Overview: Casa Maya is an older, non-inclusive resort and is centrally located between the town of Cancun to the west and the hotel and resort district to the east. It’s adjacent to the bus route which is cheap and easy to use. The rooms vary from a simple hotel room with a microwave, to a suite with a full kitchen, to the new Elite time share accommodations (more below). The majority of rooms are simple and have not been updated (no “wow” effect—older tile in the bathroom, linoleum kitchen counters, pressed wood cabinets, box style televisions) but are clean. The resort sports two pools, two bars, restaurant, and other amenities, and a great beach.
Getting a room of your choice: I don’t have an inside track, but based on what I saw and what I’ve read about other people’s experiences, my thoughts are if you book accommodations through an online service such as Expedia, you will likely get a basic room on one of the lower floors. We traded in a week at another resort in Cabo through Interval and got a suite on the 8th floor. Some people may not understand how Expedia operates. When you go through an online site, you’re going through travel agencies who hotels and resorts have offered excess rooms to. It’s not like Expedia calls Casa Maya to personally arrange rooms, so you’re getting what Casa Maya has available. If they have a lot of people like us who are trading weeks from somewhere else, or there are other people who’ve called the resort directly to reserve a room or suite, then you’re likely not going to get the primo rooms. Being rude won’t get you anywhere, but a well-placed ten dollar bill and getting down there early on Saturday may.
The “Elite” time share: When we stayed at Casa Maya in 2006, they didn’t have the Elite time share program. They’ve essentially taken three floors of their west tower (4, 5, and 6 of the 8 floors as I remember) and completely refurbed them. There’s a couple of lounges and amenities, and the rooms have been completely upgraded with granite, flat screen televisions, super comfortable beds, high quality furniture, stainless appliances, etc. The time share sales pitch is pretty standard—someone will sit down with you shortly after you check in (he’ll probably call you at home before you arrive), arrange a time to see the time shares if you want, and show you a list of discount attractions. You’ll get a free drink or two out of it (tip your waiter). Your tour will start off with a free breakfast (tip your waiter), and then you’ll see a couple of rooms and suites. The person who takes you on the tour (normally they’re American or Canadian at other resorts, but here they’re Mexican who speak English fairly well) gets you to the sales room and then turns you over to the salesman. No matter where I’ve been, this person is a local who speaks English fluently and has done some traveling. They’ll establish a personal rapport with you—they’ve been to the state you live in, or have the same hobbies, etc. They always use a big piece of paper, are adept at writing upside down so you can hopefully follow their financial logic, start off with a big number but almost immediately cut it in half, show the financing, how many weeks you get, etc. Three things always are the same—1, “you value your vacation time, right? You’re crazy if you don’t.” 2, “this is a great resort, isn’t it—what else would you possibly want? If you really do want something over the top, then that’s much more expensive and let’s face it, is it really worth it?” 3, “if you sat down and computed how much it would cost to take a vacation one week a year to a resort on the ocean in the tropics for the next 30 years, you can see what financial sense this makes.” The one thing about this time share pitch that I thought was different was that this was much more complicated than usual—lots of numbers were thrown around so the bottom line was confusing and I wasn’t sure what interest rate they’d be using, and then what RCI or Interval International type of organization they are part of…and if they’re part of three. We just told them that there was no way that we could fit yet another time share week into a year of vacation time where we work and with the other commitments we have. Then a lady came over with impeccable English who tried to sell us a block of weeks, but we just said no and everything was fine and we left. We ended up never doing any of those “discounted” activities, though. There all pretty standard, though. You can walk up to a kiosk on the street and work the same or better deal.
Meal tickets: One of the things they mention on the first day is buying discounted meal tickets. If you buy 6, you’ll pay 145 pesos per person per meal and it’s normally 185 pesos. You can use them at breakfast, lunch, or dinner. They have some nice buffets in the evening, and each is teamed. Mexican night, seafood night, international night, etc. Its 12 pesos to the dollar so you can do the math. You’ll probably have to pay extra for Friday’s Caribbean night because that’s normally 198 pesos.
Summary: The good reasons to stay at Casa Maya are the location, the beach, and we’ve always been able to get a good room. Downsides are the living room furniture and beds are hard. If you can get a good deal and know what you’re getting, enjoy it. It’s far from being a roach motel like some of the Trip Advisor comments would lead you to believe.
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- Also Known As:
- Casa Maya Cancun Hotel Cancun
- Casa Maya Hotel Cancun
- Hotel Casa Maya Cancun
- Cancun Casa Maya
- Imperial Fiesta Club Hotel Casa Maya