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“Casa Velas - not impressed” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Casa Velas

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Casa Velas
4.5 of 5 Resort (All-Inclusive)   |   Pelicanos 311, Marina Vallarta, Puerto Vallarta 48354, Mexico (Formerly the Regent hotel and Quinta Real)   |  
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Ranked #6 of 121 Hotels in Puerto Vallarta
Meridian, Idaho
1 review
“Casa Velas - not impressed”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 days ago NEW

Small resort that bills itself as a boutique hotel -
On the positive side, we found the food to be excellent and the hotel was not crowded-it only has 80 rooms. Plenty of pool spots.
On the negative side
1. you are very close to the airport and jet noise can be quite loud during take-offs.
2. The pool is solar heated. It doesn't get very warm in January. There is no hot tub at the main pool. You have to take a hotel shuttle to visit their beach front area where the pool was warmer.
3. Room maintenance was poor. Our air conditioner kept shutting off - never did get it fixed properly, light bulbs in the bath had to be replaced, toilet connection to the water tank leaked and had to be replaced, around the pool everyday workman were doing some sort of masonry work which was very noisy.
4. Last but not least there were two unauthorized charges made against our room from their restaurant and their bar. They took the charges off after I refused to sign for them. After every meal or serving of drinks the staff bring you a receipt to sign even though its an All Inclusive resort. I asked them why they did this and got a bogus story about inventory control etc.. The real reason is so they they can ask you for additional tips even though gratuities are included in the All Inclusive rate. My advice is to sign nothing-absolutely nothing because then they can't doctor the receipt or claim that you authorized the additional charge. Its a shady practice at best and made the experience less enjoyable overall. I've stayed at several All-Inclusive places and never was asked to sign for anything. Thats the point of going there so you don't have to deal with bills etc.. We tip using cash and that should be good enough.

  • Stayed January 2015, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 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.
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951 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    5 of 5 stars
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (176)
Date | Rating
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English first
Phoenix, Arizona
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 days ago NEW

We stayed at Casa Velas in January of 2015 for 1 week only and wish we could have stayed longer. The service was friendly and very accommodating. Our rooms were kept clean with added touches here and there, such as placing some of my bathroom items on a "doily", etc. Turndown service every evening. Pool is beautiful and the grounds are beautiful. Shuttle service to sister properties is almost instant. Use of the sister properties is a big plus as it adds more choices of restaurants, pools, and beaches.

  • Stayed January 2015, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 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.
casa grande
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 5 days ago NEW

This is a beautiful resort and being adults only it is very quiet. Check in was quick and effortless. We were impressed with all the staff. Service at the pool was excellent. Emilianos was a great place to eat and you could have lunch around the pool as well. The Beach Club was a 5 min. shuttle ride away and again a great place to be along with excellent food - lunch as well as dinner. Tipping is expected and the checks have a line for an "extra" tip which means you should probably leave a tip of some amount. We never once saw any indication of a waiter suggesting a tip. With the service we received we didn't see anything wrong with a little extra tip. They all were very thankful. We've never been treated better. We will be returning.

  • Stayed January 2015, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 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.
Prestwick, United Kingdom
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago NEW

This is a beautiful property adjoining a golf course. Family owned - there are 4 properties - each catering to a slightly different market. Casa Velas is adults only with an air of elegance and refinement. The AI programme is expensive but the food is exquisite and the quality of the drinks very good. We were in a two bedroom which was nicely furnished with spa bath and plunge pool. The grounds are beautiful. There is a spa and opportunities for golf or trips. A shuttle bus runs between the nearby Velas Vallarta and the Beach Club which share facilities and it is nice to get a change of pace, try some different restaurantsand enjoy some of the evening shows. Staff were most attentive and the whole week was a pure joy. The only fly in the ointment being having paid the AI fee a bill came round after each meal - which had been zeroed but included a space for tipping. It was hard to work out how much of the AI rate included tips - personally I would prefer an extra $10 on the AI rate and no tipping.

Room Tip: Being small and secluded noise is not an issue.
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  • Stayed January 2015, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
Idaho, United States
2 reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago

We were truly very satisfied with our stay. A couple of things to address previous comments:

- If you paid $20 for a taxi into town, you were ripped off and that's completely not the hotel's fault. INCLUDING the tip, we never paid more than about $9 (we went into town just beyond the boardwalk). When they say "sixty pesos" you hand them fifty and when they accept it without complaint, you add a twenty as a tip. That was our process.
- We had no issues with check-in. No one ever seemed too busy for us.
- I agree about the bill-signing and the wait time at Emiliano's for breakfast. That is a pain. We started ordering room service for breakfast because Emiliano's was taking too long and we weren't crazy about the breakfast buffet options.

I was actually confused about the tipping process. I feel as though all-inclusive should include gratuities, and the bills we signed said "extra" tip (implying it was additional, like beyond a tip it seemed we already paid?), but we still left cash and wrote in tips for dinner service and all drinks, especially poolside and beach side service. We were a little more spotty about tipping with breakfast and lunch though, I have no problem admitting.

Our hotel room had some issues with WiFi in our suite, but rather than complain and move rooms, we chose to just disconnect for the majority of our time. WiFi works marvelously in the common areas of the hotel so we limited our electronics usage to lounging by the pool.

David, Luis, Benny, and Mario absolutely 100% without a doubt MADE our vacation. They were charming, pleasant, polite, engaging, and fun. They are so sincere, thoughtful, and kind. We visited with them every time we walked past them. They were just wonderful and they went out of their way to ensure that we enjoyed our stay. Rafael at the "excursions" and such desk was also very knowledgeable and had great recommendations. We loved every activity we booked.

My favorite thing about this hotel is that there were a significant number of domestic travelers there. It does not feel like they are catering to Americans, which is something that is important to me. It feels like a legitimate luxury hotel, not a touristy Americanized hotel, if that makes sense.

This was our first time ever participating in an all-inclusive and we will always go this route. The food was AMAZING. We keep telling our friends that the reason all-inclusive was worth it was because we had so many options. We ate at the Beach Club, at two restaurants at Velas Vallarta, at one restaurant at Grand Velas, plus Emiliano's of course. If there weren't so many options, it would get old to keep eating at the same restaurant.

I wish that the drinks available at Beach Club were available at the bar at Casa Velas. That is something the management should consider looking into.

It is my understanding that the all-inclusive fees are dramatically lower during summer months (presumably because the heat makes PV a less appealing destination during those months) and I was kind of sad to hear the difference that another guest (an owner) quoted. For the price we paid compared to what people reportedly pay in June, I'd sure like to see a free spa service or golf day or something thrown in. In addition, we were there over New Year's, and the New Year's party was an additional $100 per person on top of your all-inclusive fees ... no thank you! Talk about outrageous.

Long story short, though, we are very happy and can't wait to return! Everyone took great care of us and we were able to relax and live the life.

  • Stayed January 2015, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 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.
Billings, Montana
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed 1 week ago

We booked this trip through RCI, and to be fair our bad experience is partially contributed to them. The Velas staff person who books the RCI vacations started contacting us a month prior to our vacation requesting full payment of the all inclusive fees. They warned if we didn't pay in advance we may be charged a greater rate upon arrival. It felt like a threat and scam. We went ahead and paid, and we're promised a free 50 minute spa treatment and other benefits for paying early. The check in did not feel welcoming. The lobby staff were distracted and busy. We were handed a sheet of activities and shown to our room. The room was pretty but after 3 nights of cigarette smoke coming in through the vents, our spa tub not working and spurting out a black glob of slime/hair, and little geckos coming in and out through the crack in the sliding glass doors that didn't shut all the way, we finally requested a new room. The concierge sent a bottle of champagne and chocolate covered strawberries to the new room, which was very nice. The grounds, the beach club, and restaurant were beautiful, relaxing and delicious. Unfortunately our entire experience was completely ruined when my husband booked the free message and they wouldn't honor the promised free treatment. We spent approximately three hours of our precious vacation going back and forth showing them confirmations dates, credit card charges, etc., and them refusing to honor a silly 50 minute treatment. Even with our documented proof they wouldn't agree to it until I was crying in the lobby and they finally reached the correct person.

Beyond the direct review of the Velas, we will never again do an all inclusive. We've been coming to Puerto Vallarta for seven years and normally spend a fraction of the amount we spent daily at Velas. More importantly we've had the most amazing dining experiences of our life in PV. There are so many wonderful restaurants and going out you experience so much more of what Puerto Vallarta has to offer. It also feels wonderful to support the local economy versus giving everything to a single resort.

  • Stayed January 2015, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 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.
Saint Cloud, Minnesota
Top Contributor
52 reviews 52 reviews
18 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
78 helpful votes 78 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 weeks ago

This is a fabulous resort. That being said, if you read the reviews, the cons are the same over and over. At some point management needs to address these issues, even if the resort is still getting 5 stars on Tripadvisor! And since I know the manager reads all the reviews, this review is for him too :)

Check in is smooth and effortless. Luis does make a point to tell you that tips are not included.

The pool is very nice at the hotel itself. Very very comfortable lounge chairs (10x better than Velas Vallarta). Several shady areas. I dont know what capacity the hotel was at when we were there (not full by any means), but it surprised me that there weren't a lot of lounge chairs around the pool for the amount of people that could potentially be there. We never had a problem whatsoever finding a chair, but if the hotel was full....I wonder.

Pool service was good, but slow. I mean, it can take a looong time to get a bottle of water. Premium liquor. There is a snack menu at the pool, but it was never mentioned to us and I never would have never known there was one if it hadn't come up in a round about way. I think each person should be given a menu when they first get there along with taking their drink order.

Emilio's, the onsite restaurant, offers a sit-down menu for all 3 meals. Great, great food. The filet mignon was awesome. But the restaurant is one of the reasons why it's not a complete 5 star resort - insanely slow! In the evening for dinner thats fine maybe, but not for breakfast or lunch when you want to eat and get back out enjoying your day. It was disheartening wanting to go eat breakfast, but yet not wanting to sit there for 1.5 hours. Then you have to sit and wait even longer to sign the receipt. Whew!! It's a long process. Very frustrating.

The people that work here are very friendly. All the servers, housekeeping, concierge, etc.

We had a king bed room with walk out patio that looked out at the golf course. Perfect. Great shampoo/conditioner, body lotion, hairdryer (not wall-mounted). Don't bring your beach bag because there is one in your room for use during your stay!

As far as room service, we only ordered coffee and one time ordered yogurt and granola. Room service came in a reasonable time, about 15 minutes. We eventually noticed that coffee, tea, and donuts were offered at the lobby bar in the morning along with a to-go cup.

Wi-Fi was extremely spotty in our room. Most times we couldn't get it. We would have to go to the lobby.

The gym was open from 7 am - ?? (maybe 9pm, not sure). I was pretty disappointed in the gym. There were 3 rusty treadmills. One didn't work and was eventually jerry-rigged during our stay, one worked, and the last one continuously beeped. Nothing to look at while running. The floor is wood and the "yoga mats" available...well, I stacked about 5 on top of each other to do ab work. Supplied bottled water was hit or miss (and we exercised at 8am). There was one tv that was really high up. No way can you watch it while exercising. Free weights, an incline bench, a regular bench, stair stepper, and a few other workout machines were available.

It is a super quick drive by shuttle to the private beach club. The beach club is very small and intimate and the facilities are great. Whether the hot tubs are hot is iffy - more than likely not. The food here is great too. Lunch is more of an asian theme with sushi, but there are other things too. Dinner here moves faster than Emilios's, which was nice. Now for the major con. Service. The servers here are definitely not ambitious. Most of the time I had to walk up to the bar to get myself a drink or water. At one point my husband and I looked around for someone (I think there were 4 people working) and there was no one in sight. What in the world? I have no problem getting myself a drink, but if the servers are getting paid to do it and I am paying for that service, it's irritating. I don't mean to sound rude or uppity, but at one point when my husband and I were there eating lunch and there was only 5 couples at the beachclub, I knew I could have done better serving the guests (with no server experience) than the workers employed there. By myself. Easily. It's a matter of taking pride in your work. Management needs to get these guys in gear. Pronto. This is a major negative throughout the ratings on this website. We went to the sister resort, Velas Vallarta, for an afternoon. That place is chaotic and crazy!!!!! Especially compared to Casa Velas. However, we had better service there with Gilberto than at Casa Velas. Our thoughts were that management needs to send their boys over to Velas Vallarta to see how to work. Maybe they will learn how to be better servers and not take their job for granted.

The other major negative is signing a receipt for everything. I know management says this is for inventory purposes. I don't believe it. They can keep track of their own inventory, the guests shouldn't have to. I believe the reason for this is tipping. Now, we are adults who have the capability to splurge more for a small, boutique hotel. We should be able to use our own judgment on tipping. First of all, it is an all-inclusive. However, I do believe in tipping for good service. The thing is, I don't like having to wait forever for a bill at the end and then a server standing there thinking he's going to get a lump amount now. It is presumptuous. And it shouldn't be since it's an all-inclusive and the service was substandard. Maybe if they were used to getting tipped throughout the day (at the beach club for example or pool at hotel), then service would be better. Now I realize some people don't like to have to worry about cash, but on the other hand I don't like having to pay a surcharge to my credit card company.

I don't like to have a review ending with all negatives. Sounds like I just complained. So I will sum it up. Would I recommend this hotel to others? Yes! Would we come back? Yes! However, if it was a true 5 star resort, we would be more anxious to come back faster. Please, please management - I know no hotel is perfect, but please listen to the reviewers and work on what we're saying. Food/drink service is WAY too slow and stop with the bill signing. Once these are accomplished, I truly believe this is one of the best hotels!! Hands down.

  • Stayed January 2015, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 16
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Casa Velas

Address: Pelicanos 311, Marina Vallarta, Puerto Vallarta 48354, Mexico (Formerly the Regent hotel and Quinta Real)
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Jalisco > Puerto Vallarta
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Spa Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#2 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#3 Luxury Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#3 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#3 Family Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#5 Romantic Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#9 Business Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Casa Velas 4.5*
Number of rooms: 81
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Imagine the perfect resort retreat in the Mexican Pacific Riviera, where luxury and romanticism combine in perfect harmony. Resembling a private estate, Casa Velas offers Condé Nast and AAA award-winning service in a casually elegant and intimate boutique atmosphere in Puerto Vallarta. This boutique hotel enjoys a garden setting surrounded by the Marina Vallarta Golf Course. A beachside experience waits just three minutes away at your private Ocean Club, with stunning sunsets and memorable dining. Unlimited transport is available day and night to whisk you to the golden shores of the Mexican Pacific. The Ocean Club is a place of supreme peace and tranquility for enjoying an infinity pool, jacuzzi and terrace with impressive ocean views. Our luxurious getaway invites you to enjoy the comforting sounds and vibrant colors of the tropics as you discover the true meaning of relaxation and luxury at an all-inclusive Puerto Vallarta resort paradise. Recently chosen as one of the Top 10 hotels in Mexico and the Caribbean in three categories - Luxury, Relaxation/Spa and Hotel for Romance - by TripAdvisor®, Casa Velas is an enchanting destination where simple pleasures rejuvenate your mind, body and soul. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Casa Velas Boutique Resort
Hotel Casa Velas Boutique

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