We spent 7 wonderful days at the Iberostar Paraiso Maya the 1st week of November, 2012. Couldn't have had a more wonderful trip. The resort was beautiful. There were lots of little paths, fountains, statues, architecture to see and photograph as you traveled throughout the resort. We were in building 61 - which was close to the beach and away from noisier parts of the resort. It was always very quiet - day or night. We had a balcony that overlooked a jungle/ravine area which was quite peaceful. The concierge was only 2 rooms down from us and available from 7am to 11 pm to help with whatever was needed. We especially liked Caremen - who took care of us in a quick friendly manner!
We didn't meet anyone who didn't offer a friendly hola - from the bar staff, waiter staff, hostesses, grounds service, etc. The room was made up expertely every day. We left $5.00 on the pillow for the maid each day - a small price to pay for the hard work these ladies do every day. We also tiped the hostesses at the beach and pool who work very hard to bring you whatever drink you want. They keep them coming all throughout the day.
We made restaurant reservations for all 7 nights prior to our arrival based on recommendations from Trip Advisor reviews. We especially liked El Rancho and the La Marina and the appetizer buffet that was available prior to the main course which we ordered from the menu., The crab legs at La Marina were a big hit - very large, tasty and split so there were extremely easy to eat. The Gourmet L'etoile was great as there was a lot of rich food served and it was great to be given such individual attention. Couldn't even finished all that was served! We also ate at the El Rancho (steakhouse/ lobster), El Tapatio (mexican), and La Laguna (Italian), Jambayala (Cajun). I think ate lobster with almost every dinner meal!
The resort is very large but no more than a 5-10 minute walk to anywhere you wanted to go. We didn't visit they other resorts in this complex as they Maya had everything that we needed. The beach was semi-crowded each day but we never had trouble finding beach chairs. The ocean was mostly calm the beginning of the week and was great fun but got progressively rougher as the week went on. We would like to commend the very attentive lifeguard at the beach who keep a watch out for the (foolish) people who didn't realize the power of the waves the last day we were there and got swept out very far very quickly. Also he responded to a young boy who was swept into the rough surf and ran in to rescue him. Sadly I didn't get this lifeguards name, but he responded very professionally and very quickly.
I loved seeing the Coati's (small animals) who lived in the jungle along the walkway from the pool area to the beach. The were cute and inquisitve as well as begging for food. There were signs to not feed them, but if you did anyway they did follow you for several yards wanting more as more and more came in to join the free lunch! They were fun to watch.
The only negative that I experienced was the free wi-fi in the Snake bar. We never did get a signal there and had to sit in the lobby area to get a signal.
All in all this resort was a great vacation. We would not hesitate to recommend the Iberostar brand with high praise. Thanks for a great week of fun, sun and over indulgence!