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“Pacific Beauty”

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Garza Blanca Preserve, Resort & Spa
Ranked #13 of 121 Hotels in Puerto Vallarta
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed August 5, 2014

Located on Banderas Bay in Puerto Vallarta this is truly a site to behold. The accommodations are excellent and the food fabulous. The beach has begun to erode slightly buit we have been told that it will be enlarged. The mountain residences are exquisite but a little glitzy. We have become members (two years) and the investment was well worth it. Do return yearly and look forward to it.

Room Tip: Very much enjoy the beach side rooms as closer to pools and the one bedroom suite is larger. Travel...
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  • Stayed: July 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank 2thdoc19722011
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,168 - 1,174 of 1,998 reviews

Reviewed July 30, 2014

The grounds were gorgeous. Loved our room. The food was amazing. Was not expecting great food with an All Inclusive. Staff was first class and treated us very well. We felt pampered. I am a flight attendant and travel a lot. I will definitely be back

Room Tip: There was some construction noise in late morning. We were usually out and about before it started...
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  • Stayed: May 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
3  Thank Sherron C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 29, 2014

Overall, a wonderful vacation that I would definitely recommend. I was there in off season (July), so I didn't experience any of the problems other reviewers encountered (such as slow service, and difficulty getting a chair at the beach). However I can imagine that these would be serious problems during high season as this is an enormous resort with a fairly small beach area. Go in July! The ocean was perfect and the humidity wasn't too bad. And we LOVED the thunder/lightning storms. (Just 3 during our ten days there.)
I'm writing this review because I feel rather deceived by the marketing of this as a nature preserve. The website mentions a "mountain" nature hike and a "river hike" to a waterfall. Sounded lovely, and I brought my hiking boots all the way there specifically for these hikes. Well, there's really only one hike, which would take about 30 minutes nonstop (this is stretched into 2 hours with a ton of stopping.) Perhaps the phrase "nature preserve" means something different in Mexico. The river is strewn with litter. It was disgusting, and very, very depressing. Also, the boulders along the river have graffiti on them. I didn't get the sense that this is a cherished and protected ecological preserve, as the hotel pretends it to be--quite the opposite. It's packed with locals who picnic there in droves and don't bother to carry out their trash! This really did depress the hell out of me.

  • Stayed: July 2014, traveled with family
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Service
5  Thank george h
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 25, 2014

My husband and I just spent a romantic six nights at Garza Blanca in PV. This is a beautiful, beautiful hotel. You are instantly relaxed and inspired by the lovely design and decor and made even happier as they hand you a cool washcloth and a glass of sparkling wine as you sit down on a comfortable couch to check in. These are the details that separate a good hotel from a great hotel.

We have only done an all-inclusive once before and we have always shied away from them. The reviews on TA were so good, we decided to go AI and Garza Blanca does it the exactly the way I had hoped for. The food isn't just good, it was phenomenal. All the restaurants are worth exploring. We did not have one thing from any menu that we didn't like. Favorites: Room Service breakfast: Lattes and eggs a la Blanca Blue - a poached egg on a grilled tomato with cilantro-infused hollandaise sauce. Lunch: Vallarta ceviche and the steak quesadilla; Dinner: All of it! The cocktails are expertly made as well, which is important to us. If you have kids the buffet breakfast in Blanca Blu appeared to have everything they could possibly want. We did the buffet only on one day before snorkeling and as someone who doesn't like buffets, I was happy to find a nice selection of meat, cheese and fruit. All really lovely and fresh and served by true professionals, which can really add to your dining experience. We did room service for breakfast almost every day. Pure indulgence. Tip: Takes about 45 minutes.

When I go on a romantic vacation, I want beautiful surroundings, a great beach, thoughtful, inspiring decor, a comfortable and luxurious room, and fabulous food and cocktails. At Garza Blanca I got all I wanted and more than I expected (and I expect a lot!), and it was graciously given to me by some of the nicest and most authentic hotel professionals I've ever experienced.

Everyone, I mean everyone, who we came into contact with was in a good mood, smiling, polite and authentically ready to have a real conversation. From Michelle Leonard in reservations, to Diana and Jessica G in the Concierge to Odilia, our housekeeper - everyone was just perfectly professional and friendly. Our lazy pool days were made great by Jaime, Kevin and Victor who will bring anything you want, all day long. Our time at the beautiful bar in Blanca Bar was enhanced by Oscar and Alvaro. Others we met and want to give Kudos to include, Alfredo, Fermion, Giselle in Blanca Blue, and Victor Thomas. In short, the people and their training are what make this lovely environment so perfect. Again, what separates a good hotel from a great one.

If I were managing this hotel, the only thing I would add is a lively bar culture. Maybe in July the hotel isn't full enough, but we missed being able to pull up to a bar and talk to other guests. There is no pool bar and there is no real bar in the restaurant where people gather. It was the only missing ingredient for us but it didn't mar the experience at all.

Of note: there is and will be construction going on at the resort for years to come. I did not understand this when booking or I might have been scared off. Luckily, it didn't impact our stay, at all. They are building Tower 6 of the anticipated 9 towers (I think) but despite being in tower 4, right beside the tower being built, and enjoying the upper pool daily, which is right in front of the tower under construction, we were not disturbed by the noise. The upper pool is right in front of the construction but the spraying water features and infinity edge (which are what make this pool so cool and inviting) are like white noise, really masking the construction noise, and we were not bothered by it to any mentionable degree. I was surprised as I am really picky but found myself completely unbothered by it.

Activities: Tito at the activities was also very nice. We never got out of bed early enough to do the Los Arcos tour and regretted it. We did snorkel on our own on the beach in front of the resort and saw a sea turtle, a ray, a sea snake and lots of beautiful fish, so at least do that if you can't get yourself to the beach early enough to do the tour.

At the end of our stay, we had several hours to kill before our 5 pm flight. You should know the resort has a lovely hospitality suite - a large locker room with showers and bathrooms. If you want to swim on your last day after checkout, this is how you can still get on the plane fresh. It's a lovely, thoughtful amenity. We decided to go into town instead, and Jessica G. called ahead to a restaurant and asked if they would allow us to leave our luggage after our lunch there so we could look around a bit and they did.

Our entire stay couldn't have been nicer- from arrival to the good byes, which included lots of heartfelt handshakes and even a hug. We had a perfect vacation at a resort that is hitting all the right marks. We will be back.

Helpful tips: if you are taking a taxi at the airport, just walk right on through the gauntlet of beautiful smiling hosts and hostesses at the airport who are all just trying to make a living but will hold you from getting a taxi in order to try to sell you a timeshare visit or an adventure. If you just want to get to your hotel, just smile, say no gracias and head for the taxi stand. Taxi was $30 to Garza Blanca and took about 35 minutes.

Room Tip: The Junior Panoramic Suites are large and luxurious and the view is phenomenal. The trip to the main...
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  • Stayed: July 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
11  Thank tracycfbrown
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 23, 2014

We spent five days at Garza Blanca in July 2014. The staff was great, the Jr. Panoramic Suite was amazing and all of the restaurants were fantastic. The best part for our group of 30 celebrating a wedding, was hanging out at the two infinity pools.

Some things you should know about Garza Blanca:
- it's a huge property on a hill. If you want to minimize your golf cart commute up and down the hill, you'll want to stay at the one bedroom near the beach and lower pool. There was also new construction going on, so there was some construction noise we tuned out after the first day
- there aren't any maps of the facility, the staff is really there to answer any question and show you to your room, or sky bridge. So if you have control issues, just let go. They will take care of it. That's the only thing I'd say the staff could improve on, is just letting you know in advance that is the process - vs. self service
- we found the all inclusive option to be a great price performer. Just understanding the tipping will be on your room charge (additional fee). Even so, tipping well produced great service for a group.
- You're quite a way out of town, so the beach is great, the water color is amazing. With that it's about $130P or $13USD for a taxi
- they will get a van/suburban or taxi for you, anytime

We loved the hotel and resort, we seldom visit places more then once because we like to travel to new places. But this is one we'll visit again.

  • Stayed: July 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
5  Thank DaveParkerSEA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 22, 2014

We stayed at one of the Grand Penthouse and it was so worth it. We had our family vacation of our lives. We could not ask for more. So spacious and so well maintained. Nothing was broken or not clean. The views were spectacular from any angle of each room. I'll never forget the 6 feet tall sliding doors with a wraparound terrace on each floor. There were 2 master suites with steam sauna on each room. The beds were so confy... the only problem was that we didn't want to leave the room.
Staff was so attentive and cordial. I can't name one or two of them because all of them were so nice. There was no time to wait for a staff they were everywhere willing to help. I don't know if it was easier for them to remember us because we were asian, but by the second everyone remembered us and called us by our last name.
The 2 infinity pools are amazing.. clean and quite and the views breath taking. Service is really quick and the drinks are amazing! Usually all inclusive drinks are made of cheap quality drinks. Not the case in here.. They are made to perfection. Thinking of perfection... The steakhouse Bocados!! Everything was so good! I'll go back just to eat their steak. They also have a great selection wines.
I can't wait to go back...

  • Stayed: June 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Na A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 22, 2014 via mobile

This was our second visit and this time we booked the beachfront penthouse. The view was amazing and the room was beautiful. Our family had a great and memorable time together. It's one of the most relaxing places we've been to. Everything was great. The food is top shelf and the detail of service is very high. My son and his new wife were even treated to a nice surprise. Love this place!!!!

Stayed: July 2014
3  Thank WhatnextEve
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Garza Blanca Preserve, Resort & Spa

Address: Km 7.5 a Barra de Navidad, Puerto Vallarta 48390, Mexico
Location: Mexico > Jalisco > Puerto Vallarta
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#5 Family Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#9 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#9 Business Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#10 Spa Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#11 Luxury Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#11 Romantic Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
Price Range: $201 - $2,339 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — Garza Blanca Preserve, Resort & Spa 5*
Number of rooms: 165
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Spectacularly flanked by the vibrant blue waters of the Pacific Ocean and the verdanant tropical forests of the Sierra Madre mountains, Garza Blanca Preserve Resort & Spa nestles gracefully just minutes south of historic Puerto Vallarta, one of Mexico's most dynamic and sophisticated vacation destinations.All Suites feature in-style decor that include marble floors, granite countertops, private terraces, whirlpool tubs and artisan in room amenities.Our ultra-chic gourmet restaurant is one of Puerto Vallarta's most sophisticated and premier dining options, catering breathtaking ocean views, a stylish lounge, a 230 label award-winning wine cellar, and a selection of unique contemporary dishes tailored to scintillate your senses. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Garza Blanca Preserve Hotel Puerto Vallarta
Garza Blanca Preserve, Resort And Spa

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