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“Fantastic birthday getaway!!!”

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Secrets Vallarta Bay Puerto Vallarta
Ranked #15 of 123 Hotels in Puerto Vallarta
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Reviewed June 5, 2013 via mobile

My wife decided to take me to Vallarta for my birthday. Great decision on my wife's part. As soon as we arrived we were met with cool towels and a cold Mexican beer.

Check in was easy. (They will attempt to sign you up for a fee breakfast while you listen to a presentation. We agreed to it but never went).

We were on the sixth floor and the view was awesome since all rooms have an ocean view. Room was very clean and spacious.

Our first night we went to "Oceana" for dinner. We arrived last 10pm and we were still seated. Most restaurants close at 11pm which is very convenient. Reservations are also not required which is a huge plus (only required at Japanese restaurant).

We went to the other restaurants and they were all delicious. My wife and I really liked El Tamarindo.

My wife and I really enjoyed the different music groups that played at night in the lobby. You can sit down and listen to the ocean while you are served drinks while listening to the music.

For my birthday, my wife surprised me with a hydrotherapy session followed by a massage. Their spa was definitely too notch. In the evening, before the sunset, we were escorted to the beach for a delicious dinner on the beach.

The shows were good and the buffet food was also delicious.

Relaxing by the pool is my specialty. The area was clean and I never ran out of alcoholic beverages.

I cannot wait until I return to Vallarta. The people and their kindness is like no other. We will definitely stay here our next time.

  • Stayed: May 2013
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1  Thank Unknown558
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed June 4, 2013

This was our first trip away from our son. It was fantastic! We were in the preferred section and had a garden room! Well this was a beautiful room with a jacuzzi on the balcony that overlooked palm trees and ocean! The rooms are clean, all new, chic and comfortable! We will go back for sure! Our only issue is many timeshare people tricked us at the airport. They said they were gettting our transportation and lead us over to a desk to sell, sell, sell, give shots, and sell some more. We didn't take the shots or buy anything! SO beware! Another thing I was disappointed with was at the resort they tried to sell us something like the timeshare thing. They wanted to set up an appointment to sit and eat breakfast with us to discuss great oppurtunities. "Non -pressuring, only an hour and a half." I declined numerous times and Martha kept trying. That was not the best way to start off a vacation at the resort! She didn't ask again once we left. The staff was AMAZING! The entertainment staff was also well above par! ALL of the SHOWS were entertaining too! Food was also delicious!!! Everyone seemed to like their jobs! We will be back next year for longer!

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank h h
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 4, 2013

Enjoyed a very relaxing vacation to celebrate our 5th anniversary in late May. The weather was perfect everyday with mid 80's and a lot of sun.

We arrived at the airport and had seen all the warnings about the trouble that can be faced at the airport so we just walked straight through avoiding everyone until we found our representative, who quickly got us in a cab and on our way to the resort. I really liked that we were put in an individual cab and not on a shuttle or bus like a lot of other places we have been because this avoided a lot of wasted time of dropping others off at there resorts on our way to the resort.

Upon arrival we were greeted with a cold drink and cold towel and walking through the lobby to check in the view is amazing and already gets you excited to be there. We proceeded to a quick check in and the little sales pitch to try to get you to the big sales pitch was not too bad only 5 - 10 minutes and got some coupons that we did not use.

The room was very nice with rose petals and a bottle of bubbly to start celebrating the anniversary. We were on the 5th floor, which has a big deck but if you like to sit on the deck and look out it is not the floor you because the is a 4 ft tall wall on the outside blocking any view while sitting. If standing still have a beautiful ocean view and full view of the resort. In the room the bed was very comfortable and the nice big tv was great to have as if I'm inside I need the tv on.

I would have to say for me especially Hugo, but also Caesar and David made the trip even more enjoyable for me. Everyday these goes showed up in a great mood ready to get things going. 1 requirement for me is that the resort has to have beach volleyball. This place was great cause it was played twice a day. These guys got people involved and made it a lot of fun. Even played some tequila volleyball and seemed to be a good time for everyone that there was no lacking in participation. Also the kayak tour was an enjoyable little trip. Hugo, Caesar, and David make it happen for everyone that wants a few hours of a break from laying out or reading.

Got to love a good drink or two or three while laying out by the pool though sometimes it could be a little slow if using the wait staff but the guy waiting on people on the beach and by the pool near the beach gave it his best effort to try to get to everyone as often as possible. The bar near the pools, right beside the Barefoot Grill, has a bartender named Gustavo who was excellent, very friendly. I just told him what I liked and every time I came up to the bar he came up with a new cocktail for me enjoy.

I did not make it to all the restaurants but did go to the Japanese twice, once with a reservation at the teppanyaki grill and another time just to a normal table. I loved it both times. Only addition to the teppanyaki grill would be serving noodles as well. When we sat at a normal table ordered the fried rice dish, which came with almost everything you get at the teppanyaki grill so I was very happy with that.

I had a very relaxing and enjoyable vacation. I would love to go back sooner rather than later and do plan to make a return visit in the near future.

Room Tip: Get a room above the 5th floor
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  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
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8  Thank Eric G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 4, 2013

We stayed 3 nights, May 31 - June 3. Check in was a breeze. We stayed in the Preferred Club. Our room was 1421, which is the floor that has a brick balcony, preventing you from looking down on the grounds. We didn't mind though and welcomed the extra privacy.
We were celebrating a late 24th anniversary. The hotel had a Happy Anniversary banner on the door for us as well as a bottle of champagne and a prepared bubble bath complete with rose petals scattered about. Just beautiful.
The food was very good. Was everything we ate great? No. But 85% of what we had was very good. Everyday at the pool area around 1:30 - 2:00 p.m. the hotel had live cooking stations. One day they offered an assortment of grilled meats. The day we ate around the pool, they offered paella, sushi, cerviche and fresh cut fruit as well as an assortment of bite sized desserts.
We had breakfast at the Market Cafe (buffet) everyday. There was enough variety to be satisfied and plenty of bacon for all.
We also dined at Oceana for lunch and dinner and ate at Bordeaux twice.
The staff, as previously mentioned, were great. They went out of their way to get you what you wanted.
I would definitely stay here again and would recommend this hotel to anyone without hesitation.
A shout out to Yoana at the Market Cafe. She was always upbeat and happy. She absolutely made your day with her great attitude. Alex and Orlando at the bar at the pool, next to the Barefoot Grill were terrific as well.

  • Stayed: June 2013, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank zebralb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 3, 2013

We reserved the master suite preferred club ocean front. One of the most expensive rooms available. We requested the highest floor available when we made our reservations 6 months ago because I had read here that they were nicer than the lower floor ones. We arrived early so that we could again request a higher floor & were told that the 3rd floor was the highest available of 9 floors unless we wanted to move over the the Now side. We were told that the ones on 7 & 8 were out of order due to a leaking pool. I was very disappointed in the room after looking at it & was told we could upgrade to the ground floor room with a pool for an additional $600 for our stay. We agreed. After getting into the room we realized that it had a very bad leak in the bathroom which we reported & it took two trips & about 5 hours before it was fixed. We were afraid to unpack not knowing whether we would be staying. The room leaked again during our stay & smelled of mildew the entire time. To top all of this off, the room we had requested on the 7th floor was offered to our friends who checked in two hours later if they wanted to pay more for it. They had only reserved a Junior Suite. Our friends declined but the next day we saw that someone was staying there after we'd been told it was out of order. Basically this is a scam for them to get more $$ from you at check in. Since a higher floor wouldn't have been an additional cost, we were told it wasn't available! We will never stay at another Secrets resort.

Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
11  Thank Cindy P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mauricio M, Gerente at Secrets Vallarta Bay Puerto Vallarta, responded to this reviewResponded June 6, 2013

Mrs. Peabody,

Thank you so much for your review, we feel terrible about the miscommunication that took place and want to assure you it was nothing untoward.

From time to time our suites require maintenance attention. We strive in having all our Master Suites in optimum condition. We try not to have our suites out of service for long; unfortunately at the moment of your arrival the suite you requested was not guest-ready.

I would like to mention that all and every one of our Master Suites offer exceptional panoramic views of our deep blue Pacific Ocean and the magnificent Vallarta Bay. The suite located on the 8th (top) floor is our Presidential Suite and is not available as an upgrade. The gorgeous Swim Out Master Suite you opted to upgrade to is steps away from our sandy beach and is second best ONLY to the Presidential Suite in our entire resort.

It is understandable how this situation can be misunderstood and misrepresented. We work hard to go above and beyond our guests expectations, and regret the outcome of your stay. We hope to have the opportunity to host you again in the future.

Respectfully,

Mauricio Martinez
General Manager

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 3, 2013

From getting off the transfer bus to leaving, Secrets Vallarta Bay was wonderful!

As soon as we stepped of the bus, we were greeted by friendly staff, a cool towel and a drink. Check-in was a breeze. We were shown to a concierge, given our room key and went directly to our room, with a member of the staff following us with a luggage cart. As a reference point, we arrived at the resort around 2 pm.

ROOM:

The room was fantastic. They had placed an anniversary banner on our door and an anniversary surprise inside. There were rose petals scattered around the tub, which had a bubble bath ready. We had a "Welcome Pack" that included information about the resort. The air-conditioning worked great the entire time we were there, as long as the sliding glass door to the balcony was completely shut. The shower was wonderful. It was so big and had both the regular shower head and the rainfall shower, which was nice if you get burnt! We didn't have any issues with noise from outside the room only from the room above us. When the furniture is moved across the floor is it really loud, but there was only one night that was an issue, so I used my earplugs. The view was stunning (Rm 1601) from both the front and back. On the balcony, the pool and ocean views were stunning and completely unobstructed. The view of the mountains and town, were almost as good when leaving the room.

FOOD:

Bordeaux - The atmosphere, as in all the restaurants, was wonderful. This wasn't my favorite simply because I didn't find much that I liked. However, we talked to A LOT of people that loved it. It was the type of food that I didn't care for, rather than the food itself.

Himatsu - As a lot of other reviews have said, it is wonderful. We went there our first night, but didn't make reservations for the grill. So, we thought we may have to sit in the regular dining area, however the ladies at the front were so nice and, because of no-shows, were able to fit us in at a grill table. The beef was excellent, as was the fried rice. The whole experience was even better because we sat with a great group of people and the chef just added to the fun. We also ate there our last night at the resort and, since we had an anniversary, they gave us a special desert (they also did that for a birthday at our table).

Market Cafe - Had the most wonderful breakfast. The buffet seemed to have anything anyone could want from an omelet station, breads, fruits, specialty dishes, and on..and on. Ricardo and Ayana were absolutely wonderful. They both spent time talking to us and genuinely wanted us to enjoy ourselves. We did go there for dinner one night and it was excellent, too.

Capers - This was my least favorite. It took nearly an hour to get our food, and it wasn't very good. The servers, like in all restaurants, were so nice, but the wait for our food and the fact that is was not good made this a definite thumbs down for us.

Oceana - This place is perfect for the days you want to stay by the pool. The shrimp was huge and tasted great. We went there nearly everyday for lunch and always had great food. We didn't make it to dinner, though we were told the surf and turf was out of this world.

Barefoot Grill - They kept snacks available all day, usually hot dogs, hamburgers & pizza. That was great for a quick snack. We also ordered onion rings & fries and the pool butler brought it out to us poolside.

Room Service - We had a special anniversary breakfast brought to us the first morning we were there. It was spectacular. The butler brought into our room & set it up on the balcony. The food was wonderful and the presentation was impeccable, not to mention eating with such a great view! A few times we ordered room service and the food the delivery time was almost exactly what they told us and the food temp was pretty good. We did have to ask them to leave it in the secrets box otherwise they would knock on the door. So, just make the request! Just a note, we did order at all times...morning, noon and 2 am and got the same service every time.

POOLS:

There are 3 pools to choose from. The main pool, which has the swim up bar, was the most active. It could get loud at times, but there are two other options if that becomes an issue. For the most part, we stayed at that pool because we met so many great people there and even when we stayed in our chairs, it was entertaining to watch everyone.

The pool butlers did a good job most of the time. At times, they had a hard time keeping up with so many people.

We never had any trouble finding chairs by the pool and, while we there, there was only one couple that played the towel game. There were always enough towels, too.

TIPPING - We tipped everyone there, at the pool, restaurants and bartenders. At the pool, we would give $5 US when we first got there and then $2 US the rest of the time. This really didn't seem to change the service, as we saw a lot of people not tipping and they were treated the same because they gave great service all the time.

Overall, Secrets exceeded our expectations. All of the staff was so accommodating and pleasant. I would, and plan, to go back! I have so many pictures of the resort that I didn't post, so let me know if you want to see more, or if you want to ask something.

  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank IndianaReady2go
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 3, 2013

We just returned from our trip on June 1, 2013. The staff went above and beyond what we had expected, they all smiled and worked hard to make every need or want complete. The restaurants were all very good. Never had to wait and need no reservation. Very close to shopping at the Boardwalk and airport. The staff I can't say enough good about they were very nice and really worked hard. We would go back for sure.

Room Tip: No need to get an ocean view room for all rooms face the ocean.
See more room tips
  • Stayed: May 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank Susan D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Secrets Vallarta Bay Puerto Vallarta

Address: David Alfaro Siquerios No. 164 | Col Zona Hotelera Las Glorias, Puerto Vallarta 48333, Mexico (Formerly Secrets Vallarta Bay Resort & Spa)
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 #15 of 123 Hotels in Puerto Vallarta
Price Range: $295 - $935 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Secrets Vallarta Bay Puerto Vallarta 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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