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“A GREAT TIME!” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Friendly Vallarta Resort

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Friendly Vallarta Resort
3.0 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Km 2.5 Blvd. Francisco Medina Ascencio, Puerto Vallarta 48300, Mexico (Formerly Friendly Hola Vallarta Resort and Spa)   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #27 of 121 hotels in Puerto Vallarta
Nanaimo, British Columbia, Canada
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“A GREAT TIME!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 14, 2013

A cosy room, a king bed, good food, hot sun, tons of activities (that we didn't bother to participate in, we were too busy soaking up the rays), wonderful staff, and GREAT guests! All combine to make a fabulous vacay. I highly recommend the Friendly Vallarta.

Matter of fact, we talked to a number of people who said that's they've stayed at other, more 'swanky' resorts, and found the Friendly to be better all around. They said the food was better, the beach area was bigger, the staff far more accommodating, and the rooms bigger.

We were at the Friendly in April of 2011, and again just last week in January of 2013. We were impressed in 2011, but even more so in 2013 because of a few small, but important changes: Peanut butter at breakfast (ask for it), real Heinz ketchup, more fresh food at every buffet, and new furniture in the lobby.

Thank you, Friendly Vallarta!

One little caveat... not specific to the Friendly... is that the first week of January is a Mexican school holiday, which made both the resort and PV VERY VERY busy. I prefer a little less crowds, so next time, I will wait till mid January for a vacay. Just personal preference.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Friendly V, Gerente at Friendly Vallarta Resort, responded to this review, January 15, 2013
Hi Karyn-grace C!

Thank you so much for sharing your experience, and for choosing our hotel to enjoyed your holiday, we feel flattered with all you wrote about us and is very nice to know how much you love to be here in our hotel, thank you for everything!. See you soon! :)
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (303)
Date | Rating
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  • English first
  • French first
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  • Any
English first
Winnipeg, Canada
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 12, 2013

We stayed here from January 2 to 9, 2013, and having never been to an all inslusive resort or to Puerto Vallarta we totally loved it. All the staff was super friendly and helpful, especially Hector, Vincent, Double Double, Carlos and Fidel. The property was clean throughout, good food and usually a few different items in the buffet each day and to our daugher, the best hot dogs. We were on the 10th floor, the view was awesome but the entertainment from downstairs was loud when the balcony door was open. Usually it was quiet by 11:00 to 11:30 pm. We were treated like royalty with all the drinks and food offered, to changing our larger pesos to smaller, to getting a taxi, to bus information and to checking in for our flight back. An exellent cleaning job in our room each day. The girls in the lobby were also super in serrving us. We loved the staff and wouldn't hesitate to stay here again. In fact, we hope to come back as soon as possible.

Room Tip: Get a higher floor if possible. May provided tips helps with service.
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Friendly V, Gerente at Friendly Vallarta Resort, responded to this review, January 15, 2013
Hi marthajanzen!

Thank you so much for your review, we feel really flattered. All your words are a great reward to us and we're glad you enjoyed your stay. Thank you so much for every detail you describe about your holiday, this will be really helpful for others. We hope to see you soon! :)
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Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 12, 2013 via mobile

We were there last year with a group of 6 & will be back there on Wednesday with a group of 8. We are all soooo excited! 4 of the 8 were there before, but we know the new 4 will not be disappointed. Where do I start...... Service is excellent, rooms are always clean as well as the entire facility. Food is superb. Everyone working there is so kind & accommodating. Feels like we are going home. Wouldn't stay anywhere else.

  • Stayed January 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Friendly V, Gerente at Friendly Vallarta Resort, responded to this review, January 15, 2013
Hi TherealDeborita!

It is so nice to know that we will see you again, thank you for trusting us again and also for your review! We will see you soon, everything is ready for your arrival :)
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Victoria, Canada
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 12, 2013

My wife and I have travelled to Puerto Vallarta 3-4 times per year for the last ten years. We have stayed at everything from Barcello and Dreams, to the Canto del Sol and Decameron properties.
While the Friendly is an older resort the staff make for any "Physical Plant" short falls. The only word we heard from any staff member was "Yes" to our requests. The food was reasonable and comparable to most other resorts. After all it is Mexico the food supplies and preparation is different - you Think! Nice touch on the nightly 10:00PM to 5:00 AM dining/snacks. The specialty resturant provided excellent meals supported by first class staff. The beach front restarant/snack bar was great and open for breakfast.
The beach was large and accessible providing shady, part sun, full sun areas and a roped area for a reprieve from the beach vendors,
Our room was spacious and clean. Our cleaning staff were efficient and extremely pleasant. The bonus was we enjoyed a fabulous view across the entire bay from our balcony.
The location provides great access to all of the surrounding areas and with a deep setback from the main road all you could hear from the balcony was the sound of the waves.
We enjoyed our stay and would not hesitate to return to this resort. If you are looking for a good resort at a reasonable price with great staff then check out the Friendly Vallarta.

Room Tip: If you want a great view take the main tower floor 6 and above. The higher you go the quieter it get...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Friendly V, Gerente at Friendly Vallarta Resort, responded to this review, January 15, 2013
Hi mgs195658!

It was so nice to read your review, thank you so much for everything you say about your experience. We would love to see you once again, please feel free to come back anytime! :)
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Calgary
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 8, 2013

January 13 will be our 4th time to this resort and we can't wait. Sergio, Abraham and the rest of the staff have alway's made our stay's extremely memorable. We went to Cuba last year for a change and we kept comparing everything to the Friendly Vallarta, thus we are are coming back this year.
The house keeping services have always been fantastic with the towels being made into animals, etc everyday.
See you in a few days.
Rod and Judy
Calgary

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Friendly V, Gerente at Friendly Vallarta Resort, responded to this review, January 31, 2013
Hi Rod L!

Thanks for everything you say about us, it's nice to know that you enjoyed your stay. We would love to welcome you back anytime! :)
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lloydminster, Canada
2 reviews
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 7, 2013

Had been at this hotel twice before and overlooked a lot of things because I found the staff great and the rooms clean. This time things went downhill right from the get go. There were seven of us in four rooms and I had requested that we all have balconies together on the same floor - we booked at the beginning of October for December 21st so I thought that would give them plenty of time. When I called at the beginning of December to confirm I was given the brush of by an incredibly rude person and told if it could happen it would but they would not say yes or no. I thought it was a pretty simple request - apparently not. Two rooms were together and the other two were at the opposite end of the tower on different floors.

The food was eidible. That is the best thing I can say. After the first god-awful supper, we ate down town every night. The liquour was so watered down it was pathetic. The room was half assed cleaned about every other day. One of our travel companions had a horrific sewer smell in his bathroom that was never fixed. The front desk staff were miserable every day. Trying to break larger pesos into smaller bills was painful to say the least. The only way we could get anyone to do it was to subtly threaten not to tip anyone and then, surprise, suprise we got some smaller denomiations. One of our party was ripped off by 100 pesos in doing so by the "Freindly Staff".
Catching a cab anywhere was an experience - I know that it is not the fault of the hotel that the cab drivers did not speak a word of english, but when we stopped at the front gate so that our driver could get some direction as to where we wanted to go the fellow on the gate couldn't help. He just shrugged his shoulders and walked away. So we stumbled through some sign language and got to our destination in the end with some laughs between us and the good natured cabbie.

They finally got a bathroom on the beach (they should maybe spend a little cash on some upgrades to the entire building - get some of the shoes and books and mops off of the roof) but it was always both out of toilet paper and smelled like urine.

The final straw was this - we have stayed in this hotel before as I mentioned, and have had flights leave late and so kept one room so that we had a place to store our luggage and have a nap, etc. We were charged $90 AD for this. When I asked about it at the front desk the day before I was told it would be $175. I was a little surprised, but accepted for the convienence of staying where we were. When I signed off on the voucher it was in pesos and I never thought to question the amount and when I got home and checked my credit card I was charged $282. I have sent email after email after email to have it straightened out and all I get is "You signed the voucher". Now I know that this hotel will make some half assed apology on this sight to make it look like they have made an effort to rectify the situation. They haven't and they won't. Just do yourself a favor and don't stay here. Ever.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with friends
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Friendly V, Gerente at Friendly Vallarta Resort, responded to this review, January 10, 2013
Hi ABSKTraveller,

Thank you very much for sharing your experience with us and also for your suggestions. We apologize for the inconvenience during your stay, we will contact you on our own. We have taken steps to ensure that this cannot happen again in the future. Thanks for alerting us of what happened. We hope to see you soon, you will always be welcome in Friendly Vallarta.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
25 helpful votes 25 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 6, 2013

I read all the reviews before going and I have to say this hotel was about what was expected. It wasn't fancy, but it was clean and the staff were generally helpful and very friendly. When we checked in they tried to give us a room on the 3rd floor, and we insisted on something higher up. We ended up on the 6th floor of the tower. There are only 2 non-smoking floors 6 and 7. It was a spectacular view from the 6th floor you can see the whole bay, all the way from the mountains in the distance, to the downtown, to the beautiful sea view. This was the best part of the hotel. Several mornings we could see pods of dolphins in the ocean. Bring your binoculars. One day from the beach we saw 3 whales in the distance. I was impressed with the wildlife despite all the development in P.V. We also saw beautiful white birds with green feet on the beach down by the river inlet and one late afternoon baby sea turtles were hatching and volunteers were on hand making sure they got to the sea.

Food: the food was generally quite good (with breakfast being the best) but yes, it was repetitive. Eat breakfast on the patio that is upstairs from the lobby bar. It is a nicer experience than the restaurant. We ate at the "gourmet" restaurant one night. I can't remember what I had, but it was good...not excellent

Location: The reason we booked this hotel was that it was not too far from downtown PV. We took the bus downtown and back every day (65 pesos = about 65 cents). It's about a 10 minute bus ride. The malecon has greatly expanded in the 15 years since my last trip to PV and it is always lively and fun.

Noise: I'd read a few reviews that mentioned noise and was a bit worried about that. I like to sleep with the sliding door open to hear the ocean and have the fresh breeze as opposed to having the air conditioning on. I would say 4 nights out of the 7 were very noisy. This was the biggest negative to the hotel. Loud groups would make noise down by the pool late into the night. It was quieter if you closed the door and put the air conditioning on - but even though it is central air, it was extremely noisy and it never shut off. I can't imagine how the noise was if you were in one of the lower buildings or lower floors. Nothing was ever done about the noise by hotel staff, so I guess this is the one thing you have to live with if you go here. Let me clarify, to my knowledge there weren't any large groups there when we were visiting, I think this is just the nature of the place.

Overall: comfortable, excellent deal, great location, clean (no bugs), noisy.

Room Tip: Ask for a higher floor in the main building. If you want non smoking - there are only two floors (in...
See more room tips
  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Friendly V, Gerente at Friendly Vallarta Resort, responded to this review, January 10, 2013
Gillian_M112!

Thank you so much for sharing your experience, we regret any inconvenience during your stay, is not our style contradict our guests, so thank you for all your suggestions are helpful for us. Regarding the food, we have every day different things to please to all our guests, chicken, beef, seafood, pasta, salads, desserts, drinks etc. However always be a challenge for us to satisfy all our guests, but we will keep looking your satisfaction. We apologize for noisy nights, all our evening activities end up 10:30 pm, this way all our guests can rest overnight. Come back soon we would love to welcome you anytime :)
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Additional Information about Friendly Vallarta Resort

Address: Km 2.5 Blvd. Francisco Medina Ascencio, Puerto Vallarta 48300, Mexico (Formerly Friendly Hola Vallarta Resort and Spa)
Location: Mexico > Jalisco > Puerto Vallarta
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#10 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#15 Family Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#15 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#24 Romantic Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Friendly Vallarta Resort 3*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
An oceanfront hotel in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.100% Family. Renovated Rooms. Friendly Staff. Wide beach. Food Variety. 24-hour food and beverage program. Unlimited domestic alcoholic beverages, and non-alcoholic drinks. Main pool with children's wading area. Indoor and outdoor "Kid’s Club" with fully supervised children's activities. Gym and Spa. Entertainment room. Daily activity programs. Nightly entertainment and weekly live shows. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hola Puerto Vallarta Club & Spa
Hola Vallarta
Hola Puerta Vallarta
Hola Hotel Puerto Vallarta
Hola Puerto Vallarta Resort
Hola Club Puerto Vallarta
Hotel Hola Vallarta
Hola Resort Puerto Vallarta
Hola Club Spa Puerto Vallarta

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