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“More of a 3 star, great value for the price”
Review of Barcelo Maya Beach

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Barcelo Maya Beach
Ranked #11 of 17 Hotels in Puerto Aventuras
Reviewed 11 August 2010

We traveled with a 6 year old, and the main reason for choosing the Palace was the mini water park for him to enjoy. We choose to delay our trip 2 days due to 'Alex" sitting over the resort, but the rest of the week we were there it rained each day. It was just enough to clear out the crowd and have you rushing back to fight over a chair. Can't control the weather, so no use of complaining about it. Had red flag 3 days, but you could still get in the water, no one yelled at you. Although the lifeguard will blow her whistle if you attempt to go down the water slide w/your kid (I am 5'10 and 174lbs), had to do it when she wasn't watching. The guy one didn't care much. They shut it off about 7pm.

We left $5 each day and our room was spotless. We also left the minibar guy $3 but the second day of our trip requested more beer and left him a $5 bill, we set aside the sodas we did not like so that he would not put them back in. It was stuffed full. We left him $5 the rest of the time and got the same great results. Yes it is all inclusive, but seriously if you don't have the extra $5 to give someone you should reconsider your options. They don't work for top dollar, and obviously they can be replaced in a second, so they do their job, but if you appreciate their effort it helps the mood. We did leave tips at the reservation dinners. We did see several other Americans that left tips ($10-$20), then we felt cheap for leaving $5, but we didn't really see any others tipping then realized we didn't see that many Americans either.

Lots of complaining and pushy people that want you to meet their demands, I guess some thing they can buy silver for the price of gold and get the same quality. This is not a Luxury resort, that is why it was less than $4000 for a 8night vacation. The price should tell you that. The completely negative reviews are just hard people to please.

The food-was average, did not have a problem making reservations, we were allowed 7 which was much better than our Iberostar experience. You can have multiple dinners at the Palace but are restricted to one at the other resorts based on availability. Room service costs $$, and the menu is not that great.

Towels-always had them, they use towel cards.
Kids Barcy club- Our son enjoyed it, we only took him about an hour or two each day, he was bored being with us on the beach/pool. He did find some friends to play with but they did not speak English. We packed his pool toys (diving sticks etc..) I think this is what attracted others to play with him, but we wanted to keep him entertained, at 6 I do not expect him to lay in a chair or float all day long. Take pool toys. Other families had some also. They sell tubes but that is about it besides sand toys. Nothing for the water.

We also took along chips and snacks in a suitcase, thankful we did. Only chips were the Nachos, and of course our 6yr old is a very plain eater.

If you book through Fun Jet, pay the $105 upgrade for a Limo on the way back to the airport to avoid the bus and the "rush" getting off the bus to get in the check in line. We had about 3 people in front of us when they dropped us off. Which makes it worth every penny!

Like others said the tiles are super slippery when wet, everyone was falling so don't be shy about walking slow. The beds are horrible. I have slept on dirt, cots, floors and have never had my back hurt like it did on our vacation. We bought the pool raft and slept on top of those. Pack some med for the pain. (and no, we do not have a $1000 plus bed back at home, it is just a regular $600 Simmons mattress, nothing fancy).

Overall great place for the price, but you can stay at their other ones next door for the same results and $1000 less, no one enforces the "palace only" resort rule for the kid waterpark. All there is to stop you is a sign, and many walk right past it. Tip, and take a private transfer/upgrade back and you will also be a happy camper! A DSL internet plug is $12USD a day. We used it mostly for TV, as hardly anything appropriate for a kid was in English. Take DVD's and a laptop, then leave it locked up in your suitcase. Never had a problem with anything missing, but we don't leave it out either.

  • Stayed: June 2010, travelled with family
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Thank txtanbeachbum
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 9 August 2010

Before leaving on my vacation with my boyfriend's family (8 people including myself, ranging from the ages of 21 to 53) I came on tripadvisor to look at reviews of the Palace. I was kind of hesitant about going to this resort because of some of the harsh reviews.

Well first off, every worker there (for the most part) is as nice and as friendly as they can be. They are willing to help and take care of any needs you have. The bartenders obviously work more efficiently and make better drinks when you tip them, however they do not expect or require it. The hotel staff is also very friendly. We had a small problem while checking in, but it was nothing that would ruin the entire vacation for everyone. The only problem we had we service is when we got locked out of our room and called from a family member's room for assistance and no one showed up after 45 minutes of waiting. So if you get locked out of your room, just go ahead and walk up to the front desk because it will save you time.

The food at all of the restaurants was fantastic! We loved the Carribean, Brazilian Steak House (if you are in love with meat), Japanese, Seafood & Mexican. We had reservations for the French but missed our time because we had taken a day trip that day. The buffets are fine, they are buffets, not 5 star restaurants, but as long as you find something you like or are willing to expand your palette there is no problem there. We really enjoyed the lunch buffet at the Japanese restaurant (not Japanese food at lunch). All in all, there was not much to complain about. Was it the best food we have ever eaten? No, but there was definitely nothing to complain about.

The rooms were spacey and very beautiful. The bathroom had 2 showers, a regular shower & tub, and then a free-standing rain shower. We stayed during Mexico's rainy season so the rooms and everything in them got damp at times. But you have to realize that this could happen at any resort in the area no matter how luxurious it is. We had a few cockroaches that we think were let in by the maids, but not many to feel icky. The television was mostly in Spanish, but you can find some channel in English, but seriously who needs a tv? If you put a note to request more of something in your fridge it was filled immediately even without a tip. The refrigerator wasn't the most trusting, it would frequently change from lukewarm to semi-cold, but you could just as easily walk to the bar and get something.

The resort itself was beautiful and so well kept. There are 5 hotels (I think) on the whole property so you might have to walk to go to the attractions that the entire resort shares, but not everything can be right outside your door. The beach was beautiful with clear and calm and not like the dangerous Cancun oceans you hear about (the resort is on the Caribbean Sea side, not at the peninsula). The beach is covered in palm trees and there are plenty of chairs to choose from. The pool is the largest I have ever seen and the nicest. I recommend like many others, to save your chairs before breakfast, especially if you're in a larger group. The bar in the lobby (Carey Bar) stays open until 2 a.m., some of the websites say all bars close at 11, but this one didn't. It was where a lot of people hung out at night. We never went to the Discotecha because it was too far of a walk and that wasn't the kind of thing we really wanted to do.
The shows were mediocre at best. The "Circus" is really just a lot of acrobatics, so don't take your kids that are expecting live animals and clowns, but it was pretty good. We saw part of karaoke, but they can't really plan how great or dreadful that will be.

The summer is Mexico's rainy season, so if you look at the weather forecast and see 60% rain everyday do not be alarmed and feel your vacation will be ruined. Some days it would rain off and on in short 10 minute or less spurts, some days it would only rain once for like 30 minutes to an hour, and then some days it wouldn't rain at all.

Lastly, while the resort has 5ish hotels the Palace is at the top of the price range. We were granted full access to all other hotels and their bars and restaurants. The liquor selection is much better and there is a lot more of it. The palace is definitely the nicest as far as lobby, grounds, pool, buildings, etc. etc. So I would say that the price increase is definitely worth it.

So, in conclusion, take all of the negative comments with a grain of salt. The maintenance level of our group varied and we were all pleasantly surprised at the resort. As long as you and your family are not too hard to satisfy then I would definitely recommend staying here!

  • Stayed: July 2010, travelled with family
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4  Thank lkhall
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 August 2010

We stayed at Barcelo Maya Beach Resort from July30-Aug4th and we had a great time. We have very few complaints about this hotel, but the number one complaint would be the fact that we were only able to get reservations at 1 of the restaurants the whole time we were there. We went the day we got there and they said it was the only opening they had. The buffet wasn't bad but eating the same thing several days in a row got kind of old.
Now the beach was amazing!! very long beach and the water is gorgeous!!!They have several palm trees if you want some shade. Lots of fish swimming up close and we even saw some sea turtles and a manta ray very close to the shore. we didnt snorkel but this would be a very good place to do that. there's a pier down the beach that a lot of people were going to snorkel.The only complaint about the beach was there was no bar service there.
The rooms were not that great but the beach made up for it. The rooms have a stinch but I guess we just got use to it. They were not dirty but the decor left much to de desired. You have to put your room key in a slot and leave it if you want the air conditioner to run.
The drinks were a little weak but we didnt mind becase that aloud us to drink all day. If you asked for them to add a shot to the drinks they would.
The first day we got there I was a little disgusted with the pools because it didnt seem like they cleaned them at all. (luckily we spent most of te time at the beach). The pools are made out of tiny littlr tiles and a lot of them were missing and it seems like the swim up bar area was a little unkept.Later in the day I did notice that they had skimmed the pools.
We did not go on any of the excursions but we did go into Playa del Carmen twice. Once during the day to go shopping (they actually have several shops at the Resort also) which was very nice and we had lunch at Senor Frog's, that place is a trip!!! A few days later we went back to Coco Bongo. They have a guy at the reort totally promoting this place and it was really something to see. If you are going on vacation without kids and want to this go out and have a great time shpukld be put into your schedule. i was a little skeptical because they pick you up at the Resort at 11:00 and the show gets over at 3:30. I told my husband to take extra cab money in case we wanted to come back early. At 3:30 they said it was time to go and I felt like we had been htere for 30 minutes.It's like nothing I have ever seen before, its a dance club/theater all in one. They have several impersonators and dancers and there is never a dull moment, you just dont know what to expect next.There is also a nightclub called Jaguars at the reort that was a lot of fun as well.
Overall we had a great trip with very few complaints. The ride in a taxi to and from the airport was 1 hour, we were expcting 1 1/2. I don't know that we will go back to this Resort only because we like to try new places but really the beach is absolutely beautiful!!

  • Stayed: August 2010, travelled as a couple
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2  Thank AngiePar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 August 2010

Rooms-Nice rooms with beds that weren't too hard. Double sinks and rain shower were great. Very clean and fresh towels were always there. Walls were pretty thin and I was woken up by a screaming kid next door every morning. Although there was a separate kids pool there were a lot of kids here so going doing school season would be advisable if you don't have any.

Activities-Good snorkeling off beach although it will look like Hanauma Bay in Hawaii soon because of people touching the coral and kids pulling out plants. Enjoy it while it lasts...the resort should educate people before they let ignorant people ruin it. Beach volleyball was fun but that is really in front of the Colonial.

Restaurants/bars-Carribean was not good..dried up fish that didn't taste fresh, awful dessert. Brazilian wasn't very impressive either-low quality meat that was sometime fatty. French had decent food but slow service. The best were the Steakhouse and the Hibachi which interestingly were at the Colonial next door. You would think the Palace would have better food but that was definately not the case. The buffets were big but only average quality and mostly cold unless you got cooked to order. You may find the indoor seating very loud and not very relaxing so sit on the balcony unless you have to have A/C. Take note of how they put on raw beef/chicken on the open grills and then serve you with the same tonges. Maybe why I am still sick 2 weeks after returning? I thought the quality of food at the Iberostar Pariso Lindo was much better....they also had free room service. The Barcelo had no late night food unfortunately. Bars were decent although the lobby bar can get a little old because it is a little stuffy and mostly had piano music. You may need to venture to the disco at the neighboring hotel or take the 1/2 hr taxi ride to town.

Grounds - Landscaping was amazing and it almost seemed too perfect. The place was extremely clean everywhere you walked but be careful on wet marble tiles as many people point out.

Overall I wouldn't stay here again in favor of a smaller more intimate resort with higher quality food.

  • Stayed: July 2010, travelled as a couple
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Thank cincyp
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 August 2010

We just came home yesterday and had a wonderful time! We wanted beach, sunshine and a relaxing vacation and were not disappointed. Beautiful beach with lots of chairs and shade if you want it. Food was plentiful and we were never hungry. Our room was cleaned, well, every day. There were lots of things to do or not do, just as you pleased. Not sure why all the negative reviews were posted, but it made me a little apprehensive before we left, but there was no need to worry. Our only suggestion? Bring mosquito spray... the evenings could get a little buggy! And fair warning... this hotel is a little over an hour from the airport which can make for a long travel day.

  • Stayed: August 2010, travelled with family
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3  Thank lovesbeaches91
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 August 2010

Yes, bed bugs can be anywhere these days (and are). It's not so much that there were bed bugs, but rather how it was handled. Zero responsiveness from the front desk. My mom felt a bite about 6:30 in the morning. Upon getting up she found three bedbugs in her bed. She called the front desk, they said they would send some one up immediately. They never did. After three trips to the front desk, they finally changed her room about 3 in the afternoon, after my sister made a huge stink of it and threatened to tell other people.
The front desk people never apologized for the problem or the inconvenience. They insisted it wasn't anything more than some bugs from the jungle, hot weather, rainy weather, etc. I have seen bed bugs before, and these were definately bed bugs. The staff would either refuse to believe me, or pretend to not understand me. The manager is like the Wizard of Oz, they kept saying he wasn't there, but he was behind the wall, - the staff kept going back there and returning, like deer in headlights.
This was not an infestation; I checked the backboard, and the mattress...the only evidence were the three bugs and some debris on the mattress pad. Maybe the room had been treated before, or they had come in w/a recent traveler? In any case, the staff should have listened, apologized and arranged for other accomadations, instead of evading or refuting what we were saying. Horrible, horrible service.
My thoughts on this place is if you have no problems there or special requests (forget eating at the specialty restaurants if you are trying to eat w/a large group, the 12-15 in our family were able to make two reservations out of five nights), you will be fine. The pools and beaches are indeed beautiful, and the largeness of the resort makes it never seem too crowded. The buffets were pretty good if you get the made to order items, and the drinks were decent in some places, watered down in other locations. A good place for small children and small groups. Though I gave this place low marks for service, this was only the front desk. Everyone else we met in the buffets, dining rooms, etc., work really hard to try to give good service.

  • Stayed: July 2010, travelled with family
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4  Thank BellaO6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 August 2010

Just got back from a fabulous vacation. Stayed at the Place. The food was awesome and plentiful. The rooms were beautiful. Pools and Beach were best we've seen. All in all a great family vacation. The Staff was very friendly and accommodating. We traveled with 3 teen boys one in college. Need to keep an eye on the bar tenders at the pool. They will serve anyone who looks 18. The night life was a bit dull but no big deal to us. Only complaint and it's a small one is the floors in the rooms are marble. They get very damp and slippery due to high humidity. Be careful!

  • Stayed: July 2010, travelled with family
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Thank bdk20
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Barcelo Maya Beach

Address: Carretera Chetumal Puerto Juarez Km. 266,3, Puerto Aventuras 77750, Mexico (Formerly Hotel Barcelo Maya Beach)
Phone Number:
Region: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Puerto Aventuras
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#5 Family Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#5 Romantic Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#7 Business Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#9 Spa Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#9 Luxury Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#10 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#10 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
Price Range: £185 - £370 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Barcelo Maya Beach 4*
Number of rooms: 630
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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

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