The Grand Mayan, Nuevo Vallarta: The Grand Lyin'
There are tons of beautiful resorts with nice staff elsewhere, and you can stay anywhere, right? You should stay anywhere else. We will never stay at the Grand Lyin' again and will post our negative comments on the internet wherever possible. It's a shame this gorgeous, contemporary, lushly landscaped resort fails so miserably.
Reservation/concierge methods are unprofessional and deceptive. It is completely dishonest to let prospective patrons feel that there is any chance whatsoever of attaining an Ocean Front Unit at the resort when the units are completely filled with Timeshare Owners. As Ocean Front Timeshare Owners in Maui, HI, we should have a comparable unit at the resort with our trade. We also deserve to have this confirmation made to us BEFORE we make a reservation at the resort so that we might book elsewhere when our requests can't be met.
The Mayan Resorts make it seem as if such units may be available, "depending on the inventory available," when there never was the remotest possibility that there would indeed be any Ocean Front Units available at all. Even some owners there could not get an Ocean View. This is the second time this has happened to us when reserving with the Grand Mayan and we won't be giving them a third chance to ruin our week of vacation.
We were frustrated and humiliated at check -in while we were bounced as if in a pinball machine between the reservation staff and the timeshare staff, as we were trying to find a supervisor who could help us. Each claimed the other had all the power. All we were offered was a plastic bottle of water and an invitation to the timeshare presentation breakfast.
Have you ever seen the Coen Bros. film "Fargo?" Remember the scene when used car salesman Jerry Lundegaard pretends to go back to his manager when frustrated car buyers are given a Trucoat rust preventer they never ordered? Our check-in staff member went into some sort of similar act, pretending to go backstage somewhere to check on cancellations when he knew there was not a chance we could get the unit we wanted -- at any time during our week. We even offered to take a smaller unit for a chance of an Ocean Front unit. We did everything we could do to confirm an Ocean Front unit before, during, and after our arrival, short of the monetary bribe that some guests felt forced to offer. Before departure, we emailed the resort's concierges and were never told that all the Ocean Front Units were booked by owners so that we might be able to exchange elsewhere. This is deceptive and dishonest.
Moreover, daily noise from loud lawn equipment and pounding jackhammers, plus the terrible views of a parking structure and street did not allow us to enjoy our balcony unit or our plunge pool, so these features are not really applicable if you cannot use them. There was never any sun and needless to say, sunset, available from our unit. The "Marina View" in the "New Building" eventually offered to us at check -in offered no view of a Marina whatsoever. Only the bobbing tops of sailboats appeared in the distance. It all would have been funny if it weren't so humiliating, frustrating, annoying and deceptive.
This is also a very noisy resort. The Lazy River and the wave pools need big machines to run them, and they make a lot of noise all day, including a siren that sounds remarkably like our tornado warnings here in the midwest. The activity pool has a DJ with a loudspeaker that you can here all over the resort. I love some great music and fun activities, don't get me wrong, but only when I want them. Not all day long. The only quiet is on the beach.
Fellow Americans like yourself will reserve pool chaises with their towels the night before. That was a new one for us.
Pack plenty of prozac. We were frustrated and upset the entire week of our stay. I spent every night in sleepless frustration with no help or apology from any manager or supervisor. Even when we complained when timeshare calls asking if we were enjoying our vacation were ignored, no remedy or apology was offered. We remain extremely angry, frustrated and humiliated from our experience.
This is a plastic, soulless, cliche of a mega-resort. Really too bad, because it is gorgeous. The following week we stayed 750 yards down the beach at a smaller, Mexican-run resort, The Villa Varadero, which we enjoyed so much more. It felt real, with real hospitality, Mexican guests, the serenity of lying on the beach with just the waves crashing and low music wafting over from the bar area. It wasn't perfect, by any means. BUT: our unit had floor to ceiling windows right on the bay which you could slide open to see frolicking dolphins, breaching whales, glorious sunsets. While it had none of the luxury of the Grand Mayan, our best memories will be of this resort and its lovely staff, NOT of the Grand Lyin'. My advice is to ask yourself what you really want from a trip to Mexico.
Beautifully landscaped grounds with birds, turtles, iguanas. Beautifully designed rooms. Great pools. Right on the beach of Banderas Bay.
WE WILL NEVER GO BACK THERE.