Our family spent the holidays at this resort. We travel often to PV and usually rent a home but this year, opted to stay at this beautiful resort. We opted for breakfast only there are many good restaurants that we enjoy. And, it's always fun to venture out to Old Town to visit the art galleries and markets.
THE GOOD: PV has some beautiful, well designed upscale homes so we were glad Garza Blanca fit the bill as we were too late this year to secure a good home. The property is tastefully designed, upscale with thick bath towels, luxurious bathrooms and attention to detail - almost to the standards of a Four Season or Ritz Carlton property but still falling short. It's sad because it wouldn't take much to reach that standard. Pillow options (no down pillows) complimentary coffee provided each morning, etc.
The front staff are great - from security, check in, bellmen, etc but you can tell many of them are not seasoned in hospitality.
THE BAD: As with any property during the holiday season, they have a higher occupancy rate. Luckily, they have an opportunity to make good money with restaurant, room service, etc but they often seem unable to keep the pace. One morning, we waited 15 minutes for someone to take our order. We found the coffee pots and poured ourselves coffee and handed the pot to others who were waiting. An hour and fifteen minutes with other tables with kids screaming isn't paradise for us. The next morning we called room service for breakfast. We thought we could relax and just wait. After one hour, breakfast never came. The next morning, we took a taxi to old town and ate at a local pancake house and had a full breakfast in 10 minutes. We tried breakfast again in the restaurant and because we were early, breakfast was timely. BTW, the breakfast is great if you get your order hot from the kitchen. The next morning, we tried 9:30, they were packed and again, service was at a crawl. I spoke with the manager and he said after New Years, a lot of their workers just didn't show up. I suggested setting up a buffet. Like most hotels, elegant breakfast buffets require 1/3 the staff. He said he didn't have the equipment. We went decided to go to Mega, bought breakfast food and enjoyed fixing breakfast in our rooms (We had two bedroom suite with full kitchen) and actually enjoyed this all the more. I would just skip breakfast until they get the equipment to have a buffet.
OK The REAL BAD: Because the website was confusing, we called to make sure they had internet in the rooms. The website said there was a fee. The reservation folks said internet was now free but they DID NOT HAVE WiFi. So we brought along an ethernet cord and router so we could use our two laptops and four iPads. Come on, every home, villa and hotel in PV has full WiFi and some with Vonage - free US calls. But we came prepared.
We were surprised to learn they now have Wifi in the rooms. The reservation folks didn't know this. But our excitement was dashed as we soon found out the internet didn't work well, was spotty or down. This all happened days before the so called fiscal cliff and as with many American's most were busy trying to stay on top of their investments. I shared a taxi with a guy so we could go into town and use the WiFi at the cafe to stay on top of year end business matters. It's hard to explain why a hotel of this magnitude, catering to a market willing to spend $15,000 for their family vacation and no provide WiFi. I was told there was only one internet provider south of town and it wasn't dependable. Well, before I broke ground on this property, spend $50 million to develop it, I would make sure it had water, electricity and internet. Particularly if you're catering to a middle to upper middle class market.
I do believe these are all minor problems that can quickly be remedied. They are close to being a 5 star hotel but until they get these bugs fixed, they will not have the repeat customers they'll need to stay in business. But, there are some very fine people who work at this property and who are really trying to give good service. Hopefully, the management will give them the training and back they need to accomplish the task.
And for those who plan on using the full, deluxe kitchens. They don't provide much. We wanted to make nachos - not pan for the oven. Wanted to boil pasta, no pot to boil the pasta. Small frying pan and pot. Few dishes, toaster, can opener, coffee pot, knives. Not even a cheese grater. I'm sure if you ask, they might be able to provide more but we never tried. At this point, we just wanted to be independent.