New Barcelo Maya Palace Review (Nov 2008)
Posted 26 November 2008 - 05:08 PM
After being switched from Dreams Tulum, I was VERY hesitant about going to another resort, and was certain that Barcelo would be a bit of a disappointment. Well I was 100% wrong because Barcelo Maya Palace is an amazing resort. They bent over backwards for us in so many ways and outshined any of the Dreams staff that we were working with.
The first day there was the worst because the people we talked to at Dreams had failed to pass along what they promised us to the staff at Barcelo. Therefore, we showed up to check in and were told that nobody was getting the upgrades they were supposed to be getting. Also, the staff who was there from Dreams seemed to be confused about who we were, which really made me mad since I had been emailing and phoning them for months. I was really upset that my guests were being denied something that they were promised so we talked to the manager and were able to get VIP bracelets for everyone who booked with our travel agent. If I hadnâ€™t of been promised this in the first place, I wouldnâ€™t of cared, but we felt that they should have to keep their promises. Some of our guests were brought some drinks while they were waiting, but the lobby bar was so close that most of them just wandered over once they got their bracelets.
The Milta Suite: 10+++/10
Originally, we were supposed to be in a regular standard room like the rest of our guests, but my aunt (a TA in Canada) arrived the day before me, found out what room we were in and demanded that we get upgraded to the Milta Suite, which she saw was empty. I canâ€™t thank her enough because I almost cried when I saw the room. Not only was it bigger than most peopleâ€™s condos, but it was so beautiful and had the biggest walk in master bath with closets that Iâ€™ve ever seen. The room had a living/dining room with 2 patio entrances on ground level by the beach (one with a table and chairs and 2 loungers), a huge master bath for me and another smaller bathroom for him, and a huge master bedroom with a hammock patio.
The housekeeping was beyond what I have experienced in Canada. We were left towel art everyday and the room was so clean. They would always refill our fridge and snacks everyday, and on request would leave more 6 packs of beer for the guys. We didnâ€™t have anything stolen and the staff were so kind and polite. On our wedding day while I was at the spa, my hubby went and found a housekeeper who was about to go to lunch and asked her if she could do our room once she was done because we were getting married in a couple of hours and he wanted it nice for me to get ready in. She told him she would put off her lunch and do it right away. She ran and got 3 other people to come help her and they cleaned the room and put flowers all over the bedroom and decorated. She even asked him if she could arrange my things to get ready and she laid out all my makeup and perfumes and made a â€œgetting readyâ€ area for me with my shoes and veil. When I came back from the spa I was absolutely floored by how much trouble they went through. Hubby also tried to tip her $30 but she refused his money and told him it was no trouble at all.
Wedding Coordinator: 8/10
Our coordinator was Landy from Dreams Tulum and Gabriella from Barcelo. Overall, I was more than happy with the end result and everything turned out perfectly. I would only give them an 8 because of the lack of communication before the wedding. I received very few emails back from them, and there was some misunderstandings as a result, but in the end they did a great job.
I was really disappointed in the Spa at Barcelo. I had a mani, pedi, full body massage, hair and makeup done there. The full body massage was amazing and so relaxing. However, the manicure and pedicure were done poorly for both my maid of honor and myself. They didnâ€™t shape the nails and the tips were spotty and see through. On the wedding day, Betty did my hair, and she did exactly what I asked and it looked great. However, I had to walk out halfway through my makeup application once I saw myself in the mirror. I had asked for really light purple and ivory on my eyes and when I checked she had put a bright pink almost all the way to my eyebrows. I nearly choked when I saw it and considering I only had 40 minutes to the ceremony I figured it would be safer to do my eyes myself. I ran the whole way back to my room and was able to finish off my eyes myself. (Thanks to the housekeeper for setting out my makeup! Lifesaver!)
We had the ceremony at the gazebo because it was the only place not in the sand. We were told that Barcelo had a chapel in the Colonial area and we assumed we could use it, but we found out that unless we were having a prearranged Catholic ceremony we couldnâ€™t use it. I was really disappointed because I had first chosen Dreams Tulum for their chapel and then agreed to Barcelo because they had one. We really wanted to be married in a chapel but it just wasnâ€™t possible. The gazebo was nice but it was a little too public for me. I felt like our wedding was on display to everyone eating their lunch at the buffet, but it was the only location we had available besides the beach. The timing and music went perfectly, and the set up was really pretty. The minister we had definitely wouldnâ€™t have been my first pick by far, but he spoke clear enough English and I could tell he meant well. He had asked my hubby if it would be okay if he asked us questions throughout the ceremony and hubby thought it would be better if he didnâ€™t since he didnâ€™t talk to us about the questions beforehand. Apparently, he didnâ€™t have another speech prepared because he went ahead and quizzed us anyway. I felt really uncomfortable being asked questions and kind of wished he would have talked about the meaning of marriage instead. He did do a nice job though other than that.
Both went really well. The food for the cocktail hour was pretty late getting to us but it was terrific once it did. I have no complaints other than that. We had the reception outside by the pools in front of the beach. It was beautifully set up. We used DJ Mannia and he did a wonderful job and did everything the way I asked him to perfectly. He was a complete professional and if anyone is thinking of using him I definitely recommend that you do. We also had fire dancers that Landy arranged and it made the night. Everyone was completely surprised by it and other hotel guests even wandered over to watch and clap. It was my favorite part of the reception. They even stuck around after to dance with us and have some shots, which made for some really funny pictures. The dinner was great and the cake was yummy, even after it got mauled by the flower girls. There was one staff who really stuck out to us. Her name was Carina and she was the most wonderful, considerate person and did everything she could to help us. She was so sweet and kept offering us anything that we wanted. She made sure we were taken care of, which was a really nice feeling. We even saw her a couple days later and tipped her and thanked her over and over because I donâ€™t think anyone else could have done a better job.
We used the resort photographer and I was a little disappointed, not with his pictures but with the service. He was very absentminded and didnâ€™t give us much direction. I felt a little uncomfortable with him and I think that came through in some of the pictures. I got the feeling like he didnâ€™t really care since we were sent over by Dreams. When we went to get our pictures he tried to make deals with us and not give us what was in our package. He didnâ€™t want to take the time to have the pictures printed out so in the end we just took the 260 images on CD with no slideshow or album. I didnâ€™t care because I can do the slideshow myself and I didnâ€™t feel like bartering with this guy or paying an extra $500 which sounded like was going straight to his pocket. In the end I got more images so Iâ€™m not complaining. I can get the ones I want printed myself. I just found that he was a little unprofessional.
I'll work on adding some pics...
Posted 26 November 2008 - 05:21 PM
Posted 26 November 2008 - 05:24 PM
Posted 26 November 2008 - 06:10 PM
leanimal_photo - Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting
Posted 26 November 2008 - 06:42 PM
Posted 27 November 2008 - 01:22 AM
I want to see pictures of your suite!
Especially since I didn't think that the honeymoon suite at Dreams was all that exciting (don't get me wrong, it was very nice, but just not as special as I expected. Detailed info in my review for anyone who is curious).
Posted 27 November 2008 - 01:45 AM
Posted 27 November 2008 - 01:55 PM
Posted 01 December 2008 - 05:15 PM
It looks and sounds like they did such a fabulous job of making your wedding day perfect. The resort looks beautiful. This is making me so excited for our wedding, and 99.9% set on the Barcelo Palace. Thank you for the review & pics.
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