Stayed at Barceló Maya Beach Jul 18-28, 2014 with my 15 y.o son. We were picked up at the airport by a mini-bus and arrived at the hotel at ~noon. The check in was fast, but the room would be only available at 3 pm - the official check-in time (we really hoped they had some mercy for the tired travelers, but no such luck). We didn't complain - they gave us bracelets so we could start enjoying the beach, bars and food. By 3 pm our room wasn't ready also, so we stayed just there in the lobby and waited until they told us that it is now available ( at about 4:40 pm). Our building was Coba (I requested this particular building and the upper floor room (as the most quiet) when I was booking this package thru Triplink). The room was clean, cool, mini-fridge is full of drinks - colas, beer, water) and re-stocked if you don't put a 'do not disturb' sign outside. Beds were comfy. Safe box is free, TV remote at the night table, bath robes, slippers - all white and look like brand new, bathroom is clean and all working fine. We have absolutely no complains about our room or corridors - our cleaning lady was great and didn't bother us if we put 'do not disturb' sign outside. We tipped every time. The only bother was from other guests (across the corridor). Some people forget their manners once on vacation, loud voices and laugh, banging doors; same people -EVERY night.
Grounds and beach: The grounds are very clean and lush. The beach is amazing, palm threes provide enough shade and chair are aplenty. You won't be able to do snorkeling off the beach, no matter what they say on the websites, the water is not really clear because of wind and waves and there is nothing interesting down there, but we saw some fish and once - a stingray. Some ladies were sunbathing topless. There is also an isolated beach area, south of the main beach, with old padded chairs. We stayed there one day pretending it's just us.
Activities: We played paddle at Colonial courts every afternoon (you'll get equipment - paddles or tennis rackets, bottled water AND towels at the booth next to the basketball court), jogged in the mornings (a lot of people were jogging there, so bring your gear - HR monitors and mp3 palyers :), went to gym (Caribe part of Barceló) - they provide water and towels also, stayed at different pools throughout Barceló.
Pools: we are not pool people. But they look clean and plenty of chairs.
Beach bars: there are plenty throughout Barceló, take your thermos-mugs, but if you forget they sell them there. I haven't seen waters serving drinks near the pool or beach areas - you have to go for your drinks yourself. Also, the lobby bar is very cool and they have a pop-corn machine there.
La-cartes: We booked Mexican and Spanish (only these 2 were available with our package) upon arrival, but later cancelled; we had a look at the menus - looked rather attractive, but we don't like to be committed and prefer to stay flexible on our leisure time arrangements.
Buffet: was good; what I don't really get is sometimes there was a huge line-up at the entrance waiting to be seated. Also, there was only one fish served - a grupper (tender and succulent thou), and no other seafood; shrimp/calamari were served 2-3 times diring our 10-days stay, but they were mixed with rice and not served as a separate dish. Also, if they'd only cut their pastries/cakes in smaller bits - would be so much easier to choose, and more efficient - you wouldn't have to think which one to try - you can try all, and may be come back for the one you like most + there would be less leftovers. There were never enough waffle cones for ice-cream, they didn't replenish the dispenser. Also, coffee machines were turned off. You have to either wait for the waiter or go and order from the counter servers. In overall - the buffet management and cooks are doing a great job - all is fresh, variety is enough, arranged nicely and very clean. I think people who get stomach problems might be just overeating or mixing incompatible foods like fish and ice-cream.
Tours: We took a tour combo to Tulum ruins and Xel-Ha park - it's relatively short bus ride (~ 20 min). We weren't impressed with ruins but loved Xel-Ha - if you have kids - it's very much recommended. Secured locker, buffets, snorkeling gear and towels are included - you don't have to worry about a thing and just enjoy. We were mostly snorkeling there - amazing colorful fish, but we also walked around, stayed in hammocks, had dinner and fed fish.
Weather: was good during our stay, very hot but bearable; we were using 100spf sunscreens (water resistant type for sports) for the first 3 days then went down to 60spf then to 45spf, but still burned. I guess we had to re-apply more often as it gets washed down by sweat and water.
Staff: is very friendly and helpful and smile every time you smile at them.
Caribe section of Barceló was under construction but we weren't bothered, they played classical music along the perimeter to conceal any noise from there and it worked.
In fact I think because Caribe section was closed we didn't feel the resort was crowded at all. The construction site served as a buffer between The Beach and the rest of Barceló :)
Thank you Barceló for the nice time we had.
We might come back if the price is right.
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- Also Known As:
- Barcelo Puerto Aventuras
- Barcelo Hotel Maya Beach
- Barcelo Maya Palace
- Barcelo Maya Mexico
- Barcelo Maya Resort
- Catalonia Rivera Maya
- Maya Beach Resort
- Barcelo Beach Maya Mayan Resort Riviera
- Barcelo Maya Beach Resort Cancun
- Barcelo Maya Beach Riviera Maya, Mexico - Puerto Aventuras