This is our 5th time to the Iberostar resorts in Playa del Carmen - our 2nd time staying at the Paraiso Maya. We feel so comfortable going there - it is like home! A family of 5 resorts - the Paraiso Maya is the top tier resort that allows children. The Grand Hotel is next door. As such, going the week of the Labor Day holiday - it was like an All Adult resort - most of the kids were back in school and there were a handful of Europeans with children. Much quieter this week - obtaining reservations at the Maya restaurants was a breeze! We ate at the Steak house, Japanese and French restaurant - they were all awesome! The food was just "melt in your mouth". We stayed in the building close to the beach - which we requested - and it was great! With all of the food you eat, walking to your room after eating a good meal was a necessity. I think we lost weight with all of the walking we did - but we really enjoyed that! My husband rented a all-terrain Segway and toured with the guide - his first time - it was an hour long tour of the golf course and other places we did not even know about. It is something he will do again and I will certainly join him. Very cheap as well! My favorite thing to do is paint ceramics on the beach - a small cabana is set up where you can buy bisque ceramics (ready to paint). The vendors will then "fix" all of your mistakes and make them beautiful for you to pick up the next day. I have a collection of ceramics for every year we go - keepsakes for sure!
The beach was stunning - would typically rain in the morning and then be hot during the day. The nightly shows were good - but could probably use some updating - we have seen the same shows in prior years. The disco opens up at 11:00 p.m. - good but the times we went all they played was techno music - not something I could really relate to - what's wrong with disco!! :)
Cons: The maids seems to clean at all hours of the day and night - they push the furniture around - so you hear some serious scrapping on the floor - nerve wracking! I had to call the front desk once to ask them to stop with all of the racket because it was midnight!
Advice: Check everything in your room the 1st day - does your room safe work? phone work? shampoo/conditioner in the room?, etc. Do you need a sponge topper for your bed? (we did - the bed was pretty hard for us since our home bed is much softer). The staff is very accommodating on all of our requests - after the first day we were free to enjoy our vacation!