More about Vallarta Palace
Vallarta Palace - Not impressed
Eight of us (four couples, ranging in age from 32-40), just got back from 5 days in PV. Originally we had booked a stay at Cancun at the Gran Solaris, but the day after the Hurricane hit we booked the Vallarta Palace instead. I carefully researched all the Puerto Vallarta hotels and picked the VP due to the hot tubs, liquor dispensers, restaurant options, etc. I really struggled with my choice because the Samba was over $600 per couple less expensive at the time.
I have stayed at a variety of places in Mexico including what was the Plaza Las Glorias in PV and the following resorts in Cancun: Melia Gran, Moon Palace, Riu Playacar, Hyatt Regency, Iberostar Paraiso and Club Las Velas so I'm well aware that Mexico is Mexico and sometimes things are out of your control. However, I have never been more disappointed with a resort than I was with the Vallarta Palace. We got delayed on our flight, so we arrived 12 hours late at Midnight upon our arrival they said we they had no rooms left and sent us to a different hotel. I would also like to clarify that we are not Palace Resort members and would have been prime timeshare candidates so I'm not sure that there was any system to who got the boot and who stayed. Gustavo at the front desk told us we would be given transportation to and from the hotel back to the Vallarta Palace and we would have deluxe rooms at our new resort with ocean view and hot tubs. All of this was not true, just an effort to get us to leave. He tried to get us to sign a sheet that said we had "voluntarily" chose to leave our resort - we refused. We asked to talk to the manager but there was no one there in a management position at that time of night. I tried to work with Travelocity to secure my room I was "guaranteed" but to no avail. The next morning we went back to talk to the manager. As you can imagine he never showed up even though we waited patiently and were very persistent. The best we ever got was the front desk manager.
We did get to use the resort while we there even though we stayed at The Paradise Village. It wasn't convenient to do so, but allowed me the opportunity to scope out the VP. The pros were that the rooms though small are very nice and we thought the Japanese restaurant was very good(get the Terrayki Shrimp!). However, the breakfast, lunch, and Brazilian restaurants were actually bad. The other complaints you may have read on the resort: no shade at the pool, lack of a swim up bar, bad service, etc are all valid. Overall, I came a way with a feeling that it's a nice resort, but the value equation isn't there in comparison to other resorts like the Allegro, Paradise Village, Marival and Samba. If money isn't a problem I would certainly upgrade to the Grand Velas.
Vallarta Palace was Great!!
We too had booked a vacation at the Moon Palace Resort but due to the hurricane we went to the VP. We arrived on Dec. 10 thru the 19th. Upon arrival we too were wisked off to the Paradise Village Resort, not happy campers about that. The Paradise Village is not what we paid for and someone should have told us in advacne that this was going to happen. It was not all inclusive and we where limited to what we could eat and drink. Also, we were charged $28.75 for room service, all we had brought up to us was a packet of coffee for the next morning, no sample size toiletries, I had no toothpaste as I thought that the VP was going to furnish that for us. I felt as though I lost two days of my vacation but the VP did give us $200.00 in resort money to pay for side trips. Two days there and we finally got a room at the VP and the vacation was great from that point forward. Service was excellent and the staff was very attentive. I would go back to the VP but would check with someone first to be sure we had a room available when we arrive. Be sure you take the whale watching tour, it is fabulous!! The crew on the sailboat where excellent and very personable.
Water Taxi PuertoVallarta
Beat the traffic and the heat and enjoy a scenic ride from Vallarta Palace/Paradise Village to Downtown in 30 minutes. If you're lucky, some dolphins or breaching whales might show up! Don't take the water taxi if you're planning to do a lot of shopping. The ride back may be a little bumpy due to the afternoon wind. You may get a little wet sitting on the right side (facing the bow) of the boat.
My wife and I had a great time at Vallarta Palace. I have read many of the reviews and do agree, if you are staying for an extended amount of time the food can get a little old. We were there for four days and our choices of different types of food had pretty much ran out. The rooms were large and beautiful. Most of the service was very fast and it was very easy to communicate with the staff. Being that I live in Texas, I should understand more Spanish than I do, but everyone was easy to communicate with. We had a great time and we would like to go back again. We do believe that we would have a lot more fun with a group of six or more people at Vallarta Palace.
Research before you go. . .
My fiance and I spent a week a the Vallarta palace December 16th-23rd. I researched many resorts before choosing Vallarta Palace. I have ony a few complaints that hopefully will help others in choosing an all inclusive resort. First the pictures on VP's web site are deceiving, the resort is very small. VP only has 8 floors on the corner ends of the resort and 10 in the main building. We were on the 8th floor but every room also is over all the activities. . .so if you want peace FORGET it. First night we listened to Karaoke until 11:00pm not the ocean we came to hear in our room. Second the halls are very loud, bring ear plugs also our room had a dividing door which was like living with the people next to us (sounds we would have rather not listened to). Do not plan on taking a shower while at VP the water scolds for seconds, freezes next and then reverts back to scolding. . . did this whole trip. Also the water backs up in shower but goes down if toilet is flushed??? The people who work at VP are great and treat you like royalty. But I would never return just do to the size of the resort and the lack of peacefulness people deserve to have when in a tropical haven. Note: Do not remove the bracelet you have to wear the entire stay at VP they will not let you check out nor leave if you do not. I took mine off in the scolding shower the night before we were to check out and they almost made us late for our plane in refsuing to let us leave without producing the bracelet at checkout! Hope this helps out.
Not what we expected
My honeymoon was originally scheduled for Moon Palace but due to Hurricane Wilma, we went to Vallarta Palace. Our trip was from 11/30 through 12/7. When we arrived on Nov. 30th, we were told that the hotel was overbooked and they would put us up at a nearby 5 star hotel. With no other options, we went to the substitute hotel (which was not a 5 star hotel - it was a 3 star at best). We were assured by hotel mamagement that we would be given the honeymoon suite due to the overbooking. When we checked in on Saturday (after 3 days at the substitute hotel) we were told our room was not quite ready...so after an hour we went to our room...which was not the honeymoon suite. The room was fine but small....beds were small but comfortable.
Overall, the hotel lacks service and what service they do have is poor. The property is beautiful however it does not compare to Moon Palace. We are Palace Premier Members - it almost seemed to be held against us as the hotel was catering to those folks they were trying to sign on as members. We were not even offered any of the free services - it was only after asking that we were told about them. Not a return destination for me. I have been all over in Mexico and this was by far the most disappointing. The restaurants were very average.
We, like many of the others who wrote reviews, had originally booked our stay at Moon Palace. However, due to the Hurricane we had to re-book to somewhere else. Having been to Moon Palace in the past and loved it, we thought the Vallarta Palace would be just as great. Well, not so much. I do have many good things to say about the resort and only a few bad. First, the good..........the resort is absolutely beautiful. I loved our room with the hot tub and in room liquor dispenser. Our view was beautiful too. The service was good and were always treated politely and promptly. The hotel was clean and the staff was friendly and attentive. The drinks were made well and sometimes too well (so strong you had to ask for LESS liquor). The spa treatments were awesome too. I highly recommend the holistic massage. You can see and hear the ocean while you are getting your massage and it is amazing.
Okay, now for the bad..........there was absolutely NO NIGHTLIFE!!!!! Although the staff tried to put on themed shows and such, all activities were over by 11pm. One night there was kareoke with a lounge packed full of people which was really fun, but it ended by 10:45pm, just as the crowd was really getting into it. Now, it is not like we are 21 years old and huge party animals, but we wanted to have some fun. We came down with 2 other couples to celebrate our 30th Birthdays. It was our 1st big trip without the kids so staying up past 10:30pm would've been nice. We did go downtown to party at a few of those bars (Carlos O'Briens, Hilo, Senor Frogs, etc) which was a blast but we had to pay for it. A cab ride was 16.00 each way plus drinks/shots at the bar, for an esitmated total of about $100.00 for just a few hours. Not exactly what we had planned when we decided to do the all inclusive thing so we could drink as much as we wanted (included). If VP would have had a nightclub or the activities would have lasted until after the street lights came on, we would have had a much better time. We have done Moon Palace in Cancun and Sandals Resorts in Jamaica and didn't ever have to leave the resort to find a party. The other bad thing was the food. The Brazilian restaurant served the same food everyday and it wasn't that good. The Italian restaurant and the Asian were okay though. All in all, if you are looking for a beautiful, realaxing resort and just want to hang by the beach or pool and then eat dinner and go to bed early, this is the place for you. If you want to party AT ALL, go somewhere else.
My wife and I and our 3 month old baby booked our trip to puerto vallarta because of the hurricane that hit cancun. when we first arrived, we were picked up at the airport and told that in order to get transportation back to the airport on our return we would have to attend a meeting at 10:00 am the following morning. we did not attend the meeting because we heard that this hotel pushed time shares. We were glad we missed the meeting because we heard that the meeting was for just that. when we arrived at the hotel we were pleasantly surprised. we were greeted with a glass of champagne and the new renovations at the hotel looked great. very chic. However, they took us to the oceanview room that we payed for and could barely see the ocean. The rooms were too small because the hot tub took up half the room. We asked to change rooms to the room we paid for and were told that the hotel was overbooked and that they couldn't move us. the crib that we requested didn't fit anywhere in the room except in the bathroom. we also bottle feed our baby and the fuse to the minibar and t.v kept blowing and so we couldn't keep the babies milk cold. for all you drinkers that also meant the beer was warm. They still wouldn't change our room. I had to move the 100 pound t.v. cabinet to reset the fuse every time it blew because the staff didn't want to keep being called. I still couldn't change rooms. The food at the hotel was mediocre at best with the odd highlight.
The entertainers for the night shows couldn't dance.
There were no umbrellas around the pool so you coudn't get enough shade if you wanted it. The4 pool temperature was freezing and I am from Canada. The poolside entertainment was loud and annoying and there was nowhere to escape it. The wait staff was very nice. they never expected a tip and they tried very hard to give you top of the line service. they didn't always achieve this but they tried. the beach was very nice and the spa is second to none. The golfing is also very good and very close. after 9 days of being there we recieved a letter under the door saying that there was a promotion because they again had overbooked the hotel. if we moved to another hotel they would give us three free nights in any palace resort. Because we didn't like this hotel all that much we thought we would check out the offer. They said we could move to paradise village and enjoy all the same ammenities there and get 3 free nights. we decided to do that. after checking out the following day it took 4 hours to transfer us over to the new hotel. when we got to the new hotel we found out that the all inclusive was only three meals a day and no mini-bar. we also had to now sign for everything. we had no oceanview and did not have free access to the gym. after getting the run around and finally getting a hold of the general manager for palace resorts his response was you knew what you were getting when you transferred. He said the best we can do for you is for you to come back to the hotel and we'll give you the same room again. I declined.
While I was there at the front counter for the four hours transferring I overheard one lady say her brides maids were coming in the next day and that the hotel had cancelled their rooms.The desks response was I can't find them in the computer , sorry. that was it she was out of luck because they were over booked. I heard another couple say that they had been sent to another hotel the night before and were now back again to check in the hotel's response was sorry you have to stay at a different hotel again tonight. these overbookings were not a one time occurence and if you go to this hotel you have a very high chance of getting bumped . our room was not cleaned until 6:30 pm the second night we were there as well. This is a beatiful spot and with a change of management and some real training of the staff,it could be great. However, the present service makes it intollerable. I am being generous by giving it 2 stars. We were there for ten days and they never did manage to change our room even though we had a three month old sleeping in the bathroom and fridge that blew it's fuse 7 times while we were there. if you could not lift large objects you wouldn't have had t.v or cold beer. we also stayed at paradise village which was not as modern but the rooms are larger,they had a small zoo, the food is better, the pool is warmer but it is not as all inclusive.(only 3 meals a day and no mini bar) gym is also not included.managed much better but it felt like the waiters expected tips even though the tips were supposed to be included. they pushed the time shares at both places but less at vallarta palace.
our below average vacation
We picked this location as a last resort since Secrets Excellence where we were supposed to go originally was destroyed.
The rooms and the building itself looked ok, exactly as expected based on the photos on palaceresorts.com
The property is very small.
Food is below average. the menu doesn't change at all. Every day you will find exactly the same assortment... more of a diner quality... imagine spending 7 nights at Denny's. so the food sucked...
i'm not really picky, but this was just bad...
entertainment... hmmm how do i say it best.. entertainment was below high school level...
there is 1 show Mystere that is worth seeing... the rest of the shows were just HORRIBLE... there is absolutely NO entertainment at all for any ages in that resort...
The beach is ok.. the ocean is not calm in that region as expected, so you'll see a lot of waves...
i would recommend getting massages there since they really do have great massage therapists working at the spa...
overall, i am NOT coming back to that resort, since in my opinion it was the most horrible all inclusive that i've ever stayed in...
Goin to Nuevo Vallarta for the first time. Just wondering if anybody has been to vallarta palace recently, and how is it? Beaches, local restaurants, etc. Any info would help. Thanks in advance.
Nuevo Vallarta - Grand Mayan hotel
Stayed at Grand Mayan in Nuevo, and I love it. I know people have had bad experiences with the sales folk in the past, but we haven't. In fact, my dad, who owns the timeshare, likes them. This is from a guy, my dad, who's been working the timeshare folks over for free breakfasts for twenty years. The hotel itself is primo. Really nice staff. Beautiful pools and grounds. Love the water slide! Great views and lovely, quiet beach.