More about Barcelo Maya Caribe Beach
One tequilla, two tequilla, three tequilla, floor!!
Hola!! I just got back from the Barcelo Maya Caribe two days ago, and must say it was one of the best times of my life. The whole experience of sitting in the sun, relaxing with my friends and enjoying the good ol' Captain Morgan's at night was amazing. The resort it-self exceeded my expectations in every way. I couldn't believe that I actually was there for a whole week. I really enjoyed everything about the resort except for when we were looking for something to eat. We didn't find the good ketchup until the last couple days. It's in the other snack-bar. Not Captain Morgans. I also was a little creeped out by the fact that every time I went in the ladies room, there was a fella in there cleaning, or whatever.
Other than that, LOVED it!!
The entertainment at the theatre is also deffinately worth seeing. I loooooooove their singing, and dancing. Carlos was hot!! He had an amazing voice. I wish we would have been there to see the Michel Jackson thing because I guess it was the best one out of all of them, but we got there to late and left to early the day of.
All in all everything was great, I definately hope to go back there as soon as possible.
Thanks for the great time.
Asta la hago!!
Want to go back tomorrow!
Barcelo Maya Caribe Jan 19/06-Jan 26/06, booked last minute and couldn't be more pleased. 2 girls, age 30.
I have no complaints. I was happy for 7 days. Hard to say that at home! Had a bit more rain that I was hoping for, but I still did pool aerobics in the pouring rain! A trip is what you make it.
My personal tips, and I went prepared:
-Bring a cooly mug, large
-bring a blow up floaty raft for the pools/ocean
-bring your own snorkle gear, I swam out quite far and loved it. Bring a piece of bread from the buffet, the fish will go nuts.
-They will give you 2 rooms keys, credit card looking things. I got to my room and was in the dark. Concerned, lights didn't work. You have to insert your card into the slot near the door. Keep in in the slot all week! Keeps the a/c running while you are out.
-beds are hard, i asked for a foam topper, it was in my room, bed re-made within 2 hrs.
-Go to Xel-Ha! Best day of my life. Get the all inclusive. $59 US at the gate. 9am-5pm.
-Do not take Taxi's. Walk up to the highway. Stand there, watch for white mini vans, flag them over. They will probably flash their high beams. $2 US or 20 pesos, they will drop you whereever.
-You will hear a lot about biodegradable sunscreen. I couldn't find it in Canada, but it is everywhere there. It's 10-16US at the resort. I found it in Playa Del Carmen for $7. They really want you to use it at Xel-Ha, or anywhere, helps protect the fish. You will see what I mean, while swimming, you can see the oily film. Get some.
-Caribe/Beach side is WAY more fun than the other newer side. The friends we met came to our side to have more of a good time, if you want to "party" more. Captain Morgans every night. Learn the dances, have FUN! Bring your large mug
-Beaches were amazing, tons of chairs. Get involved, play the games, bocchi, trivia, archery.
-Your in room mini fridge will be cool, not cold. They are all like this, get ice from the hallway and fill your bathroom sink.
-Bring dollar store gifts for the maid, leave toys for kids, crayons, colouring books, hair clips for their kids. They love it, instead of a tip.
-Book your a la cartes RIGHT away. Fill up fast.
-I found the resort quite large, never really left my section. It is a bit confusing at first, but really study the map they give you and you will figure it out within a day.
-Get to the show early in the theater for a good seat.
-No one I knew was sick, I used the tap water to brush my teeth, I ate everything, and I get sick easily. I felt very safe here.
-Met lots of Canadians, and especially surprised at the amount of French Canadians, GREAT to party with!
-Saw the young, the old, the families, the singles. Kids will LOVE it.
Anyhow, I was thrilled, WILL go back again,
I've been to a few resorts, and so far this was my favourite!
We had a wonderful and relaxing time!
Our "post-poned honeymoon" at the Barcelo Maya Caribe Resort was wonderful! We stayed at the resort from January 22 to 29, 2006. Friends and colleagues had highly recommended the resort to us and some of them were repeat visitors.
When we arrived to our hotel room (4144) the resort staff had prepared our room with scattered rose petals in a heart shape on our bed and had a bottle of chilled champagne, a fruit basket and bottle of Mayan honey-rum waiting for our arrival. The room was a really nice size, along with a nice size bathroom and outside patio where we sat during rain showers to read our books & admire the lush gardens. The staff always kept the room tidy and refilled the mini-bar fridge almost daily with water, pop, juice and beer. The snorkeling in front of the resort was magnificent - we brought our own snorkel gear (the resort supplies it too) and we went out as often as possible - we saw a wide variety of colourful fish and ocean life including sea turtles and sting rayes! We always found a wonderful place to lie on the beach - there were a large number of empty lounge chairs and the beach is quite long so we were able to create our own little relaxing/secluded area from other guests. There was a lot of variety in food choices at the buffet and à la carte restaurants - it was really tasty and there were new specials daily as well as a different theme for dinner every night! We spent a day in Playa Del Carmen, exploring the shops and handicrafts as well as the new Walmart! We took the white mini-van "Collectivo" that passes in front of the resort into town for $1.50US/pp each direction. This allowed us to explore and learn a little more about the Mayan culture and it's people. We took one day-trip to the Tulum Ruins and Xel-Ha - the ruins were beautiful & the amount of fish at Xel-Ha was amazing - this made for an enlightening and fun-filled trip! It made for a tiring day and we were happy to have a "siesta" when we returned to the resort. The staff at the resort were really friendly and you can tell they work really hard - some even have multiple jobs as servers or cleaning staff and as the nightly entertainment. The entertainment was really well done, the theatre was comfortable, the sound was good and the costumes were really colourful! Friends highly recommended seeing the Michael Jackson show -- all we can say is WOW! The entertainer could easily pass as MJ as he had all the moves down pat and his voice was almost identical!
Although we had an excellent time, there were a few things missing at the resort: 1) there was a lack of shade on the beach - there were no shade huts "Palappas" & the plam trees were damaged in the hurricanes so the leaves were quite shredded & provided minimal shade; 2) they don't provide drink service on the beach - we would get a couple drinks before heading onto the beach and bring along a bottle of water from our room; 3)the bed and pillows were really hard - I asked for a mattress topper but, they were all in use & 4) the advertisement for the resort isn't adequate/unclear - even the travel agent couldn't find out what the difference was between the resort sections before we left. The sliding patio door was broken in our room upon our arrival but, someone came to replace it quite quickly after we reported it. Safety was never a concern for us & a safe is provided for free use in the room to lock-up your valuables.
We look forward to visiting again in future and we hope next time to stay in the new section - Colonial/Tropical to see what the difference is. Otherwise, we highly recommend the Barcelo Caribe!
Wonderful - highly recommended!
Just returned recently from a week at the Barcelo Maya Caribe and it was fantastic! I've already recommended it to friends and family thinking of travelling to the Mayan Riviera.
Pools – swim up bar!!! Need I say more? Lots of deck chairs and hammocks too.
Beach is very spacious and with plenty of beach chairs. Lots of palm trees so easy to find a place in the shade. The sand is soft and doesn't get hot, and the ocean is very clear and blue - and shallow quite a ways out. There are reefs & plenty of fish within close proximity to the beach so a good idea to take (or buy) a snorkel & mask for exploring right off the beach. Also good idea to take an air mattress and a Frisbee/football/etc for the ocean.
Fantastic!!! Buffets (and “snack bars”) all had lots of choice, each night a different theme, and all delicious. I stuck almost exclusively to the local fare – but why go to Mexico if you're not going to enjoy the Mexican food?! I heard others saying they didn't find it to be great quality, and so that might have been true for the non-local cuisine (I tried pasta one night and it could have been better, but there was always plenty to choose from). The a la carte restaurants were good too – although we actually preferred the buffet... If you go to the Spanish restaurant, ask for a Mayan coffee – quite an event! No need to necessarily book right away, but should book relatively soon after getting there (ideally day of or next day).
All of the drinks are goooood - the margaritas were to die for and I found out on the last day that they have bloody caesar's (rare outside of Canada)! The coffee was apparently pretty weak – if making coffee in your room I suggest using 2 packets for a pot (or even bringing your own!)
Very spacious, clean and attractive. The balcony is lighted so you can sit out at night. The lights and air conditioning in the room work only when you leave the room key in a slot by the door, which is ingenious for saving energy – and it cools down very quickly once you get in. Also a free bar fridge which they re-stock daily with beer & soft drinks.
Very friendly and helpful. Lots to keep you busy if you’re interested – water aerobics, bocce, salsa lessons, beach volleyball, etc.
Went into town (Playa Del Carmen) by taking the local "Collectivo" (instead of a taxi) which was quite easy and cheap – you can just catch it right outside of the main entrance to the hotel. Lots of shopping and restaurants – make sure to go down to the beach where you can grab a beach chair and enjoy some drinks and chips & guac.
Went to Tulum another day – very interesting & recommended, but take/wear your bathing suit – it’s hot and there’s a beach to cool for those of you with enough foresight!
Also went to Xel-Ha – it was interesting, but be aware that it’s a tourist attraction – something like a natural Wild Water Kingdom. There’s snorkeling and other activities, but not quite the natural quiet lagoon it was promoted as. Not many fish to see, and very busy – not quite like stumbling upon a natural wonder… But fun as long as you know what you’re getting into.
All in all highly recommended – have fun!
I stayed at the Barcelo two years in a row in April for a week and loved it! The beach was amazing and the pool was excellent! Plenty of pool towels availible. Room service was excellent- the mini fridge was ALWAYS stocked. TONS of activities all day by the pool and on the beach. Great place for kids and couples. The disco at night was a favorite for all ages. No one expected tips or anything. We always tipped the bartenders though, just because we liked our drinks strong. There were on-tap margaritas and beer available by the pool and a swim up bar in the shade. The entertainment at night was always wonderful. I think it's silly that people complained about the interent service and based their bad reviews on that. First of all your on VACATION, why do you need to be cooped up inside typing away on the computer? Enjoy the sun and the culture for peets sake! And second of all, it's Mexico, you're nuts to expect a lightning speed connection and free access. The workers were awesome, always smiling and very helpful. Great culture and great people. They appreciate the smaller things like great weather and beatiful sunshine. I Can't wait to go back!!
We stayed on the Caribe side of the resort from Feb 13-20, we had a group of nine ages 25-55 from Minneapolis and all of us had a fabulous time!
FOOD: Great, first night they had lobster, fresh fish including tuna, grouper and salmon. Second night included grilled lamb chops, fabulous. Third and fourth night they had prime rib. We tried the Mexican restaurant on the beach side, food was so-so, the coffee was great, quite a show! The spanish restaurant was excellent although our reservation wasn't until 9pm (make your reservations the day you get there, we waited until the third day) the gauzpaucho was excellent as well as the lamb and pork. Breakfast was always at the buffet, lunch was at either the buffet or Captain Morgans which consists of a grill, hotdogs, pizza, pasta and salad bar. We went over to the Beach side for lunch one day to the Rancho grande, it was packed everyone was waiting in line, some were rude, budging and seemed angry, we went back to the Caribe side, much more pleasant.
DRINKS:They have self serve tappers, bring a mug, they also have self serve straw daqaries and pina coladas with bottles of white and dark rum. We did the pool bar in afternoon, Lobby bar in the eve, theater bar after dinner, then to captain morgans they're open until 2am. They also have Modelo in your mini bar at no charge.
POOL,BEACH:GORGEOUS, the weather is in the 80's, we brought floaties for the pool, snorkel gear and a radio. Beach very clean and you never have to save chairs, there's tons. We all came back with great tans.
ACTIVITIES:There is a 18 hole mini golf, 4 hole pitch/putt (carefull of the ants!) Bocci ball, water bikes, archery, bikes and tennis, probabally more we just didn't get to it.
STAFF:They always have a smile and say hola, rooms were cleaned well, we left two dollar tips each day, we also tipped the mini bar guy for xtra modelo. Check out went well. Bartenders were good, we tipped half the time.
ROOMS:We stayed in building 5 close to the pitch and putt, they had robes, slippers, ironing board, iron, hairdryer, hard beds and a patio with two chairs. Our room overlooked a large garden/jungle area, beautiful flowers and birds. We never turned on the A/C, there was a ceiling fan, we just left the patio door open with the screen, no bugs.
Great vacation we will be returning next year with out a doubt!
Pretty Atmosphere/ No Security
My husband and I stayed at the Barcelo Maya from February 17 to February 24, 2006.
As previously stated by other trip advisor members, the safe in the room was a joke ! It was a metal box about the size of an old VCR that was not bolted to the wall and did not work. We reported this to the front desk. Nothing was done about it. We carried our wallets and passports with us everywhere.
Tip money left for the maid on our second day was taken from the room, but the room not made up. We reported this to the desk.
The bar fridge in our room was not restocked between our arrival and the departure of the previous guests. In fact, some of the pop and water bottles were found to be half empty. On our third day, we finally had to call the desk so that someone could replenish these supplies. This was the only time during our one week stay that the fridge was re-stocked. (Note: the bar staff are friendly and will give you large bottles of water- we brought these back to the room).
A "major" incident happened at the hotel during our stay and we were not informed by anyone at the hotel nor did our tour operator provide us with any security warnings. My sister tried to contact us from Canada and left a message at the hotel which we never received.
Beautiful Grounds at the hotel, beautiful beach (a bit of coral and seaweed debris washes up on shore but the beach is cleaned each night).
Food is delicious, plentiful and varied. I loved the Quesidillas prepared while you wait, and the salsa was the highlight of the lunch !
Most staff members are friendly and try to be helpful-though it is easy to tell that some of the wait staff are "in training". They work very very hard in the buffet restaurants, so we tried to tip at almost every meal (unless we were completely ignored- which only happened once or twice).
We had great weather and an "esthetically pleasing" holiday at the Barcelo Maya, but I would not go back due to a feeling of "insecurity" I felt there. I only noticed 2 security officers on the grounds the entire week (which doesn't say much for any "on-site" investigation that may have been taking place).
We would recommend instead the "Barcelo Solymar" in Varadero Cuba if you want a nice warm getaway where you feel safe. We stayed there 2 years ago and had a marvelous and charming holiday. And we felt safe !
Incredible! Beautiful and prestigous.
This is our second trip down south this winter and our first time at this hotel.
Everything is well thought out. The grounds are spectacular even following the horrible hurricane damage. They've put a lot of money into this place and it shows. The food was great. Beach beautiful. Water shallow for about 300 yards out. Never seen so many beach chairs in my life, thousands of them and no need to reserve. Service was excellent and at a reasonable pace compared to other Caribbean destinations. Rooms provided an ideal shelter at the end of the day. Great amenities. Yes the beds are hard...but just ask for a foam toper.
I wouldn't hesitate for one second to recommend this place to anyone. You'll have a wonderful vacation. Don't listen to the bad reviews. Remember, a holiday is what you make it. It's easy to find bad things in life. But it can be easier to enjoy the good ones. Awesome place!!! Everything a place should be.
What a wonderful place !!
I read a lot of feedback before I went for my vacation. A lot of suggestions are very useful. But may be you do not know why they suggest so. I would like to share some of my experiences.
1. bring big mug. why ? since the cup they provide was a bit small for beer, and they provided self serve beer, so if you have a big mug then you do not have to go back and forth many times.
2. bring a bread to feed fish - YES !! you can see a group of fish right at the beach. That was amazing. I thought, fish only show up at a deeper place. But at here you see fish within 2 meter from the coast.
3. They did provide a good safe box in the room and I saw security at each building, they are friendly and I feel very safe.
The followings are my suggestions:
1. Buy some disposable waterproof camaras before you go, they sell 17.5 USD each.
2. Bring a waterproof watch with you.
3. US dollars is better than any thing, if you pay by credit card for additional activities, the representatives will convert the price from US to peso. so become more expensive.
4. plan your activities early. if you want to go for scuba-diving, you need to do it before 18 hours of your flight taking off.
5. The disco bar is very very good, must go.
6. At the last day, you can still enjoy your time on the beach and have all the food service even you have checked out. You can take shower at gym.
7. when you arrived at airport, if someone offers you free trips for spending time see some new resort, I suggest you do not take it, those are sales activities. As what I heard, they are selling condo or something like time sharing properties.
I had seen all the good things mentioned in the feedbacks, and seen nothing bad. I miss the place and will go back again.
Ended too Soon!!!
We just returned the week of April 11th. I have never stayed at the Barcelo before but we planned this trip last minute. And with all the negative reviews about things that happen there in February I was a little nervous after reading many TripAdvisor Forums. But I can tell you once my family arrived I was put into vacation mode and the vacation was very relaxing. I requested to be in builing 3 but got building 1 which is the last builing to the right of the hotels. It was very quiet, it was oceanfront, 3rd floor so we had great views of the ocean and pool. The room was 1303 with two hard beds and a balcony. It was just fine for us. The maid changed the sheets daily and they filled the minifridge up daily. The bathroom was always clean with somekind of sanitizer. They work very hard!!! Our safe did not work for two days so we had to carry all our valuables with us. After numerous calls to the manager they finally sent someone. It was fixed at the end of our 2nd day. The iron only worked in the bathroom the plug didnt fit in any of the other outlets in the room. So it was a bit annoying trying to iron something on the small ironing board when others were trying to shower. Also, our door locks were getting stuck so be careful when leaving and make sure your door is locked. We left money for the maid and he didn't touch it for two days. So I was not too concerned about that problem. This hotel is very relaxing and casual you don't need to bring your find jewels with you.
We ate at the buffets the first few days and every day. They were ok but after a while they get boring. On the beach and Caribe side you are only offered two resturants the Mexican and Spanish. We choose not to eat there because we were basically eating that at the buffet. But we did upgrade $15 person to eat at the Japanese Restuarant. Our reservations were confirmed. We went over to the Coloinal Side to be told that we didnt have reservations at the Jap. Rest. but at the Tai side. My children never ate Tai Food before and I really didn't want them to try it there. I thought the Japanese Restuarant would be fun and different. So, Ericka at the Beach Front Desk really messed up our reservations. She is the most rudest person I have ever met!! If you could avoid her when checking in I would. Because our first encounter with her upon checking in to these speical reservations she made she messed up. And I must say that was the best beach day we had. I had to pull my kids out of the ocean because our reservations were at 7:30. So if you decide to upgrade ask over and over what restuarnt your going to. I had a receipt and they didn't want to refund me but they eventualy did! The Front Desk has very poor Customer Service Skills.
The beach was the best especially in front of the beach/caribe side. You could walk out very far and snorkle. The T/C side was a little rocky! This was the best beach we have been to in Mexico. There is very little shade due to the hurricane. The pools were awesome they have a waterpark on the t/c side. The kids club were wonderful to my children. There are many activities to do at the resort. The last three days it was a bit windy and the waves were getting a little rough but my kids rented boogie boards and had a great time! The shows were ok. But the Michael Jackson show is a must see its on Friday nights. Very entertaining and really good dancers.
This hotel requires alot of walking. I would recommend bring comfortable shoes and enjoy the views because they are awesome! You can walk down the nice walkway along the beach from the caribe side to the tropical side. It may seem far but you have to remember you are walking along paradise. I would bring an isolated mug because they do not have beach or pool service. You have to go up to the pool bar to get a drink and they are very slow. They usually only have one person working.
I can't wait until next year to return but we will stay on the Tropical/Colonial Side. It's newer and the waterpark is right there for my kids and they are much friendlier over there. Plus you get to eat eveywhere and you don't have to pay for upgrades!
Just a tip: The employees work very hard! So I would bring some $1 bills and tip them. When we ate at the buffet we had the same waiters everyday and they took care of us. They deserve something extra!!! Do not hesitate going to this resort because there may be a few bad reviews.
Reception at the Barcelo Maya Caribe
Mariachi at the bar of Barcelo Maya Caribe
The snail or observatory
Chilling out in the Hammocks!