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“Great Hotel.”

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Secrets Vallarta Bay Resort & Spa
Ranked #16 of 124 Hotels in Puerto Vallarta
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Seattle, Washington, United States
Level 3 Contributor
8 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Great Hotel.”
Reviewed July 4, 2012

Ive stayed at some very nice all inclusive hotels in Mexico including LaBlanc and this one is very nice. The food was great and the staff was also very friendly. I will definitely return and I liked it so much I ended up buying the Unlimited Vacation Club. I cant wait to stay at the new Cancun Secrets. If you decide to check out the Unlimited Vacation Club membership hopefully you can get Igor. He was easy going and actually comes from the states.
We walked every day to DT PV and no one hassled us. The board walk is awesome with lots of shops and open bars.
The only draw back I could see happening would be to stay here during the busy season. It could get extremely hectec. We stayed in june which is the rainy season but no rain came.
I would definitely go back. If you have any questions feel free toreach out.

Room Tip: Tip your waiter and waitress. Even a buck will go along way.
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Arthur R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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English first
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed July 3, 2012

My boyfriend and I just returned from this resort. We had an AMAZING time. The rooms were very comfy and had lots of room. We felt like the king and queen of the resort. The staff was very nice and always assisting us with whatever we needed. The view was AWESOME. The city of Pto. Vallarta is beautiful and we felt very safe going into and out of the city. The food was very tasty, and my 2 favorite spots were Himtsu and the duck from Castaways. If you are going to do excursions, I would suggest to book through Vallarta Adventurers. The tours were worth every penny. Word of advice- men pack long pants, because some restaurants will not let you in without them. We will def be back to visit this place!

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank Tamelia
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Phoenix, Arizona
Level 2 Contributor
7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed June 27, 2012

My best friend and I try to meet once every two years for a special vacation and this was the second time we used an AM property (my 3rd time). Due to busy schedules and living in different states we can only manage to stay for 5 nights. So, needless to say, every minute counts. I'll start with the extremely irritating points first...
We had booked an ocean view, Jr suite in the preferred tower. While we were being escorted to the preferred tower for check in we were advised that the resort was "maybe 20% full." This was just FINE with us. Our next point of contact was Johann at the preferred tower. He assigned us a Jr suite on the 8th floor. The wonderful bell man showed us all the room features, etc and as soon as he left we noticed the room was very warm and the balcony was a partial ocean view with the ocean facing wall being solid. There was no breeze on the balcony, it felt closed in and added with the warm temperature in the room we decided to go right back downstairs, talk to Johann and request a room change. We were advised there were no other available Jr suites and there "might" be one open "tomorrow after 1pm." We spoke to a supervisor and were told there were upgraded suites available for $300+ additional PER NIGHT or we could "downgrade" to another room with no mention of any type of refund. We were disappointed but decided to wait on the "possible" available room the next day. We decided not to unpack or get settled because we were pretty sure they'd move us. This was close to 5pm. We went back to the warm room and decided to make the best of it and wander around a bit and have dinner. The place was EMPTY! And that's not bad! We loved it. No waiting, no lines, maybe 2 other couples in the restaurant where we had dinner. Certainly got plenty of personal attention wherever we went and our pick of any seats in any restaurant, at the pool and beach. The next day at about 3pm we were assigned another Jr suite on the 6th floor and it was a HUGE difference. Glass walls on both sides of the balcony, a more available ocean view and ac that was icy cold. We were so happy to unpack and get settled. My thought is, the place was empty - we should have been moved immediately even if it was to an upgraded room at no cost. We were not seeking an upgrade, but were certainly not happy with where we were placed. One night out of five - over. It could have been so much better and nicer and sadly it slightly soured my experience and certainly my feelings about Johann.

Now the good stuff. The staff was awesome! So sweet and attentive. Especially Alejandro at the pool. He met me by name every morning, prepared my chair and brought me a cold bottle of water before I even opened my book or applied sun screen. I decided I wanted to parasail and one of Alejandro's beach server friends, Martin brokered the deal with the parasailing company and saved me about $20. Very sweet. I loved my flight.

Beach vendors are very pushy. Best way to deal with this for us was to stay at the pool. I can see how it would hinder people from loving any true beach serenity.

The restaurants were great. My favorite was Himitsu (the Japanese restaurant). Great show at the table and very fresh food. Loved the French and Oceana as well. Buffetts were so/so for me. Much preferred the cooked to order meals. Room service was FAST and accurate. Secrets box is a great touch.

Beautiful lobby with amazing views and very comfy chairs. Sat there almost every night after dinner and met some really nice people to chat with.

Very laid back, chill vacation.

I felt no pressure to tip, but we did tip almost everyone. These men and women work so hard and in low season (is June low season?) I was more than happy to spend a few dollars to show my appreciation.

Like I said, close to perfect. Not 100% sure I'd return after the room hassle situation, but time might heal that wound. :)

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
11 Thank PhxChick
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Houston, Texas
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed June 26, 2012

This was the best resort I have ever stayed at! Service was excellent and staff was very nice. Room was very clean and food was beyond fantastic. Drinks were great as well. Men: Don't forget to pack a pair of pants for some restaurants. Hibachi grill was our favorite. This resort is connected to 'now amber' which is another resort under the same company. Families are aloud there but it is alot cheaper to stay there. The 2 resorts share restaurants. Even thou that resort allows kids, you do not run into them. They are not aloud on the secrets side at all. We would recommend staying on the 'now amber' side and going over to the secrets side. You save money and the resorts are identical. There is a massage place called 'Healing Hands' right outside of the resort. You can get 2 massages that are 75 minutes each for $45. CHECK IT OUT! When you exit the resort take a left and you will immediately see a place on the left that says 'Massage' and walk past that one about 3 buildings and you will see it across the street. It is next to a travel agency in a strip mall. It seemed sketchy at first but it was fantastic. The ladies were amazing. Workout facility at secrets was great too. We will DEFINITELY be returning and going to other secrets resorts.

  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank kamang
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
MARKHAM
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed June 25, 2012

If you are a person who loves the beach, DO NOT stay here, this beach is disgusting and lots of dead bugs in the water. each wave that washes up had dead bugs in it. Sand was very dark and lots of rocks so this beach ruined my entire vacation mood. Other than that, everything else was great. Service was excellent and food wasnt bad. The rooms were really clean and tidy. The lobby is one of the nicest we have seen, I would rather the beach looks nicer though cause that is what we came for, not the lobby. The other bad thing about this particular secret is the restaurant are always close so we dont have too much choices. Lot of people recommended to stay with dreams as they have a much nicer private beach.

Room Tip: We had the swimout suite, it was beautiful but if you are looking for a budget, stay over at Now whi...
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank siubac
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Diego, California
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
Reviewed June 25, 2012

We stayed at Secrets for 7 nights over the week of Memorial Day weekend. From the moment we arrived we were given great service by friendly and professional staff. Our room was on the 7th floor with our own jacuzzi. The room was absolutely beautiful. Our only complaint was the water coming out of the rain shower never got hot.

Being an all inclusive, we were expecting meritocracy in the food department. Overall, we were pleasantly surprised. The two restaurants that stood out were the Mexican and French restaurants. The snapper at the Mexican restaurant was delicious. The best meal I had there all week. We ate their for dinner twice and my husband got the snapper the second time. The sushi place was just so-so. We live in San Diego are are used to and I guess spoiled by amazing sushi. I think every roll on the menu had cream cheese in it. So we just got some noodles and nigiri. The restaurant was beautifully designed and decorated though.

Actually, the entire resort was beautiful. Our favorite spot was the lobby bar. We went there every single night to watch the sun set before going to dinner. We never go to all-inclusive resorts. Our vacations are usually more adventurous. But if we ever "need" this type of relaxing vacation, I would definitely hit this place up again.

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank sarayoungsandiego
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Level 5 Contributor
71 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
Reviewed June 25, 2012

My sister and I stayed at the Secrets Vallarta Bay from June 15-19, 2012. When we arrived to the resort, we were blown away by the beauty of it! The views from the lobby were breathtaking, the design of the spaces were well thought out to really impress guests upon arrival. We have so many things to say about the resort – good, bad, okay. I have outlined them here:
Upon arrival, we were taken to the front desk, where there was a bit of trouble with our reservation. A week prior to arrival, I had double checked online to see if the price was better, which it was (by a few hundred dollars!). So I adjusted my reservation, and luckily I am in the business so knew to bring my confirmation. They did not have the change, and it took a good deal of time and phone calls for them to get it corrected. They did offer us a drink while waiting, so it was not too bad, but I did not like that I had to present the paper confirmation to get that fixed. Oh well – we were on vacation, no big deal at the time. They fixed it and we were on our way to our room!

The room was absolutely amazing. We booked a swim out suite in the Preferred Club on the Secrets side of the resort. Totally worth the extra money!! The room was nice and spacious, the bathroom was gorgeous. Large stand up shower area, nice big tub, and the swim out pool – I can’t even explain how great that was. It was shared with about 5 other suites, but we had plenty of our own room. The preferred club I liked because we had access to a bar from 7AM – 11PM with some premium brands and lite beer (the full corona got to be a bit much so it was nice to have the option). We did not really use the food too much, but it was nice to have the option. And we had an ocean view from our pool, so the views were much better than the standard swim out suites.
Restaurants – there was a really weird dress code for restaurants. They told you that you couldn’t wear beachwear to ANY of them. That sounds crazy, since it’s a beach resort. Oceana did not seem to care, though. It was also a real pain to get back and forth to the other restaurants – up and down elevators.
French – This was a nice restaurant, not amazing décor, but really cute. The food was pretty good, so we really enjoyed it!
Himitsu – we loved this restaurant! The sushi was decent, and the hibachi was really fun! We went twice while we were there and had a blast both times. It is designed beautifully!
Discotheque – We actually had a lot of fun at this! It was not too busy since we were there during slow season, but we still had a great time. It was a really cool design and they played good music. The bartender, Omar, was really fun and we had a great time with him!
Tamarindo – this place had a gorgeous design, I wish we had more time to have another meal here, it was so nice with the live music too! The food was prepared great as well!
Capers – this restaurant was not as over the top with design, but I loved the little touch like the fresh shaved parm tableside!
Breakfast A la Carte – We went here twice, and they did a good job with fast, courteous service. The food was hit or miss, the French toast was undercooked and way too much sugar, but the eggs Benedict was really good!
Carnival Breakfast Buffet – There was a nice selection and I liked that you could get things made to order! No complaints about the food, it was all very decent!
Mediterranean restaurant – we had to wait a pretty long time to get served, even though there were only about 5 other tables sat in the whole place. The food was just okay – the scallops were a bit chewy and the beef Carpaccio came with what tasted like a BBQ sauce, and way too much of it.
Carnival Lunch Buffet – we loved this! The selection was wide, the food cooked great, and they even had some made to order dishes that were fantastic! I wish we had gone back here again!
Oceana – the views from this restaurant were gorgeous – blue ocean and beach! The food was okay – the shrimp didn’t seem to be the most fresh, so we ended up getting more chicken and beef from there.
We went into PV for the day, and it was really easy to get a cab to and from! There were a ton of vendors trying to pull you in every direction, which I was not a fan of. But I loved the authentic cuisine and getting to see a part of Mexico that I had never been to.
Pools- the pools were absolutely fantastic! They kept the water cool, there was one that had the beds you could lay on in the water, there was an activity pool where they had a lot of random stuff going on. I loved that I didn’t hear any kids from the pools on the other side – I was totally at peace at our adults only pool! There were some adults from the Now side, but never any kids. The bartenders and waiters at the pools were great as well. However, we were there in off season – I can’t imagine how crowded it would be with a full house.
Beach – the beach was right in front of the pools, and my only complaint were the vendors yelling at us from the beach to buy stuff. Not the resort’s fault at all – I only bring it up to say just ignore them and they stop bugging you in particular. But it was a little annoying that no one could really play beach volleyball because there were so many vendors and it was too annoying to try to do it with them all over the court.
On the 2nd night that we were there, there was a really big storm, lots of pouring rain, lightning, etc. Our room completely flooded – like a half inch of water from the door to the room past the bed. Ironically the only place there was not water was next to the door where the pool was. We called immediately at 3AM when we woke up to it, and the operator sent me to the engineering department, who said that they would send someone to clean it up. The guy that came to clean it up did not speak English, so we couldn’t find out what was going on (not upset at all about that, since come on, we’re in Mexico). So we heard nothing else that night and stopped by the front desk of the Preferred Club the next morning. We filled the guy in, as he had no idea anything had even happened overnight. At this point, I had now spoken to three people with not one apology for it happening. Not faulting the guy that actually squeegeed our room for 30 minutes. The guy at the front desk made things a bit better by following up with us about an hour later and saying he was looking into it. However, then he followed up twice more telling us first that it was from the pool (which we explained it was not), and then said that they knew it wasn’t an engineering issue since housekeeping did not have anything on record. I then explained to him that no one actually checked for any issues, the guy just cleaned it up and then left. At this point, he started to get how frustrated we were. I should point out that luckily, we did not have any bags on the floor at the time, so we did not have any damage to our personal items. So we ended up following up with several people over the course of the next 12 hours – between the concierge in the main lobby to another front desk person, only to come back to our room that night and find remnants of water that had obviously been cleaned up. I went to the front desk again and a very nice girl then explained that they had found a problem with a drainage or something outside our room and that there were several rooms flooded, but it had now been fixed. They had sent us champagne and chocolate covered strawberries to apologize (I had already seen them but didn’t realize that was what they were for, as there was no note). As you can tell, this was a very tedious, annoying issue that I was frustrated that I had to deal with over and over again on my vacation. I still had never heard word ONE from a manager at all, not even a note in my room to apologize. I even said something at check out and still have not gotten any kind of apology for something I consider a huge inconvenience to have to worry about.
The day we arrived, a gentleman with the Vacation Club gave us his little presentation and then gave us the massage coupons. We had a big issue with this, as it says on the coupons that you can use them for facials, and then the spa would not honor that and said that they were supposed to tell us that we couldn’t use them for facials. I did not like how sneaky this was, and that it was not made clear by the guy that gave us the coupons. When we talked to several people about this, they told us that they would tell management, but again, we heard nothing about it from anyone.
Overall, we had a great time on our vacation, and for the opening special price, we gave a lot of leeway to them for some small service issues. But the lack of management follow up to real issues I did not think was acceptable. No matter how much a guest is paying at a hotel, there should never be a feeling that the hotel could care less whether you are happy when you leave. And that is how we felt, and still feel. Walking into the resort the first day, I thought I would tell everyone I knew that they should visit and plan a vacation with this hotel, but I am not really so sure after the whole trip. I am curious to try other Secrets resorts to see if, after some time of being open, they would be a lot better. I hope so, because I loved the concept of the hotel and how well it was designed. I am sure I will try another Secrets again soon, but not sure I would head back to this particular resort anytime soon, unless I could be assured that all the kinks are worked out.

Room Tip: The Preferred Club has great views of the ocean, and if you can book a swim out suite, we loved it!
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  • Stayed June 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank Kelly G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
, General Manager at Secrets Vallarta Bay Resort & Spa, responded to this review, July 4, 2012
Dear Kelly G,

On behalf of Secrets Vallarta Bay Management and staff, please receive our most sincere apologies for not fulfilling your complete expectations. We regret to hear that there were problems with your reservation upon check in, though it is good to hear that at the end we were able to solve this issue for you in a short matter of time!

As you have mentioned in your review about your disagreement about our dressing codes, please note that this was never our intention to make you feel this way. You will find our dressing codes in our Main Website and in all the travel agencies. This is a corporate statement and you will find this at all our AMResorts properties such as any Zoëtry, Secrets, Dreams, Now or Sunscape Resorts. Though we are more flexible in our outdoor Restaurants and you can see our dressing codes in our Sundial or at the entrance of each of our Restaurants. On the other hand, we truly appreciate your outstanding comments about the food of our Restaurants; be sure that our Executive Chef will be notified about your feedback as well as the French toast that was not of your complete satisfaction.

The main concern about your vacation was the inconvenience of the flood that occurred in your room which for this we extend our most honest apologies. As a brand new Resort certain types of unexpected situations like this may occur on the way but please note that our maintenance staff is working hard on fixing them as soon as possible.

Hope that you can give us the opportunity to service you in the near future and to show you our areas of improvement to achieve the best quality and full satisfaction to our guests.

Sincerely,

Mauricio Martinez
General Manager of Secrets Vallarta Bay
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Secrets Vallarta Bay Resort & Spa

Property: Secrets Vallarta Bay Resort & Spa
Address: David Alfaro Siquerios No. 164 | Col Zona Hotelera Las Glorias, Puerto Vallarta 48333, 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 Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #16 of 124 Hotels in Puerto Vallarta
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Secrets Vallarta Bay Resort & Spa 4.5*
Number of rooms: 271
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Romantic. Refined. Remarkable. Located on the golden sand beaches of the Pacific coast within walking distance of the famous El Malecon boardwalk, this vibrant oceanfront resort provides adults 24/7 access to amazing nightlife, non-stop entertainment and Unlimited-Luxury(R). ... more   less 
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