This was our 3rd trip to the Barcelo Maya Beach and we had a great time again! There are pros and cons about staying here but the cons are usually minor and do not affect your overall trip as long as you don't sweat the small stuff.
The Pros - The hotel rooms and linens are clean, the beds are comfortable with pillow top mattresses, the flat screen TVs allow you to plug in your iPad to watch movies at night, rainfall shower head with hot water all the time, and excellent maid service. The beach is beautiful and much better than the higher end parts of the resort as there are less rocks and more mature trees for shade when you need it. We always found a chair and the staff do a fine job of keeping the beach clean. There is always activities going on and photographers walking around letting you take pictures with some exotic animal for your photo album. The food is very good with plenty of options to choose from. We went to two a la cartes (Spanish & Mexican) and enjoyed both of them. We also paid an extra $15 per person to go to the Japanese restaurant on our last night which we always love to eat at. The disco was fun but we arrived too early to find Lionel Richie playing on the big screen but a quick chat with the DJ fixed that and the party got started right away!
The Cons - We had lots of problems with our room this time (Room 2217 in Coba Building). (1) The fridge did not work at all - the fridge is not normally very cold but the complimentary drinks were room temperature. We called maintenance who came by the next day to fix it and left water all over the floor and the drinks on the counter. We did not know if they fixed it or if they were coming back. We called the front desk who sent a maid to wipe up the floor and put the drinks back in the fridge (which we could have done) but we weren't sure if we should load the fridge back up if they were coming back. We called maintenance to find out if it was fixed or not and the lady said she would call us back - but she never did. It turns out the fridge was fixed since the drinks started to cool off but it was very hard trying to determine that. (2) The roof above the toilet was leaking so we had to wipe the toilet seat before we could use it. (3) The sink faucet cap was broken and it looked like it had already been fixed several times already. (4) There was mold around the shower which should be cleaned off with Javex - they don't have fans in the bathrooms which doesn't help with the mold problems. (5) Our main door lock from the hallway did not lock so our room was left open throughout the day. When we finally noticed the problem we called the front desk. After four hours of no one coming to fix it we called the Manager who finally sent someone to make sure we weren't doing something wrong (I'm sure they get lots of dumb complaints). Once they confirmed there was really a problem they had maintenance change the whole lock system right away and everything worked fine after that.
The Maya Beach rooms are getting old and need some repairs. Our friends stayed at the Tropical and they had rock hard beds with old TVs and a rocky beach - and they paid more to stay there! All the rooms at the Barcelo should have good mattresses and flat screen TVs. There should also be free internet service throughout the property so people can check on things back home or check in for their flights. They have a better internet pricing strategy this year so you get discounts for the more days you use (we paid about $30 for four days vs $12 per day before).
Mexico isn't the cheap place it used to be years ago as the prices are very "American" now. However, the rooms and amenities should be upgraded to reflect the prices they charge. Voices echo throughout the hallways so people really need to be more considerate to others that may be taking a nap, especially parents who let their kids scream.
Overall, we really enjoy staying at the Barcelo Maya Beach because of the comfortable beds, good food and drinks (great mojitos), awesome beach and staff! We would go back again and will continue to recommend it to others. However, we might try an adult only hotel next time to get away from the screaming kids in the morning while we are trying to sleep in.