More about Barcelo Ixtapa Beach Resort
Barcelo & Ixtapa were very nice!
We were in Ixtapa & stayed at the Barcelo from Feb 17-24, 2004. Ixtapa is beautiful with mountains in the background & a great beach. The beach is very clean and there are no rocks - just miles of sand. Different from the Yucatan & other places we've been in Mexico. The swimming is fun but there can be some bigger waves so you have to be careful. There is no coral or rocks in the water either so it has a nice sandy bottom which I liked-you can see what's below you! Their are also some fun activities available along the beach if you're interested. The parasailing was great & only cost $20 - amazing view! You can also rent jet ski's, go for a banana boat ride, rent a boogie board, go skydiving etc. The town of Ixtapa is walking distance & has some good restaurants & souvenier shopping. Senor Frogs & Carlos & Charlies are the party spots if you want that. Not much else to see there. The Barcelo Ixatap Beach Resort was a very nice place to stay. The rooms are good-nothing special but they are roomy & clean & most have a balcony & ocean view. Some people who had a mountain view said it was noisy at night & they could hear car alarms etc, but with the ocean view all you can hear are the waves. The breakfast buffet is very good & the lunches out by the pool & ocean are also very good! The brick oven pizzas are wonderful & you can have the lunch buffet or order off the menu (or do both) so there's a lot of variety & everything we had was great! The waiters by the pool will bring your order right out to your chair if you want - great service!The dinners were not so great so we ate out a lot for dinner. It's easy to go into town & the prices are reasonable so we didn't mind going out & skipping the buffet. Dinner isn't bad - we just got tired of it after a couple nights. I highly recommend taking the gondola ride up to El Fara. Great view & great food! We never watched any of the nightly shows so I have no info on that - same dinner buffet as everyone else though. People that went sounded like they enjoyed them. The pool at the Barcelo is also very nice. You do have to go "reserve" a couple chairs when you get up in the morning or they will be all gone - both at the pool & on the sand. I think they will bring out more chairs if you request. We would usually get our chairs before we had breakfast then spend the day at the pool or ocean. Great service at the swim up bar & they don't skimp on the alcohol! The staff was great & they would get games of beach & pool volleyball going, pool darts, bingo, water aerobics etc. There were activities if you wanted but the pool was never too crowded & you could just relax in the water. At night there is a nice little bar & tables outside & inside where you could get drinks & listen to the piano - very relaxing. Some nights we saw people partying in the bar late & dancing but overall this seemed like a quieter more relaxing place & not a party hotel. Go into town if you want to party. Overall, I thought the hotel was nice, the staff was very friendly, the food was good & the pool & beach are great. Most of the hotels along the beach looked pretty comparable & if you want all-inclusive the Barcelo is a good choice. Feel free to e-mail me with any specific questions & have a great trip!
We enjoyed the Barcelo Ixtapa very much!
We spent the week before Christmas at the Barcelo and we enjoyed it very much. The staff was wonderful, the rooms clean and comfortable - great view, and the beach was wonderful. The food could have been better but what do you expect at an all inclusive? We'd go back in a heartbeat - great vacation!
Good time had in Ixtapa
First time to Ixtapa, loved it. The hotel, though older was good. Needs a little work in some areas, but what places don't? The staff was great, take the time to get to know them by name. spent 2 weeks jan 15-29; lobby bar needs more staff, service a little slow. we chose to eat in the retaurant most nights and avoided the entertainment area; ordered off the menu a few times when bored of the buffet; lunch buffet was excellent; wait staff very good; pool bar staff as well; had rooms on both sides of the hotel over the 2 week stay;amusing to watch people "save chairs" at 5am; last day the security staff was trying to prevent people from doing this; not sure how to fix this problem. some people would save entire areas and never appear till mid-afternoon; of course the saying holds true: some people should not be allowed out of their own homes! enjoyed the experience, walking the beach was great; have been to many places in Mexico, this was truly nice and leaning towards a visit back to the Barcelo Ixtapa next year
El Mejor de Mexico
The Barcelo Ixtapa surpasses all expectations. Clearly no resort is for everyone. So let me clarify who SHOULD go here, and you can decide for yourself is this dream resort is for you! First of all, if you are family oriented and have kids, get on the first plane and head to Ixtapa. There is so much to do. Likewise if you enjoy traditional, high quality Latin food, (if so, skip the lunch buffet, and order from the ala carte menu and the ceviche etc. is of the best anywhere, period!) the Barcelo is for you. The atmosphere is not American, but very Mexican, and that means family, friendly, genuine, and extremely clean.
The grounds are also extremely pretty, and the lobby/breakfast area is beautiful. The breakfasts and specialty buffets are of the best I have had anywhere, and I am discriminating. This place is a gem- do yourself a favor and visit!
Staff wonderful, dinners terrible...
We spent 2 weeks ending Feb. 22, 2004 at the Barcelo Ixtapa. The 25 years old hotel is the typical high rise with the room doors facing inwards to an atrium with a restaurant and piano bar. We could have been anywhere. The hotel rooms are small but very clean with ample storage space. The doors to our closet fell off but my husband fixed them. Our 8th floor balcony had two chairs, table and a plant and a wonderful view of the ocean, sunsets and the great beach just as requested in an email I sent them that they never acknowledged. Nice for morning coffee.
The chaise and shade problem. We had never experienced this before anywhere in Mexico, Hawaii, U.S., Europe or Canada so it was almost comical. Three days into our stay the management decided to bar people from the pool and beach area before 7 a.m. I felt so sorry for the security guard who had to listen to annoyed disbelieving guests as he tried to stop them. That experiment was soon ended. On day 7, they then removed most of the loungers from the beach and had a fellow who would get them for you. Unfortunately, they failed to tell anyone this.
The staff was great, especially the Concierge, the housekeeping staff who just couldn't give you enough towels and the short order cooks in the morning, although they were forced to run around making sure that items were replaced when they ran out. There didn't seem to be anyone in charge of refilling items such as butter or bacon. They had hostesses to seat you but not bus boys so the waiters had to clear tables and serve coffee and run somewhere far away to get tea for a large number of tables. This did not work out well. Again, it's management.
I have to preface my opinion on the food by saying that my only other AI experience has been with the RIU chain and the food at the RIU's has been very good over the past 4 years. The breakfasts, although quite fine because of the wonderful short order cooks, did not compare to the RIU's. Lunch was lunch the couple of times we ate it...hamburgers, pizza, sandwiches. Dinners were another matter. Terrible. The specialty restaurant Don Quiote actually made me ill and I only ate a bite of my undercooked salmon (the maitre'd pointed it out when we complimented the staff and told them our opinion of the food) that also tasted metallic...not a good sign. My husband's steak on two occasions was cold and tasteless and cover in tinned gravy as were my lamb chops the time previously time. The Sunset Grill was marginally, and I mean marginally, better. Bad food, beautifully presented. The food at the buffet was, in our opinion, inedible. The selection was very poor. We ate there only once, the day of our arrival. We were expecting the same sort of selection and quality as at the RIU's and we were just shocked.
The Barcelo only offered only a sparse selection of cold, rather old looking and tasting, gravy laden food. We were disgusted. Each day, we would look then go out. You can actually pay to eat dinner ... I can't imagine!
The drinks were well made but specialty coffees, champagne etc were not available as they were at the RIU's. There is no stand up bar, although they do have a bar with television sets that no one went to and a piano bar, just like in the old days. There is no central area to meet people or just have a drink or a disco or dancing.
The entertainment venue was unappealing, rather like a warehouse at the front of the hotel. The food is the same in the entertainment venue as in the main atrium restaurant. They do have HBO on TV so we caught up on movies in the late evening.
I would not do AI at this hotel. There are many wonderful restaurants in Ixtapa and Zihua to eat at and we ate out every night and had wonderful meals, very reasonably priced. The two of us had delicious meals, starter, main course, beers, coffee and sometimes desert in the $15US to $30US range.
I would not return to this hotel, or for that matter, try another Barcelo if I was looking for AI because of our experience at this one.
They need new management and a look at how other chains do it. This could be a good AI hotel...they have a terrific staff, the beach, small but well tended grounds, nice pool, the outdoor and indoor space and an older hotel that is in good shape.
Luckily we didn't mind the extra expense of eating out every night. Not everyone can do that so I am writing this in review in warning.
Oh, BTW, no one called or asked us during our stay what we thought or if we were happy until check out, except for the staff trying to nab you at the end of the meal to write a nice comment in their book at the specialty restaurants. At the RIU's they phoned us in our rooms, asked us personally at dinner, sent around forms during our stay to solicit our input. I guess they really didn't want to hear what we would have said except on a sheet of paper submitted at the end or maybe they already know.
Barcelo was GOOD!
We just spent 2 weeks at the Barcelo ending Jan.23 and the 4 of us had a great time. The people who work there were wonderful as were all the people of Ixtapa and Zihoo. Everyone was very friendly and the amount of people who spoke english was astounding! What a difference from the Dominican Republic! The hotel is starting to show her age but was very clean and well kept. The beach was very good nice waves and much cleaner than Ziho bay which I found was very dirty on our trip to La Ropa. The food was good especially the 2 lunch restaurants and close to the hotel are many excellent restaurants. I don't think you could go wrong staying at the Barcelo.
The greatest place on earth until 5 p.m.
We just returned. Let's get the positives out of the way. Room, very good; ocean view as requested, nice veranda. Facility is awesome. Huge pool, great swim up bar, two great lunch restaurants on either side of the pool. Breakfast buffet is great. The staff was great, every one of them, so there has to be some descent management. Here we go with the rest: as soon as the pool bars close (last one is 6 p.m.) the place turns into the Bar-LAME-o. You would think you were in a nursing home.
The food at night is horrible. Other than 2 nights during a 7 night stay, you are stuck with buffets. These lame buffets are the same every night. The music in the Sanca bar was good once they quit trying to play American stuff and stuck to Mexican tunes, but the band only plays on Fri/Sat/Sun nights. Monday night was the busiest in the Sanca Bar and no entertainment. And only 5 lousy bar stools at the bar. The entertainment in the out building was actually humorous is was so bad.
Mexican night was the worst, and the worst buffet, too. You'd think they could at least pull that off. There is no central bar to congregate. You can have a drink by the piano player and the waiter will give you good service, but I'm a bar guy and there is nowhere to hang out and meet people. One night the piano guy was off and here came 3 guitar players and a sax guy. They looked like the Country Bear Jamboree at Disney World. Ever once in awhile they'd move their heads slightly. Maybe this is just Mexico, but if you read my review of the Almond Beach Club in Barbados, then you'll know where I'm coming from.
Ixtapa is absolutely beautiful and the beach is clean and manicured. No rocks, just sand. Maybe some of this doesn't mean anything to you, but I'd never go back to the Barcelo. Feel free to email if I can help you any further. Also, I'm looking for a nice place to stay in Cabo San Lucas. It doesn't have to be all-inclusive, we're thinking that might have been our big mistake by selecting the Barcelo.
R and R at it's finest!!!!!
Was pleasantly surprised with the Hotel. (we got an oceanview) The sunsets from our room were unforgettable.. The staff (and entertainment )at the Barcelo were awesome We stayed for 3 weeks in Feb.2004 and could have stayed longer. There was 8 of us, with the men golfing at the 2 nearby courses. (Very reasonable compared to last year at Puerta Vallarta) It was very safe and enjoyable for us girls to take a bus to Zihuatanehjo and spend the day bartering and sightseeing.The food was the best we've had in 7 years of different "all inclusives" The strawberry daquiri's.... ...YUMMY!!Our group was friendly and outgoing, but I've never stayed where the staff hugged and kissed you good-bye...Loved them all!!!I would have no doubts of recommending the Barcelo if you want to Relax and just enjoy the sun and Mexican way of life.
We spent 5 days at the Barcelo and it was the worst vacation we have ever had. We are still trying to get some sort of compensation from them.
All of my jewelry was stolen from the room. The bellboy picked up a suitcase that wasn't shut even after he was told to please wait. A bottle of Kahlua fell out and crashed to the floor. He never apologized and the hotel at first refused to replace it.
The temp in our room never rose above 78 degrees and that's with the A/C cranked as low as it would go. The bathroom door would not shut. We didn't have hot water for 2 days. Our "balcony" was so small that it was a tight squeeze with just 2 people.
We were extremely dissappointed in the food at the hotel. It was not worth eating. Kind of makes all inclusive completely irrelevant when you must go outside the hotel to find decent food.
The front desk tried to charge us for calls that were never made.
I would HIGHLY suggest staying at any other hotel rather than the Barcelo.
Great Place / Bad Food
We stayed at the Barcelo 2/21 - 2/28/04. The hotel is a high rise - not much personality, we could have been anywhere. Staff, both in numbers and personality were great. Our "balcony" was so small that it was a tight squeeze with just 2 people. Restaurant manager should be taken out and hung. Plenty of trees at that location for a hanging. We too, thought the evening buffet was cold, tasteless, and unimaginative. Lots of beef gravy and it wasn't even warm! We were extremely disappointed in the food at the hotel. It was not worth eating. Kind of makes all inclusive completely irrelevant when you must go outside the hotel to find decent food. The two speciality restaurants are impossible to get into until very late at night. From the sounds of others reviews sounds like that was a blessing in disguise. Do yourself, a favor don't stay here - even though the beach is lovely and the staff very helpful, these are offset by the lousy food and inability to get a beach chair after 7:00 a.m. I would not stay at this hotel again.