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Barcelo Maya Palace
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Reviewed 25 January 2014

The reason for the visit was a company trip, and it was amazing! The staff was so helpful and friendly! There is a ton of walking but I don't mind the exercise since the buffets and beer were constantly flowing. The Brazilian restaurant was incredible!! Shopping is onsite, and they have these 2 tribal looking guys that take pictures with you on the beach. Everything about this place is perfect and I have not one complaint. I can't wait to go back!!! CERVAZA!!!!! Cheers and have a great trip!

  • Stayed: January 2014
    • Value
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1  Thank gwendee007
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HBarcelo-Maya-Palace, Director de Relaciones Públicas at Barcelo Maya Palace, responded to this reviewResponded 18 June 2014

Dear gwendee00.

First of all receive our greetings from Riviera Maya and we appreciate your time, to write your comments on Trip Advisor,
Thank you for your preference! It you will be a pleasure to host in the future!

Best Regards from Barceló Maya Palace Deluxe.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 January 2014

We just stayed at the Palace Deluxe from January 17th to January 22nd. There were a total of 8 of us (6 adults & 2 teens). We had a total of three rooms. The resort is beautiful. Everything is clean and in its place at all times. The pools are amazing with plenty of beach chairs for everyone. They have an adult only pool which is nice to get away but we didn't really find it necessary as the resort is so huge and spread out that it feels spacious. Their are bed cabanas at the adult only pool but you have to pay extra for those which doesn't feel right when you already paid a boat load for the trip. The beach is white sand and soft. Massive amount of beach chairs to go around. Everything you would expect along with crystal blue waters and palm trees.

Ok so now the things that bothered me about the resort. We have stayed at a few other resorts so have something to compare this to.

Food: Not that great. Buffets were bland with the same options night after night after night. The only thing I looked forward to getting on the buffet was fresh made to order omelets each morning. The restaurants are hard to get reservations for. We ate at the Brazilian and it was OK. We did the skewers and didn't leave hungry that was for sure. We were also very disappointed with the lack of options for food. There are only the restaurants and one snack option available during the day. At other resorts they typically will have snack stations set up all throughout the resort and at every single bar with things like Chips and Guac as well as hamburgers and hot dogs. They also have to go containers so you can take the food to the beach or pool side and munch while you lounge. Barcelo does not allow this at all. You are not allowed to take food outside nor do they have any snack stations set up around the resort. Once I found a shady spot to lounge the day away I don't want to have to get up and walk 15 min away from my spot to go sit down and eat food. It was very annoying to say the least.

Rooms: Our room was very nice. However, the bathroom is not very private. If you are a private person who doesn't like to share your business with everyone then you won't like it. The toilet is in a closet type room of the bathroom with a frosted glass sliding door and then the bathrooms have shuttered sliding door to close it all off. However, you can hear when someone is going to the bathroom and know exactly what they are doing in there. Also you can see the person in the bathroom through the shutters taking a shower or getting ready. There is a mini bar in the room which is stocked when you first arrive with pops, juices, waters and beers. There are peanuts and chips also provided. That is the first day. Each day there after you are lucky if you get a new bottle of water put in there. We even left tips and notes asking for more beer, water, and chips but had a hard time getting what we wanted stocked. Other resorts we have stayed at always stock the mini bar full every single day. Also in incidental thing but I like it when I stay in resorts. They don't do fun things with your towels like fold them into animals. They did do turn down service for us two nights of the 4 we were there. And finally about the rooms. The walls are paper thin. You can hear people walking outside. I had a hard time getting a full nights sleep due to noise issues. Drunk people yelling at all hours of the night. Party goers coming back from their destinations late were easy to hear. I could also hear when the other room flushed its toilet or moved a chair across the room.

Service: Finally I have to say that friendliness and willingness to go above and beyond was hit and miss. The people who should be the ones going out of their way to make your stay the best possible were typically very cold and off putting. The lobby desk people, the concierge people, the internet cafe person, the hostesses to the restaurants. Those people where the ones who needed to up their game. That being said we encountered some awesome wait staff that rocked! The bartenders were awesome, the servers at the restaurants were awesome and always made you feel welcomed and special. They even pull out your chair, push your chair in for you, if you had your hands full they would carry your plates back to your table for you. They were just on top of things and wanted you to be happy.

Bigger isn't always Better: The resort is so mammoth that you have to walk extensively to get anywhere. Nothing is close at hand or easy to get to. No straight lines to get you to where you are going. Everything curves and up a flight of stairs now down a flight of stairs and around two building. I think I did more walking at the Barcelo then I did in Vegas. I like the idea of a large resort to make it feel less crowded but the walking was crazy. By the end of my stay there my feet were raw with blisters and I had shin splints. I took good shoes with me too expecting some walking.

I would definitely come back to the Riviera Maya. I love it there. Very beautiful and a quick get a way from the USA as well as affordable. But I am not sure I would stay at the Barcelo again.

  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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7  Thank OldsGal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HBarcelo-Maya-Palace, Director de Relaciones Públicas at Barcelo Maya Palace, responded to this reviewResponded 18 June 2014

Dear OldsGal
.
First of all receive our greetings from the Riviera Maya and thanks for your comments on Tripadvisor are very important to us ..
Our main goal is that all our guests have a pleasant stay and a happy return home; we are pleased to know that you enjoyed your vacation.
Thank you for your preference! It will be a pleasure to host in the future!..

Best Regards
Barceló Maya Palace Deluxe

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 January 2014

I stayed with my family December 13th-20th, 2013. I went with my mom, stepdad, sister (age 19), and myself (age 22) and it was a unanimous decision that this was the nicest resort we had ever stayed in. We have been to the Bahamas, the Dominican Republic, and Cancun and stayed in extremely nice resorts, but the Barcelo Maya Palace Deluxe was our overall best resort yet.

We arrived around midnight after our flight was delayed six hours. Needless to say, we were happy to be greeted at the front desk by a waitress with welcome cocktails. We then made our way to our room. We stayed in the M-building (I can’t remember what it was called…something weird.) all four of the beds in our two rooms were the hardest beds ever. I’m not that picky about beds and slept just fine, but my parents called and had a mattress pad put on their bed because they couldn’t stand it. It was lumpy but they said it helped.

It is a long walk to get pretty much anywhere at the resort from the rooms. (It didn’t really bother us though as we needed the exercise to help work off some of the massive amounts of food we ingested.) The first thing we noticed was how beautiful the pathways are. There are up-lit covered walkways to get you from your room to just about anywhere you would want to go after dark. This was nice and really made my sister and I feel completely comfortable walking about the resort at night. Our luggage was dropped off at our room within minutes and we made our way to the buffet as you need reservations to eat at any of the a la carte restaurants.

These buffets are most likely not what you are expecting. Even at five star resorts the buffets tend to be a little bit lacking. This first night I was overwhelmed by the number of options available to us at the dinner buffet. There is a meat station where you could choose almost any meat imaginable to be cooked right in front of you on a grill. There is a fish station that works the same way. There are countless options of cold and hot sides ranging from the generic salad with all of the imaginable toppings to more exotic dishes that are native to Mexico. This was the only night we ate at the dinner buffet as we made reservations at the restaurants for every other night. However, every day we ate at either the lunch buffet or snack buffet in the afternoon and we were just as impressed. The only advice I have here is to pass by the snack buffet and walk the few extra steps to the lunch buffet as there are a lot more options and the food is fresher. If you’re just going for some chips and guacamole, the snack bar is nice because it is open to the outside so you can continue to enjoy the weather.

The second and fourth nights we ate at Rodizio, the Brazilian Steak House. I the majority of us had the skewers. It was SO much food but almost everything was delicious. The only thing I did not like was the green sausage but I’m not a fan of sausage to begin with. The turkey was a little dry but had good flavor and the rest of the meat was all amazing. Another person at our table ordered the entrecote (filet) and said it was the best she had ever had. Our second time there I took her advice and ordered the filet and it was extremely undercooked. I would recommend ordering the skewers as you get a taste of everything so even if you don’t like one of the meats, you have several others.

The third night we ate at the Brasserie, the French restaurant. I had the surf and turf: filet and lobster tail. They were both just okay. Probably the best entrée at our table was the duck.

The fifth night we ate at the Japanese steak house at one of the other resorts. It was just like the other Japanese steak houses I have eaten at with the soup and salad, and the rice, vegetables, and entrée all cooked on the grill in front of you. I’m not sure if it is because the meat was not as high quality compared to that of the Palace restaurants or if it was just because the chef cooked my filet directly after he chopped up lobster tails for other people at the table, but my steak had a horrible almost fishy flavor. I was afraid the meat might have been bad so I didn’t eat it. Still, the fried rice, salad, soup, and vegetables were all enough to fill me up and were all great. Oh, I almost forgot! The sushi was absolutely AMAZING. Seriously. I would go to this place just for the sushi “appetizers” alone. I say “appetizer” because it was big enough to fill me up and make eating the rest of the meal somewhat of a chore.

The sixth night we ate at the seafood restaurant at the Palace, the Caribe. I ordered the dill crab leg appetizer and the salmon braid entrée. It was honestly the BEST salmon I have ever had. It was so moist with such great flavor. I would highly recommend it. Several other entrees were ordered at my table and I heard no complaints about anything. The only criticism I have for this restaurant is that my Stepdad asked the waiter to bring him the best dessert on the menu, and he ended up with the flan. It was absolutely awful.

On our last night we ate at the Mexican restaurant at one of the other resorts. I am obsessed with fajitas and was tempted to order them for dinner, but I ate them LITERALLY every day for breakfast and lunch at the buffet. I decided to take a chance and go with the Ox tenderloin. It was a mistake. Two other people got the fajitas and were satisfied with their meals. Still, I wouldn’t waste one of your dinners on this place. For being in Mexico, the Mexican restaurant was the worst one we experienced. I think this probably has something to do with it being located at the cheapest one of all of the resorts.

At the Barcelo complex, people staying at the Palace can go to any of the other resorts. This includes their pools, bars, restaurants, entertainment, beach, etc. The people staying at the other resorts, however, only have the privileges to go to their own resort or the ones that are cheaper. They are arranged on the grounds in order, at one end the Palace being the best, the one next to it the second best, the one next to that the third best, and the farthest from the Palace is the cheapest. As you can imagine, my sister and I ended up finding more people our age to hang out with as we went to the cheaper resorts. If you go with any young adults that are looking to find friends, tell them not to be afraid to venture to the other resorts’ bars and pools. They can even still get the top shelf liquor when they show their bracelet and sign off for it.

The grounds at the Palace, along with all the other resorts, were immaculate. Absolutely gorgeous. I did notice that the other pool went to outside of the Palace was not as clean, but it wasn’t disgusting or anything. We went to the disco one night and had no desire to go back. I guess if you went with a group it could be fun, but the music was SO loud and there really weren’t enough people there to create a good dancing atmosphere. Don’t get me wrong, I love going out to bars and dancing so it’s not like I’m just not that kind of person, but it was uncomfortably loud and empty in there. The lack of people could have just been on the night we went though.

One more thing I want to touch on is that at the spa, you can use the hot tub, sauna, and steam room for free. The hot tub was less than hot, but the steam room and sauna were both great. The only complaint I have here is that they took away our drinks on our way in! :(

Even despite the weather we had, (rain every day except for one,) I would still relive this vacation over and over again if I could. The food was overall great, there was not one single time I went hungry. The hotel itself is beautiful, the nicest I have ever stayed at. They had all the top shelf liquor and more than I would have wanted. I didn’t meet even one unfriendly staff member. Everyone from the maids, to groundskeepers, to entertainment staff said, “Hola!” and smiled as you passed by. I’m sure this is part of their job description, but I have been to resorts where the staff seems less than enthused to serve you and Barcelo was nothing like that. Now that we have been to the Palace, I know that I wouldn’t want to downgrade to any of the other resorts. Seriously, spend the extra money, it is completely worth it for the top shelf liquor, better food, and better facilities!

I’m sure I’m leaving stuff out but this review has already become two long already. Hopefully it helps anyone looking to visit Riviera Maya feel comfortable choosing Barcelo Maya Palace Deluxe. If we ever go back to Riviera Maya, I don’t think we would stay anywhere else! It is a tough resort to beat!

  • Stayed: December 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
11  Thank Alyssa B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HBarcelo-Maya-Palace, Director de Relaciones Públicas at Barcelo Maya Palace, responded to this reviewResponded 18 June 2014

Dear Alyssa B.

First of all receive our greetings from Riviera Maya and thanks for your comments on Tripadvisor.
We are glad to know that you had a wonderful time in this paradise and it would be a pleasure to host you once again. ......

Receive a warm greeting from the Riviera Maya.
Barceló Maya Palace Deluxe

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 22 January 2014

We stayed from January 8th to the 15th and had beautiful weather! I would recommend upgrading to club premium if you care to eat in the restaurants as you get priority reservations. Many of the other people (with out club premium) were frustrated that they couldn't get certain reservations at the restaurants. The restaurants at the Palace were much better quality than at the other locations on the resort too. The buffets were very nice also, with many many options.
The rooms were fantastic!! Great bathrooms :-)
The resort is very large, so make sure to bring comfortable sandals/shoes. It took us 50 minutes to walk from one side of the beach to the other. The beach/ocean was one of the nicest in the area, with plenty of chairs available. Pool was slightly chilly, so we swam in the ocean.
We had a wonderful time, but I don't know if it was because of the resort, or the beautiful location and weather. Not sure if we'll be back to this one because of the high cost to get the amenities we were looking for. No major complaints though.

Room Tip: Don't pay too much extra for ocean view, as there aren't many rooms that have decent ocean views. Yes they face the ocean, but there is a lot in between the ocean and the room.
  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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4  Thank Jen9823
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HBarcelo-Maya-Palace, Director de Relaciones Públicas at Barcelo Maya Palace, responded to this reviewResponded 18 June 2014

Dear Jen9823,

We appreciate the valuable time you have taken to share your comments with us.

We are glad to know that your stay was enjoyable and hope to have the opportunity to serve your family in the future.
Receive a warm greeting from the Riviera Maya.
Barceló Maya Palace Deluxe

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 January 2014

This hotel was just wonderful ! Grounds were very well kept and rooms were large and clean, but beds like mentioned in previous posts are so hard. Unfortunately the weather was terrible, but we still enjoyed ourselves. Food was very good with a wide variety of options. When the ground in the lobby gets wet it's VERY slippery so be careful ! Disco/shows at night time were good.

Beach was rocky so watch where you step, but so beautiful. Water was very clear and warm with little to no sea weed. You could snorkle right at the beach and see fish and turtles. You can also walk to the dock to jump off and swim with the fish. The beach is about 1.5km from one end to the other, so it was a nice run in the morning if you're interested in that.

Overall had a great trip and would recommend to people travelling to Mayan riviera.

Room Tip: try to get a room on the top floor because you can hear moving chairs/people walking above you. Try to get a non adjoining room.. if your neighbours are loud you can hear EVERYTHING.
  • Stayed: January 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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2  Thank Paige M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HBarcelo-Maya-Palace, Director de Relaciones Públicas at Barcelo Maya Palace, responded to this reviewResponded 18 June 2014

Dear Paige M

Thank you for your preference! It will be a pleasure to see you en Barceló Maya Palace Deluxe on your next vacations.

Receive a warm greeting from the Riviera Maya.
Barceló Maya Palace Deluxe

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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