More about Barcelo Maya Tropical Beach
The pools & hotel grounds are Very nice & clean. The beach is Beautiful although umbrellas would be recommended. Overall, we did enjoy our trip & the pleasant staff although, I would return only if it were a "good" deal. Hotel is clean but understaffed, Buffet is average but always cold, restuarants are avg., the service was poor & the drinks were bad most of the time. The entire system of the hotel requires an overhaul doesn't seem geared toward service & very unorganized. You have access to 3 hotels which are spread out & there is no transportation so expect to do a lot of walking. There is no itinerary for activities at the hotels including the Tropical unless you go to their individual lobbies & then you have to walk there! Water activities were at the furthest beach & a total project because it's a first come first serve basis so you have to waste hours for lessons etc. Many activities are only available once or twice a week. My husband said give it a lower rating than I did, due to the many misc. problems that arose, understaffing, food, drinks & poor overall service.
My husband and I stayed at the Barcelo Maya Tropical Resort in February 2006. We were down there for our honeymoon. Let me tell you they treated us like gold. Everything from the front desk personel, to the pool area to the beach front was superb. The staff was very kind and always smiling. The meals were awesome. We went down there for a week and my husband and I want to go back next year the same time but this time stay for 10 days at the same beautiful resort. We definitely enjoyed the nightly live entertainment. We could watch it from our balcony but we choose to go sit with all the rest of the guests. If you are thinking of a gorgeous resort to stay at it is the Barcelo Tropical by all means. Been there and looking forward to next year to go back.
Great potential but Not Great
I read all the reviews before we left and noted that while most people loved the Barcelo Maya Tropical Beach (BMTB), a very vocal minority did not. Now that we've just returned from the BMTB, I think I know why there are two divergent camps. The BMTB is the land equivalent of a Carnival cruise. Both are a lot of fun, with sun, water, food, drinks, family, friends, vacation, everything that makes a cruise or a resort FUN. The big difference between the two is that Carnival does not pretend to be a 5-star cruise line, but BMTB does advertise itself as a 5-star resort. As a seasoned traveler who has been to all 7 continents, I have a pretty good idea of what constitutes a 5 star resort. Most of the postive reviewers of BTMB were willing to overlook some fault or other and still gave BMTB a 4 or 5 star rating. Some things are first rate such as the grounds, the pools, the lobby, the view of the ocean, and the staff's friendliness, but BMTB is supposed to be a "premium resort" and it has so many weaknesses that it's obviously not a five or even a four star resort.
The food is mediocre at best and sometimes, such as in the Mediterranean restaurant, truly awful. The drinks are so-so at best, and some drinks, such as martinis, gin and tonics, and the white wine bordered on undrinkable. The wait service was pleasant, but many of them were totally untrained--a typical example: We had to wait 30 minutes to order at the Italian restaurant and after we ate, we were served dinner rolls with oil and balsimic vinegar that were supposed to be served when we arrived. The maid service was just average except they did not keep essentials such as toilet paper, shampoo, and the minibar stocked. The beach is very pretty but has many sharps shells, rocks and coral which caused many foot injuries. The reefs have nice (not great) snorkeling but you only get free equipment for one hour a day, if equipment is available, and often it is not. There is no free transportation available into town for shopping. A third of the people we talked with had problems with the A/C or with rooms not being ready until 6PM the day they checked in. So while we ejoyed our visit there, I think you can find nicer places to stay at more economical rates.
My family and I just returned from a 7 night stay at the Barcelo Maya Tropical Beach Resort and I have to say it was the worst vacation we have ever been on. Maybe I expected too much after I reading the glowing reviews on this site but let me tell you that this resort fell way short of what I expected. First let me say that this resort is absolutely beautiful, the grounds are always well kept and the potential for this resort is great. This was our 3rd trip to Mexico as a family. We've stayed at The Royal Hideaway and The Iberostar Paraiso Maya and we had a fantastic time at both. The Barcelo Maya was the complete opposite to these hotels. The service at the Maya was absolutely HORRIBLE. After taveling all day with a 6 year old and an 18 month old baby I was not happy to check into a dirty room. There were dirty towels everywhere, unmade beds, etc. While this wasn't what we expected, we know things like this will happen. The Air Conditioning in our room did not work for the entire time we were at this resort. We called guest services to report the problem and were told that a repair man will be coming in 15 minutes. He never showed up. This went on and on for a couple of days till finally we went the front desk to speak to a manager but unfortunately there wasn't a manager in the entire hotel for us to speak to. Every night I had to put my children to sleep in there underwear because our room was so hot and humid. Our room was not cleaned on the 2nd day of our stay we called guest services to ask for fresh towels and wash cloths. This lady actually said that she wasn't sure if they had any AVAILABLE but she would check. Our fresh towells came about 21 hours later. I ask the waiter for a glass of mimosa at breakfast and he didn't know what it was then he told me they only serve mimosas at lunch. I really thought I was in the Twilight Zone. On several occassions I would go to get the tub ready to bath my children and see soap scum from the previous night still in the tub. It was alot less stressful to just wash it myself so that is what I did. That seems to be the theme of this resort. DO IT YOUR SELF. We waited 40 minutes for a glass of fruit punch for my daughter at the Italian Restaurant. After my husband found the manager we got it in under a minute. We did not use the beach once because after seeing people with missing toenails and other injuries I did not think it was safe for my children. After buying 2 pool floats at the gift shop I asked 5 different staff members where I could have them blown up. Every last one told me to use my mouth, one person actually said it should not be that difficult. I had to just laugh and laugh because I actually paid money for this place. I kept looking at the other tourist who seem to be having the time of their lives and wonder if there was something wrong with me. My husband works in the Hospitallity business and he could not believe what he saw at this resort. The staff could not care less if you had a problem and the managers are clueless. I feel as if I was robbed of my money and my memories. I would not return to this resort if they gave it to me for free.
We stayed at the Barcelo Maya Tropical resort from March 6 - 13, 2006. Our stay was fantastic and this resort was fabulous. Below is our long review.
Resort: The resort is beautiful, marble everywhere. In comparison to the older Caribe and Beach sides, the Tropical and Colonial have them beat hands down. The new sections are spacious, well designed and gorgeous. The lay out is great with paths that allow you access to all the resort areas. I have been to a number of areas where the layout is poor and you are walking around areas instead of having direct paths. This can get frustrating. Don't get me wrong, the Barcelo property is huge if you want to visit all 4 resort areas. But if you prefer to limit your walking, you can stay in your section and find a lot of things to do.
Beach: The beach is the most beautiful in the area. Long, wide and powder white sand. You can always find a lounge chair, there are so many and the beach is huge. The water was very warm and great for snorkeling. I wish I would have done more snorkeling in the first few days there because the last part of our trip, it got very windy and was not good for snorkeling. We went to Xel Ha and the snorkeling matched what we saw at Barcelo (great). You can walk and walk on this beach and it never seems crowded. I have been to numerous beaches in the Riviera Maya and this beach is #1. I brought aqua shoes because a couple areas have some rocks/coral around, probably after effects from the hurricanes.
Pools: The pools were large with fountains and jets flowing through them. You could swim and never bump into anyone or feel crowded (the same as the beach). I hate being in pools where you are constantly bumping into people. Not the case here. They are refreshing, not cold. You could also find plenty of lounge chairs around the pool areas. One thing I found interesting is that most people sat at the pool areas instead of the beach. No complaints regarding this since I am a beach person and I could take my pick of loungers. There was also a kids playground pool area where you found a majority of the kids. Many resort pools are over run with kids and although I love kids, I don't prefer this when I am on vacation. This was a big plus for us.
Food: We found the food at the a la cartes to range from very good to poor. We liked the Japanese very much, the Santa Fe was o.k. and the Seafood restaurant was terrible. We did not even go to our last reservation at the Italian because we preferred the buffet food. We had many meals which were very good at the buffets. They had theme nights which varied and offered dishes such as seafood (lobster, shrimp, crab, etc,), prime rib, grilled steaks, chicken, roasted pork, fish, pasta bar, salad bar, etc. The breakfast buffet was good also with made to order omelettes and other eggs, pastries, fresh fruit, smoothies, meats, cereals and many other things. We thought the buffets were great because of the wide selection but they do get old by the end of the week. The buffets at night had different things on the menu which offered variety.
Rooms: We had a king side standard room on the 2nd floor in the Veracruz building (room 7537). We really liked our room because it was half way between the beach/pool and the lobby areas. We were also very close to the elevator which came in handy. The room was always kept very clean and was spacious with a large balcony. The shower was large and always had hot water. The a.c. worked excellent and we often used the ceiling fan. The t.v. had a lot of english channels (the most I have ever seen). The safe worked great. The mini-fridge was restocked for us almost every day. In fact one day we wanted a couple of extra beers and they gave us a 6-pack. The bed was the best thing I have seen in all my trips to MX. Usually the beds are like sleeping on a rock hard slab but not here. The mattresses were great. We talked with several people who stayed at the Colonial and they said that their beds were hard so they must have done something different with the beds on the Tropical side.
Bars: The bars were great, especially the lobby bars. You could get top shelf drinks at the lobby, anything you could possibly want. And the drinks were strong. Sometimes I had to even ask them to add a little more mixer to them. The creamy blended drinks did not seem to have as much alcohol in them, although you could taste the alcohol. The lobby bartenders were great, especially Mayo. He was fun to watch and talk to. We tipped a few bucks every time and got great service. We found the beach/pool bars to be a little slow at times. There seemed to not have enough bartenders to serve all the people at the pools. But they did offer self serve corona, tequila and other blended drinks where you could add other alcohol they had put out.
Services: For the most part, the services were very good. When we arrived in our room, the safe was locked and we could not open it. Also, our front deadbolt would not lock. We called to the front desk and they said that they would have someone up within 5 minutes to get the safe open. Sure enough, within a few minutes someone was there and got it open for us. They told us that they would send someone up to fix the deadbolt and we did not have to stay there to have it fixed. So we went to the bar for a drink and went for a stroll around the property. About an hour later I suggested we go check to see if the deadbolt was fixed but was not expecting it would be. Well surprise, it was fixed already. Daily maid services was fine but some days things would be missing. Some days we would not have kleenex, other days no face cloths, some days no lotion, etc. This was nothing major as the room was always cleaned well, just inconsistencies. We never did see any towel art even though we tipped every day.
Another thing to mention is to try the mini golf. It was a great 18 hole course which we enjoyed very much. Look for the iguanas around the course.
All in all, we thought the Barcelo Maya Tropical was fantastic. We always like to try different resorts to mix it up a bit, but I have to say that we will most likely be back here because we enjoyed it that much. And the beach is the jewel of this entire area. Go and enjoy.
My partner and I just returned from 6 nights at the Barcelo Maya Tropical. I have traveled all over the world, including to the Yucatan Peninsula before, and I have to say this place is unparalleled. We chose the Barcelo largely on the basis of Trip Advisor. Because it was so helpful to us, I thought I'd offer some details below for future travelers.
THE GROUNDS: You could have eaten off of the ground it was so clean and well-maintained. The landscaping was beautiful and colorful. They preserved the local fauna and wildlife. We saw gardeners actually cutting the lawn with hand shears, pruning and watering and scrubbing...it was always in perfect condition. You would never know this place had been through a hurricane just a few months ago.
THE POOL: The pool went on for what seemed like forever. It had fountains, spouting water to swim through, underwater jets to massage your back, bridges and islands, swim-up bars, poolside hammocks, etc. We don't have kids and although we don't mind them, we didn't want a place overrun by them. The hotel had a separate water park for kids that was pretty amazing (water slides, fountains, and other cool things), so a lot of the kids play happened there. There were always plenty of seats available in either the shade or the sun whenever we went out there (which was really nice because at many other resorts people take up all the poolside lounge chairs early). You're never far from a bar or a restaurant.
BEACH: They had restored the beach from the hurricane...you can tell that the palm trees were recently planted (they're not super tall, but they're more than just saplings). The beach goes on for a long stretch and it is deep, too. It was soft white sand and perfectly clean. The water was warm and calm.
RESTAURANTS/FOOD: We really liked the food at the Barcelo. The evening buffets had different themes on different nights, but you could always get the staples regardless of the theme (i.e., grilled chicken, grilled steaks, pastas, salad, soups, etc.). One of our nights there we had all-you-can-eat grilled lobster tails that were delicious. The pastas and desserts were delicious, too. The daytime lunch buffet was good (we preferred the indoor one to the pool-side ones because it had a wider selection of foods to choose from). Excellent fries and burgers! Breakfast was amazing...omelettes, eggs benedict, french toast, pancakes and waffles, fresh fruit, cappucinos, and loads of other yummy things. The service was excellent. As for the a la carte restaurants, we liked the ones we chose (the steak house, the Italian, and the Mexican...we skipped over the Japanese although it looked good), although I think the Santa Fe (the steak house) was probably our least favorite. The best was the Mexican. In each of them, you had to wait a little bit for seating, even though the restaurants were never full. I didn't quite figure that out.
DRINKS: The drinks flowed and the Corona taps everywhere were great. We believe the liquor was watered down a little (probably to keep the tourists from getting too drunk and unruly)...but the beer wasn't watered down. The bartenders were always really nice.
SERVICE: PERFECT. Everyone was so friendly and helpful. I speak Spanish pretty well, but I was surprised at how many of the employees there spoke English (I mean, this is MEXICO!). No matter what you wanted, someone was always willing to take care of it for you. (How I miss that now that I'm home.)
ROOMS: Our room was a standard room. It was spotless, roomy, and comfortable. The bathroom was big and the shower water pressure was great! The pillows were a little firm for my taste, but some people like that and it didn't bother me. They restocked the mini bar every day for free. (There's also 24 hour room service available.)
POTENTIAL DOWNSIDES: We requested a room away from the theater, which ended up being a good call. Those buildings closest to the outdoor theater probably heard the performances whether they wanted to or not (it could get loud). The performances (which were fun to watch) were over by 11, so it wasn't like it was an all-night thing, but sometimes you just want a little peace in the rooms. Most of the guests were laid back and sociable (particularly the Canadians) and we met some great folks. However, a few of the guests seemed to be a little rude and uptight. For example, they'd seem frustrated if employees didn't speak English really well (come on...this is Mexico, not an English-speaking country). One American couple accused us of stealing their towels and were really rude...until they discovered their towels three chairs over. No apologies to us, though. I suppose you get that anywhere. Many of the complaints on here seem to be coming from that uptight mindset. Remember folks, RELAX...it's Mexico, it's vacation...there's no rush and no need to do anything but chill out.
We took in the ruins at Tulum (which I recommend) but we did it on our own rather than going with a tour. We're glad we did it that way...it was cheaper and we were on our own time. We also went to Cozumel for a day to go para-sailing, swimming and shopping and had a fun time. Playa del Carmen looks charming at night and we wished we had set aside an evening to enjoy it. Next time.
I'm glad we were in the new section (the Tropical and Colonial are newer, the Caribe and the Beach are the "older" parts of the hotel). It seemed grander (even the public bathroom floors were polished marble!), had higher ceilings, wider walkways, air-conditioned buffet restaurants, etc.
Anyway, I highly recommend this place. I still can't get over how beautiful it was and how flawless the service was. I also have stayed at the Iberostar Tucan. It was top notch and gorgeous too and the food was a little better there (only slightly though). But the Barcelo was more beautiful, the service was much better, the beach was more extensive, and there was more to do. I'd definitely go back.
Great resort! We are planning on going again.
My husband and I stayed at the Barcelo Tropical from February 14-21, 2006. We really liked this resort, it is beautiful,well maintained,great beach and pool,great rooms and clean. We loved our stay so much that we are planning on going back next year with our children. I will tell you about some of the great things at this resort.
Food; Buffet was good and had a large variety of foods. Twice a week they have seafood which includes lobster tails, and then on the other nights they have other theme nights. We also went to two of the al acarte resturants and the one we liked the best was the Japensese. It had awesome food and the service was impecable. The steakhouse was all right and if I was go again I won't go there I would just go to the buffet and have the opportunity to have steak everynight.We heard the seafood resturant wasn't that good so we cancel our reservation and went to the Italian resturant instead. The Italian resturant wasn't that good either but its all going to depend on your own taste. So if you go I would try these resturants because not everyones taste is the same.The resturants on the beach had very good food also and their were two swim up bars that were right next to both resturants. The only thing that was bad about the swim up bars is that the service was sometimes slow and the glasses were small so I would advise everyone to bring their own glasses. The people were friendly and nice.
Rooms: The room was clean and refrigerator was always stocked and ready to go. The standard rooms are spacious and if you didn't want to spend the extra money for the suites I don't think you would be disappointed. Our room was in the Yucatan and was right by the large theator were they had the entertainment every night. It was great, especially if you didn't want to go to the theater and just wanted to listen to the music from you room. The bathroom was nice and the shower/tub combination was spacious and it always had shower gel, shampoo, and conditioner in the dispensors.
Beach: The beach is spacious and there is plenty of lounge chairs at the beach and around the pool. It was racked and cleaned everyday and the beach was long. There were several rocks in the water that you have to be careful of but it makes for better snorkeling. So my best advise would be to wear water shoes and bring your snorkeling gear. The water is not as warm as it should be but it was about 85 degrees. They offer snorkeling and scuba diving excursions for a fee and they also have a scuba diving class that you can take so that you can try it out in the pool. The nice thing about the Barcelo is that there is four resorts on the same property so you are welcome to use all the facilities at all the resorts and the other resorts offer atv riding, horseback riding, kayaking, hobie, waterbikes and more. There is endless amounts of things to do here. They also offer stretching and areobics by the beach and other physical activities. You won't be disappointed in the activities.
Pool: Pool is large and has hammicks and lounge chairs all around it. There is several bridge that go over the two pools and there is several water fountains in the water. The kids waterpark is great and has several slides and they also have a playground right next to Barcy the kids center. Both of these areas are right next to the large pool so you could be in the large pool and still see your children playing. I can't wait to take my children back here.
One last things that I think that people should know is that the service at the lobby is a little slow but I think it will get better the longer they are open. They just opened in December 2005 and I think this will all impove with time, so take that in to consideration when you look at all the other reviews for the resort. This resort is a five star in my book.
Greata time at the Barcelo
Check-in: Our first overall impression of the resort was that it was beautiful and immaculate. Our initial encounter at the front desk was disappointing. We were there right at check-in time of 3 p.m. and were pretty much ignored. One party of 6 French people were checking out and we stood there for over a half an hour while people scurried about behind the front desk basically ignoring us. There was NO ONE in front of us. It was pretty ridiculous. We had been travelling all day and just wanted to check in and go get some lunch. Once we finally got someone to check us in, she was bordered on being rude. Fortunately, it was really the first and only bad customer service we encountered the entire week! We were only able to book three of the four ala cartes we were entitled to. No biggie.
Rooms: We were on the second floor of the Tropical and all of our room requests were honored. Unfortunately, we were as far away from the ocean as you could be, but with all the food and drink we consumed, the walking was good for us! The rooms are very nicely appointed, large and clean. Maid service was good. Beds were comfy and lots of pillows. Couldn't even hear my own kids fighting from next door.
Food - We have been to many AI's and other types of resorts. The food was fine. A buffet is a buffet, as far as I'm concerned. I can always find something to eat. Does get a little tiresome but it wasn't me cooking it or cleaning up after, so I was pleased. Had dinner at the Steakhouse, Seafood and Italian restaurants. Food was good and it was nice to not have to jump up and down.
Bars - Never had to wait more than a minute or two for a drink. Always courteous bartenders. Enjoyed Capt. Morgans one night. Our teenager met a bunch of friends and closed the disco every night. He had a wonderful time. I was pleased to hear that they would not serve anyone that didn't have an adult wristband.
Grounds - Gorgeous, well kept, always being worked on. Lush with all new growth coming in. Will be stunning in a few months.
Beaches- Really beautiful. Plenty of beach chairs, very clean, clear, blue water. Waves just high enough to make it interesting but not dangerous. Wished the pier was done for some snorkeling. My son ventured out to the island to snorkel and said it was amazing.
Pools - Unlike other posters, we found the water to be refreshing, not cold. The pools are big and immaculate. The kids area by the Colonial was a lot of fun for our 11 year old. Always someone walking around cleaning up.
Staff - Very friendly. Everyone you either smiled at or said hello to responded in kind. We had a great time using our high school Spanish and received many wonderful lessons from maids, waiters, bartenders etc.
This was our fourth trip to the Cancun/Playa area.
Just returned from a week stay at the Tropical. First of all let me say this is a beautiful resort. The staff is very friendly, and courteous. The grounds are kept pristine. There's always someone cleaning.
Food was good, but like most people say, a buffet is a buffet. There was always a good assortment, and the presentation was nice also. We ate at the Steak House one evening, steak was not very good, and service was even worse. It seemed they were training personal there. The other a' la carte we went to was the japanese restaurant. This one was much better. Service was great , and food was pretty good.
Drinks at the resort were pretty good. Never had to wait very long as some reviewers have stated. You have to just remember you're in Mexico, and also on vacation, so just chill. What's the hurry. That's why we went on vacation to escape the hustle and bustle of life.
The beach was very clean, and there were always plenty of chairs around.The water was a little choppy while we were there, so be careful when entering the water. You might want to wear some beach shoes, as some places are rocky.
The pool area's are beautiful. There are fountains everywhere. I found most people stayed at the pool area's. A little tip if you want to remember. Get out there a little early and put your beach towels to hold your favorite place, then you can go to breakfast and then come back a little later. Lot's of people did this so we picked up on it.
The only really negatives i have on the resort are, the check in was really slow, i mean really slow. But like i said we grabbed a drink and went with the flow. And also there wasn't much of an assortment of beer. You either had Corona draft or Modesto can. But at least the Corona was cold. Overall , loved the place. Remember tip if you can, we all come from more properous countries then where they live. VIVA MEXICO
My wife and sister-in law just returned from this place. They had (4)-$100 bills taken out of the safe. There was also a note left for them stating they should keep their valuables in the safe. Apparently any staff that sees your valuables left in the open is supposed leave the note. So somehow in their 1st 3 hrs they had at least 2 unknown vistors in their room! The flunky security then blamed the girls because they could not tell them how much money they had had. After this the girls desided not to have maid service or have the bar stocked but were told they could not decline it. They also had a patio door lock that was always unlocked even after they locked, however they were on the 3rd floor??? The service was also terrible! To top it off there was a dbl homocide (2 Canadiens)several weeks ago in the neighboring resort. I read some reports on that crime and they will never catch em'! I've never travelled to Mexico and never will now! I relize most people have great times but I don't want to spend my vaction watching the military patrol the area. Dennis in WI
THE PAINTING STALL
In the Hotel Grounds