Seasoned Travelers to Puerto Vallarta know to bypass all booths, pitchmen, and pitchwomen trying to engage with you when you exit customs. This is known as “Time Share Alley”.
On your way to catch a taxi, shuttle, or private pick up, you will be deluged by folks offering discount deals on Puerto Vallarta attractions, free rides, free city tours, and assorted other pitches to get you to stop and talk with them. DO NOT STOP, DO NOT TALK WITH THEM, continue to the end of the rope line at the airport exit where your legitimate “pick up” person will be waiting for you.
Once you are finally in your mode of transportation to wherever your Puerto Vallarta destination may be (in my case it was the Mayan Palace Resort in Nuevo Vallarta), make sure you have 170 pesos (includes tip) to pay Taxi Driver.
When you arrive at the Mayan Palace (which consists of 5 different times shares incorporated into one very large resort) known as The Grand Mayan, Grand Bliss, and Luxxe, and one more I cannot remember. You are whisked to an arrival center where they take your bags, and off you go on the jaunt to your designated building.
The grounds for the combined complexes are enormous, well kept, and well maintained. The worst time to go is June, July and August. It is Humid, with plenty of mosquitoes, along with sand fleas (make sure you bring plenty of Sun protection and repellant). This is considered the rainy and low season.
The rooms are well furnished, well kept, and very very clean. The combined complexes are truly a 4-5 star experience.
Unfortunately, if you calculate the cost these folks paid for a time-share U.S. ($14,000-$25000 plus a $700 a year maintenance fee for a week), you could stay at an all-inclusive 5 star resort anywhere in the world. If you are desperate to throw you money away on a timeshare, then go on line a buy one at 50-70% less than what you would pay buying direct.
The Mayan Complex has some excellent restaurants that are all U.S. oriented prices (no bargains here). The food is very good as is the service, but you are paying for it, and everything is ala Carte.
Do not pay for wifi, which will cost you $100 for the week. Instead, walk 500 feet to the Grand Bliss, and use the free wifi in the Lobby, or walk significantly further and use the free wifi at the Luxxe.
Once you are settled in, jump in a taxi and head straight for the closest Wal-Mart (taxi ride will cost you 50-70 pesos). Buy all your water, breakfast food, fruits, beer, cola’s, milk, and if you are planning to golf and use the Golf Shops Golf Clubs “buy golf balls at Wal-Mart!!!” The pro shop at the Mayan Complex charges U.S. $5 a ball to buy them there. You will loose between 1-4 balls during play, so buy them at Wal-Mart if you did not bring your own!!!
When you are done shopping at Walmart, push the cart straight out the door to the curb where there will be a fellow with a radio who will call you a taxi (He is dressed in white with ID), he will help load your groceries into cap (you do not need to worry about carrying those heavy water bottles). Upon arrival at Mayan Complex, taxi will take you straight to luggage drop off, where they will take all your groceries and deliver them straight to your room(s). No hassle no worry (give the guy with radio 20 pesos, and give guy at luggage drop off at Mayan another 20 pesos.
The Golf Course at Mayan complex has a great deal if you attend the Owners Breakfast (Where they try to up sell you a more expensive time share arrangement). The breakfast is great, and if you are an owner, take advantage, eat the breakfast, go get the coupon for $65 golf including cart and golf clubs, do not buy anything, and you are good to go. They even throw in a free City Tour with Tequila testing, which my friends said was great.
The pools at the complex are major and extensive, if you are a pool person; this place is heaven for you. Pool waiters do not bother you like they did in the old days, and there is lots to do.
For those that want to keep busy, the complex offers many, many things to do: Tournaments, classes, exercise, yoga, cooking, and assorted events to keep you busy.
If you eat at the restaurants both lunch and Dinner plan to spend about U.S. $100 per person (kids will cost you a bit less).
They also have some very good entertainment each night, so take advantage of it (it is free, even though they hope you will buy a drink while you are watching).
If you are not taking advantage of the Mayan facilities because you have a time share, or a friend had a time share, or a relative had a time share, or your neighbor had a time share, you can get a room there for about $98/night. This is a very good value for the services and facilities provided.
While Puerto Vallarta is a very nice place, and all the staff, and people of Puerto Vallarta are very grateful to have you there, I will be more inclined to take my next vacation in Hawaii. There is something about Hawaii that puts you at ease, and helps you remember why you are taking a vacation in the first place (including airfare and hotels, it will probably cost you about the same as going to Puerto Vallarta).
If I ever do return to Puerto Vallarta (other than on business), I would have no qualms staying at the Mayan Palace Nuevo Vallarta Complex. I forgot to add, that the Owners of the complex are in the processes of upgrading the Mayan Palace, which means they are trying to move as many Mayan Palace owners out of those timeshare units as possible, so they can convert them. If you are a Mayan Palace owner who has not been convinced to upgrade to Bliss or Luxxe or whatever, hang in there because they will eventually need to offer you an upgrade without charge just to get you out of the building!
- Also Known As:
- Mayan Palace Nuevo Vallarta Hotel Nuevo Vallarta
- Wyndham Nuevo Vallarta
- Nuevo Vallarta Mayan Palace
- Mayan Palace Resort