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“This hotel is all right - for a first time trip to the Riviera Maya” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Barcelo Maya Caribe

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Barcelo Maya Caribe
3.0 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Ctra Federal Chetumal-Puerto Juarez, Km 266.3, Puerto Aventuras 77750, Mexico   |  
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Ranked #5 of 15 Hotels in Puerto Aventuras
Redmond, WA
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
“This hotel is all right - for a first time trip to the Riviera Maya”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 30, 2009

We just got back from a trip to Mexico where we stayed at this hotel. This a really big complex, five resorts in one.
As can be expected of all inclusives and the buffets they serve, the food was not authentic mexican food, but it was good food. They manage to provide variety while catering to a lot of differnent tastes. We did not eat at any of the formal restaurants, so I cannot review the food there. The drinks were excellent and not watered down at all.
As for the rooms, we stayed in their standard room. It was nothing special, just your standard hotel room: two beds, a couch and two chairs, a flat screen TV, a minibar, and an ensuite bathroom. The only negative thing I have to say about the room was that the water in the shower never seemed to run hot, it was always lukewarm. Don't know why that is though. Maybe they think lukewarm water is warm enough for a shower/bath down there. I would have loved to take a hot bath after a long day of snorkeling to relax my sore legs, but that was not to be. I have read other reviews that the beds were hard, but I did not find it so. Granted they are not as soft as most of the mattresses you find here in the US of A, but they are not bad either. Of course, I prefer and use an "extra firm" mattress at home, so maybe I am not a good judge of that :)
We snorkeled right off the pier, lots of fish hang around there - they know they get food there, so they have no moivation to go elsewhere. You can feed the fish there, they like bread, bananas and the fish food they sell for a dollar in the aqua shop. The water was choppy and the visibility was not all that great. The beach is good for both swimming and snorkeling, as it has both sandy stretches near the Caribe and Maya Beach hotels and rocky areas near the Palace. I did see a huge sting ray and a large Barracuda near the pier while snorkeling. Some of the guests also reported seeing turtles and schools of angelfish.
We took a guided snorkeling tour provided by the hotel dive shop (Dressel divers) where we spotted quite a few turtles. I felt that there wasn't much sea life around the reefs, they seemed dead to me. I was at Jamaica the previous year where the reefs were just teeming with sea creatures and the visiblity was great - upto fifty feet and porbably more. Based on my previous experience, the snorkeling was disappointing, but maybe I was expecting too much? Jamaica was "less developed" in a touristy manner - maybe that was why there was abundant sea life.
We also did the Chichen Itza trip and it was spectacular. I thank all the other reviewers here who said it is a must see. I did, and I agree - it is a must see. We booked our trip through Miguel who sells these tours near the reception desk at the Caribe hotel. He gave us the best price and the best advice on activities nearby. He is just fantastic - tell him what you are interested in and what your budget is like and he will try and accomodate your needs. We did not have much to spend, so we got a discount from him for the Chichen Itza tour and really great advice. He told us to take a taxi to the Yal Ku lagoon in Akumal and to go snorkeling there. It was worth it. He told us to take a collectivo instead of a taxi to Playa Del Carmen to save money and that is exactly what we did. It was a great experience. The other girls at the desk tried to charge us more - 45 dollars more for the Chichen Itza trip. So, make sure you talk to Miguel.
All in all, it was a good trip, and a good resort to stay in if it is your first time in Mexico. I will definitely recommend this place. It is value for money. On my next trip to Mexico, I will stay at a smaller place, maybe not quite right on the beach as I want to explore more of Mexico - do the Coba and tulum ruins, visit the Sian Kaan reserve and all that. I don't intend it to be a beach vacation next time, so a smaller place will do me fine. If it is a relaxing beach vacay I am looking for, I will stay at a smaller place which does not wreak such havoc on the ecosystem.
The Riviera Maya is certainly overdeveloped, and very touristy, and unfortunately, the big resorts have the best beaches, making them off limits for the locals. Of course they also exact a very heavy toll on the ecosystem, which is very apparent when you get into the water and see how sparse the reefs are. That is a price to be paid for all this development and it is being paid, over and over again. There are vast tracts of land being cleared of green cover so they can be sold as "luxury resort condos" or turned into golf courses on this stretch of the Riviera Maya. Why anyone would want to destroy forests and put in a golf course is beyond me. Heaven knows what the toll on the ecosystem will be beacuse of that.

  • Stayed November 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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English first
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 14, 2009

I stayed at Barcelo Maya Caribe Beach for my honeymoon and it was wonderful! Everything went absolutly perfect. We had a beautiful room, very clean and quiet. The hotel restaurants are pretty good and so are the night shows. The beach was very nice, with plenty of room for everybody. The hotel staff was helpful and nice.
The only low point was that I forgot my bathing suit in the room when I left and there was no response to the e-mail I sent later about that.
If you choose this hotel, I'm sure you wont regret.

  • Stayed April 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 8, 2009

I went with a group of 11 in our family, kids ages 10-19 and we had a terrific time. The room was very spacious and clean. Housekeeping did a terrific job every day. We were fortunate enough to have rooms that were right next to the pool so we were able to open our sliding glass doors and walk right out to the pool area. The pools were HUGE and so much for my kids to do. We took advantage of the free hour of snorkling and did it more then 1 day. The food at what the hotel calls a snack bar was really great. So many choices every day and not anything like what I would think of as a snack bar. It was a terrific buffet of a variety of foods from quesidilla to pork chops, burgers, fish, salads, fresh fruits and the list goes on and on. The buffet was wonderful as well. My favorite meal of the day was breakfast but I have no complaints about any meal we had during our stay. We chose to eat at the steak house for our resturant dinner and it was fabulous as well. The wait staff at all the eating places were very attentive.
I really liked that the resort property has a good variety of shops, we never even needed to leave the resort. Monday, Wednesday and Friday the resort mall area hosts a different event each of the nights. The night we went it was Carnival. The kids had a great time dancing w/ the performers and the MC and the performers made it a lot of fun. We all were especially impressed by the artist who made the most beautiful paintings using spray paint and various objects such as cardboard, his fingers, sponges etc. He is such an amazing talent.

Honestly my only negative was that it was an hour and half from the airport to the hotel but it was worth the drive because we really enjoyed our stay.

  • Stayed June 2009, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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New Jersey
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 27, 2009

I visited Barcelo (Tropical) last July with 3 of my girlfriends and had an absolute ball. The food was good, the atmosphere was unbelievable. None of us are real drinkers so we didn't much care about the alcohol. The room was beautiful and the staff was professional and friendly. Both the pool and ocean were like bath water so it definitely pays to go in the summer months. I can't think of one negative thing about our trip. Definitely recommend and am returning this July with my family.

  • Stayed July 2008, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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5 reviews 5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 25, 2009

I stayed at the Barcelo Maya Caribe Beach resort from Feb. 15-19 with 3 friends. This was my third stay at a Barcelo resort (others being Langosta Beach, CR and Dominican Beach, DR), and this was by the far the most impressive. The resort is 5 hotels, and yes, it is huge. BUT...this makes for so much to do, you will never feel bored...

Arrival and Check-in: Arrival on US Air and transportation to the resort were smooth. The resort is over an hour from Cancun airport, so be prepared for that. Check-in was typical of most all-inclusives, meaning you can't get into your room until around 3PM, but you have your wrist band on, so go start your vacation and stop complaining. We just left our luggage in the lobby with the staff...so many people were doing it, we felt totally safe about it, and nothing was stolen from us.

Room: When we were assigned our room, we were given a junior suite on the 1st floor.
We were given a Club Premium room without the Premium services, which didn't cost us anything, and was therefore, great! It was ocean view, but we were on the 1st floor, so we couldn't see much. But, it was also a corner suite in a great location, so it didn't matter. The room was very clean, and everything was in good shape. Bathroom was marble all around, which is a nice touch. No trouble with hot water, and there was four of us in one room. Beds were hard, but they usually are. Maid service was very good. Very nice room in general.

The Resort and grounds: Absolutely incredible! Palm-lined walkways, walkways over lagoons, and fountains everywhere. Huge floral arrangements in the lobbies. The Mayan architecture and statues were a nice touch. Everything was spotlessly clean and well maintained. Every hotel has it's own theater, each putting on a unique show for that night. In the theaters, you are seated, and you have drink serivce, which is always nice.
The nightclub was were we spent most of the nights. It was consistently full with a great international crowd. The interior and music quality were much better than what I was expecting. The shops in the Colonial made for fun souvenir shopping at night.

Food and Drink: Great, great, great!! Corona on tap, Cuervo Tequila, Bacardi Rum, and Smirnoff Vodka were the included premium liquors, which pretty much makes all the mixed drinks you could want. There were tequila and rum stations all over the place. Homemade tequila soaked in mandarin oranges, peaches, apples, etc...and all bars had self-serve Corona and frozen drink coolers. The Food also was very good. Breakfast is always good in these resorts, so I don't need to say much. Barcelo as a chain pretty much serves the best coffee you can find in that specific destination, which is always nice. Lunch was GREAT. The fresh tortilla chips, salsa, and guacamole were the best I've ever had (I live in the northeast US, not alot of great Mexican food). The lunch buffet was also more substantial and large than I've had at other resorts. For dinner, each hotel has it's own buffet. The food quality and presentation differs in each hotel. The Beach and Caribe hotels have pretty standard buffet style quality and presentation, which the Colonial and Tropical buffets are a bit more gourmet in presentation, as is the food offered. We didn't go to the Palace to eat, the Colonial buffet was great, we didn't really need anything more. For A la Carte, we ate at the Mexican Restaurant. It was our last night, and the food was amazing. It also somehow had by far the best margaritas. Overall, the food and drink were the highest quality I have had yet in a Barcelo resort, as I believe this is their flagship resort in Latin America. You can also drink the hotel's tap water, the resort has a water purification system, so don't worry.

The Beach and Pools: The beach was very long and nice to walk. The Beach and Caribe hotels are the oldest, so they are in front of the best part of the beach. It becomes progressively more rocky as you walk along to the Colonial, Tropical, then finally, the Palace. It is the rockiest in front of the Palace (go figure). The beach was very nice, however, there was still a good amout of rock in the water in front of the "best" part of the beach. The rocks, and the lack of umbrellas or huts on the beach, was my one and only dissapointment. There was a pier that divided the Caribe and Colonial beaches that you could jump right in and snorkel at then end of, it was amazing. Each hotel had it's own pool, with the Colonial and Tropical pools being a little bigger. Pools were very nice, and clean. Swim-up bar service was average.

Overall, we had a great time at a beautiful and well-organized mega-resort. Service, atmosphere, food and drink, and surroundings were all top quality. Everything was four stars, at all times!!!

  • Stayed February 2009, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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2 reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 7, 2009

This was my third stay at the Carbie Dec07 & Dec08 and know 3/28 to 4/4 and the stay was very good , the only draw back was the underage drinking by the hicks from the sticks( big group from Mich.) When I say underage drinking I mean 15, 16, 17 yr olds getting very drunk in the pool and lobby bars as the parents did the same , I guess that why little Johnnie and Susie acted like the parents , complete buffoons. I was ashamed to be a fellow US citizen the way these yolks acted towards other quest and staff. But the resort is big enough to find quite spots 4 pools and 2-3 miles of beachfront though the beach in front of Carbie & Maya are prime.

  • Stayed March 2009, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
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North Dakota
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
43 helpful votes 43 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 29, 2009

Our first time at this resort but not first time in Mexico and absolutely LOVED IT! The resort is LARGE but the best section is the Barcelo Maya Beach and Barcelo Maya Caribe just because the beach in the front of these 2 is the BEST out of the 5 on the property. Crystal clear water with lots of marine life. No having to get up at 5 a.m. to find a beach chair here because they are plentiful. Our room did not have a safe but in talking with others, we felt comfortable in leaving personal belongings in our room with no problems. Also, left personal belongings on our beach chairs and absolutely no problems there either. Very nice shopping on the premises. Took public transportation for $2 USD each way per person to Playa del Carmen for more shopping instead of paying $20 for taxi. Buffets were all great and LOTS to choose from. Captain Morgans grill had the BEST burgers ever. Lots of fresh fruit and the cookies are amazing! Got 2 free dinners at the nice restaurants but didn't care for the Mexican. We LOVED the steakhouse though. Petite filet mignon that melted in our mouths. The maids were all really nice and did their job. Just a little bit of communication barrier since we knew no Spanish and they no English but we managed. Rooms had small fridge that was filled daily with juice, water, soda, beer along with peanuts and candy bars. The turn-down maid was always very gracious leaving towel art for us to enjoy along with mints and fresh towels if needed. Our teen boys found many friends here and we felt safe in letting them "hang out" without our supervision. Plenty of activity at this resort so felt no need to leave except for touring Chichen-Itza; the 8th wonder of the world. An absolute must see for history buffs. TONS of pool room so nobody was crowded in or out of the pool. You could use all the pools at any of the 5 resorts but since having teens felt no need to visit the kiddie areas. LOVED IT AND WON'T STAY ANYWHERE ELSE WHEN WE GO BACK TO MEXICO!

  • Stayed March 2009, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Barcelo Maya Caribe

Address: Ctra Federal Chetumal-Puerto Juarez, Km 266.3, Puerto Aventuras 77750, Mexico
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Puerto Aventuras
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Romantic Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#4 Spa Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#4 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#10 Family Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:3 star — Barcelo Maya Caribe 3*
Number of rooms: 414
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Also Known As:
Barcelo Maya Caribe Hotel Puerto Aventuras
Barcelo Puerto Aventuras
Barcelo Hotel Puerto Aventuras
Barcelo Maya Caribe Beach
Barcelo Maya Caribe Riviera Maya/Puerto Aventuras, Mexico

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