I've been going to Puerto Vallarta every February for years and have always stayed at the Palmar as we have many friends that go at the same time. The facility itself is extremely well cared for - rarely a blade of grass out of place and the service has always been excellent from the staff that have been there for years.
Where the Palmar has really changed is its budget cut backs. At one point it used to have a vibrant social activities program - contests and games and dance lessons etc - over the past few years it's all been cut out to the point where they have one activities person on and that is to play a single game of bingo at 3 pm.
The palmar's most popular feature is the massive water volleyball game that starts at 1 pm every day rain or shine. Sometimes as many as 16 players a side - its the reason many of the people go every year. ( I'm not kidding ). It's a self administered game - no employees are involved - and the ball each day is brought by an 85 year old character named Leo - a fixture of the resort that everyone knows. If you're under 50 you'll be the youngest player there most days and it's a lot of fun because everyone knows each other from playing for 20 years together - so there is lots of bantering and carrying on. They make all new comers feel very welcome - but warning - they all cheat.
The food at the palmar is very good - but recently they cancelled a lot of there specials and went to theme nights. One night they kept is a Mexican fiesta night which is very well done. The main restaurant is very good as well.
The Villa Del Palmar is not - I repeat NOT - a place where you should go if you are a young party group - the palmar is a retirement home on the beach. There is absolutely zero party here despite them having an all inclusive program. If you are going thinking it's going to be an off the hook all inclusive great time like typical Mexican all included concepts you will be horribly disappointed. ( a shapely young woman in a bikini here is a very rare sight - 70 year old men in speedos though is quite common )
It is a great place to take your family with small kids. It's on the beach - although not very good for swimming as there is a major rip tide as well as problems with jelly fish and rocks. The pools are warm and well cared for - but quiet. The one pool off towards the beach is like a library where you can literally hear a pin drop - and the seniors sunning themselves around it will get quite upset if someone was to break their silence.
The palmar is a time share resort as well as hotel - and as one reviewer said - their salesman are a problem. They will try to get you to see a presentation for a discont card upon arrival - just be firm and tell them you are not interested.
The location of the palmar is right in the hotel zone. It's close to shopping - Sorianas is the main grocery store a few blocks south, and its a five dollar cab ride to Walmart. The neighborhood is very safe leaving the resort is normal and fun. there is an excellent Outback restaurant two blocks south and a Starbucks the same direction about a block and a half. It's also a short cab ride to old town where there are many amazing restaurants. If you go to the marina for dinner - the there are many excellent restaurants wrapping the harbor.
Hopefully the owners of the Palmar read this and quit with the cutbacks At the hotel as it really is a great place but they're guilty of trying to save a penny everywhere they can while increasing their rates.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Situated on the soft sands of Banderas Bay is Villa del Palmar Puerto Vallarta, an enchanting family resort that combines charming Mexican tradition with upscale sophistication and modernity. The magical resort, situated close to the center of downtown Puerto Vallarta, offers a unique vacation experience that will have you falling in love with the stunning beachfront destination. Boasting two freeform pools, three delicious culinary options and a state-of-the-art spa, Villa del Palmar is everything you need for a fun-filled vacation and more! ... more less
- Reservation Options:
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- Also Known As:
- Villa Del Palmar Beach Resort And Spa
- Villa Del Palmar Beach Hotel Puerto Vallarta
- Hotel Del Palmar Beach
- Villa Del Palmar Puerto Vallarta
- Resort Del Palmar Beach
- Puerto Vallarta Villa Del Palmar