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“Beautiful View!” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Secrets Vallarta Bay Resort & Spa

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Secrets Vallarta Bay Resort & Spa
4.5 of 5 Hotel   |   David Alfaro Siquerios No. 164 | Col Zona Hotelera Las Glorias, Puerto Vallarta 48333, Mexico   |  
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Ranked #9 of 121 Hotels in Puerto Vallarta
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Kingston, Ontario, Canada
1 review
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Beautiful View!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 28, 2012

This was our first two week vacation since our honeymoon eight years ago. The resort was very relaxing and the views (from most rooms and the lobby) were breathtaking. The service was wonderful. All of the staff were friendly and very helpful. There were lots of choices for dinner. Italian was probably our favourite. Best part-no reservations and very little waiting time. Worst part-food often arrived cold and I was very sick for a night and a day after one evening meal. Advise? Send it back if its cold or doesn't seem cooked enough. Staff seemed happy to oblige. If it wasn't for my experience with the food, I'd give this place five stars.

Room Tip: Book your room on the upper levels to ensure a great view!
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 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 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,414 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (627)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Rigby, Idaho
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 27, 2012

We booked this trip thru bookit.com. We were there from December 1 thru 8, 2012. When we arrived we were taken by private taxi (which I booked in advance) to the resort. We were pleasantly surprised to find out that because of a booking overload in the NOWAmber side of the resort, we were upgraded to the Secrets (adults only) side. Our stay was fabulous. We were celebrating our 10th anniversary and were treated like royalty from the very beginning. We were met with cold wash clothes for our necks and something to drink. While we do not drink alcohol, a bottle of very cold water was presented immediately in substitute. We were ushered to the concierge desk and given the details of our stay. We had our bags taken to our room for us and the porter took the time to show us the amenities and the controls for the room. THAT WAS VERY HELPFUL! Again, we do not drink alcohol, so when we requested that the fridge in the room be stocked with club soda and water, that was taken care of the rest of the week. We are early to turn in and that was noted as well. The restaurants are all amazing. I enjoyed the Bordeaux the best, the Italian the least. There is nothing I have to say that is bad about the Italian other than it was loud and noisy and we wanted something more quiet. The buffets in both hotels were lovely and ever changing. There were staples that remained the daily fare, but they had hot cooking stations to change it up a bit if you were interested. Food is available 24/7. Room service is excellent as well. Lounge chairs by the pools were always available as were chairs at the beach. Towels are plentiful. . . . The waiters at thebeach were always accomadating even if it was a bottle of water or a smoothie. All rooms have ocean views and the balconies are lovely to sit on. We were on teh 11th floor and the breeze was wonderful. The room was devine! I cannot say enough about the comfort of the room and the maid service. Always clean . . . The showers are to die for. Please feel free to email me with any questions. There is just not enough room here to tell it all. The gift shops are reasonable but are indeed gift shops. However, if you forgot, they do have it for a price. Exchanging money is not an issue. Oh and they even have security to keep the beach vendors where they need to be and not on the property. They can be avoided if you desire. I will return to Secrets and NOW Amber hotels in the future as a result of this trip. The staff is amazing!

Room Tip: Go for a room above the 3rd floor and put a small tip on your pillow. I am talking a buck and you w...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Maple Ridge, Canada
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
57 helpful votes 57 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 24, 2012

What a great vacation. Looked on line at the reviews often to see what the reviews were like and went with high expectations and we were not disapointed at all. We payed the extra $55.00 per person for the week to stay in the preferred club and it was well worth it. The rooms were beautiful and looked exactly like the pictures under the hotel website. Lots of restaurants to choose from. The teppanki was great, we went twice and the French restaurant, while the portions are very small, the main entres were fabulous. (rack of lamb to die for) The chef comes out to see everyone to see how their meal was and it made you feel like you were at an expensive restaurant. We did not eat any of the breakfast, so we cannot comment on that. Lunch buffet at the Now Amber is better than the one at Secrets, worth going over for lunch there. We did not go to any of the dinner buffets either. We did use room service twice and had dinner on our deck later in the evenings and it was not bad for room service. Love the secret box, you don't even have to go to the door if you don't want to.
The room in the preferred club had great amenities, they even had suntan lotion for your use which was great as we did run out. The room was huge with a very large shower and soaker tub. Double sinks with lots of counter space. More room to put your clothes in the room than we have ever had at any hotel.
The drinks in the preferred club bar were top shelf. The swim-up bar drinks were great, however the one bar closest to the activity booth made drinks that we wasted as they did not taste good no matter what kind of drink we ordered, so we just made sure we were at an area that the poolside/beach waiters got the drinks from the swim-up bar.
You never did not get a lounge chair. We recommend getting one on the deck on the beach to watch the waves and sunset at. The beach vendors do not come up on there so it is much better than being on the sand where they constantly come up to you. The weather was beautiful the whole week.
We will for sure go back to this Secrets Hotel and we will be trying their other Hotels as well.
Definately worth going to.
All rooms get an oceanview. I really wanted a swimout room, but non were available, but after seeing them it didn't matter at all. They lose the sun pretty early.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 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
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 23, 2012

We stayed at Sercrets Vallarta Bay from Dec 1st-8th. We had an amazing time from the moment that we got there.

First off, being single and traveling with a couple of friends I was a bit concerned that the resort was going to be all couples and that we would feel very uncomfortable. However, this was not the case at Secrets. Yes, it was still primarily couples but there was also a nice mix of other singles and all of the guests were great! We really met some amazing people that made the experience so much better.

Ok, back to the resort.

The Good-
The staff is fantastic! The servers will go out of their way to get you whatever you need. You want a special drink? Done! You want food? They will bring it to your chair while you sit on the beach! You want to sit around at breakfast drinking mimosas for hours? They will make sure that your glass is never empty!

The entertainment staff is excellent. They work really hard to make sure that everyone had a great time. The pool and beach activities are so much fun.

The pools are really nice but were just a bit cold for my liking. However, after spending all day out in the sun with a cocktail in hand you don't even notice that the water is a bit cold.

The rooms are large and the balcony was really nice. We had 3 adults with a pull out in a room and we didn't feel crowded.

The restaurants were pretty good. The best part about them is that you didn't have to make a reservation ahead of time, you just show up at the restaurant of your choice. We only had to wait for a table once, at the French restaurant. The Mexican place was probably our favorite. It is also the least crowded, not sure why cause it was really great. Also, they have tables for larger groups. The coffee shop on the Now side is awesome, they have all kinds of coffee drinks, sandwiches and pastries. The coffee shop looks like it would cost extra but it is actually part of the all-inclusive.

The lobby bar was always great. We ended up going there almost every night. The drinks were fantastic and the service was good. The view from the lobby was amazing.

While the property was shared with the Now Resort (family resort) we never really had to deal with children even when we went to the Now side for dinner. We did see a few but we never had to sit next to them at restaurants or hear them while at the pool. The few kids we did see were on their best behavior.

The Not So Good-

The lighting in the room was AWEFUL! It was the one thing that we complained about every single day. You could not see anything while getting ready and we had every light on in the room.

The turn down service is really early. Most days they came between 630-700pm, while we were getting ready for dinner. The housekeeping was also a bit inconsistent. One day when they cleaned the room they took the dirty towels but didn’t leave us any new towels. There was also an incident where the room service plates were placed in the 'secret box' by housekeeping but weren’t picked up for a whole day! Gross!

That being said, none of these things were deal breakers for us. We were on vacation and while it was mildly annoying we didn’t spend too much time worrying about it. The front desk is really responsive, if there was anything that we ever needed they took care of it really quickly.

Overall we had a great time. We would go back to Secrets VB in a heartbeat and are already planning our next trip to a Secrets resort.

Room Tip: Don't bother with the swim out rooms. The are all in the shade and everyone we talked to said th...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lakewood, Colorado
Senior Contributor
47 reviews 47 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
88 helpful votes 88 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 23, 2012

We traveled to Puerto Vallarta the first week in November. We had booked a package at the Now Amber, but when we arrived, we had been moved to the Secrets Vallarta Bay - we were two adults, no kids, and were very happy with the upgrade. We enjoyed the damp facecloth and cold champagne on arrival, but check-in was the usual hassle when you arrive early - arrived about 1:30 pm, could not check in until 3:30, so we found a comfortable spot and had a few cold drinks while waiting. Went back at 3:30 and were told maybe about 15 minutes more (this happened more than once). Finally got to our room about 5:00, only to find the stone floor in the room soaking wet (obviously just mopped) and very slippery. We used all our towels to dry a path so we could unpack. The accomodating bellman found us more towels.

The room was very nice - comfortable king bed on the 7th floor (ocean view), large jacuzzi tub, fantastic shower - large shower stall with two showers, one regular and one rain shower. The bathroom area is open, with just curtains for privacy around the sinks - not a problem for an old married couple like us. Plenty of closet space, lots of hangars - all in all a very nice room. I especially liked the firm pillows, unusual in Mexico.

Food - We ate breakfast every day to the Market Cafe. It was typical for an all-inclusive, the usual omelet station, fresh fruit, etc. It was nice to start every day with a mimosa! We didn't eat lunch very often - late big breakfast and early dinner meant we didn't need much food mid-day. A couple of times, the hotel set up a ceviche bar at the pool and we did enjoy some of that - although watch the hot sauce. It can get very spicy if you're not careful. We ate dinner one night at the buffet at the Now Amber - I was not impressed with the selections or the quality. My husband had fresh cooked fish which he enjoyed, but I had some beef that was incredibly tough - I couldn't even chew it. The other nights we ate at the Oceana, Bordeaux (2X), Tamarindo, and Capers (2X). We usually ate around 6:30 to 7:00 and never had to wait to be seated. All the meals we had were excellent. My ideal dinner would be the crabmeat tacos appetizer at Tamarindo, the beef filet at Bordeaux, and the pistachio creme brulee at Capers. Oceana had good seafood and fish, and Tamarindo also had good shrimp dishes.

Pool and Beach - we spent most of our time near the beach and main pool with swim-up bar. The lounge chairs were very comfortable and stocked with towels. The pool area was never overcrowded and we never had a problem finding chairs right next to the pool. There is limited shade around the pool, so the umbrellas provide the best option until late afternoon when the sun begins to go behind the trees. The beach is nice - we tooks beach walks, but did not go in the water, so I don't know what swimming in the ocean was like. There are beach vendors, fun to watch from the pool chairs or in the poool. They didn't appear very intrusive, just walked along showing their wares. There are several pools - activity pool, main pool, smaller side pool, and there is a jacuzzi closer to the hotel building that actually has hot water in it - very nice.

Drinks - the Swim-up bar was pleasant if a little busy. Bartender Juan Valdez was great and after the first day always had our cold cans of Pacifico ready for us. We saw people drinking cans of Miller Lite and Bud Lite, but - you are in Mexico, at least drink Mexican beer! We didn't try any of the foo-foo drinks, but they looked good, all made from scratch, no slushie machines. We had pre-dinner and after-dinner drinks in lobby bar. Waiters Abel and Ethel worked very hard to keep everyone served especially later in the week when things got busy. We are wine lovers, but not wine snobs, and found the red and white wines drinkable if not outstanding. After dinner I always got my Baileys and husband his gin and tonic.

Service - at the start of the week (we arrived on Sunday), service was outstanding. Every person working at the hotel was friendly, always smiling, always asking what we needed and taking care of our requests quickly. We got turn down service every night with chocolates and the next day's newsletter left on the bed. On Wednesday, a large convention arrived at the hotel, and the level of service declined. No more turn down service the rest of the week - we had to hunt down a newsletter every morning so we would know which restaurants were open, etc. The service in the restaurants also suffered - we had a dinner at Capers that was almost ridiculous. We are not in a hurry and enjoy a leisurely dinner, but 20-30 minutes between courses is absurd. Service in the lobby bar also slowed to a crawl due to the numbers of customers waiting to be served. Some silly things - we had checked the newsletter and it showed the dress code for Tamarindo one night as Casual, so we showed up in our shorts. The man at the desk said, no, my husband had to have long pants. We objected, and told him what the newsletter had said. He found a copy of his newsletter and the dress code was different. They did seat us at an outside table. When we went back to our room, I checked our newsletter and we were correct - they had printed two different versions of the newsletter! I think that, if the hotel knows they are going to be busy, they need to make sure they have enough staff to handle the crowds. I do not fault the workers, they tried very hard, but it was just too much for them.

So - all in all - a very nice place with good food and drinks, hard working staff - just a few small issues that prevented me from rating this a full 4 stars. Would I go back? Absolutely - the small problems in no way ruined our vacation,and the plusses far outweigh the minuses. I would recommend this hotel to anyone wanting some rest and relaxation.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 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
    • 4 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.
Huntersville, North Carolina
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 20, 2012

This was our second Secrets Resort stay although Puerto Vallarta was a new destination for us. We've taken vacations and this was the best so far. The resort was great and loved the location! Was able to walk out of the resort and explore the local shop and downtown. The food was great along with the resort staff. We recommend Puerto Vallarta Adventures if you'd like to take an excursion, which is connected to the resort. Many activities to do within the resort to keep you entertained throughout the day.

Room Tip: We were happy we declined the "ocean view" room upgrade and decided to stick with the &quo...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 19, 2012

Much like the other reviews on here my wife and I enjoyed our vacation from Dec 9-16 very much. The bus was a short trip from the airport, a nice arrival with cold towels and shi'a page at the resort. Friendly staff all around aiming to make your stay the best it can be. We opted out of the time share presentation and never heard from them again. Not a big deal as some others make it out to be. Some highlights and suggestions I have from my stay:
Cons:
- constant barrage of merchants trying to sell items along the beach, did not mind at first but gets old fast (allow them to set up down beach or on outskirts so people can go see them should they choose)
- no late night coffee/liqueur bar
- roosters in the morning, not a big deal but my room was far from them
- only beer in mini fridge
- spa prices very high

Pros:
- vey friendly and hard working staff who aim to please
- good variety and tasty food at the restaurants
- absolutely gorgeous resort that stands out in the area, new and impressive rooms right through to the lobby, gym and all facilities
- 24 hour free porn channel 36!
- good gym

Lastly a couple of things I would like to add. There are some really great standout staff members like EZEQUIEL at the pool. Staff who took care of us and was good to get to know, not just tip hungry but like to meet the people from around the world. It is a shame that I did not see more people give these workers the tips they deserve which although I am not made of money I was happy to provide.

I was not disappointed at all with the resort and have stayed at a lot of places in Mexico and in the Caribbean. The Playa Del Carmen beaches are nicer and quieter but it was nice to see some more cultural parts in Puerto Vallarta. EF.

Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Secrets Vallarta Bay Resort & Spa

Address: David Alfaro Siquerios No. 164 | Col Zona Hotelera Las Glorias, Puerto Vallarta 48333, Mexico
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 Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #9 of 121 Hotels in Puerto Vallarta
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Secrets Vallarta Bay Resort & Spa 4.5*
Number of rooms: 271
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Romantic. Refined. Remarkable. Located on the golden sand beaches of the Pacific coast within walking distance of the famous El Malecon boardwalk, this vibrant oceanfront resort provides adults 24/7 access to amazing nightlife, non-stop entertainment and Unlimited-Luxury(R). ... more   less 
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