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“5 Star plus!” 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 #13 of 122 Hotels in Puerto Vallarta
GreenLeadersGold level
Calgary, Canada
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
“5 Star plus!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 14, 2013

Being greeted at the main entrance with a glass of champagne gave us the ipression that we were being treated like royalty and it continued for the week.
The view was spectacluar from the open air lobby while being escorted to the Preferred Club where we were checked in quickly and taken to our room. The luggage was delivered within 10 minutes.
The room was immaculate and was made up quickly each day when the do not disturb light was turned off.
The Preferred Club provides a hot breakfast, ceral, coffee, fresh juice each morning and fresh sandwiches throughout the day so no need to walk the extra few steps to a restaurant. It also had an exclusive premier brand bar for those booked there. The extra cost was minimal and certainly worth it.
The staff was very well spoken and could not seem to do enough for you. Special shout out to Miguel (server on the beach), Adriana (concierige in the PC) and especially Nayale (day hostess at Carnival Restuarant) Carnival is buffet but the best one I have ever eaten at!
All food was fresh, service quick and efficient. I can not say enough good things about the restaurants - we enjoyed them all!
One word can say it all - awesome!
Would we go back - absolutely!

Room Tip: 4th floor in the Preferred Club has the natural rock facing which is quit wide but good for those wh...
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  • Stayed January 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.
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1,412 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 (611)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Japanese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Toronto
Top Contributor
51 reviews 51 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 26 cities Reviews in 26 cities
42 helpful votes 42 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 13, 2013

The food at Now Amber is excellent - on a par with Dreams PV (the former Camino Real). The resort is close to town (a $4 cab ride or fifty cents by bus), but fully contained with many available restaurants and activities throughout the day. Clients can use all the restaurants at Secrets (the mirror resort for adults only) after six o'clock. The best of these is Bordeaux, the French restaurant. The resort is virtually brand new so everything is in splendid condition. Only drawback - the beach is rocky.

Room Tip: Rooms in the preferred section are slightly nicer, and perhaps worth another $100 a week or so. The...
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  • Stayed October 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Calgary, Canada
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
29 helpful votes 29 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 13, 2013

My husband and I stayed at the NOW Amber from November 17th to the 24th. We very much enjoyed our stay.

Room: We were lucky enough to get the oceanfront swim out suite in the preferred tower. This room is amazing with your own private pool. The entire week there we never used the main pool. The waiter would come right to our terrace and bring our drinks. We had sunshine all day and could move one of the four deck chairs to a shady area on the terrace if you wanted to get out of the sun. There was also a table with seating for 4 on the terrace. This room is large. I think the bathroom was the size of some of the rooms we have had at other resorts complete with walk in closet and spa like shower. I would stay in this room over and over.

Food: The one nice thing is no reservations required, but we found they seemed to alternate which ala carte restaurants were open. We have travelled to numerous all inclusive resorts and found the buffet here to be sub par at best. Because my husband and I do not eat seafood, there was one night that we could not find a meal at the buffet and they don't do breakfast as well as most resorts. One day the women making the omelets did not seem to want to be there. My husband ended up with a omelet with a uncooked complete yoke in it. The italian and mexican restaurants were good as was the service. We never did try the japanese restaurant. There is a snack bar by the main pool that we did grab a hamburger at a couple of times. Room service is included and we used it for breakfast the last day there. The food was alright and came quickly, but was exactly what we ordered.

The lobby lounge has a beautiful view, but could really use some evening entertainment of some kind. We never went to the disco (a little to old for that I think)

Staff: Most staff at the resort are great and go well beyond in there service. We were looking for somewhere to watch CFL football and the gentleman at the desk in the preferred tower made a point to find us a place we could go and watch. He even called to make sure they were showing the game we wanted. Benny in the preferred club lounge was amazing and always made me the perfect not too sweet pina colada. He always had a smile and worked very hard. Please be polite to the staff and tip what you would at home. The lounge staff was also very good and always had a smile for you.

Cleanliness: This hotel is kept very very clean. When we arrived we found items in our room from the previous guest, so it made you wonder how well the room was cleaned between guests. The maid that did our room missed it one day, we phoned down and she was there right away. She always did a very good job. The mini bar fridge is stocked by someone else and was restocked everyday complete with chips and M&M's.

We don't have children, but it looked like the kids really enjoyed the kids club there.

Pool: As I said earlier we never used the main pool, but it seemed that you could always get a seat there if you wanted one.

Room Tip: I would stayed in the preferred tower. It is well worth the upgrade.
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 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.
Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 12, 2013

Having been to Cancun a few times, we wanted to try something different in Mexico. We have stayed at 2 Secrets resorts, so we stuck with the same brand and hoped it would be comparable. It was! Overall, we were very pleased with the resort - service was excellent, room was well-appointed, lobby and other public spaces were very well designed.

Room - this was the 1st hotel room in Mexico where the A/C actually worked!! We were thrilled to find a ceiling fan as well as an adjustable thermostat that kept the room downright chilly! The bed was very comfortable. I like mine soft, hubbie likes his firm - and we were both pleased. The maid came as expected, and the mini-bar guy kept ours full. I wish there was a drain across the shower door area, but that was my only issue.
Pools- The one closest to the beach is heated! It made the whole experience that much better. Last year, in Cancun, the Silversands' pools were not heated, and we couldn't get in the pool the whole week because it was too cold. So, we could not have been happier about the heated pool even though it got crowded at times. The other pools were nice, too.
Service-From the front desk to the restaurants, the service was excellent. We were always greeted with a smile wherever we went, and they bent over backwards to please us. The Carnival hostess remembered where i liked to sit every morning for breakfast, and the pool waiters remembered what I like to drink and would refresh in a regular manner. We could tell Ramondo (hope I got his name right) at Capers really wanted us to enjoy our meal; Fernando by the pool was very gracious; and Armando at VIP services was lovely and very helpful. I can't remember all of their names, but truly, I can't say enough about the service.
Restaurants-So, some of the food is interesting by American standards, but we always found something to eat. The breakfast buffet was great - a wide variety for both Europeans and Americans. Lunch was a bit of a challenge - some of the food at the Barefoot Grill was not great, so the alternative is Castaways and the buffet, both of which require you to be in something better than a bathing suit. But, the pool waiters will bring food from Castaways right to your chair, and the chef usually does a chef special poolside every day from 2-4. Lots of places to go for dinner, some better than others. Generally, any of the steak dishes were good at all of the restaurants. We were perplexed (amused!) by some of the food descriptions on the menu, and I really wanted to offer my services to the resort in providing the English versions of the menu items. Sometimes they seemed to try to make the items really fancy when a simpler description would work.
Entertainment- we didn't participate in much of that, but there were lots of things to keep people busy. We did appreciate that they set up a blow-up screen and projector and showed American football games down by the pool in the evenings. They even provided chilled beer and soft drinks in a cooler, and had a waiter come around to get drink orders so we could enjoy the game without having to fetch our own drinks. The main lobby was fairly busy in the evenings and was a good place to watch the sunset and listen to live music (harp or saxophone, etc.). The nightclub had a great moroccan theme decoration and played good dance music if you are inclined.

As a couple with no kids, we probably would have enjoyed staying on the Secrets side, but we really enjoyed the hustle and bustle of the Now Amber side, too. If you are planning to bring kids, they will LOVE this resort.

If you aren't interested in a time-share type of presentation, you might want to skip the Unlimited Vacations presentation. Although it's not a true time-share deal, it's very similar. They said it was a "loyalty club" but... think time-share w/o the maintenance fees. I'd like to have my 2.5 hours back that morning, but it is probably a good value if you have several thousand dollars lying around.

Can't say enough about how hard everyone worked to make sure we had a good time. Puerto Vallarta felt very safe. There was a notable police presence in town, and the hotel had some good safety measures in place. I'd definitely recommend this to my friends - esp. those with kids who want to go to Mexico.

Room Tip: All rooms seemed to be Ocean View. Upper floors would allow for better viewing, so you might want to...
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  • Stayed January 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 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 11, 2013

We stayed here from Dec 15-22 /2012.
We have 2 kids, ages 5 and 7 and we had a great stay. We upgraded to the preferred suites. I highly recommend you do so. The food in the tower lobby is yummy and always available. The staff are so helpful, and you get free wifi in your room. Not to mention the jacuzzi on the balcony is awesome! If we go back we would try to get a swim up room for sure.
The beds are very comfortable, and the rooms are clean. The tv's are excellent, the bathroom is huge and the shower is luxurious. The mini bar selection is all premium alcohol and they stock it often. The kids pool and explorers club are top notch. Complete with a climbing wall, harnessed trampoline, and playground etc. so awesome! The pool side service was superb--if you have a chance to ask for Miguel. He works his tail off. We tipped $20 a day and he brought us special made drinks for the kids served in guavas, chips and guacamole, and great adult drinks too! The desk staff are polite, helpful, and efficient. The food: buffet is not excellent but is ok. The restaurants are way better, specifically the tepanyaki. The beachside buffets were better than the standard buffet. Also there is NO nightlife. 9am and there is no entertainment, it all shuts down. We would probably go back as the resort is clean, and small and service is great, but the price would have to be reasonable. If you want a day away....visit the zoo! Really cool experience!

Room Tip: G with the preferred suites....
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 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 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 7, 2013

we stayed over new years and the resort is simply well put together. the design team went all out to plan a perfect blend of form and function. the rooms are great and comfortable and views for all. The lobby area was so well designed you just feel comfortable spending alot of time there .
The food at all the resturants was great as was the service.
Thankyou to the entire team at Now Amber and my hat off to the design team for a well planned design. ( I have 30 years of construction experience dealing with designers) so I appreciate all the forethought in Now/Secrets.
The only negitive I can offer is if you like the beach for water activities it is not as nice as say Nuevo beaches but the life of the beach is great. the beach itself is rocky and a strong wave zone. For us it was a minor flaw in a otherwise perfect location and resort.
The resort is 6 dollar cab ride to all the shopping areas or 20 minute walk.
great job Now Secrets you don't need to tweek much of anything.

Room Tip: all rooms have views but the level one has pools for level one users only. thats added cost but we...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ofallon
1 review
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 6, 2013

We stayed over New Years and overall had a blast and would go back to now amber/secrets. We chose to stay at now amber having stayed at now jade in riviera maya last New Years and had a great experience. If u haven't done an all inclusive over New Years, I highly recommend it...it's a great way to end the year and start a new one.

The good:
The resort in general is immaculate....the views from the lobby are beautiful. The rooms are great, we stayed in a junior suite on he 4th floor. Every room has an ocean view, so we really didn't see a reason to upgrade. Would have been cool to have a swim up suite....but how would u get drinks? And you probably wouldn't meet as many people.

We liked Bordeaux. Ate there for New Years and another night. Pretty sure it's adults only....so there's no kids running around. The service was great too, multiple people waiting on you made it a great experience.

The hibachi at himitsu was our favorite, I could eat there every day. You have to make reservations the day of (I think) with the concierge. Just like the states they have a salad, miso soup, they give u an option of a sushi roll, then the fried rice, veggies, and choice of meats. The room is sealed off from the a la carte seating (which is nice) and is very Cool. You don't need reservations for the a la carte menu at himitsu, we tried this once and it was so-so.

There's always activities going on. We played volleyball a couple times, ping pong, attended a show in the ballroom. It rained a couple days and they brought out board games, delt black jack, had poker tournaments, etc. the activity directors would always ask u to play volleyball and tell u what shows were on that night. They're easily identifiable in their uniforms.

We also liked the location.....15 minutes from the airport, 5 minute cab to the boardwalk, 5 minute cab to the marina. The cabs were only $5 each way. You can also walk to the boardwalk if your the exercise type, 15 minutes or so from the resort.

The desires bar was cool too....it said it was open from 10pm-1am everyday....but we went there around 9pm a couple times. Bartenders (tony and Abel) were great. It's more or less a club with alot of space, although It was never crowded. Good place for a nightcap.

The lobby bar on the secrets side is also a good place to chill.....good selection of booze. Grey goose, stoli, jack Daniels, absolute, etc.

We heard good things about tamarindo but never went due to our short stay (5 nights). I'd do 7 nights if I went back. There's too much to do between the beach, pools, excursions, proximity to the boardwalk(downtown)....you can't see it all in 5 nights.

I liked coco cafe too.....I'm a Starbucks guy and drink a cup of coffee everyday. It's nice to run down there and grab a cup of coffee to start your day. Didn't try any of the food/desserts, but looked decent.

Ate at oceana for lunch twice, pretty good.....I'd recommend lunch there over the buffet.

Free wifi and free long distance was nice....although we were connecting to secrets and staying at now, connectivity was slow unless sitting by the window or on the balcony.

The bad:

Capers was awful....I had a "new York strip"....they have better cuts of meat at Walmart. Heard this from other travelers too.

I thought the buffets sucked....they have two. One on the now side and one on the secrets side. We went to the secrets side to avoid the foreign kids with horrible manners. The buffet at now jade was decent and we had no issues, but now ambers was/is terrible. It always took me 10 minutes or so to fill my plate because all the food looked gross. Who wants tacos or refried beans for breakfast?? They didn't have a lot of options either. The only thing that was good was the omelette station. I stayed 5 days, had 5 omelettes.

Ordered room service twice, didn't care for the pizza.....it was soggy and gross looking. Didn't even touch it.

Maid service....ours seemed to come everyday at 4pm, which is weird. Why not come at 10-12 when 99% of people are at the beach or pool? my fiancé was getting ready to go out for the night and the cleaning lady was in our room one day....she wasn't happy. The minibar in the room wasn't stocked by the maid, but instead by a lady with a cart around 5pm. Would've liked for it to be stocked when we weren't in the room, rather than a knock on the door at 5. Pretty sure she didn't come by a couple days too.

Service in general was hit or miss....either really really good or really bad. Being an American, it seemed like the Mexican travelers received better treatment. I stood in front of the concierge for a couple minutes while the lady running the concierge was chatting with a friend. It seemed like she wasn't even going to acknowledge me until I asked her a question. I asked her to make a reservation at himitsu for hibachi and she said it was full.....without checking her computer. I was bummed because that was the only night we could eat there due to our schedule. I went back to the concierge an hour later and asked the same question to a different employee an was able to reserve two spots (thanks eloy) that night.

I hate to sound picky, but I'm pretty easy going.

Kids, kids, kids.....my god they're everywhere. We stayed on the now side and spent the entire trip on the secrets side, including the adult pool. We were never asked once if we were staying at secrets, nor did I care if someone were to have asked me. Our first glimpse of the now pool, all of the swim up bar stools were occupied by kids!! Not teens or young adults, but kids. We went straight to the secrets pool and continued to do so the entire trip. They either need to make one pools on the now side adults only or allow adults to the secrets pool, enough said. I'm not sure why they even have secrets and now combined. Make it one or the other with preferred towers, seriously it's dumb.

The vendors were pretty annoying on the beach....they're not pushy, just all over.

Didn't get in he ocean, due to the rocky beach....but didn't care.

Overall, good stay.....id return. i like puerto vallarta alot better than riviera maya....better scenery (mountains) and closer to everything. rhythm of the nights was awesome, best part of the trip. We did the 5:30 departure, which I'd recommend. We got some great pictures on the way to las caletas, while it was still light out.

Hope this helps.....again stunning resort, just a couple hickups.

Room Tip: Don't upgrade
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  • 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
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
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 #13 of 122 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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