet and lunch buffet, the resort also has a wide range of high-quality dining options available. At this resort, you can find a steak restaurant, a seafood restaurant, Japanese teppanyaki, Italian cuisine, French cuisine, authentic Mexican cuisine, as well as a wine cellar with over 200 different vintages.
In total, there are 9 restaurant options, not including the coffee shop that serves up light bites throughout the day.
On specific days, there is even an outdoor Mexican-themed buffet paired with live entertainment that is not to be missed.
And if that wasn’t enough for you, or you’re looking to celebrate a special event, you can opt for romantic dinners for two on the beach for an extra charge.
There is also an exclusive beachfront bar/restaurant area specific to members of the Preferred Club. But even without this, you will have tons of food options throughout the day.
If you’ve tried all the restaurants at Secrets Maroma Beach and are interested in a night out or want to visit another one of AMR’s resorts, you can! As part of the privileges of Unlimited-Luxury®, through the Sip, Savor & See program, you can enjoy a complimentary dinner, drinks and live entertainment at one of the nearby, participating resorts from 6pm to 1am!
Simply visit your concierge by 3pm that day to arrange the details for the evening. This is a really neat feature that we didn’t get to take advantage of but will definitely do so the next time we visit!
THE BARS AT SECRETS MAROMA BEACH
You will be glad to know that Secrets Maroma Beach serves unlimited top-shelf liquor at its 6 bars and lounges on the property.
These bars include the swim-up bar Manatees, lobby bar Rendezvous, pool and beach bar Barracuda, the theater bar Showtime, Sugar Reef poolside bar, and the Desires music lounge bar.
In addition to these bars, there will be many other opportunities to grab an alcoholic beverage. During our stay, we enjoyed a ‘fire coffee’ drink from an after-dinner coffee cart. We also got handcrafted tequila/gin cocktails from a tequila cart by the pool on one of our pool days!
SECRETS MAROMA BEACH RESTAURANTS: RANKED!
1. WORLD CAFE
Out of all the meals in the day and restaurants on the property, we were most impressed with the breakfast meal. We ate breakfast at World Cafe every single morning during our five-night stay because of how much we enjoyed the experience!
We typically don’t eat breakfast at home, so this could have also contributed to why we were so drawn to it.
Nevertheless, the breakfast spread was wonderful. As soon as you’re seated, you’re asked what you’d like to drink. We always started off with green juice or orange juice as well as a cup of coffee. We ordered pretty basic things, but other more elaborate coffee drinks were available as well!
From there, you can have at it with the food! You can grab anything from pastries, cold cut meats, yogurts, juices, cereals, oatmeal, bacon, sausage, eggs, and fresh fruit to salads, crepes, french toast, pancakes, waffles, chilaquiles, molletes, empanadas, quesadillas, tamales, fried rice, and even made-to-order omelets.
Can you tell that I love breakfast buffets at all-inclusive resorts yet?
Now quickly moving on to lunch! The cool thing about World Cafe is that every day features a different type of cuisine. During our stay, they had a French cuisine day and a Mediterranean cuisine day, among other cuisine themes. Below is a photo of just some of the French desserts we ate.
Unfortunately, we skipped lunch on a few days (from being too full from breakfast) and forgot to ask what the cuisine of the day was, oops!
Recommended meal: Breakfast and lunch, both were delicious
2. EL PATIO
El Patio was definitely our second favorite restaurant.
Since we are pretty seasoned at eating Mexican food, we made it a point to order dishes that were not quite as easily accessible back home. To that end, we ordered the following: Curd Tlacoyo, Seafood Tostada (okay, I am obsessed with seafood, so I just had to order this), Esquites, Grilled Octopus Tacos and the Poblano Mole Enchiladas.
To round out the night, we ordered the Tres Leches Cake and the Churro Nest.
The tres leches was a bit odd because it was not drowned in milk as a typical tres leches cake would be. Perhaps this was to appeal to the palate of the general clientele, perhaps this was to make the cakes less perishable–I will never know.
My favorite dish of the night? The churros! I had been looking for churros my entire stay and I had finally found them at El Patio!
And if you were wondering, yes, they were.. dare I say it.. better than the ones at Disneyland.
Recommended meal: Open for dinner only.
3. SEASIDE GRILL
We ended up eating at Seaside Grill twice–once for lunch and once for dinner. During lunchtime, Seaside Grill served up a whole hodgepodge of good food including salads, tostadas, ceviches, seafood, sandwiches, tacos, nachos, grilled meats, and more.
We ordered the shrimp aguachile, baja tacos, spicy seafood soup with vegetables, and a pita club sandwich. My partner and I both agreed that every single thing we ate at Seaside Grill for lunch was delicious and well-presented.
Lunch was certainly really good, but dinner is where the restaurant really shines. During dinner, they specialize in steak and all things grilled!
For our dinner meal, we ordered ribeye tacos, gizzard tacos with bone marrow, picanha, catch of the day (mahi-mahi) and a ribeye steak. While all the dishes were good, we especially enjoyed the appetizers–the ribeye tacos and the gizzard tacos. We both agreed that adding the bone marrow to the tacos made them that much more rich and delicious.
If we had to rank the entrees from best to worst, we’d say the mahi-mahi, then the ribeye, followed by the picanha (which was a bit tougher compared to the ribeye).
Aside from what we ordered, Seaside Grill also serves soups, salads, other types of steaks, as well as typical sides commonly served with steaks. For dessert, you can choose between 5 or 6 options ranging from brownies, cheesecakes, chocolate cakes, pecan tart, and more.
Recommended: Lunch or Dinner, both were very good
4. BAREFOOT GRILL
Barefoot Grill is the large food stand that specializes in light lunch specialties next to the taco stand. This restaurant is frequented by guests who choose to lounge by the pool and beach all afternoon.
The great thing about this restaurant is that there is simply no dress code! As its name suggests, you can simply walk up with no shoes, no shirt, no coverup and still be able to place your order.
Once you order, you can take your food back to your pool chair, to your room, whatever you choose. Just note there is no formal seating at this restaurant.
While their menu changed on a daily basis, I can highly recommend the catch of the day. On the day that I ordered this dish, I got a deliciously fried red snapper paired with pico de gallo and guacamole!
If the fish piques your interest, do order this earlier in the day, because after a few hotel guests spotted my dish, they had attempted to order one for themselves but unfortunately the restaurant had no more for the day.
They also serve burritos, fajitas, hamburgers, fresh fruit, and more.
Overall, everything we ordered here (the catch of the day and a cheeseburger with fries) was delicious! We also loved how casual and convenient this dining option was.
It’s situated right next to the pool area and is open from 12:30pm to 6pm, making it the perfect option if you’re hanging by the pool all day.
Recommended meal: Lunch, late lunch
5. COCO CAFE
No all-inclusive resort is complete without their trusty little coffee shop! The coffee shop at Secrets Maroma Beach Riviera Cancun was certainly one of our favorite spots to hit up throughout the day.
Plus, the fact that this cafe was open pretty much all day made it our most-visited “restaurant”. The coffee definitely helped keep us awake for all the fun at the resort!
Coco Cafe’s food menu changed just about every day, meaning the mini sandwiches and desserts on display were never the same. They even had a ‘special menu’ where they would feature a special drink/food item.
On some days they had affogato, on others, they featured attractive treats like glittery cake pops. We started making it a habit to pop in just to see what they were offering for the day!
Coco Cafe was such a convenient spot, especially during times where we were in need of an afternoon pick-me-up or were craving something sweet.
Should you find yourself a bit hungry during those moments just after the restaurants close for lunch but before dinner, Coco Cafe is a great spot to pick up a pretzel, mini sandwich, desserts, or fruits. Other spots to grab a meal include the pizza stand and the taco stand.
Recommended meal: Breakfast (especially if you need to head out to an excursion and don’t have time for a formal sit-down breakfast at World Cafe), afternoon, and post-dinner dessert.
We ate at Portofino for one of our dinner meals, and while it didn’t completely shine like a few of the previous options, it was overall okay. We ordered the melon-wrapped prosciutto, fig salad, mushroom risotto, duck in gravy sauce, and ossobuco with gnocchi in saffron sauce.
Starting with the not-so-good. We took note that the figs in the fig salad did not seem fresh, but rather previously frozen or preserved (though the figs at the breakfast buffet were, so that was inconsistent).
The mushroom risotto had good flavor, but was a bit too salty for our liking.
The duck confit tasted okay (we had never had this before and it reminded us too much of carnitas), but what really shined was the ossobuco. The portion of meat was huge and the sauce was delightful. The appetizer bread was also quite delicious!
Since I would consider myself a seafood pasta connoisseur, I would have liked to try the linguine with clams or the fettuccine frutti di mare, but ran out of stomach space to try those! There’s always next time.
Recommended meal: Open for dinner only.
7. HIMITSU / TEPPANYAKI TABLE
Himitsu was probably one of our least favorite restaurants in terms of taste. This is most definitely because we are Asian ourselves, so we know Asian food well and tend to be pickier with it.
In terms of decor and atmosphere, it was great! It was definitely one of the most stylish restaurants at Secrets Maroma Beach.
We ordered a little bit of everything just to sample the flavors. We ordered the tempura shrimp, three sushi rolls, ramen, bibimbap, and short rib. Out of everything, the short rib plate tasted the best while everything else was not very authentic tasting.
I will say, I did enjoy their desserts as they were lighter in flavor/sugar compared to most of the other desserts at Secrets Maroma Beach.
I had wanted to try the pad thai originally, but after seeing photos of it online, I decided against it (the noodles in the photo looked nothing like regular pad thai).
The last note on Himitsu is regarding the teppanyaki table. To eat at the teppanyaki table, you will have to make reservations 1 day in advance. If you want to eat teppanyaki-style food but don’t care to see the show, you can order a plate of teppanyaki stuff on the regular menu (no reservation required for the latter).
Recommended meal: Open for dinner only, but we’d recommend skipping this one.
RESTAURANTS WE DIDN’T GET TO TRY
Because we didn’t get to try these restaurants, we left them out of the ranking. French food is not really our thing, and neither is teppanyaki-style food.
We were bummed to not have tried Oceana (seafood), but we were totally seafood’ed out after having spent 3 days in Playa Del Carmen eating nothing but seafood!
- TEPPANYAKI TABLE (AT HIMITSU)
SECRETS MAROMA BEACH RESTAURANT REVIEW: IS THE FOOD GOOD?
The bottom line is that the food at Secrets Maroma Beach is good enough for the money. Keep reading for more.
Here’s what we liked:
The variety of food at any time of day! No matter what time of day, there was always a huge selection of food and beverages to choose from.
Morning: While the international buffet restaurant is technically the only restaurant open in the morning, their buffet spread was endless. You’re sure to find something you like at the buffet. And if that’s not your thing, the grab-and-go bites at the coffee shop OR room service breakfast should satisfy you!
Pro Tip: Don’t miss their green juice or any of the fresh-squeezed fruit juices in the morning! We found ourselves wanting more throughout the day because it was so refreshing!
Lunch: While the lunch options are more limited than the dinner options, you’ve still got a lot to choose from including the Barefoot Grill, Coco Cafe, Seaside Grill, and World Cafe.
Midday: If you missed the restaurant hours at lunch, no worries, you can still grab food by the pool area at the wood-fired pizza station or Barefoot Grill. Don’t miss the catch of the day at Barefoot Grill if you like fish!
Dinner: This is when the majority of restaurants open up. You’ll have so much to choose from.
Midnight / the wee hours of the night: You can always count on that 24/7 room service to keep you fed!
Here’s what we didn’t like as much:
Having said that, I did want to mention a few minor things that popped up in my mind during my stay. They may not impact your decision to stay at Secrets Maroma Beach, but I thought I’d share anyway!
I’ve stayed at other resorts before like Excellence Riviera Cancun and Excellence Playa Mujeres, so it was impossible for me not to compare the three properties. Some of the things that I found Secrets lacked are the following:
- No mid-afternoon snack carts – At the Excellence resorts, I recall random little food carts that would appear in the middle of the day, serving treats such as soft serve or crepes. At Secrets, I experienced just a tequila cart by the pool area (which was great), but no fun midday eats.
- No hard liquor in the minibar – Only beer. The Excellence resorts had both beer and hard liquor to be enjoyed in the rooms.
- No candy is included in the minibar – This one is so minor, but the Excellence resorts had candy, which is the only reason we noticed! Now, we didn’t bother to ask the concierge about this, but that was one thing we were craving that we couldn’t get our hands on (we also didn’t want to pay for this in the general store).
- Room service menu was limited to more American-style foods – You can choose between salads, chicken wings, nachos, soups, basic pasta and pizzas, BBQ ribs, and sandwiches. All of which was very American in cuisine style (and not my favorite). I was hoping for a more ethnic variety (even enchiladas, chilaquiles, tacos, or even a bag of instant ramen would have made me happy). Another odd thing was that guests could only order desserts after 12am which was odd because I feel like many of us would want to sleep at 12am rather than gorge on sweets.
- Hard to find churros – Because I have an obsession with churros, I was looking for churros everywhere during my stay at Secrets. The only place I could find them was at the Mexican restaurant, El Patio, which we had only on our last night. It would have been great if they had churros available 24/7 at the coffee shop or something. Kidding, but not really!
- No coconuts for drinking – We asked on our last day at the resort and were told that there weren’t any on the property. It would have been nice if these were available, but the staff did try to accommodate our request! We were told if we wanted coconuts to drink/eat, we would have to notify them a day before so they could order them for us.
SECRETS MAROMA BEACH RESTAURANTS: THE BOTTOM LINE
Overall, we enjoyed our dining experience at Secrets Maroma Beach Riviera Cancun. My partner considers himself a foodie and while some of the restaurants did not live up to our standards (meaning we probably wouldn’t dine there again on our next trip), the majority were quite good.
Despite the size of the resort, the restaurants don’t feel overcrowded. And while some of the restaurants do serve better food than others, they all make the presentation of the food a priority.
Out of the many restaurants available, our favorites were: Seaside Grill, the steak restaurant, World Cafe, the international buffet restaurant, and El Patio, the Mexican restaurant.
While I can’t sit here and say that ALL of the restaurants and food options were 5/5 stars (some restaurants were okay while others were great), it was still pretty good overall. My partner and I both agreed that the food here was slightly better than the food at the Excellence Playa Mujeres and the Excellence Riviera Cancun. I have not tried the food at other all-inclusive resorts, so I can’t really speak to how this compares to other hotel groups.
And what you’ll have to remember is that ultimately, you are at an all-inclusive resort and the food is included, which is a win already. If you want that gastronomic experience, you will probably be better served at a Four Seasons or at an actual fine dining restaurant.
Overall, we would highly recommend Secrets Maroma Beach to anyone looking for that 5-star treatment or that romantic getaway. The property, activities, and amenities are all great, but I did want to mention the staff. Honestly, it will really be the kind and engaging people who work there that will make your vacation that much more extraordinary.
Having visited for ourselves, it’s easy to see why many destination weddings are held at this resort. It’s a breathtaking place to be and the staff will surely do what they can to make your vacation truly unforgettable.
Ready to commit? You can make your Secrets Maroma Beach Riviera Cancun reservations here on Expedia (this is where we personally found the best price for our stay)!