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“Overall it was a great place to stay, especially with children” 4 of 5 stars
Review of The Grand Mayan Nuevo Vallarta

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The Grand Mayan Nuevo Vallarta
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5.0 of 5 Resort   |   Av Paseo de las Moras s/n | Fracc. Nautico Turistico, Nuevo Vallarta 63735, Mexico   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #13 of 27 Hotels in Nuevo Vallarta
Sonoma, California
Level Contributor
11 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“Overall it was a great place to stay, especially with children”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 28, 2013

We recently (mid-July) traded in an RCI week for 7-day stay at the Grand Mayan-NV. I read a lot of other reviews and do agree with most of them. The property is beautiful and my husband and our two young boys had a blast at the pools/water park. The best pools I've seen in Mexico.

Check-in was easy, but just like another reviewer said, we were told to go over to concierge to get our keys(wristbands)- which was the whole "timeshare spiel." And it turned out accurate that RCI trades are only given rooms on the back side of buildings which face lagoons, parking, gardens and construction. I took a risk by agreeing to the breakfast presentation, but asked for a room upgrade. It was pretty easy-she came right back with an upgrade, but we had to wait until the next day to change rooms as it was past 6:30pm by this time. We were moved to a 5th floor room with wonderful view of Banderas Bay. The room itself was exactly the same as the garden-view room.

So was the presentation worth it?? In my opinion- yes/maybe. We got a lot other discounts and we were looking to save some money. The tour was nice, but the sales pitch-grueling. Not for the weak! We declined to purchase and the salesman actually got angry! They passed us off to 4 people for last ditch efforts to woo us into buying. I did not, thank goodness.

Overall our vacation was great. Summer is "Mexicana" season, which I loved. I always feel silly going to Mexican resorts and being surrounded entirely by Gringos. It was great hearing Spanish spoken everywhere- imagine that! My kids loved everything- they wanted to be at the pools/slide/beach all day long. They weren't interested in tv or my iPhone all week. Yay!

Pros: Property-gorgeous, pools, swim-up bar, slide awesome,rooms are clean, decor is nice, beds comfortable, maid-service attentive, nice view, food is good, staff is nice, spa is nice, great massage, very nice gym

Cons: Timeshare sales pitch! Slight wear & tear in rooms: faucets although newer were loose, stove top barely worked. Extremely pricey food in restaurants- more expensive than California! It was a hassle to leave property to go elsewhere for dinner. Yes-you would save $ but then add the round trip taxi and you're only saving $5-10 (we gave up and went way over budget).

Room Tip: Above the 4th floor for best view! But they might not let you upgrade unless you agree to timeshare...
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 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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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (492)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • Italian first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Granite Bay, California
Level Contributor
54 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 28, 2013

We just spent 2 weeks at the Grand Mayan 7-13-27th; we're owners but hadn't stayed here before. The first week we had 15 in our family, 8 children and 7 adults. We had 5 units for all of us. The week couldn't have been better. The staff are uniformly well trained, friendly, efficient and speak passable English. Yes, the beds are hard, but if you call housekeeping they will put an egg crate mattress on the bed to make it bearable. I am amazed at the delightful execution of services the staff performs. The hotel is but one of several at the resort and it's a little intimidating at first to find your way around but in no time we were hopping shuttles everywhere and even the bus to go downtown. The pools and grounds are gorgeous and meticulously maintained. I especially liked that the pools don't have high levels of chlorine. There is something for everyone to do and enjoy. My biggest complaint is the pool lounges; they suck—uncomfortable and they have only one position semi-recumbent. The chairs at the beach are cheap plastic but they're adjustable.

The spa is beautiful and I had 4 of the best massages of my life from Luisa; she's amazing.

It is the rainy season but it only rained twice for a short time while we were in old town, both on Sunday nights. And we didn't have a problem with mosquitos either. The weather was balmy some days, which was nice and hot some others. We would go back this time of year again with no hesitation.

All in all we loved our time at the Grand Mayan. The buffets are fun with a big variety of delicious food. We tried most of the restaurants at the resort and the food was always good but pricey in some of them like Epazote. We took a van downtown and ate at Vitea on the Malecon; it was wonderful with luscious food and great service. Another new place on the Marina is El Molcajete. We took our fresh fish and the owner cooked it with 2 amazing sauces, included a green salad, rice and salsa and chips, great deal. The Mexican people we encountered were friendly and very helpful in giving us directions or showing us where to go.

Puerto Vallarta is a beautiful, charming old city with great people and lots to see.

Room Tip: Owner's get priority for ocean views, the rooms with odd numbers. Higher floors have less noise.
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 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.
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 25, 2013

We stayed at the Grand Mayan for a week last week, 4 of us stayed in a 2 bedroom room, and there was plenty of room. The room was clean, grounds was great. We were on the 3th floor, only issue we had was going in July, it's the local's holiday/vacation period. ...

food was great, cost was a bit high, go into town for cheaper dinners. We took a taxi to Walmart, I asked him to wait for us which he did, just asked for a bit more $$. Got food for breaksfast, snacks, etc..

Spa was great,,,, bed's a bit hard, FYI, and pillows fat............

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 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 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles, California
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed July 22, 2013

Just got back from a very disappointing week at the GMayan hotel, we stayed in a master suite...our check in was pretty fast maybe because we arrived on a Sunday..but I wish I would have listened to other reviewers about putting on our own bracelets because we did have to listen to a very aggressive sales pitch from the woman who puts them on for you..after my husband gave her a very loud no she released us finally but as soon as we walked into our room she was calling us to see if we had discussed her offers, etc. I told her to please give me time to relax she said she would call me back in a couple of hours, absolutely not acceptable but the hilarious thing was that after that first phone call our room's phones stopped working they had a loud static noise so she was unable to reach us the whole week due to their own faulty phones... I actually did report it a couple of times to staff but was ignored until the day before our departure a tech was sent to our room to "fix"it but they were still not working after he left..a supervisor called to apologize and ask what she could do to change our bad experience with their service, and I said like what? she laughed and quickly hung up!? Because we had no phone service I had to text my family who were staying there instead...My sister had to ask them o change her refrigerator 3 times because it was malfunctioning the first time was right after we had gone grocery shopping and begged them to please send a replacement so that her dairy/meats would not go off..they ignored her and didn't show up until the next day, she had to put it all on ice overnight, so not acceptable!

My daughter and her cousins enjoyed the facilities, the lazy river was fun but has many liner issues and uneven patches my niece even cut her toe and tried to get some first aid for a very bloody toe and was told that the security guy was the person but they couldn't find him so my daughter had to run over to the market and buy some bandages to treat it...

We ate at the Samba restaurant the first night and were very disappointed with our meal, I had the fish burger that tasted way to much like egg and my husband and daughter had the beef burger that was just okay, but we paid $100 us dll for 3 burgers and 3 drinks! After that experience we stuck to either eating in the room or venturing out to the marina where we found 3 really good places to eat: "Porto Bello" Italian food (a little pricey but well worth it) was absolutely delicious pasta and the tiramisu was heavenly( just bring your mosquito repellant they are just by the river and lots of insects); the "8 Tostadas", simple Mexican style seafood place fresh and reasonably priced, generous portions (but closes early)...and Barracuda a little place next to Oxxo where we had a delicious molcajete filled with steak and shrimp, very reasonably priced as well....we did get the room service pizza a couple of times and the pizza was very good but pricey..

Would highly recommend buying groceries at Walmart, which we did and saved hundreds of dollars vs. eating at the hotel restaurants...we basically ate all breakfast/lunches in our room(which we have never done before and didn't really feel like we were on vacation having to clean up and wash dishes afterwards), be aware its kind of a hassle getting groceries up to your hotel room because the bellboys try to get a big tip from you by telling you they wont charge you the $25 pesos per container they put the groceries in, in our case we had at least 5 boxes...once we handed him a couple dollars tip he magically dropped the extra charges! and they charge for everything in the room so make sure you get plenty of water and coffee...

We typically stay in the Marina Puerto Vallarta area and this is our first time staying in Nuevo Vallarta, mainly because we got an excellent deal on Ebay for the Grand Mayan..but we found that we missed being able to just walk out of the hotel without so much hassle and having more options for dining and activities within walking distance outside the resort.

Overall the Grand Mayan needs to improve their guest services, response times,prices and maintaining their facilities a lot better...maybe they have grown too fast but they need to keep guests satisfied and injury free! Suffice to say we will not return nor recommend them anytime soon...

Room Tip: we were told that we would only get an ocean view if we attended a timeshare presentation and that w...
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Socialmediamanager1, Gerente at The Grand Mayan Nuevo Vallarta, responded to this review, August 5, 2013
Dear StellaBlue68:

We really appreciate the time you have taken to share with us your detailed impression about your stay. We are pleased to learn your loved ones enjoyed the facilities and the lazy river.

However, we are disappointed we did not meet all your expectations and learn about the inconveniences experienced while staying with us. For that reason, all pertaining areas will receive your feedback and we will continue working hard to achieve excellence.

We hope you have the opportunity to visit our resort again.

With all good wishes from The Grand Mayan!

The Grand Mayan Management.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Cincinnati, Ohio, United States
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 19, 2013

I stayed at the Grand Mayan for a week in June on a girls vacation. 4 of us stayed in a 1 bedroom room, and there was plenty of room. The room was clean and tastefully decorated. Housekeeping was responsive, although we had to call a couple of times for more towels (4 adult women use a lot!). We were on the 9th floor and our balcony had a small pool, which was a really nice touch.

The pools were amazing! Very clean. I will say that sometimes it was hard to find a chair if we got there later in the day. The swim up bars were a lot of fun and so was the lazy river.

Service was wonderful. Everyone was very pleasant and they go out of their way to say good evening and good morning.

Overall, it was a great trip!

Room Tip: Rooms on the higher floor are quieter.
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with friends
    • 4 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 19, 2013

When checking in, the check in process takes a LONG time because it's a huge resort, so it's a good idea to eat something at the airport or on the plane so you're not dying. Also, be sure to get an odd numbered room above the 3rd floor. Those look out over the pools/beach. There were lots of kids/families.

We had read some reviews of the resort that said that the food was not great and very overpriced. We'd have to agree generally. So, go to Wal-Mart early in the trip and pick up stuff for breakfast/lunch/snacks/drinks for your room. You can take a cab or your car, and it's very close – only about 10 minutes away. Also, you have coffee maker, etc in your room, but no filters, so you might throw some filters in your bag and/or a bag of coffee.

The beds are large and very firm mattresses. Consider using a blanket folded over as some padding and/or ask them to put an egg crate style mattress pad on there.

When you check in, they will sic the time share folks on you and want to schedule a complimentary breakfast and 90 minute presentation. Tell them no - - - that you'll think about it. They do these on Saturday and Sunday. Then, you can later decide if you want to to do it.

The con of doing the presentation is that it will take up basically your entire morning – from 8:30-12:30 or so (they're never 90 minutes) and if you don't like the pressure sales thing you'll hate it. The pro of doing it is that it gives you 10% off your room charges (only for food/drink I believe), discounts on spa stuff, a free breakfast (which is amazing), and if you go down later and chat with them about the breakfast after you've decided what excursion you want to do, they will throw in free tickets for that (which is worth some money).

We decided to do it after they agreed to throw in free tickets for Las Caletas for each of us who showed up. The other nice part was that we had a very personable sales lady who also gave us some great restaurant recommendations, etc.

Also, make friends with one of the concierge people – we used Javier – he was funny and very informative – and we stuck with him all week. He told us about places to go that were off the beaten path, and his local ideas.

Car rental – We are explorers and so it was a no-brainer for us. Pros – you are free to come/go, go exploring to many of the places that others are paying $100 for, on your time frame, on your sequence, etc. We rented for about $150 total (that was a larger car because we had a lot of luggage (thanks to our friends :)) but was very nice car – a Dodge Avenger. It was double what we thought because we had to buy liability insurance (it's required in Mexico), but still felt like the $150 was worth it. The people at the resort have a system for valet/park. Once you are on the resort, people movers take you everywhere (it's like Disney). The cons on a rental car – can be a little dicey in Puerto Vallarta to park, drive, etc. Have to be adventurous. Takes a little extra time to call down and have them pull the car around, etc. Also unlike other parts of Mexico, you really are in Mexico when you are outside the resort, so there are very few street signs and nothing in English. So, with a few words we were able to ask directions and people were really friendly to point us back to the right roads, etc. It was actually kind of fun for us, but again we like the adventure.

Food – in general, the food on the resort restaurants is so so and expensive. But, we didn't realize until we checked out that with RCI you have a $300 credit toward room charges for food and drink. So, this helps a lot. We ate at Samba's when we first got there because it's convenient. They had good guac and quesadillas. Havana Moon has a GREAT view of the beach/sunset, but we weren't huge fans of their food. There are some good restaurants within walking distance of the resort. I highty recommend Eddie's (great breakfast and good dinner too). If you have a car, then there are many good restaurants in PV too. We LOVED Barcelona – it's on the side of the hill overlooking the boardwalk and beach. Great tapas there and they serve a great appetizer of potato salad for free and some sipping tequila after. They also have a chocolate molten cake that you order when you get there, that is to die for. Some great places too in some of the towns that we went.

Some excursions that might be good –

1. PV has a great boardwalk, called the Malecon (based on Santa Barbera, their sister city). There is shopping and restaurants and things on that two mile walk with sand sculptures, rock art, bead art, lots of shops and restaurants. Very fun.
- Also live music at most restaurants and a beautiful historic Catholic Church.Fun little town to walk around – square with music, old church, etc.
2. Las Caletas – this is a beach that you can only reach by boat. Everyone said we must do this. Was a nice boat ride out, lunch served buffet style on the beach, better water than the resort, nature walks, hammocks, etc. You can snorkel too, but the water was not clear when we were there. We did learn to paddle board there, which was really fun. They have kayaks too. It's very laid back.
3. Sayulita – this was the surfing town with hippie vibe. Very fun place and you can easily spend a few hours there walking around the shops, galleries, restaurants, and going down the beach and watching folks surf. You can take lessons there too. Great place to eat called ChocoBanana – their carrot cake was heavenly!
4. Punta Mita/Isla Marietas – just further along the coast back towards the resort from Sayulita is Punta Mita (also a nice drive). The water over on this side is fabulous. Green and clear visibility. You will notice that the water at the resort is murky (think Gulf of Mexico). This is due to a large river which dumps out near there. We spent most of our time at the resort pools/lazy river which are fabulous. When you get to Punta Mita there are lots of beach-side restaurants/bars and lots of captains who will take you out to the Marietas where the "secret beach" is nestled through a cave and inside an island. Interestingly, when we asked people about this at the resort, they were ho hum about it, but JP said it was not to be missed. And, we had the time, so we did it. AS with everything you negotiate a price. For us, we negotiated $40 US for both of us to go out there on this skiff, and that included snorkel gear and was about a 2 1/2 hour excursion. He also took us to some other amazing beaches around the other islands. THIS WAS OUR FAVORITE THING WE DID. On drive back, you can stop at La Manzanilla, public beach with beautiful water, we are told. We ran out of time, but it did look great as we passed.
5. San Sebastian – this is an old mining town up in the Sierra Madre islands. It's about 1 1/2 hour drive. Very quiet there and neat little square, but not a lot else. It was a beautiful drive and fun being at 5,000 feet v. the beach for a change. It was cool there and the people very friendly. They are known for making a different type of tequila up there called Racilla. It is pretty smooth. Also, they grow a variety of coffee that is low in caffeine and actually used as a sleep aid. We bought a bag for my folks.
6. There's another town nearby called Bucerias that people will tell you to go to. I would not. Not much there and looked pretty rough.

At night at the resort, from about 8 pm-midnight, they do a show at the main hub between all the different resorts on the property. It's an open air bar called Santuria. It's where you initially come in and where you go out to take taxis, get your car, etc.

Room Tip: Get a room with an odd number and up higher - you'll have a view of pool area and beach.
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  • Stayed July 2013, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 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 16
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
17 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 13, 2013

We stayed at the Grand Mayan for 2 weeks in April. The weather was perfect. The swimming pools were well cared for and the living spaces were perfect. We rented a 2 bedroom through RCI. We had a partial view of the ocean and the whole marina nearby.
The place is huge. It was more expensive than I like, but the food was very good. The staff was very friendly. They want to sell you more time shares, but we avoided that.
Beware when you get off the airplane. After you get your luggage, there are many timeshare people ready to help you get to your hotel. Please avoid them and the taxi stand that will charge you too much.
I would go outside and get a cab on my own and it will be much cheaper. I found that Puerto Vallarta was the worse place for aggressive time share people.
Places to visit would be the Botanical Gardens. They had the best gift shop and restaurant of any place we went. We also enjoyed the markets and the sidewalk mall by the ocean in Puerto Vallarta.
We went on the Water Taxi a few times to get from Nuevo Vallarta to Paradise Mall.
I would recommend staying in Puerto Vallarta, if you want quick access to many activities. If you want to be more all inclusive, you can stay and get everything you need at the Grand Mayan, but it will be expensive to buy your groceries there. We took the 30 minute bus ride to Walmart or we took a taxi there.

Room Tip: Always ask for an ocean view or a partial. The view of the marina is nice too
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  • Stayed April 2013, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 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.
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Additional Information about The Grand Mayan Nuevo Vallarta

Address: Av Paseo de las Moras s/n | Fracc. Nautico Turistico, Nuevo Vallarta 63735, Mexico
Location: Mexico > Pacific Coast > Nayarit > Riviera Nayarit > Nuevo Vallarta
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#9 Family Hotel in Nuevo Vallarta
#9 Luxury Hotel in Nuevo Vallarta
#10 Romantic Hotel in Nuevo Vallarta
#11 Top resorts Hotel in Nuevo Vallarta
#11 On the Beach Hotel in Nuevo Vallarta
Hotel Class:5 star — The Grand Mayan Nuevo Vallarta 5*
Number of rooms: 795
Also Known As:
Grand Mayan Nuevo Vallarta Hotel Nuevo Vallarta
Wyndham Nuevo Vallarta
Grand Mayan Resort Nuevo Vallarta
Grand Mayan Puerto Vallarta

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