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“Name of resort says it all !!!,!” 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 #24 of 119 hotels in Puerto Vallarta
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Name of resort says it all !!!,!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 19, 2013 via mobile

Stayed here in march 2013 my wife and myself along with our two children 4 and 5 years old boys. We had a great time and the workers are the friendliest at this resort that we have ever been too. The lobby area is a little out dated with the couches. The pool and ground are very well kept and cleaned daily. The room we had was on the 11th floor facing ocean, could not asked for a better room and view. The rooms area very clean and updated. No fridges in the room and beds are hard as every resort. But I did talk to Fernando and with a little $ was able to get a fridge and some foamys for the beds. Definatly worth going to for the right price as we did get a good deal.

Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
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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, April 23, 2013
Hi Logangp.

It was wonderful for us to read all about your experience with us. Thank you for sharing this review, it will be helpful to others. We are pleased to know how much you enjoy our hotel. Please feel free to come back anytime! :)
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1,329 people have reviewed this hotel

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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 (299)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Brandon, Canada
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
2 of 5 stars Reviewed April 18, 2013

We, like many others read a lot of these reviews before booking this trip. In all honesty our group feels that many of them are fake because there's no way that people could rave about this hotel! We went for 5 days and were ready to leave by about day 3. There really isn't much to do at the resort at all and the best part of the trip were the two whole days that we spent in town. The staff really aren't that friendly, other than a few bar tenders. We actually found the girls at the desk to be slightly rude and acted irritated to be dealing with us. We asked for a safe and a fridge at check in and received neither. We didn't ask again because we used our friends' safe instead but at check out they had a hard time believing us that we were never given one.

The beds are the worst we've ever slept in and we're really not that picky. One of the woman in our group had back and shoulder issues because of these beds and barely slept for the whole trip. My husband and I slept relatively okay but that's not that hard to do after consuming a large amount of alcohol. The hotel is older but very clean just like everyone else has said. The entertainment is lacking. The beach was fine for the pacific coast but there is a much nicer beach about 400 feet to the right of the resort. The hot tubs had a green scum floating around the water surface daily. At one point we ordered a round of drinks on the beach and the staff member took our tip and never returned until we flagged him down 30 mins later. The Melecon was so much fun, we walked the whole strip twice and had a blast. We had a great time at the flea market and bought some neat things to bring home. La Leche is a restaurant a few doors down from this resort and it was amazing! The Blue Shrimp in town is also one of the best meals we've ever eaten in our lives!

So let's get to the absolute worst part of the trip by far.. the food. TERRIBLE. The most inedible I've ever experienced in my life and we're seasoned travellers. I actually lost weight on the trip. The omelettes at breakfast and the fish fingers at the beach restaurant were about the only thing any of us ate. We were all really excited to try out the a la cart restaurant and got dressed up twice to go. We went twice because we had nothing else to do and we thought the chef must have called in sick or something the first time. We tried 8 separate mains and appetizers and none of them were edible. My husband had the tomato soup as an appetizer and everyone at the table agreed that there must have been a mistake made when they poured it because it was actually gravy instead. This same "sauce" was poured over shrimp for one of our mains. We love seafood and everything we tried was very fishy tasting and was obviously frozen at one point. We are not food snobs by any means and happily eat at any regular Canadian chains and have never sent a dish back or complained in our lives.

I'm a positive person and have never written a review online about anything before but our whole group just felt so strongly about this experience that we needed to share. It blows my mind that there are legitament positive comments about the food, and the staff really aren't that friendly!!

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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Friendly V, Gerente at Friendly Vallarta Resort, responded to this review, April 23, 2013
Hi N0tAPickyPers0n.

Thank you very much for choosing our hotel, for sharing your experience and suggestions. TripAdvisor does not allow false reviews and it is impossible for us to make our own reviews, we love to read and learn from all the opinions from our past guests. Regarding the refrigerators and all the speacial requests, everything are subject to our availability, for example: our service is all inclusive, food and drink for 24 hours, that's why we do not include in-room refrigerators, but we have a few ones. All our guests can have food and drinks during all their stay. Our staff is responsible for cleaning swimming pools and hot tubs at night, so the next morning are clean and ready for use. Thank you very much for all your suggestions, we will not contradict you in any of your opinions because they are all important to us, and help us to improve. We hope you come back soon, you will always be welcome :)
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Winnipeg, Canada
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 16, 2013

I just returned from my second stay at Friendly Vallarta and had a great time again. I travelled alone with my 16 year daughter and returned to this resort after traveling with a friend last year. The staff are truly friendly and I found that once they knew you were a returning guest, they went a little more out of their way.
If you are under 30 to 40 you would likely spend more time up town at the bars as this Hotel Offers a Dance floor in the lobby on some nights and the entertainment is fun but not intended for a huge party crowd.
The wait staff are always around offering you a drink or a snack poolside and at the beach, this weather you have a tip in hand or not....we tended to tip when we ordered food to the beach or at the pool. Other hotels I have stayed at in PV only came by if you tipped every time.
The food was better than last year and there are lots of options...the beach restaurant had great clubhouse sandwiches, burgers, fries, pizza etc....
The lobby furniture is quite dated and should be replaced but there was no end to the cleanliness of the Hotel..staff were cleaning all the time.
If you don't want to hear the party music from the beach or lobby at night...stay above the 4th floor...can get quite loud and go late.
This hotel by far has the best beach in PV and one of the only ones that you can have chairs right up to the Ocean's edge. There is always staff to bring your chairs where you want and umbrellas. There were many families and kids seem to have a great time. There were also many Seniors which was fine by us. You meet a lot of other Canadians.
I don't recommend going around Easter or Mexican Spring break unless you have brushed up on your Spanish as the Hotel caters a little more to local tourists at these times.
I felt completely safe and we travelled by bus most of the time, walking other times. Sunday night is the night for Families on the Malecon with lots of entertainment and free shows....I definitely recommend the Pegaso sailing trip and go to hidden beach!! Wonderful trip....will definitely be back!!

Room Tip: Ask for Ocean view balcony...no upgrade fees....stay above 4th floor
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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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, April 23, 2013
Hi Laine B.

Thank you very much for all the good things you share with us your comment flattered us, we hope to see you soon at Friendly Vallarta :)
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Vancouver, Canada
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 15, 2013 via mobile

I read a lot if reviews before I booked that place...lots of people were complimenting their entertainment but once we got there we were very disappointed.we were a group of ten people and couldn't believe how early everything shut down there.ive stayed at a lot of places but no other hotel ever shut down the pools at eight and ended their boring entertainment at 9 pm.staff was awesome,most of them are super friendly.our group had 5 rooms,2 of them were supposed to be superior rooms but they were the exact same as our standard rooms.so it's not worth paying any extra money to book a so called superior room.i actually met a couple who was staying in "the penthouse"but she said their room was the same as our standard room,they were just on the top floor.food tastes good but it was the exact same for 5 days out of the week.it only changed on the beach dinner night and on the Mexican fiesta.doesnt take too long to get sick of the food.hotel is very old as well and needs to get renovated.we got a good deal on it but next time we said we are going to pay a few hundred dollarstore again and go to a higher end place since its totally worth it.my husband and I forgot our pool towels in one of our friends room one day.tey checked out earlier than day than we did since they had an earlier flight.by the time we noticed their room has already been cleaned and we had to pay 45 dollars for the towels which was outrageous since the towels were so old and thin that there wasn't much left of them.i told the lady at the front desk that I work at a hotel as well and we would never charged 45 dollars for towels all I got told was"different hotels,different towels".over all we had some fun since we were a big group and entertained ourselves but we met some other people who were disappointed about the food and entertainment as well.staff is mostly very friendly but I still wouldn't stay there again

  • Stayed April 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Friendly V, Gerente at Friendly Vallarta Resort, responded to this review, April 23, 2013
Hi Angie B.

Thank you very much for choosing our hotel to spent your vacations, we regret this unpleasant experience, but we want you to know that in Friendly Vallarta we have during all the week different activities in the beach and pool area, also many shows during each day. Drinks and food 24 hrs with different styles of cuisine like pasta, chicken, seafood, meat, desserts and various drinks, in addition our rooms have been remodeled and have also improved many areas of our hotel; we build new bathrooms at the beach, we remodeled the lobby area and also restaurants, among other things. All this to satisfy our guests. We hope you come back soon, and you can see that what happened will never happen again in our hotel, we guarantee! :)
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Edmonton
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 14, 2013

Thanks to all the staff at the Friendly Vallarta. We had an amazing time from the start to the end of the trip. The food was fresh and excellent. The chefs are the best of all the Hotels we have stayed at and by far better than the RUI chain up the beach, These guys know what hot off the grill really means (our chef was a lady with a sweet personality). The variety was simple but always hot and the buffet trays were clean around the edges. We loved having breakfast outside on the patio being offered excellent coffee and orange juice. The staff were extremely friendly and very entertaining. No one was excluded from getting a high five or a hug before leaving from breakfast. Getting set up at the beach was a breeze due to Abraham's excellent service. He is a great asset to the beach crowd. The room's were simple but clean. Bathrooms are definitely dated but the view from the main tower was spectacular.

Tony & Colleen

Room Tip: higher you go the better the view
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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, April 15, 2013
Hi EdmontonFunfinder.

Thank you so much for all your comments and your recommendations, we loved reading everything you wrote about your experience. For us is how to re-live those moments. We are pleased to hear that you enjoyed your vacation, finally that's one of the things that we want for all our guests. Please feel free to visit us anytime, see you soon! :)
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Edmonton
Top Contributor
58 reviews 58 reviews
28 hotel reviews
Reviews in 28 cities Reviews in 28 cities
38 helpful votes 38 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 11, 2013

We just returned from our 10 day vacation at the Friendly in Puerto Vallarta. We had a very nice time. We arrived early and were checked in immediately and given our bracelets and out on the beach soon after. We didn’t spend time by the pool, but set up on the beach on a daily basis. Abraham is one of the hardest working employees at the resort. He works tirelessly to set up chairs, with mats if you’d like and umbrellas and tables. It seemed that there were always enough chairs and umbrellas to go around. There are many peddlers who walk around all day. They are not pushy if you say no and quite nice if you want to chat with them. We were reluctant to go into the pool as the resort was quite crowded especially leading up to Easter….seemed like a lot of people drinking in there and not ever leaving ;)

The rooms are very basic, but as most everyone else has reported they are very clean. The maids do a fantastic job! There are complementary safes in room and they still use regular keys to unlock the doors. The beds are hard so we ordered the pads that I’d read about others using and it did help. Again, this is not a 5 star hotel, so it is adequate. The only time we spent in the room was to shower and sleep.

We did have opportunity to sample all the restaurants. You could choose from two buffets for breakfast. You could eat at the outside buffet that was upstairs or at the buffet by the pool. These options were also open for dinner and the one by the pool for lunch as well. The breakfast buffet had the usual variety of hot and cold dishes and although it didn’t seem to have as much food as other places we have visited, I’m not sure if that was because there were more stations of the same foods at the other places. There definitely was something for everyone and the fresh fruit was delicious. You could sit down at the restaurant by the pool for lunch or grab a plate and take it out to the beach to eat. The restaurant by the beach had a menu on our first few days of the vacation, then ended up having a buffet after that. It had burgers, fries, pizza etc. We followed the advice of one of the previous reviewers and ordered the shrimp to be delivered to us on the beach….one word….fantastic! What a great treat! We also ordered coconut shrimp to be served at one of the restaurants for dinner one night. We ate at the a la carte a few times and enjoyed all the dishes we tried. We especially loved the waiter who came around with the dessert cart and made pictures on our plate. He “drew” a rabbit, koala, car etc. He was fun to kid around with….we asked for the Picasso drawings on our plate. Other than the regular restaurants, there was also a sweet corner with pastries and coffees and hot chocolate. We don’t drink coffee, but the lady working there was very happy and smiley whenever we saw her.

The staff is very friendly, however, we’ve found staff to always be super friendly at any of the resorts we have visited in Mexico if you talk to them and make an effort. Many thanks to Raoul and Monica for arranging to order the shrimp for us. We did tip everyone and always have no matter where we stayed. It seems that people are more apt to tip here as there are many repeat visitors who have gotten to know the staff…..perhaps this is why everyone reviews this resort as super friendly. The entertainment staff was not our favorite. We’ve found that the shows here were the weakest we’ve seen at any of the resorts other than the circus show and that had actual gymnasts performing, not the entertainment staff. They didn’t seem to make a huge effort to engage many other than those in their age bracket.

The drinks were as someone else mentioned….every bartender does things a bit different, but were all good. We liked the drink of the day as it enabled us to try something new that we wouldn’t have otherwise known about. We liked the Electric Lemonade and Black Forest. We found some of the drinks kind of aspartame tasting especially the strawberry ones.

As I said earlier, we were there in the week leading up to Easter and it was getting progressively more crowded. With a greater number of people they then offered a menu at the restaurant on the beach in the evenings and opened a small breakfast buffet on the beach. There was also something grilling either by the pool or on the beach daily. There were different kinds of tacos…beef, chicken, shrimp and on Fridays they had huge Mahi Mahi and Red Snapper barbecuing on the beach.

Overall we were satisfied with our stay and feel like we got full value.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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 1
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Friendly V, Gerente at Friendly Vallarta Resort, responded to this review, April 12, 2013
Hi Windsurfer27.
.
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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trenton, nj
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
45 helpful votes 45 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 10, 2013

First let me say that we are a “young couple” in our fifties... We booked Friendly Vallarta thru Orbitz, which had the best price and all our transfers and flights were flawless. I had emailed the resort before arriving requesting a king size bed, non-smoking room on an upper floor, our request was granted with no problem. I also told them via email that it was my other halfs birthday that day, but nothing special was done for him.

As stated by all the other reviews the staff at this resort are the great. Everyone could not have been nicer or “FRIENDLIER”....Abraham on the beach is the “BEST”, he works extremely hard and remembers from day to day what you need, other great staff that stand out in my mind was Ruben the ceramics guy, we needed a few hours of shade, so we decided to paint a few things and when you are done Ruben glazes your work and touches it up so it looks perfect........The staff which provides drinks and food to you while sitting on the beach were phenominal, always asking what you needed or what they could get for you.....

As stated this resort is old and could use some repair, but it was clean and everything seemed in working order..... We never had to wait long for the elevator which was also a plus.

The food was good, not great.....always found something to eat at each meal, we did book the “gourmet” restaurant 3 nights and that was very nice and had wonderful service, make sure to ask for the "Spanish coffee” at the end of your meal “yummy”.....Let me also say making reservations at the gourmet restaurant was very easy compared to other all inclusives we have stayed at, go to the buffet right near the lobby at 9:00 am for that evenings dinner, you can be seated at 6, 6:30 - 8, 8:30, the gentlemen there also told us there was a dress code, but that was not enforced at all, and another note this is an adult only restaurant. Friday night they had a “beach party” which we thought was great, good entertainment and good food at this event......

We unfortunately, can only go on vacation the week of Easter and the resort was full of locals also enjoying their Easter break, but they were fine and we never had a problem, so if you don’t like crowds do not pick a holiday week for this resort....

Friendly is in a perfect location, close to the airport and close to town “malecon”, we walked out to the road and caught a local bus, very convenient and fun.....

One other note was that we do tip thru out the week, but some folks we saw there did not, but the service remained that same for everyone.

Let me finish by saying if you are looking for a 5 star glitzy and glamourous resort DO NOT book here, but if you are looking for a nice relaxing vacation with no stress, this is the resort for you.....

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 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
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Friendly V, Gerente at Friendly Vallarta Resort, responded to this review, April 12, 2013
Hi missbigfish.
.
Thank you for sharing your experience, was very nice to read. We are very happy to know you enjoyed every moment at our hotel, our goal is that all our guests enjoy their vacation. Hope to see you soon! :)
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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
#13 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#13 Family Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#23 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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