We spent 2 weeks at the Iberostar Maya from the last week of Dec 2011 to the end of the first week in Jan 2012. We took our 2 teenagers (18 and 17) with us.
Rooms: we had 2 suites next to each other in building 63. This building is more in the middle of the resort. At first i really wanted to be in building 60 or 61 so we would be closer to the beach, but because our 2 kids went out every night to the disco, our building was a shorter walk home at night. So i would choose to stay in building 63 again if when we go back. Our rooms were very spacious and always clean. We had the same cleaning lady everyday for 2 weeks. We would leave her things we brought from home --like make up, clothes, shoes, candy etc, or leave her a couple of dollars each day on top of our bar. I recommend to look around your house and pack up stuff you no longer use and bring them with you to leave for your cleaning staff. By our 2nd day, our lady knew exactly what pop and beer we wanted stocked in each of our bars. She left us big bottles of water each day. These rooms are much nicer, newer and larger then the rooms on the Lindo side.
Beach: we have traveled quite a bit, and this beach is very nice. If you have to choose from any of the iberostar resorts in the Mayan, make sure you choose the Maya. It has the nicest beach. As for other reviews that talk about rocks in the ocean....not at the maya, but yes there are a ton of rocks in the ocean at the Grande. The beach at the Lindo is just okay.
Our kids played beach volleyball all day on the beach, and we had massages on the beach. Our kids also met some many other kids aged 15-20 that they hung out with every day. they all seemed to go and do all the activities together as a group. They have made friends from all over that they now keep in touch with on facebook. They never got bored or complained at all.
Pools: the pools were always clean. We didn't use the pools (us parents) but our kids did. They really enjoyed all the events that were held at the pool every day.
Food: food was good..not great...but not bad either. we usually stay in Riu Palace properties so we are used to GREAT food. I have to tell you that you will not starve at this resort. The Japanese restaurant is amazing. We ate at the buffet most of the other times. The breakfast buffet located just off the front lobby has the best food. We ate lunch either in the at the pool or we ate at the bbq on the beach. Dinner buffet is on the Lindo side and it is good. We used room service 2 times and the food was good both times. There is an amazing hamburger place at the shopping mall and you must try it and it is free!! The ice cream was very tasty.
Entertainment: The Star entertainers were awesome with our kids. They spent time getting to know us and always had our kids and their friends involved in the shows during the day and night. Whether it was the pool side dancing or archery lessons, beach volleyball tournaments, night shows for everyone...these young entertainers are simply great!! Yes the shows are a little cheesy, but people this isn't Vegas!!!!
Snorkling: don't bother unless you go for a whole day trip. We booked the 2-3 hours excursion and it was awful.
I would highly recommend staying at the Maya. The Maya is much better than the Lindo and when we were there, people where upgrading to the Maya from the Lindo. Great service throughout this entire resort. Don't worry about the size being too big...you will be happy to walk a bit after all the food you eat. We went into town twice and i would highly recommend Carlo n Charlies over Senior Frogs.
Feel free to contact me if you have any questions.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.