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“Five Star Resort (minor problems) Please read the whole thing” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Now Amber Puerto Vallarta

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Now Amber Puerto Vallarta
4.5 of 5 Resort   |   David Alfaro Sisqueiros 164 | Col. Zona Hotelera Las Glorias, Puerto Vallarta 48333, Mexico   |  
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Ranked #11 of 120 Hotels in Puerto Vallarta
Moose Jaw, Canada
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
“Five Star Resort (minor problems) Please read the whole thing”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 8, 2012

We enjoyed, for the most part, an excellent week at the Now Amber/Secrets Resort and Spa. When we initially booked our trip to the Now Amber we went for the preferred tower junior suite swimout, upon arriving at the resort we found ourselves being escorted to the Secrets side of the resort, much to our suprise. We were given the junior suite swim out on that side of the resort only to find out that because the pools on that side do not recieve any sunlight they are cold enough to freeze the b@**s of a brass monkey. When I mentioned to the concierge that these swimouts should be heated I was informed that they are. I then noticed that the circulation pumps are turned of at night and any of the heating they may have done during the day was lost. My wife who looking forward to having this swimout pool was severely disappointed.
Being a new resort you can expect a few bugs in the system but really there were nothing major. There are what I consider a few minor safety concerns with the pool and surrounding area. 1) There are ledges and steps in the pools and the bottom of the pools are all one colour, the edges of the steps and edges should, I think, should be of a different colour so you do not trip like myself and many others did. 2) The RAMP, oh let me tell you about the RAMP leading to the washrooms in the pool area on the Secrets side- SLIPPERY WHEN WET and very dangerous, I do not know how many people slipped on the RAMP but it could be a lawsuit in the making. Now don't get me wrong it is not just bare concrete they do have half a dozen non-skid strips spaced roughly 3-3 1/2 feet.
The food at the resort was top rate Oceana was excellent- great staff helping us to expand our limited Spanish, Bordeaux was superb, loved the roast duck, Tamarindo was really good too. Unfortunately we did not enjoy our visit to Capers. Everything started off well we recieved our wine, our orders were taken and then we were ignored, ignored until we helped ouselves to more wine. At that point our server seemed perturbed " we were doing HIS job" after finishing our second glass of wine, our water and our appetizers we were ignored again. Rather than helping ourselves we then decided to go elsewhere. While enjoying our meal at Oceana the manager of resturants came to apoligize. This was a greatly appreciated gesture in his part. We explained to him that we understand when your short-staffed and busy you may not get the greatest of servive but a quick explanation and keeping the wine and water glasses full and everything would have been fine.
Soooooooo for the most part everything was excellent nice new, clean resort, good food plenty of drinks and a good location ( you can walk to old Vallarta in 1/2 an hour if you want). The only thing I would not reccommend is the prefered junior suite swimout on the Secrets side of the resort, CCCCOOOOOOOOOOOOLLLLLLLLDDDDDDD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
So yes we would go here again it was an excellent resort and I give it a 9.99 out of 10.

Room Tip: Any room at either the Now Amber or Secrets other than the prefered junior suite swimout @ Secrets
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  • Stayed November 2012, 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
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,091 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
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (471)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Japanese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
BC Canada
1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 6, 2012

We were at this resort in November and found the resort to be absolutely lovely. I found the food to be excellent. The rooms were lovely, but not the best I have been to. The service was somewhat slow, due to understaffing (in my opinion). The staff had to work very hard and we often found ourselves without a pre-or post- dinner drink, coffee, etc. the hotel and grounds were very clean and housekeeping did a great job. The view was amazing, we could hear the waves, and the lights and lobby were soretty at night!

The spa was expensive, but no more expensive than spas at other resorts. However, it was by far the most incredibly beautiful spa I have seen to date! And the Swedish Massage I received as a result of attending the 90 minute (actually 3hour) presentation for the travel club was fabulous!

The swim up bar, however, had a terrible odor! We could not stay at the bar, as it was just terrible smelling. For the who.e week, the odor was there, so it could not have been an anomaly.

The location of the resort was great. Just a few minutes in a cab and we were in the heart of the Malecon. Puerto Vallarta is a pretty city full of character and charm.

For the women out there, be wary of the taxi drivers that seem to be connected to the resort (they have the resort name on the taxi and their business cards). While most were fine, the minute I was in a taxi alone, the driver proceeded to try and 'pick me up'. And he was not at all subtle about it. It was a shocking, and somewhat scary, experience. Just my luck that the driver fancied himself as a desirable man!

I have to say, though, that Dreams Tulum had a much better garden area.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 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
    • 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.
vancouver
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 6, 2012

My husband and I stayed at Now Amber from Nov 7-18. Overall we had an amazing stay.

The best part of this trip was how STRESS FREE it was... we slept in every day, not needing to get up and save seats by the pools or make reservations for dinner. We showed up poolside anytime from 9am - 3pm and always found space. The only dinner reservation we made was for the teppanyaki restaurant, which was easily done the same day. We waited a max 5 minutes at any restaurant, and the resort was full.

The room: by far the nicest all inclusive room we've had. Very pretty, with unbelievably comfortable beds. The rooms need a couple more hooks for hanging wet towels and robes, but that's an easy fix. We had a great view from the 9th floor. We deliberately didn't book anything special, to see what a standard room was like - good call. The free local and long distance calls was a great bonus.

The location: Ideal for us, as we really enjoyed walking/running into PV and its beautiful Malecon. Not to mention the ridiculously cheap and wonderful massages (Healing Hands) right outside the resort, and the supermarket around the corner. There's about 400m of beach to wander before you hit a breakwater - longer if the tide's out.

The Service: Excellent, especially Manuel at the pool bar - except one inconsiderate 24hrs (see below).

The grounds/pools: Beautiful lobby with great view and drinks. A tremendous pool selection. Loved relaxing in the beachside infinity pool, especially at sunset. The Now Amber side got very busy over the weekends, but when we couldn't find a place to relax poolside, we went to Secrets, which was rarely busy. Secrets also has these amazing floaty pool mats, and a lovely shallow pool with built in reclining chairs. It was great having that choice, and hopefully that continues. That being said, the activity on the NA side was alot of fun most of the time. I did notice the NA pool bar smelled like it needed a good cleaning at times.

The food: We ate at the buffet for all breakfasts and lunches and never got tired of the food - excellent quality and selection. We tried every ala carte, and had terrific meals at all. We were expecting slower service, and were surprised by how attentive our servers were. We are seafood lovers, so our meals at both Oceana and Castaways were our favourites. The seafood selection everywhere was top notch, surprising considering other PV vacationers said other resorts were cutting back. The house wine was also much better than expected. The only small glitch is their minimal selection at the barefoot grill by the pool.

My only major complaint - There were 2 large conferences and 2 weddings during our stay. The weddings and 1st conference were handled very well. The conference had separate rooms for eating and celebrating, and the weddings were minimally intrusive, held for 2-3hrs in the evening. However, the 2nd conference was a bit ridiculous - 300+ people partying outside on the Secrets side until 1am - including loudspeaker speeches and music - with no apologies to other guests. Then the next day everyone woke to a massive 200x50ft canopy erected on the beach for that same group completely obstructing the ocean view. We eventually spoke with mgt and they provided a free late checkout ($50 value) without problem.

All in all, a real treat of a trip for a great price.

Room Tip: Any room above the 4h floor would be okay in the standard part of the hotel.
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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
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 6, 2012

I read the reviews prior to going to this resort. some reviews was nitpicked over such small issues. Have to remember it is Mexico.
We have stayed at many resorts in PV and the Mayan and I have to say this resort was excellent. We had a awesome time.
There was 6 of us and we asked at the desk if we all can be together on a floor higher than the 6th floor and they gladly accomodatated us. We were on the 10th floor amazing view, beautiful rooms, comfortable bed and our room was very quite. I would recommend the 10th floor or higher.
We liked the idea... no bracelets. you can go as many times as you like to the ala cartes. The food was very good. Tues and Friday they had a beach party they put so much work into it, buffet, show etc and great service.
The pools are very clean and pool bar service was great. The beach waiters were awesome especially Cezar and Gustavio they were excellent waiters, don't forget to tip them.
The beach: not good for swimming and we wished you could walk further as they have it blocked with rocks you have to climb over them if you want to want along the beach.

I would recommend this hotel to anyone and would go back.

Room Tip: higher floors are quieter and have great views of the ocean. we were on the 10th (awesome)
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
1 review
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 5, 2012 via mobile

no Champaign like other guests on arrival. Vacation Club - We agreed to a 90 minute presentation and it ended up being about 3 hours. When we discussed that at the exit interview and the club hostess we were told that their presentation was 90 minutes all the rest of the time was our talking - that's a rip off . My wife and I work hard and our vacation time is premium. When I suggested further free spas etc for the extra time, it was denied. It put a bad taste in our mouths for the rest of the stay. Japanese and Italian restaurants we poor. Elevators slow. Lobby music depressing and repetitive.bar service slow at times every where. Swim up bar smells. Some staff were excellent others still developing given new hotel. At times I felt it was all about the money where at dreams tulum the service was real.

  • Stayed November 2012
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Calgary, ab
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
22 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
41 helpful votes 41 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 5, 2012

We stayed one week, end of Nov and had a great time. Many reviewers get stuck on the little bumps in the road and never recover, whenever in Mexico there are at the very least always small bumps so we should keep our eye on the big picture. The big pic at this place is overall great in comparison to the six other Now/Dreams/Secrets that we have been to. Brand new, great food and decent liquor, including Don J. / Crown / ect. if you ask and tipp a normal buck a drink. The staff did there best to accommodate starting with a free upgr to 7th fl without us even asking. The ocean swimming sucked but it comes with that area. The staff were great whether at
the bars, restaurants or desk, We upgraded to a master suite for the last day in our Preferred Tower and felt like royalty knowing that you tyically get less from a hotel when it is located in a city. Regarging our many stays in PV, This place so far was best. We booked early and got an awesome deal to boot.

Room Tip: Get high as possible to avoid noise and have better views, Preferred tower is quieter, faster eleva...
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 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 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
1 review
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 5, 2012

I read the reviews of other travellers and I am disappointed that people feel that they should nitpick small issues. I just got back yesterday and I think that I may have been at a different resort from some of the other reviewers. I have stayed at many other resorts in both PV and Cancun and this place would have to be at the top of our list. We were met with fast service at the reception desk for both check in and check out. The rooms are beautiful with excellent views (we were on the 11th floor) and a soft bed. One of the best aspects of the room was the fact that the air conditioning is silent and this is the first resort where we could actually hear the waves crashing at night.
The restaurants are really good and the buffet offerred a good variety every day. We really enjoyed the buffet at the beach which happened twice during our vacation along with nightly entertainment.
Overall, I would recommend this hotel to anyone and would not hesitate to go back.

Room Tip: Just be nice at the reception! We were originally on the 4th floor but I asked if we could have a h...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 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 Now Amber Puerto Vallarta

Address: David Alfaro Sisqueiros 164 | Col. Zona Hotelera Las Glorias, Puerto Vallarta 48333, Mexico
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Jalisco > Puerto Vallarta
Amenities:
Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #11 of 120 Hotels in Puerto Vallarta
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Now Amber Puerto Vallarta 4.5*
Number of rooms: 327
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