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“Excellent Staff and Food”

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Friendly Vallarta All Inclusive Family Resort
Ranked #19 of 126 Hotels in Puerto Vallarta
Toronto, Australia
Level Contributor
20 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
“Excellent Staff and Food”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 13, 2013

We checked in and went to our room which was very nice and had a great view of the bay. the bathroom could have done with some minor upgrades such as caulking but other than that the room and bathroom were large and spotlessly clean. About an hour after we booked in we received a phone call letting me know that I had left my IPad at the reception area ! The manager of the hotel personally brought it to my room.

Staff at the front desk were a little indifferent but all the other staff we met, especially all the waiters, were exceptional. They provided exceptional service, always with a smile.

Food was great and the Al a Carte restaurant was lovely.

Downside for us was the lack of a bar area. The main bar was open in the lobby of the hotel and some of the clientele acted like they had never seen a drink before yet looked like they had drank plenty.

Room Tip: All rooms appear to have a view of the bay.
See more room tips
  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Turner53
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Friendly V, Gerente at Friendly Vallarta All Inclusive Family Resort, responded to this review, May 17, 2013
Hi Turner53.

Thank you for everything you say about us and share some of your experience with us. We hope to see you soon to serve you in whatever you need, see you soon!
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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2,952 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (708)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 12, 2013

This place is by far the most friendly of all Mexican destinations! The staff is 5 star, and speak perfect english. The food is great, first time I have ever been to Mexico and I didn't have tummy issues. The people that complain about this resort should have their heads examined. Or better yet don't come here, leave it all for us easy going fun loving people. The staff truly appear to love working here, and welcome you into their lives and treat you like family. They invited us to goto a soccer game against another resort. Never have we had such a connection with staff. Thank you Friendly Hola. We will be back in the not to distant future. Hopefully we will get to meet Veicente's new baby girl!!
To all you complainers....stay home!

  • Stayed April 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Sabritios
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Friendly V, Gerente at Friendly Vallarta All Inclusive Family Resort, responded to this review, May 17, 2013
Hi Sabritios.

Thank you so much for your review, we feel really flattered. All your words are a great reward to us. We hope to see you soon! :)
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edmonton, Canada
Level Contributor
31 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 12, 2013

As a a woman travelling alone and for my first time in PV, I thouroughly enjoyed my experience at the Friendly Vallarta. Stayed there from April 8th to 20th.
Pros:
-- location, location, location! You can walk to shopping malls or take the bus to Centro or just about anywhere. You are right on the ocean and you can walk for miles along the beach. I even saw whales playing right from my balcony. How cool is that???!!
--the staff are very accommodating and friendly. All very hard working!
-- the food is fresh and tasty although not that varied however, for all the time I was there, I didn't get a chance to try everything.The gourmet restaurant was delicious. I really appreciated that they always had something going on around the pool, ie, fresh fruit with lime juice and salt( to die for!), salsas,, desserts, cold towels, just a special touch, I thought. Thereis always coffee and treats available as well as ice cream in the afternoons--yum, yum!
--very clean although the furniture is date
--i had a room in the tower on the 9 th floor which was very quiet and had ocean view.
--lovely spa facilities
-- good shows every night. I really enjoyed the choice of music which contrary to some other resorts I've been to, wasn't so loud that you can't hear yourself think.
-- everyone is made welcomed and there are no exclusive areas which I liked but you may not

Cons:
-- the thing that bothered me the most was the amount of constant vendors on the beach bugging you as you settle in to your loungers to sunbathe. You kind of get used to them but I felt really bad having to ignore them as I feel I am ignoring someone's humanity. I was interested in some of their wares but would not dar e ask for fear of having to negociate a price. There are ropes to indicate where they cannot go, but you still see them and hear them. I would therefore try to pick a spot as far away from them as possible. And, as you come in to the hotel, there are timeshare guys, which to me, are far worse than the vendors because they try to rip you off and have nothing to show whereas the vendors carry all of their wares with them and put in really long tiring physical work.
-- dated
-- no clock radio, water or coffee makers in room. You can request them however
-- the second week I was there, many locals with large families so very busy in the restaurants and at the pool. You might not appreciate being surrounded by so many spanish speaking families but I certainly did because I want to learn spanish and I wanted to get a feel for the culture
--the employees speak little english but I rather enjoyed that. You may not

I really enjoyed the staff who did everything to help me. One of the waiters even recommended a cream for some of my bug bites. I felt really safe and will probablby visit again just to see some of the staff
So depending on your tastes, you would choose this resort if you want a relaxing, family, culturally oriented vacation.

  • Stayed April 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank pgenevieve
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Friendly V, Gerente at Friendly Vallarta All Inclusive Family Resort, responded to this review, May 17, 2013
Hi pgenevieve.

Thank you very much for your review! We feel flattered for everything you say and we are very happy to know that all was fine during your stay. We would love to see you again, please keep in touch :)
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
calgary
Level Contributor
21 reviews
11 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 11, 2013 via mobile

We have had the luxury of staying at this fine resort 6 times now. We have had minor issues that have always been addressed. The hotel is owned and managed by a renowned chef and the food is top notch. The menu can always be to your liking as you have the option in picking what you eat each day. Yes, the resort is older however there are constant improvements being made. The staff is second to none and we are always made to feel like family while are there. And by the way, the servers all speak english, maybe no perfect however you will get what you ask for and or someone will understand what it is you want.
So if you are the type of person who will complain about anything no matter what, do us all a favor and stay elsewnere. They serve Pepsi not Coke, get over it. The rooms have no fridge, get over it. You are not paying for a luxury 5 star resort here. But let me say this, the food is always 5 star as is the service.
Those of you who complain that there are too many Mexicans staying there, hello you are in Mexico and Mexicans have just as much right to stay there as Canadians, Americans or whomever. Those of you who find cause to complain about something obviously have other issues that perhaps professional help might satisfy. Stop your constant whining about the service, rooms, servers, food or whatever else you feel the need to complain about or stay elsewhere. I am sure the staff at the Hotel Friendly Vallarta would much rather hear you compliment them on there great service than complain about trivial items. Grow up people and remember, you get what you pay for. And at the Hotel Friendly Vallarta you get service second to none. If you want 5 star luxury services then pay for them and do us all a favor and stay elsewhere. We would much rather not hear your trivial complaints that normally come from 5 year olds.

  • Stayed April 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank James R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Friendly V, Gerente at Friendly Vallarta All Inclusive Family Resort, responded to this review, May 17, 2013
Hi jamesrolfe.

Thank you for choosing our hotel to enjoy of your holiday. We loved to read about your experience with us, please feel free to come back anytime! See you soon :)
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
calgary
Level Contributor
13 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 10, 2013

We stayed at the Friendly Vallarta From April 13 to 20. This was our sixth time at this resort.
We keep coming back for the wonderful staff and pleasant stay.

The resort is older but is kept very clean. It's also nice to see that every time we come back there always improvements being made. Over the last couple of years they have added a coffee bar in the lobby, added bathrooms near the beach so you don't have to walk so far to use the bathroom.

I enjoy the food at this resort. Yes, it's pretty much the same food on the buffet everyday, but you choose something different each day so it doesnt get repetitive. It's like going to Denny's. It's the same menu, but you can choose different items each day.

The staff are all very helpful and friendly. They will get you anything you need. The servers at the pool and beach always come around to serve you drinks, so you don't have to get up if you don't want to.

We don't participate in the entertainment much but there are activities throughout the day. The entertainment staff are organizing volleyball, kayaking, water aerobics etc. There is usually a show or activity every night for entertainment.

Request a room on a higher floor. It's quieter and you get a wonderful view of the bay. The rooms are basic but big and clean. There is no mini fridge or coffee maker but it's not a problem for us. We go to the lobby for a coffee.

I recommend this resort for couples, and families. It's not really geared for people who want to party.

One last thing. Get to know the staff! They are wonderful people and they work hard. After so many visits they become your friends

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank sly165
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Friendly V, Gerente at Friendly Vallarta All Inclusive Family Resort, responded to this review, May 17, 2013
Hi sly165.

Thank you very much for your valuable comments and for sharing this experience, it was a pleasure to know that you enjoyed our hotel. We will be happy to welcome you back the day you choose. See you soon! :)
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Vancouver, Canada
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 8, 2013

I have stayed at The Friendly 3 times and every time. I have had excellent service and the best of times. The food is very good and drinks are great too!!The rooms are very comfy and the staff treats you like family. I will be returning this year. I would recommend this hotel to anybody that was asking.

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank hollyinvancouver
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Friendly V, Gerente at Friendly Vallarta All Inclusive Family Resort, responded to this review, May 17, 2013
HI hollyinvancouver.

Thank you for trusting us and for sharing your experience here on TripAdvisor. We value your opinion. We are so happy to know that you enjoyed your stay, that is our greatest reward. See you soon! :)
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Blaine, Minnesota
Level Contributor
30 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
1 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 5, 2013

Well my fiance and I stayed here from April 27th- may 4th. I am sad to say, I have not had a worse experience at any hotel or resort ever.. Lets start with the first day. We check in and there are over 200 local mexicans in the lobby with tons of luggage waiting for a bus to pick them up. There was barely enough room to get to the front desk. We check in at about 4 o'clock they then tell us that we have 2 towel cards that cost $25 each if you loose them, a safe key and some generic lock that costs $100 if we loose it, a room key that costs $25 if we loose it, and then 2 wrists bands that cost $100 if we loose them.. This to me is a little ridiculous. I think I have enough to worry about . (Every other place I have been has had room key cards, and an up-to-date safe).

ROOM-- Well whatever we get to our room to find no refrigerator, no alarm clock, no fan in the bathroom, excess caulk on the tub (ill get to that later), no wash cloths, rock hard beds (I am talking rock hard) and last but not least there was only 1 plugin in the whole room, and a lamp was plugged into it. Lets talk about the caulk on the tub.. on the top side of the tub there was a 1" tall strip of caulk about 7 inches long on the front and back of the tub. (most likely to keep water from spilling over the tub while showering) this is a Beach Resort right? I couldn't believe what I saw. (I have pictures).. ok I am going to move on..

Shower leaked on floor every day had to put towels on floor to not slip.. Dirty bathroom, see pics

Food-- unless you like ridiculously bland mexican food that looks even worse than it tastes then I would suggest to stay away from here. There was one night on sunday night we had these great chicken tacos that actually had flavor. they were great but that was the only thing on the whole buffet that tasted edible. (waited all week and I never seen them again). The omelets in the morning were ok at best. The cook didn't know a word of english and so I had to point at everything that I wanted in my omelet. there was only one sit down menu restaurant that was only open 1 day of the week (thursday of all days)..

Drinks-- Not one of the bartenders or servers could make a drink to save there lives. Either they were too strong and tasted like i was taking a shot of tequila or vodka or rum. Or they were making them with so many different ingredients that they just tasted like garbage. I went to a bar down a mile or 2 on the beach and had a 9 year old girl make me a drink better than anything i had at the resort. only thing that was acceptable was taking a shot and chasing it with juice or pepsi.. NO COKE.

Pool-- the whole resort was full of local mexicans. The kids pool was so dirty and the adult pool was full of mexicans and no one spoke english. all of the music by the pool was in spanish and the all of the servers only spoke spanish. I speak a little spanish and they still couldn't understand me.

Beach-- the beach was beautiful- we walked about 2 miles down the beach and honestly the beach here looked like it had the best water and sand combo.. Very clean. But on the down side there was about 10-20 ppl walking by trying to sell you stuff. they just stay there and walk around and because we were the only (white) Americans on the beach every 5 mins I am serious every 5 mins someone was trying to sell you something ( from dresses, to sunglasses, and jewelry ) I said NO to the same person about 10-15 times a day.. Drinks on the beach come about every hour or so. These are tiny cups servers should come around every 20-30 mins minimum..

Entertainment-- The entertainment was scarce and ALL of it I MEAN ALL OF IT was in spanish. Not a translation into english NOTHING it was horrible. There was no pamphlet or anything to tell you what the resort was doing that day or anything. very unprofessional..

Location-- This was the only good thing about this place, 15 min walk to the marina or Walmart and a $5 cab ride to downtown. great location and because the food and entertainment was so bad I took advantage of the location by eating and restaurants downtown and using the Vallarta Adventures at the marina for entertainment.


Well I think I covered the basics. I feel I would have had a better time at the resort if it was a motel6 in the middle of Mexico City. THis place just plain lo bad. any good reviews on here are unreal and probably someone working for the resort trying to boost ratings.. I repeat do not stay here .. I paid $1702.00 total after taxes for 2 ppl with round trip airfare from minnesota, for all inclusive and i would never do it again I don't care how cheap it is. This place is bad.

  • Stayed April 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank JOSHUA J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Friendly V, Gerente at Friendly Vallarta All Inclusive Family Resort, responded to this review, May 8, 2013
Hi JOSHUA J.

Thank you for your recent visit and for sharing your thoughts, we value your opinion and we will not contradict you. We regret this unpleasant experience, but we want you to know that in Friendly Vallarta we have during all the week different activities in the beach and pool area, also many shows during each day. Drinks and food 24 hrs with different styles of cuisine, in addition we build new bathrooms at the beach, we remodeled the lobby area and also restaurants, and we are renovating different areas, all this to satisfy our guests. Regarding the minifridge, you can requested during the arrival or after, this service is based on our availability. We have an All Inclusive service with food and drinks during 24hrs and that's why we don't include a minifridge in rooms. We hope you come back soon, and you can see that what happened will never happen again in our hotel, we guarantee! :)
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Additional Information about Friendly Vallarta All Inclusive Family Resort

Property: Friendly Vallarta All Inclusive Family Resort
Address: Km 2.5 Blvd. Francisco Medina Ascencio, Puerto Vallarta 48300, Mexico (Formerly Friendly Hola Vallarta Resort and Spa)
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Jalisco > Puerto Vallarta
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#8 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#13 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#13 Family Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#17 Business Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#21 Romantic Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Friendly Vallarta All Inclusive Family Resort 3.5*
Number of rooms: 218
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Enjoy the best all-inclusive vacations in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico with the friendliest hotel! Friendly Vallarta Beach Resort & Spa offers incredible location in the hotel zone and a wide range of fun experiences. Friendly Vallarta Beach Resort & Spa is located in one of the most precious bays of the Mexican Pacific, with a unique location in front of the beach, in the heart of the hotel area. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hola Puerto Vallarta Club & Spa
Hola Vallarta
Hola Puerta Vallarta
Hola Hotel Puerto Vallarta
Hola Puerto Vallarta Resort
Hola Club Puerto Vallarta
Hotel Hola Vallarta
Hola Resort Puerto Vallarta
Hola Club Spa Puerto Vallarta

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