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“much needed relaxation” 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 #8 of 121 Hotels in Puerto Vallarta
Certificate of Excellence 2014
chico
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
“much needed relaxation”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 8, 2013

My husband and I stayed in PV April 16th to April 26th. We trully enjoyed our stay. It was a five minute trip from the airport. We took a federal taxi (white) and it cost $20.00usd. We did not upgrade to club and never knew the difference. There is a MEGA store very close, 10min walk. This store has anything you could ever need and more including all forms of alcohol.
The beach was beautiful, however, very rocky and not the best for swimming. The one thing that was a little uncomfortable for me was when laying on the beach 20 ft from me was a rope on the other side of rope were several peddlers. We didnt come to this resort to be bothered. I know they have to make a living, but we enjoy the beach more than any aspect of our vacations. Sorry did not enjoy the beach as much as most resorts.
The service was very good in restraunts. My favorite Oceana chicken azteca. Room service was fair. We ate breakfast at the buffet every morning and looked forward to a warm goodmorning from Yohanna.We hope that management knows what a great asset Yohanna is to this resort. No matter what she always goes the extra mile.
Our room was cleaned regularly, and fridge stocked daily. It was my husbands birthday and they went all out to give him a special surprise at no additional charge. We did not go to any of the entertainment , however, the entertainment staff during the day were very friendly and fun. One day my husband set up for me to go out on the ocean on a hobbi cat with Alex. What a blast and such a great view of PV.
All and all a wonderful vacation. However probably will not return due to the peddlers standing in front of our view of the waves begging us to buy. If this isnt important to you then I would highly recommend this resort. Last but not least we went for two seperate spa treatments and it was pure heaven.

Room Tip: 6th floor had great view of ocean
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 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
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1,308 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 (580)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
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English first
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 7, 2013

What a great place to stay! Excellent staff that tries really hard to make your stay great. Good food and drink. Nice pool. Gated. Comfortable and clean rooms. Room service was delivered extremely quick! Private taxi service upon request. Fabulous lobby overlooking pool and beach - perfect for a sunset cocktail or relaxation. Easy. Comfortable. We will be back!

Room Tip: Every room has a great ocean view. Higher rooms are quieter.
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  • Stayed May 2013, 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mexico City, Mexico
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 6, 2013

My recently husband and myself decided to have a second honeymoon on our first aniversary. The place is just wonderful as it is a luxury resort; the all-inclusive plan was great, the food in the restaurants was delicious, the people was so kind, the spa is a place where you have to go. The only issue was when we arrived at the hotel, when they tried to sell us their preferred membership and they tried to make us to assist to a presentation even when we were celebrating something special for us and we didnt want to waste a moment in a sales meeting. They used some kind of gifts to try to persuade us, such as a dinner at the beach and some discounts for the spa. After an hour of saying no, we were free!!!, and the rest of our experience was marvellous.

Room Tip: Ask for an ocean view room.
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  • Stayed April 2013, 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
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
temecula
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 6, 2013

I'm writing this review for the TA community. I read just about every review for both Now & Secrets, so in return I'm writing the only review you need to read.

Why we chose Now / Secrets:
My gf for nearly 5 years wanted to do an AI close to our house in s.Ca. for her bd celebration.
She wanted a nice resort with a non stop flight of 3hrs or less. We did look at Cancun, but most flights were 1 stops & 5+hrs. That left us with Cabo or Pv. Looking at the resorts for Cabo, that were at least as nice, including Secrets were more money. So our main focus became PV.
We have stayed at a Secrets before, at Silversands riviera maya, & even with some minor problems we thought we would give Secrets another chance.

We booked Now, with the hopes of being moved to Secrets. I called in a few favors that I was promised by AM Resorts & we were upgraded to Secrets preferred ov.
I will try not to repeat to much of the other reviews ( I guess you may have to read theirs too ).

A very short taxi ride to the resort from the airport, under 15 mins.
Upon arrival to the resort, we felt like we made the right choice !
The staff opened our taxi doors, handed us a cool towel, a glass of sparkling wine, & with a greeting of " Welcome Home ". This set the mood for the whole stay.
A gentleman walked us from our taxi, to the concierge desk in the preferred tower.
We met our personal concierge & she had our room ready for us, Room 1820.

Like others, we loved our room ! A bottle of sparkling wine & a dessert with happy birthday written on the plate was waiting for us / gf. We had a nice view, but as you can see the preferred towers are at an angle from the ocean, so you don't get a direct ocean view when you enter the room. A full ocean view from the balcony with your private jacuzzi.

Preferred Tower / Did we Love it / Is it worth extra Money ?
First of all, we did love it ! Our concierge was excellent, she was so sweet & tried to make things as special as she could for my gf bd. This was a huge plus. There is also a private bar, which makes it nice so you don't have to go to far without a drink, or up the elevator, 8 floors without one. They also put out a nice array of food / snacks during the day, so you won't go hungry ! The preferred service did make us feel very special & this was a very special bd celebration !
IS IT WORTH EXTRA MONEY ?
Well that's hard to say, if its your money yes, if its mine, I guess just how much more ?
I know the service is very good in the resort so you don't have to pay more for great service, & there is a lot of food & drink everywhere. Plus the views from the standard towers are better.
My advice, if you get it, its a great bonus or if you are very needy & feel like you need to be treated with even more personalize service its a nice luxury. Either way you can't go wrong.

If you are an adult, traveling without kids, you will want to stay at Secrets. You can take your chance & book Now & hope to be moved to Secrets but either way you will want to be on the Secrets side !

One of the reasons we chose Secrets was for the food.
Most important no reservations, we never knew what time we were going to eat.
We ate anytime for dinner, between 6:30pm - 9:30pm.
We loved the different selections of restaurants & you could spend a week eating here without getting bored of the food.
For me, I'm a beef eater. It's a little hit & miss. My gf kept on reminding me it's Mexico,( like you can't get a great steak in Mexico ).
She mostly ate fish & from what she said, it was very good & it did look good.
Breakfast was great, & we did room service twice for breakfast & it was always good & timely.
Lunch, there was enough options to take care of any lunch mood & we never went hungry !

DRINKS ! ! !
We like to drink, we are not big drinkers, really.
We usually only had 1 or 2 drinks at a time.
We had lots of mojito's, frozen drinks, beer & wine.
I enjoyed the Appleton Rums, & the better liquors. Mexican beer is ok, & like I was reminded we are in Mexico.
Wine: some people know wine, some don't, some think they know, we do know.
For the most part they pour wines from Chile & Spain. The wines have a $7-$10+ market retail. We were very please to see these very good drinkable wines offered.

THE RESORT IS BEAUTIFUL & VERY CLEAN ! ! !

Night life could be better, the disco is very nice, but the dj is clueless. I'm sure he is playing popular club music with videos, but it's just not working. They have some live music at night in the lobby (on both sides) but it ends to early.
The one show you must see is the fire show !
Other then that, you sit in the spectacular lobby having a drink, not so bad !

MASSAGE: It has been written many of times "healing hands". There is 10+ places to get massages right out the gate. If you are a couple, the goal is 75 min massage for 2 $45.
We did it twice, neither at healing hands, your welcome.

Walking to the Malecon: Just a nice 10 or 15 min walk, please. When it's over 80+ out there is no nice 15 min walk. The walk is more like 30 mins. Take the bus or for you big spenders a taxi.

The staff is excellent ! ! !

Did I mention my Girlfriend loved it ! ! !

  • Stayed May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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.
De Witt, Iowa
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 6, 2013

My wife and I spent 5 nights at Secrets Vallarta Bay the end of April. After staying at a few other all inclusive resorts in Mexico, I can say this resort is above all others. From the views to the Food to the Amazing staff; Secrets exceeded all expectations. First off, the resort is extremely well maintained and nothing is overlooked. The lobby is absolutely beautiful with great views. The specialty restaurants were quite good (much better than most All Inclusives we have been to), with the French restaurant being by far our favorite. The fact that you do not need reservations was a nice touch. We never made it to the buffett for lunch since the resort always had some type of food around the pool everyday.
The rooms are amazing. We stayed on the 10th floor and the views were great. Absolutely no complaints. It appears that the views are actually better from the regular rooms than they are from the Preferred rooms.
I can't say enough about the staff. They were amazing. We made it a point to tip through out the trip and while I don't believe it effected the level of service, I was much appreciated and they all deserved it. Don't be cheep; tip the staff they are great.
We had such an amazing trip we are planning on taking our children back to the Now Amber side the end of the this year.

Room Tip: We did not upgrade to the preferred side and the resort was still fabulous. Save the money and enjo...
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  • Stayed April 2013, 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Victoria, Canada
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 5, 2013

We had a great vacation at Secrets from April 20-27.

A Preferred Club garden view room (2nd floor) gives you a view of the ocean through the palm trees. If you want an unobstructed ocean view, you will need to go to a higher floor (or look at the view from the back, hall side of the building). Definitely these rooms get some noise from the pool area, but it was primarily an issue on the weekends, when there seems to be a louder drinking oriented crowd (in their mid 20's to early 30's) at the resort. During the mid-week it was much quieter. We also found that the area to the front of the preferred club building was quieter than other lounge areas, especially those near the swim-up bar.

For us the advantages of the preferred club included the jacuzzi tub on the balcony, easy access to the concierges, the feel of having your own bartender from morning to night, desserts at the ready, and great housekeeping. We also didn't have to pay much of a premium for the Preferred Club (e.g. about $100 per person extra) so it was a good choice for us.

Secrets has great staff, especially Yohana (hostess at Market Cafe), Alejandro and Noe (Preferred Club bartenders), Gloria (housekeeper), Preferred Club concierges, and Market Cafe dinner staff.

Check-in was easy - we got off our bus and were given cold towels. Once we were quickly identified as being in the Preferred Club (we were upgraded from Now to Secrets - which ended up as a big plus), a staff member walked us over to our building for an early check-in. We chose not to visit the VIP desk after check-in, so didn't get "coupons" and didn't get any timeshare pitches. We weren't bothered about timeshares in any way. I wouldn't have known about them except for what I have read on Tripadvisor!

Each day you will get a newsletter with the day's activities, weather forecast and information on special events/shows, and which restaurants are open and their hours.

If you are vegetarian or have food allergies, check in with the concierge when you arrive and get little cards you can show to the wait staff at the restaurants for menu guidance. Overall, the food is of the quality you would expect at a good hotel. It is hotel food - it won't knock your socks off, but is well prepared and presented.

We enjoyed the breakfast buffet at the Market Cafe (preferred to the Now side's buffet) as additional foods such as yogurt and smoked salmon were available (the layout of the buffet is smaller) and the cheerful greeting by Yohana really gets your morning off to the right start. Note: If you like real hash brown potatoes for breakfast, you will be disappointed as all they serve are premade triangle patties!

The lunch buffet at the Market Cafe is also the way to go - a good variety of hot foods, salads and desserts. We had a forgettable "al a carte" lunch at Oceana, with poor service, and never went back for lunch again (their dinner was MUCH better). The Grill by the pool is good for a burger meal or late day snack (if a late dinner is in your plans). However, vegetarians should plan to eat at the Market Cafe for the best lunch options.

For dinners, the menu are designed so that you order an appy, soup and entree. Our favourite dinners were the Market Cafe (for Mediterranean or Seafood buffet), Bordeaux (French) and Oceana (Seafood). If you want to eat at Bordeaux - go early. On our last day there, we tried to go back but were faced with a 35 minute wait so opted for another good Mediterranean meal. We had an adequate meal at Capers (Italian), but the service wasn't as good. Himitsu (Asian) was really disappointing as the service was VERY slow, even though the tables were not full. The restaurant needs more cutlery - the waiter kept telling us to keep our forks (no chopsticks were available) between courses. My husband's soup was inedible and the meal was the only one at the resort that caused digestive distress. Instead enjoy the good and tasty sushi at the lunch buffet.

Room Service needs improvement. I arranged for a special evening order through the concierge and it only showed up on 4 of 7 nights. One night I called to inquire when the delivery would be made, was told it was on its way but it never showed up! Another time we ordered breakfast and it came promptly but my husband didn't get any cutlery but a knife to eat his eggs with!

We had a couple of problems with our room that required visits from maintenance staff, including to fix a slow shower drain and a problem with the air conditioning. I have to congratulate Secrets for having such pleasant maintenance staff! One night we had a problem with our A/C when we returned to our room. We called the front desk after midnight and after confirming that we had a 'closed' system (all doors must be closed for the A/C to work) a maintenance man was sent to our room promptly (he arrived in about 10 minutes) and determined that the system needed to be reset (which is done via their computer system). The fellow initially seemed worried that he did not have sufficient english to communicate with us about the problem but he was very good.

The lobby is fantastic, often with live evening entertainment (e.g., Mariachi Band). During the day I was thrilled to watch humpback whales from the lobby.

We saw one dance show in the theatre. It was well executed but this type of show isn't very memorable. The show wasn't very well attended.

Although smoking is allowed throughout the resort, it mostly wasn't an issue for us non-smokers who are used to public spaces and restaurants being smoke free. It only ever bothered me in the main lobby and I was able to move to another location.

We were called at 8:30am one morning and told that there is a rule against having clothing/swimsuits drying on the balcony/balcony chairs and asked to remove our swimwear immediately. First I had ever heard of such a rule. Later from pool area I looked up and saw lots of drying taking place.

Good massages and reflexology are available just outside the resort gates at Healing Hands ($25 US for 1 hour).

I visted the spa for a pedicure. It was well done but not particularly special and was priced about the same as a pedicure at a hotel spa at home ($75 US). I was disappointed that the spa's pools were not working, as I had hoped to try them as part of my treatment.

Note: we did tip in pesos (but not consistently) after a short walk to use the ATM at the HSBC outside the resort. The concierge can make change. A taxi to the Flea Market for some souvenir shopping was 60 pesos and to the airport it was 100 pesos. Secrets has its own taxi fleet - new cars, A/C, and english speaking drivers. You will have more fun with the local taxis.

Room Tip: Preferred Club is a good option to enjoy a soaker tub in the bathroom and a jacuzzi tub on the deck...
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  • Stayed April 2013, 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.
Denver, Colorado, United States
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 1, 2013

So my fiance and I went to check out Secrets as a location for our destination wedding next year. Neither of us had booked an all-inclusive resort before, and really did not know what we were getting into. I imagined an Old Country Buffet attached to Best Western. Luckily, this was slightly better. Going in April is great because it was not 100% booked, there were no annoying 20 year olds who went to Mexico to drink, and the weather is 80s in the day, 60s at night. The staff was friendly and welcoming and the food was really good.

As with any place, you can find flaws if you look hard enough. I personally liked the music playing, but some said that it was too loud. I liked that nobody asked if my fiance was my brother, even though it was not a "gay" place.

Nobody tried to force a time share down our throats, and all of the staff seemed like they were happy we were there, and wanted us to have a good time. That, plus great drinks, is pretty much all that I need to have a good time.

Needless to say, we booked it for next year, and cannot wait to go back.

Room Tip: We were on the 7th floor, it was a gorgeous view, great room.
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  • Stayed April 2013, 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 6
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 Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #8 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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