Baha Mar versus Mayakoba

Old Jun 5, 19, 1:43 am
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Baha Mar versus Mayakoba

I've booked the Andaz Mayakoba for a week in mid-July, with a TSU and a second, adjoining room on the lagoon side.

We have four adults and three kids (under the age of 6) going, and those rooms are just big enough to handle us (we travel well together).

The more I think about the potential for seaweed, and the long ride/walk from the lagoon side to the beach, I started to look at Baha Mar.

Unfortunately, it looks like the TSU at Baha Mar gets you into a Grand King Suite, which is capped at two people (and has no pull-out sofa or much furniture at all). We can do the double/double for two adults and two kids, but then we are still stuck with leaving one kid in the car for a week if we get a suite.

Could do two double/doubles and squeeze everyone in, but I have TSUs just burning a hole in my pocket.

Having the lounge at Baha Mar saves some cash on breakfast/soda/water/light snacks, but Baha Mar food seems even more expensive than Mayakoba, so even with the breakfast savings, still probably paying overall the same or more at Baha Mar as in Mayakoba.

The beach at Baha Mar seems better (or at least less seaweed), but Mayakoba seems a bit more relaxed (we won't be out clubbing with the kids). The free kids club at Mayakoba may be fun for the kids. I suspect the kids place at Baha Mar is not free.

If I knew we would get upgraded to one of the one-bedroom residences, I'd probably jump at Baha Mar, but no way to know if that will happen.

We are pretty slow-paced and non-particular travelers. The kids don't eat much anything other than pasta/hotdogs/chicken/pancakes/cereal, so having incredible food options is not that important. I'm a hotel room snob, but no one else in the group is. The kids need good pools for playing, but the adults just generally take it easy by the pool and the ocean, with maybe a day or two of a half-day excursion here or there. For instance, we did Coconut Point last year, and it was pretty perfect for this gang.

So, what do you all think? Anyone have experience with Baha Mar and Mayakoba and want to weigh in?
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Old Jun 5, 19, 2:54 am
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@ Mayakoba - take bikes or just call the golf cart to shuttle you around. I’d say it’s more of a pool place vs
a beach place. Lagoon rooms/area are more than sufficient. Beach area is obviously nicer. The beach pool is a little more adult. But you are comparing a large scale hotel like Baha to more a boutique property like Andaz - you need to strongly consider that in the experience you are seeking. Mayakoba is a chill vibe and limited interaction with other guests due to the property lay out.

Casa Amate is a nice ‘house’ - the bar is small, but cool. However, the food and experience is lacking at that price point.
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Old Jun 5, 19, 7:21 am
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(I haven't been to Baha Mar yet - going in January)
If you can find Beach Suites available at Mayakoba, those are TSU-able as well.

The breakfast at Mayakoba is extremely good.

The biggest thing to keep in mind is that Mayakoba is just "chill". Even when it's at capacity, it doesn't feel full or busy. There is a lot of great sand on the beach, pools are nice, it's a quiet and relaxed resort. The golf cart drivers picked up on peoples names after a day or two, the people that set up the chairs in the sand for you will proactively bring you bottles of water, etc.

Baha Mar is nice and new, but from reviews I get that it is a really big resort and you're not going to get the boutique vibe or personalized service (because you're one of a thousand instead of one of a hundred or so rooms).
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Old Jun 5, 19, 8:11 am
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Mayakoba is super nice. I wouldn't let the beach issues you identified (seaweed, proximity) bother me. The only reason I would consider Baha Mar would be Mexico vs. Bahamas.
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Old Jun 5, 19, 11:07 am
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I really think the seaweed issue is overblown. Some days are good, some days aren't but regardless they clean it up, and the water is still beautiful. Personally, I don't really like Nassau: it's very expensive for what you get, locals aren't as friendly, has its own crime problems, etc. The beaches at Nassau themselves are probably a smidge nicer and probably at the same quality as Cancun (which is a smidge nicer than beaches near Playa - such as Mayacoba). However, everything else is superior in Mexico IMHO...

Personally, I prefer the Grand Hyatt Playa Del Carmen (with it's awesome club lounge, gorgeous spa area, same quality beach as Mayacoba, good (and cheaper) food, amazing architecture, and 2 minute walking distance to the heart of Playa Del Carmen with hundreds of shops and restaurants) - but that's just me. Oh and the TSU suites there are direct Ocean Front and gorgeous.
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Old Jun 5, 19, 11:25 am
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Originally Posted by Kacee View Post
Mayakoba is super nice. I wouldn't let the beach issues you identified (seaweed, proximity) bother me. The only reason I would consider Baha Mar would be Mexico vs. Bahamas.
I know few will agree with me on this, but we thought Mayacoba was a bit TOO isolated. It reminded me of a high-end timeshare in terms of layout and architecture. The entire Mayacoba development is very "hoity toity", and so there's really no local character or local restaurants, shopping, culture, etc. The beach is pretty good but there's those strange (giant) floating sandbag like things just off shore which I found distracting.... For us it's Ziva Cancun first, then GH Playa, then Zilara, then Mayacoba in order of preference (and we aren't party animals, either).
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Old Jun 6, 19, 1:02 pm
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Just came back from Baha Mar for a friends birthday. I don't think it is super kid friendly, and in disclosure, I have no kids. Its a large convention style hotel that shares the grounds with the Rosewood and the SLS. We are all college kids and thought it was perfect for what we wanted; fun, spring break like, good parties at SLS. The restraunts lean towards faux high end, think Katsuya, but the pool area has tons of things for kids like hot dogs and hamburgers. The beach area would be fine for kids, the parties are at the pools, and they have an enclosed area with free non motorized water sports they might enjoy.(If kids under 6 can kayak and snorkle?) We had a standard suite (glob upgrade) at Baha Mar, and the room does have a full sized kitchen and large living room, but the couch doesn't pull out and the bathroom was even too small for a couple. Hope that helps.
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Old Jun 7, 19, 11:46 am
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I appreciate everyone weighing in. With 7 people at Baha Mar, we won't be able to use a TSU (maximum capacity is 2 for a suite?), and we'll be squeezing into two rooms or shelling out for a third, so we are thinking we'll just stick with Mayakoba.

However, another crazy idea. Given how expensive the food is at Mayakoba, does it make sense to not use points for one of the rooms, and do the all-inclusive for four of the seven guests?

So, I'd save 140,000 points, but then have the cost for the all-inclusive for two kids and two adults.

If two adults and two kids would normally spend $500 a day worth of food/drinks, the room is essentially free.

As globalist, we get free breakfast so that saves a chunk, but looking at the prices for lunch and dinner, it would does not seem all that hard for an adult to easily spend $100 USD a meal, not including drinks, and the kids meals are all $20 USD a pop as well.

I'm a big eater, and I do enjoy frozen fruity drinks by the pool.

It would mean spending $3500 for the week, but we'd likely spend at least $2,000-$2,500 on food for two adults and two children anyway. Saving 140,000 points would be more than worth the difference.

For those who have been to Mayakoba, when eating on-site, were you spending enough for food and drinks to make $500 a day reasonable for two adults and two kids?
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Old Jun 7, 19, 11:59 am
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We've been to Mayakoba twice now. We averaged about $300 a day for food for two adults and one teenager. This did not include breakfast as it was included as a Globalist. There is a new Burger place in the little village, that was one of the better meals we had and also one of the cheapest. I think it was $60 for all three of us including non-alcoholic drinks. And a golf cart can take you there. Some of the other resorts in the complex have more options and sometimes cheaper options. I found any of the buffet specialsat Mayakoba to be not worth it. Food not that great. One night every week they have a taco special - this is a good deal.
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