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“Barcelo PV +/-”

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Barcelo Puerto Vallarta
Ranked #32 of 124 Hotels in Puerto Vallarta
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Algonquin, Illinois
Level 6 Contributor
94 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
“Barcelo PV +/-”
Reviewed January 30, 2011

The hotel was very nice and as seen in pictures and previous reviews. The staff was friendly and helpful with the exception of the check-in person who offered no explanation of the hotel or the dinner reservations nor even advised we could upgrade? The bell boy was much better....We probably would have moved to the sunny tower as our room while very nice was always in the shade etc. The beach is forgetable as nothing much plus why go there to get buggy. We walked it once and got bites. We didn't like the seclusion of the hotel really far out of town and in a bay that seemed to really cool it off with limited the views of the ocean etc. The buffets were good but got ordinary over the 7 days stay. Don Quixote by far is the best with Capri next. Would forget about Arcos especially since it is only outside and the weather was very cool at night. It became uncomfortable to eat in the cool air and it is cold not just summer cool, like lower 50s with a wind off the ocean. It is not worth going back to but was a pleasant stay. The weather coldest in the history made the situation less fun overall - not there fault I know - but other issues as above made the trip much to close to ordinary vs special. Entertainmet was quaint some better shows, some very amatuerish. There was NOTHING else to do after dinner other than drink in the one bar or go to your room.

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank MicSte
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Saint Jerome, Canada
Level 4 Contributor
15 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
Reviewed January 30, 2011

I would like to point out that I have stayed at Barcelo Palace in Riviera Maya last year and loved it! We decided on Barcelo again because of great service and room received in Riviera Maya.

We were not disappointed! The room is bigger in Puerto Vallarta with the extra lounge area when you enter the room. Also, every room has a view of the pools, ocean and mountain area. Really breathtaking. I had written prior to arrival and had asked if possible for a room on a higher floor in order to really have a good view because the palm trees are quite high. Well it was well worthed since I got a room on the top floor! What a view! Do not hesitate to write to them! Rosalba Garcia in the reservation department did a great job! Thanks again!

Although it is a little out of town (which is what we wanted), this did not keep us from visiting PV. We took the local bus for 7 pesos (which is less than $1 US) right in front of the hotel! Do not forget to exchange for Pesos because the bus does not take US or CAN $! Even if I was travelling alone with 2 teenagers, I felt very secure.

Speaking of $$$, if you are Canadian, you do not need to exchange your Canadian dollars for US. They also accept Canadian $$$ at the front desk which you can exchange for a great rate. By the way, the hotel gives a better exchange rate than you would get in PV.

The hotel is very nice and clean. The pools and vegetation are wonderful although I prefered the big pool early in the morning for the sun then moved to the smaller one in order to enjoy the sun till 5h30. The is more than enough shade for everyone with the palm trees and umbrellas. They have waiters walking around to serve you drinks and whether you tip or not, you get great service. I would tip once a day at the end of the day instead of at every drink. This way you are not always looking for your wallet!

The only down point is the beach. If you are a beach person, this is not the resort for you. The sea is quite strong and comes up to the wall at night. There is a nice beach if you walk on the beach toward the Night of the Iguana site, but I guess you have to rent the chairs from one of the restaurant down there.

We rented a boat right off the beach for a day. We were joined by 2 other friends travelling with Air Canada and got quite a deal! $200 US (for the 5 of us) to go snorkeling at Los Arcos and Quimixto and also visited 2 beaches reachable only by boat (Yelapa, where we climbed up to a wonderful waterfall with our guide, got to hold Iguana and snake and then to Las Animas where my 16 years old and 15 years old got to enjoy riding a Sea-Doo for 1/2 hour $40US which our guide bargained for us). We left the hotel at 10h30 am and came back at 5h30 pm! If interested, do not hesitate to ask for Juan Carlos Robles on the beach (is surname is Chikki). They have 2 boats called La Jolla I and La Jolla II. Very clean boat, includes snorkeling equipment, life jackets and drinks (beer or soad, water). You can also see him at the first restaurant across the river on the beach. Tell him Lyne from Canada sent you and he better take good care of you or Schwarzenegger (which is how he called my 6` 4`` son Pascal) will come back and take care of him! He should get a good laugh out of this!

The Sea doos on the beach go for $50 US for 1/2 hour. I saved $10 in Las Animas.

If you need sunglasses or nice jewellery, do hesitate to ask for Santos, Simon or Valentino (3 brothers walking around dressed in white and with a panel of sunglasses) . They have nice (fake) Oakley sunglasses which my teenager bought (we negociated 2 pairs for $30 US). I also bought a nice ring and pendant for $70 US in silver. Do not hesitate to negociate. I got a bargain in exchange from things I had brought from Canada.

We also went to Mislayola to visit the Tequila Factory Mama Lucia (about a 5 minutes walk from the hotel). Very interesting! Did not go to El Eden since we had seen another bigger waterfall in Yelapa...

We went riding ATV which we reserved with Esteban at the Barcelo activity counter. Quite fun but really expensive ($166 US) considering we drove only for 1 hour 15 minutes one driven by my 16 years old and one driven by me with my 15 years old in the back. Wonderful scenery but very dusty.

All in all, we had a great time and my kids said they enjoyed this trip better than the one in Riviera Maya (for which I had paid twice the amount)!!! They would like to go back next year!

If you want a nice clean hotel with breathtaking views, nice personnel and like to talk to local people on the beach, then do not hesitate! It is indeed a 4* hotel if not more!

The only bad comment I have is about Internet. I was not a Premium client so I paid $15 US for one day use of Internet so the teenagers could chat with friends on their Ipods. Since we plugged 2 Ipods with the code, the Internet was only for 12 hours. I took it at 3h00pm and the next morning it was no longer working. Also, we never were able to write home. After 1/2 hour on the phone with some Mexicain technician, I had to purchase a $5 US - 30 minutes session at the business center in order to write home. I think that is quite a let down and expensive. Sorry Barcelo, but it could be less pricy and made more available at a better rate in this age of technology!!!

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled with family
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Helpful?
2 Thank onthego1402
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edmonton, Canada
Level 1 Contributor
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed January 29, 2011

We stayed with 5 adults and 2 children ages 2 and 3. The resort was beautiful and clean, service was awesome and the food was great including the buffets and ala carte (Don Quixote the best). The children played in the playground and along the side of the pools. Two bedroom upgrade was cheap at $25 per night and well worth it for a family containing 2 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms. No access to the balcony though if you are in the back bedroom and the main bedroom people are asleep. I cannot fault the hotel for any of the negatives we experienced which were few but worth mentioning: the no see um bug bites which were itchy like crazy (don't go near the sand), there are many people on the beach selling stuff (they are polite), the hotel staff booted us out of the hot tub when we had kids with us (this annoyed us as the kids pools are too cold for them and could not be used), there is hardly a beach and the ocean was rough when we were there - everyone stayed at the pools mostly. I prefer the beach though.

The zoo was well worth visiting and apparently the food and drinks in Mismaloya are cheap and good but we did not try it this time.

I would not go back simply because I preferred the Mayan with the beautiful beaches and I could do without the bug bites but overall we have few complaints and had a wonderful time with our family.

One other tip - you can use your laptop or smartphone out by the pools picking up wireless from the condos surrounding the resort - this came in extremely handy and we kept in touch and posted pics the whole time we were there.

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank gogoAlaska
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edmonton, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed January 29, 2011

First time at this resort. Very nice rooms. Well decorated with lots of space. Pools were very chilly and the hottubs were only warm, needed to be hotter. Buffet restauarant had a good variety of food. A la carte restaurants were very good. Beach was small. Sand was very grainy and hard to walk on without sandels. Surrounding countryside was beautiful. Evenings were very cool. Not a lot to do in the evenings. Games room was small and not well taken care of. Gym was nice. Staff generally was friendly however there were a number of discrepencies in charges during checkout. Overall a nice resort.

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank dougmcleod
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Regina, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed January 26, 2011

This was the place to be for 2 weeks. Upon arrival, we where in tower 1 and were Club Premium. Check in was a breeze but no sun on the balcony so we transfered to a Grand Master suite in Tower 2 with a great view of the surrounding area and ocean. Watched the whales play out in the Bay and watched the dolphins chasing fish around in the Bay. Had the sun bleaching our deck every day from noon till dark and got to watch the pool chair towel wars every morning. Now that was entertainment. Los Arcos was the daytime snack bar of choice and the Capri and Don Quixote were all to good to pass up. We did venture out to PV a bit but for 70 pesos a piece, the bus ride was well worth it. Friendly people, good food, great service, relax and enjoy; what more could you ask for. Now that I know the hotel, it will be no problem speaking to them directly (Felix or Oscar) and heading back to this lovely little piece of heaven for another 2 weeks of relaxation next year. It was so good I didn't even have any withdrawl from the Crackberry. We used the IPhone to check and see how the weather was back in LaLa land and smiled every morning. I have stayed at several different all-inclusives throughout Mexico and the Caribean and must say that this was tied for first but it was only half the price of the other one. Great bang for the buck and, booking through WestJet, our flight times were great. Didn't have to leave at 4 in the morning, no waiting for check-in and no getting home at midnight. Awesome holiday and many thanx to the people that make this place run.

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank mgbtj1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Fairbanks, Alaska
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed January 25, 2011

After having a terrible experience at this hotel under previous ownership nine years ago, we decided it was finally safe to venture back. We are glad we did! From the first-class champagne greeting, to the beautiful grounds, the friendly staff and decent food, our two weeks at the Barcelo were well worth the trip.

While the all-inclusive format didn't match our travel style, I can see how it would work quite well for some; there was always plenty of food and drinks available (have a mango margarita at the swim-up bar, they're the best!)

The location while remote, is very beautiful and there are a few attractions close to the hotel such as the zoo and several tequila tours. Otherwise, it's a 10 minute taxi ride to the city center- about $12 plus tip. This gets expensive after a while. If you have less money and more time, take the bus, about 60 cents and 20 minutes, but drops you at the edge of town.

One of the most impressive things about this hotel is that not once was I approached about purchasing a time-share. If you've been to PV before, you know how rare that is!
I booked a couple of tours from the tour desk in the lobby, and after one of them didn't match my expectations, the booking agent took 50% off without my asking; again, the staff is just great! Ask for Ricardo in the El Patio restaurant, he'll take good care of you.

A number of guests reported bug bites while we were there, but these where from no-seeums or small flies; after all, the hotel is surrounded by jungle.

All in all, we had a wonderful time and would go again for a nice, relaxing vacation.

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank AWWTW
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Moline, Illinois
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed January 24, 2011

Everything about this hotel was top notch including with the room, the service, the food and the drinks. It was the best room in a Mexican resort I had stayed in. Two bathrooms per room with an ocean view. Ok, if you want a several of the downsides to the place which there always is but didn't affect our stay. The beach is very small and the ocean was not overly inviting but we loved the pool so much we didn't need the ocean. Also the roosters from the neighboring village woke us up the first few day early in the morning but we got used to that to as we were not scheduled to get up at any certain time. Overall a fantastic restful vacation!!!

  • Stayed December 2010, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank Stripes07
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Barcelo Puerto Vallarta

Property: Barcelo Puerto Vallarta
Address: Zona Hotelera Sur Km. 11.5, Puerto Vallarta 48294, Mexico
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Jalisco > Puerto Vallarta
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#14 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#19 Luxury Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#19 Spa Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#25 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#27 Romantic Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#29 Family Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:4 star — Barcelo Puerto Vallarta 4*
Number of rooms: 316
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Barceló Puerto Vallarta***** (formerly Barceló La Jolla de Mismaloya) in Puerto Vallarta, is an elegant, all-inclusive Mexican-style resort. It offers 316 completely renovated and comfortable suites with excellent service, leisure, history, beautiful scenery, exuberant flora and privacy.Relax after a hard day’s work in the hotel spa, catch some rays at one of the hotel pools or take time out to practice your favourite water sport. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
La Jolla Mismaloya
Barcelo La Jolla De Mismaloya Puerto Vallarta
La Jolla Puerto Vallarta
Puerto Vallarta La Jolla De Mismaloya
Barcelo De Mismaloya
Barcelo Mismaloya Puerto Vallarta
Barcelo La Jolla Mismaloya

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