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“In depth review of Barcelo Maya Palace Resort”

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Barcelo Maya Palace
Ranked #6 of 17 Hotels in Puerto Aventuras
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed November 23, 2012

There is a reason why I don't do "all inclusive" resorts. It can be summarized in 3 words "Quantity over Quality". If you are a big fan of an all inclusive concept then you need to stop reading now. You won't like this review.

Finally we decided to pull the trigger and do an all inclusive since we had 2 kids and another relative travelling with us. This was our sixth trip to Mexico but the first one to Playa Del Carmen. I don't understand why anyone would choose to travel to Playa which is an hour and a half drive from the airport as opposed to Cancun which is twenty minutes away but ok we've been to Cancun so many times we decided to try something different and a bit more family oriented.

Transportation from Cancun to the Hotel is anywhere between $80 to $146 depending on how many people are in your group and whether you need a regular cab or a van. We needed a van so we spent $120 one way.

The taxi situation in Cancun airport is total madness. Instead of a line of cabs waiting for you just like everywhere around the world, here you have different people trying to stick some vouchers in your hand, different lines, different prices, different uniformed agents trying to steer you in different directions. In a word, organized chaos.

An hour and a half drive through the pouring rain and we arrive at the hotel. There are five Barcelo resorts (it's a Spanish owned chain) one next to each other. The lobby is nice, the view is gourgeous, but there is a huge line to check in. Twenty minutes later we reach the front desk, they give us room keys, towel cards (???), discount coupons. We grab our bags deciding not to wait for the bell boy and start walking to our room which is a good fifteen minute walk from the lobby.

We booked 2 rooms. Each room sleeps up to 4 people and both had balconies although they were not ocean front. Bathrooms were big and had separate shower areas as well as tubs. Balconies had two chairs and a small table. Both rooms had 2 sofas each for the kids in addition to the regular beds. The door to room # 8839 did not lock properly. Somehow this fact was not addressed by the hotel during our stay. A/C also did not work properly. It was impossible to raise the temp. The mechanic came took a look and did not fix the problem. Also if you are a light sleeper stay somewhere else. Walls were paper thin and all rooms open on an courtyard so when you have drunken yahoos coming home at midnight yelling and laughing you can forget about a good night sleep.

The buffets had a huge assortment of foods. We ate way too much. This is definitely not a place for someone who is on a diet or is watching carbs. Alcohol was included. There were a lot of tourists from Russia who were enjoying themselves, especially the over abundance of alcohol. Food was average at best. Like I said before quantity over quality. As soon as we arrived we've made reservations at 4 specialty restaurants. If you wait a day or two you will not be able to make resrvations. These restaurants book very quickly. Here is a list of restaurants where we ate dinner from best to worst:

1) French
2) Brazilian
3) Caribean
4) Japanese

Pools at the hotel were very nice but water was cold. Pools were not heated. Beach was also very nice with white sand and blue water but some patches had sharp rocks so you had to be careful. There were multiple shops and a kids club which our kids used quite a bit. The fitness center was small and in the basement. Like I said people go to places like these to pig out not to get into shape. You had to exchange cards for towels (???) Our first full day there they run out of towels. First time this ever happened to me anywhere. Forty minutes and a conversation with a manager later we got the towels. Unacceptable.

We used the sauna but the steam bath was out of order. Wife used the spa which was ok but definitely not on the level of Fiesta Americana Grand Coral Beach in Cancun where we stayed in January. Non-motorized water sports were included and I paid $65 for 30 minutes on jet skis which is comparable to other places.

Booked two trips through the activity desk, one to Tulum and one snorkelling and we enjoyed both. Transport back from the hotel was $105 with a discount. Please note that this being a Spanish owned and operated property many employees did not speak English.

Overall I would say this was a decent four star property not the five star hotel that they advertise themselves as. Next time if we decide to travel to Playa we will probably stay somehwere else and definitely not at an all inclusive. I've heard great things about Fairmont and Rosewood in Mayakoba about 45 minute drive from Cancun.

Room Tip: Get a room closer to the lobby. Otherwise you will have to walk a lot. Make restaurant reservations...
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  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
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7  Thank Jason M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HBarcelo-Maya-Palace, Gerente at Barcelo Maya Palace, responded to this reviewResponded April 21, 2017

Dear Guest,

Thank you for your valuable review, we are sorry about our reply being delayed as we really appreciate that you have taken some time to write your comments about your experience in our hotel and this comments have been noted and shared with the leaders of every department.
We have been working hard to improve all our opportunity areas in order to achieve all our guests’ satisfaction.
Once again, we thank you for staying with us and hope to welcome back soon.

Regards,

Them Management

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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4,033 - 4,039 of 7,408 reviews

Reviewed November 22, 2012

The hotel was amazing , the food was good in the A'la' Carte restaurants, there is a diving center right on the beach, the service is good although it takes for ever to check in, drinks are plenty and covers most of the tastes

Room Tip: Get the rooms away from the pool and the theater
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  • Stayed: September 2012, traveled as a couple
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6  Thank Ahmed ElMorsy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HBarcelo-Maya-Palace, Gerente at Barcelo Maya Palace, responded to this reviewResponded January 7, 2017

Dear Guest,

We are very happy about your feedback as our main goal is to leave all our Guest satisfied . We will continue all the hard work to keep satisfying all our guests and we hope to host you back real soon!!

Best Regards

The Management

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 22, 2012

We stayed at this hotel two years in a row. Our stays have been in at the beginning of Julyand were a family get together vacation. The weather was great on both ocassions. We stayed in a Junior Suite not far from the pool. The rooms were really nice and modern. I believe the Palace section of the Barcelo Complex opened in 2009. Our stay was all inclusive as most are in this neck of the woods. What we really liked were the swimming pools. The main pool is quite large with huts located on the pool edge to provide relief from the sun when needed. It also has a really nice childrens pool that also was a nice size. The beach was okay. A few rocky spots here and there and the water was crystal clear. Great for snorkeling if your into that. The booze was top shelf and the food was good. Huge buffets to pick from all day long. The specialty restaurants were okay. Something different than the buffet every night. As most regulars know, make your restaurant reservations on arrival because they fill up fast. A little bit of a hike from the Cancun Airport. It took about 50 minutes to get there without much traffic. I would definitely recommend this place for a family vacation.

Room Tip: This place is huge. Make sure you don't get a room to far from the pool
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  • Stayed: July 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank Lummy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HBarcelo-Maya-Palace, Gerente at Barcelo Maya Palace, responded to this reviewResponded January 7, 2017


Dear Guest,

Thank you very much for your amazing feedback, this motivates us as a hotel to keep up the good work and improve day by day to create great experiences to our guests.
We really appreciate your evaluation and hope to welcome you back soon!!

Warm Regards

The Management

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 21, 2012

Nice resort, although you don't really have the feeling you are in Mexico -you could be anywhere in the world. Nice beach, good watersports, good food considering that it is mass produced.

Check in was very inefficient, especially considering that we were prepaid. Avoid the house wine at all costs. It tastes like floor cleaner mixed with Koolaid.

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank CCNorth
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HBarcelo-Maya-Palace, Gerente at Barcelo Maya Palace, responded to this reviewResponded January 7, 2017

Dear Guest,
First of all we want to thank you for your preference and we appreciate the fact that you took some time to write your feedback about our resort.
As a hotel is it is very satisfactory to see that our guests enjoyed their stay here, and we will continue providing the service with the same quality about the things you liked and improving in our areas of opportunity as the ones you´ve mentioned.

We hope to welcome you back soon !!

Best Regards

The Management

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 21, 2012

This is a beautiful resort that is very poorly run. We recently stayed at Barcelo Maya Palace. At first, it seemed like paradise...beautiful beaches, decent food and nice atmosphere. However, by the second day we could see a lot of other people complaining about the food, the pool always running out of towels (even in the off-season), dirty glasses at the pool, and overworked grumpy staff, especially at the front desk. No one seems to smile at the front desk and they are rude, demeaning and miserable. Our room was filled with bugs, our shower and toilet were moldy and it was always noisy, even though we were on one of the higher floors. When we checked in we had one roll of toilet paper and then never replaced it during our entire stay until we called the front desk several times informing them we needed toilet paper in our room. Typically, we never complain about anything, but had to go to the front desk multiple times for different issues. No one bothered to help us and treated us like they simply didn't care. A few years ago it was so much better...but it has serious problems now and we will never go back. We even had bugs bites all over us from the room. Disgusting.

One final thing...the beds are very uncomfortable and there is a slope from the head to the foot of the bed. The sheets were stained with blood and dirt when we arrived and had to call to have them put fresh sheets on the bed. They desperately need to replace the old, worn out beds and sheets.

The reviewer below was right on the mark...bring bribery money if you want them to treat you with any kind of care or respect for your business. And, be very careful about checking every detail of your bill, especially if you buy things at the gift shop or bill your room for excursions. The front desk is shady and our bill was overcharged about $500 and they argued with us for an hour. We saved all of our receipts and they were wrong, but it took two days for them to admit they were wrong and correct the problem. It made our experience with this resort poor.

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
8  Thank M N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HBarcelo-Maya-Palace, Gerente at Barcelo Maya Palace, responded to this reviewResponded April 21, 2017

Dear Guest,

Thank you for your valuable review, we are sorry about our reply being delayed as we really appreciate that you have taken some time to write your comments about your experience in our hotel and this comments have been noted and shared with the leaders of every department.
We have been working hard to improve all our opportunity areas in order to achieve all our guests’ satisfaction.
Once again, we thank you for staying with us and hope to welcome back soon.

Regards,

Them Management

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 21, 2012

It was our first trip to Mexico and we were a bit weary that this trip would not be as good as our previous destination of choice- Jamaica. It was a bit of a trip from airport (about an hour-and-a-half) but the moment we and our 5-year-old stepped onto the property, we were amazed at the sheer beauty of the grounds and this was just the beginning! You feel like you are walking in the beautiful park and every new turn is bringing something new and unexpected- cudos to the property planners!

The staff was extremely helpful, the rooms were very nice and clean, the food selection was at least on par, if not better, with outher 5-star Caribbean resorts. Although we did not get a chance to visit all the restaurants, buffet and snack bar offered sufficient choice for a family of 3 (even admitting that it's all-inclusive, how many salad/ open bar/ desert choices one can go through, really?)- everything was extremely fresh and presentation was great. Seafood is amazing!

I was very careful about choosing the resort as spend a lot of time on the beach and I surely made the right choice- this property has everything for everyone, tranquil waters with fish swimming close to the beach (kids are having a blast feeding it (please buy fish food from the store as the bread from the kitchen can be noxious to little fellows); a bit of the rocky formations that can be explored; snorkeling is definitely, a must! Adult pool is a nice touch, too.

Activities for kids: this is somthing that deserves it's own chapter- starting from the great water park for kids, already mentioned beach where even the shyest kids can find friends and can be introduced to swimming without fear of the waves, and going to Barcy club where there are activities for kids of any ages- it's great to see kids from various backgrounds interacting with each other from the get go (pinatas, face painting, arts and crafts, soccer, supervised waterpark play, you name it...)

Yes, there are parties, but that is the reason people go on vacation- to relax, have fun. I am more of the opinion that this resort is more geared towards the family and somewhat mature audience, rather than wild partygoers and that was a nice touch, too, since we do fall into that category.

If you want to have additional tours, they are available in abundance so no one will be left disappointed. We will be coming to the same resort in the future.

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1  Thank HappyTravels223
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HBarcelo-Maya-Palace, Gerente at Barcelo Maya Palace, responded to this reviewResponded January 9, 2017

Dear Guest,
First of all we want to thank you for your preference and we appreciate the fact that you took some time to write your feedback about our resort.
As a hotel is it is very satisfactory to see that our guests enjoyed their stay here, and we will continue providing the service with the same quality and improving in our areas of opportunity.
We hope to welcome you back soon !!

Best Regards.
The Management

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 20, 2012

The Hotel looks nice.Nice beach.Very close entertainment.You can hear laud music up to 2pm.Food can be better.Every day almost the same,except restaurants.But most important uncomfortable bed and pillows.We could not sleep at all.Never will go back.

Room Tip: Take with you pillows
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  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
8  Thank FANNY G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
HBarcelo-Maya-Palace, Gerente at Barcelo Maya Palace, responded to this reviewResponded April 21, 2017

Dear Guest,

Thank you for your valuable review, we are sorry about our reply being delayed as we really appreciate that you have taken some time to write your comments about your experience in our hotel and this comments have been noted and shared with the leaders of every department.
We have been working hard to improve all our opportunity areas in order to achieve all our guests’ satisfaction.
Once again, we thank you for staying with us and hope to welcome back soon.

Regards,

Them Management

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Barcelo Maya Palace

Address: Carretera Chetumal-Puerto Juarez km 266.3 | Xpu Ha, Puerto Aventuras 77750, Mexico (Formerly Barcelo Maya Palace Deluxe)
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Yucatan Peninsula > Quintana Roo > Riviera Maya > Puerto Aventuras
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#2 Family Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#3 Business Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#4 Romantic Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#5 Luxury Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#5 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#5 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
#6 Spa Hotel in Puerto Aventuras
Price Range: $268 - $609 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Barcelo Maya Palace 4.5*
Number of rooms: 756
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Barcelo Maya Palace Deluxe Hotel Puerto Aventuras
Barcelo Puerto Aventuras
Barcelo Hotel Puerto Aventuras
Barcelo Maya Palace Riviera Maya/Puerto Aventuras, Mexico

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