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“PBEB Villas” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Pueblo Bonito Emerald Bay

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Pueblo Bonito Emerald Bay
Ranked #1 of 80 Hotels in Mazatlan
Certificate of Excellence
Tucson, Arizona
Level Contributor
252 reviews
41 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 176 helpful votes
“PBEB Villas”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 12, 2011

We stayed in our Villa at Pueblo Bonito Emerald Estates November 1 through 15. This is our second trip to our villa and decided to purchase the all inclusive. Some general observations:

The Villa: We enjoyed the villa, especially the private pool/spa and extra space. The housekeeping was excellent (thanks Guadalupe) and after the first few days, she knew that we liked to sleep in. She came later in the day, around 1PM which was much better for us than first thing in the morning. The beds had feather bed toppers which made them too soft in my opinion. Pillow menu is great and it's nice to try different ones. Our golf cart drivers (especially Enrique, aka "Curly") were awesome, coming to pick us up with a moments notice. Everyone we encountered was friendly and accommodating. We had a few business papers to scan and email and the business office was very helpful.

The all inclusive: Overall I thought the food was good for an AI. The shrimp tacos at Bistro are the best, and the tortilla soup at Cilantro's can't be beat. We ate at Angelo's twice and the tasting menus were excellent. The first time, the waiter was rushing us through and we barely had time to finish our wine before he was bringing the next course and glass. The second time, we asked him to slow down so we could really enjoy the courses and he had no problem. I guess they think we Americans like to "eat and run". Well sometimes maybe, but not on vacation. One of the things that annoyed me was that for the in room dining you could only get one beverage per person. So if I wanted 2 glasses of wine and my husband wanted an ice tea and coffee, we could only get one per person. I am not sure if that is so they could get additional delivery charges and tips, but when we complained, they did bring an additional round of drinks but on a different check. Another quirky thing was that even though it was AI, you had to sign a check for what you ordered. I am not sure if that was to track what was consumed or in order to get a tip. A few days before we left, they told us that we no longer had to sign a check, but they included an option to sign a tip to your room. I thought the service in the restaurants and pool was good, and on a few ocassions, very good (especially Gustavo) at Le Cordeliere.

The Resort: I did not use the Spa this trip, but my husband did get a massage. While they do have discounts for the spa treatments, I still think they are expensive. The work out room and other facilities are really nice, very clean and can be used at no charge if you are a villa owner or guest. I think there is a minimal charge otherwise. The deli had a good selection of food and things, but were pretty expensive. They have a captured audience, so I guess they can charge what they want. The grounds were immaculate, as always. There is always someone cleaning, triming, or whatever, so the place is very clean, although showing its age in a few places.

Overall, we like PBEB and will return in 2013.

  • Stayed November 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
7 Thank MDavisTucson_AZ
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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2,681 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (417)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Tustin, California, United States
Level Contributor
18 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 12, 2011

We got a $200 food/beverage credit for attending a time share presentation. We came back to Emerald Bay to have dinner with friends the next day, I ordered the Prime Rib, and our friends ordered chicken, The meal came with a trip to the Salad Bar, which had an excellent variety of greens and vegetables and a fantastic Chipotle Chicken dish. Portions are good, and the salad bar includes desert. We have a hard time spending $200, even though we ordered wine and Margaritas before dinner. Highly recommended for a nice night out.

Room Tip: Every room is beautiful, but most first floor rooms have no view of the ocean. The villas have a vi...
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  • Stayed December 2011, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank The_Heaths2011
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Marana, Arizona
Level Contributor
112 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 66 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 11, 2011

Just returned last night from 1 week at Pueblo Bonito Emerald Bay. Is our 5th time to Mazatlan although first time to this Pueblo Bonito (have stayed at Pueblo Bonito, Mazatlan previously and other properties.)
PROS: 1. The landscaping staff does a FABULOUS job in keeping the property lovely and clean.
2. We had a very spacious suite that was kept immaculate by the housekeeping staff .
3.The three pools are lovely and offer you the choice of quiet with no activities (nice for reading and resting) or the full realm of activities.
4. Food overall was quite good and quantity ample. Wait staff was very good. However, we feel Angelo's at Pueblo Bonito Mazatlan and Cilantro (also there and right on the beach) have better atmosphere, choice and quality. Also at these two restaurants is a great wine list and terrific Sommelier (Alberto) can not go wrong with his suggestions. (No sommelier or wine list ever presented at Emerald Bay).
5. We did not take part in the all inclusive plan as is way too much eating but found the prices relatively reasonable (compared to Cabo and the Caribbean).
6. Happy hour 2 for 1 was a pretty good deal and drink of the day (also 2 for 1).

CONS: 1.No other restaurants (other than those on the property) to walk to - must take shuttle to Pueblo Bonito Mazatlan, taxi or pulmonia - if you want to go to Marina.
2. Only place for entertainment (on certain nights) is at Kelly's Bar and seats are very uncomfortable there. They used to have Rafael Rodriguez there 3 nights a week who is an excellent guitar player and singer. Unfortuneately, he is no longer there - a real disappointment !
3. Check in was very disorganized - took us over 45 minutes ( I realize this may have been due to it being Saturday - but- could have been smoother and quicker!) THEN - you had to go to the table and schedule a time share visit before they would give you your key! We told them we have been through this twice before here but they would not let you get by this step. On the assigned day - we said no and declined. Should definitely eliminate this at check in - can push at another time, if they have to.
4. Suite was very spacious and clean but no deck,( a real minus in a beach resort) and furniture uncomfortable to sit on and a bit out of date. May be better in newer buildings.
5. Gym is not free unless you are an owner - not so in other resorts we have been to in Mazatlan.
6. Beach is not as nice as others to run on (I am a jogger) and certainly not swimming beach.

Property may be better for families than people that like to enjoy the Mexican culture and explore more. Did enjoy the Rest and Relaxation, of course the pools, sun and warmth!

Room Tip: Maybe ask for one of the newer ones
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  • Stayed December 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Kathy B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
santa fe, nm
Level Contributor
23 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 52 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 9, 2011

Our annual Thanksgiving trip to PBEmerald Bay was, as always~~FABULOUS. The hotel continues to be the most beautiful in all of Mazatlan; location, accommodations, staff, on property food et. al.
The shuttle service to town is terrific and always on time..and we take advantage of it often. We attended a wonderful performance at the Angela Peralta theatre on the Plaza Machado of Broadway music..it was terrific..(16 violins just to give you a hint of the caliber and quality)..dined twice at the wonderful Topolo restaurant adjacent to the Plaza Machado; 3 times at Roy's on the Point which is near PBEmerald Bay. For those who are overly concerned re: your security...please abandon the bad press you read..and have a wonderful time in Mazatlan. On the property Kelly's bar is a hopping spot these days and the Bistro restaurant is top notch! Regarding the all inclusive offer...there are some problems with the program and given this is their first year implementing I believe it will be worked out. It is not appropriate for everyone..AND if you do take advantage of this program, please remember to tip your servers and staff..the amount they receive as 'included' in the all inclusive is paltry. We have been owners for over 10 years and I will say that with the growth and monetary issues of the property and within the Country (not unlike the US) some of the staff may not be of the previous caliber that was exceptionally attentive and customer focused..but for our family this will always be our 'home away from home' and our annual Thanksgiving retreat!

Room Tip: all rooms face the ocean..the biggest consideration is if you have children then request a location...
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  • Stayed November 2011, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank yosta
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Omaha, Nebraska
Level Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 2, 2011

This resort went far beyond our expectations. Nestled on a beautiful beach, each room has breath taking ocean views. The staff was all amazing andthe day after our wedding, the Mazatlan aquatic zoo brought endangered sea turtles to be released on their beach. Anyone staying at the resort was allowed to partake and release their very own turtle. It was an amazing experience that I will never forget.

Beyond the views, the food is amazing. Though it can be pricey, if you spend a few extra dollars up front and partake in their all-inclusive offer, it will save you a great deal of money in the long run. When we were booking the resort, I was never able to find a menu that displayed their food items. THIS IS NOT YOUR TYPICAL ALL-INCLUSIVE! The food is very high quality ranging from gourmet cook fillet mignon to fresh seafood. They had every Mexican dish imaginable and incredible Coconut Shrimp. Alcohol also included. Lastly, the resort has a sister resort called Playa Mazatlan which is also included in the all-inclusive price. Pueblo Bonita provides a complimentary shuttle to their sister resort which is located on the best beach in Mazatlan.

This resort has the neatest network of pools that I have ever encountered. I believe their is 3 swim up bars. They make all drinks from mai tais to bloody-marry's. This resort was truly remarkable. My Wife look forward to traveling back in the future.

  • Stayed October 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank David S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brentwood, California
Level Contributor
161 reviews
27 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 80 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed December 1, 2011

Mazatlan shares a bad rap with Americans who paint Mexico with the same broad brush. This year, more than in the past, we were told repeatedly not to go by caring friends who watched TV and read stories on the internet. The problem with that is we have little idea as to scale or geography with respect to Mexico, Sinaloa, or in particular Mazatlan. While I am sure the stories are true, it is like saying don't go to California because there is extreme violence in Los Angeles and therefore you will be in danger when you take that trip to Disneyland (Anaheim).
We visit Mazatlan every November. The people there are hard working, friendly, and many have become good friends over the years. We stick to the main areas where tourists travel and try to remember safety in a foreign country requires common sense in what you do and how you act.
Pueblo Bonito Emerald Bay is amazing. It is sheer beauty that is addicting to return to and difficult to say "Next year, we'll be back" to the staff. Like many Mexican places, it has certain things that you would like to see more upscale, such as the room furnishings. As a package of sheer location, the very private ocean setting, exterior landscape, gym and spa amenities, a morning walk on the beach, the pool, the architecture - hey, I've been around the entire world and this place is special. I suggest during your trip that you remember that 1) it isn't the U.S. with all it's attitude and the rat race, 2) that you have patience for a slower pace of doing things, and 3) smile, be pleasant, and treat the person in front of you with courtesy. That will in return give you the vacation you have always wanted. I am there every November and next year's (2012) trip is already booked.
This year: We went to a semi-pro baseball game, the Opera (see photo) to see Madama Butterfly (I know I used an 'a' at te end of Madame), It was sung in Italian with spanish and english subtitles and there are no bad seats). We visited the brand new cinema complex twice (this was a Class AAA in any city and movies in English were $3). We ate out at different restaurants in town, and at the hotel every night. Went to the amazing and huge hotel gym each morning. Walked on the beach. We participated in 2 baby sea turtle releases which the Aquarium and Mazatlan run in a joint conservation program.

Note: I bring a ton of small bills so I can tip the people who worked hard to make my stay pleasant. These people sometimes work for a few dollars a day and are happy to make our lives richer, so why shouldn't we help them in return. That isn't to say I have a lot of money, but I do believe that helping others is part of my vacation experience as much as the physical part.

Pueblo Bonito EB was a place I fell in love with the first time I saw it and 8 years later, it is still everything I initially hoped it would become.

If you go, say Hi to the following people at the hotel from Bob in California:
Jose (Manager), Rudy, and Julissa at the front desk
Alejandro the Bellman
Eduardo, Victor, and Belinda at the pool activity desk
Claudio, Ramon, Daniel, and Jairo at La Cordillere (restaurant)
Hector at the Gym in the morning
and Ernesto and Jorge (George) on the daily hotel shuttel
These are all very special people who can do a lot to make your stay much more enjoyable.

Don't forget to 1) go to the Baseball game with Eduardo (it isn't about baseball, it's about the fun in the stands), 2) Take Salsa lessons with Eduardo and Belinda, 3) go for a long quiet walk on the beach at 630am (not later because the sun comes overhead at 830). 4) Visit Alfredo Ybarra and Pancho (the owner) at "Pancho's" by the ocean and have the tequila cheese and bananas flambe, and anything else on the menu. 5) have a filet dinner at the bar off the main lobby during happy hour (2 x 1 martinis) - on an evening when the guitarist comes to sing and play (the guy is worth every minute).

Hope this helps. Oh, and don't forget to tip the maid. She works hard and is the invisible person who ensures your room is cared for.

I hope your trip is a good one, but the key to any successful trip is your frame of mind.

Room Tip: Room location is a personal thing but I would suggest a higher floor for the views.
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  • Stayed November 2011, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Callbob1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
9 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 28, 2011

this was the second time we stayed at this property - it was six years ago
thanksgiving week, and we before the inclusive deal we ate lobster for the big day.
Not so this year. Also, the place seems to be physically run down a bit, plaster coming
off the walls, the stair needing to be patched up or the time in the pool coming
off. Too many guys working to patch things up. Pueblo Bonito looks like a old movie star passed her prime.
With the All Inclusive they seem to be in the habit of nickel and diming the customers. $18 USD for a 6 pack of Pacifico in the deli (yes, you read that correctly -which was $4 for an 8 pack downtown!) There is no money that exchanges hands (unless its a tip) anything you purchase goes to your account, which includes the deli purchases, room service, drinks
at any of the bars at the pools etc...which is kind of nice, but makes you want to keep tally to find out what you are really being charged for. Take note Iphone and Smartphone users: if you hop onto their in house wireless it's NOT free. Your room will be charged automatically unless you sign up or run off 3G Telcel or Lusacell that I found in the area. So in order to get the all inclusive at $45 a day rather than the posted $70 day, we had to sit through the time share racket AGAIN. As long you are willing to do this, you can save your self $300. Pueblo Bonito is now pushing the beautiful villas in the back that cost $160K with 12% financing (for 15 years + 17% Mexican VAT tax - not worth it for something you technically don't own but can saddle your heirs with as your legacy if you don't like them. I did like the new spa. Pluses: the pilates and stretching classes ($11 A CLASS) new Precor/ Startac equipment, pretty good pricing on their services, though I read a review that none of the technicians are certified, (seriously? are you surprised that your massage therapist at fancy resort in a third world country is NOT certified? *GASP*) I think we are over Mexico for a while, the prices are down right ridiculous for what you get in terms of service and quality. Bar service at the pools were awesome, but the Bistro restaurant needs to step it up (service was shoddy at best) They try but it doesn't quite work. Again: i don't mind paying for good service or a quality product, but Pueblo Bonito misses the mark.

Room Tip: make sure you ask for a junior suite they are the ones that have balconies not the Master Suites
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  • Stayed November 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Stef G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Pueblo Bonito Emerald Bay

Property: Pueblo Bonito Emerald Bay
Address: Ave Ernesto Coppel Campana 201 | Camino Al Delfin, Mazatlan 82110, Mexico
Location: Mexico > Pacific Coast > Sinaloa > Mazatlan
Amenities:
Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Spa Hotel in Mazatlan
#1 Family Hotel in Mazatlan
#1 Luxury Hotel in Mazatlan
#1 On the Beach Hotel in Mazatlan
#3 Romantic Hotel in Mazatlan
#5 Business Hotel in Mazatlan
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Pueblo Bonito Emerald Bay 4*
Number of rooms: 252
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Each suite comes with a panoramic ocean view from your private balcony and has amenities like outdoor Jacuzzis, a beauty salon with mini-spa and tennis courts nearby. Relax below 150-year-old mangroves that surround a free-form pool and stroll the shoreline by the bay. Located next world famous sport fishing waters, golf courses, and the Gold Zone, you can enjoy any number of nearby activities on both land and water. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Pueblo Bonito Emerald Bay Hotel Mazatlan
Mazatlan Emerald Bay
Pueblo Bonito Emerald Bay Mazatlan
Emerald Bay Mazatlan

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