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“Didn't get all we expected ... but a very nice place & we would return”

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Now Amber Puerto Vallarta
Ranked #18 of 123 Hotels in Puerto Vallarta
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Reviewed March 14, 2013

I read lots of reviews before we went there so we thought we knew what to expect and about tipping, but we were surprised by many things that did NOT happen, even when we tipped. We stopped tipping after a few days, unless we got decent service, including the service in the room. Upon arrival there were some things that needed to be fixed right away a door that would not lock, no chain lock on the front door - we had 2 adjoining rooms with our kids in one room and us in the other and we wanted to feel safe. Some were fixed the 2nd day when we left a note and then they phoned to ask how everything was so I told her - then they fixed the rest. But we got terrible service. No towels were left in both rooms on 2 of the days, the rooms were done VERY late - like 5 and 6 pm. We'd be out at the pool all day and return to shower so we could go out for dinner and the rooms were still not done. Had to find maid carts and get our own towels. Tried phoning the 1st time it happened - useless. We were told if we left a few dollars in the room with a note for housekeeping of what we wanted we'd get good service. WRONG! They took the $ but didn't give what we asked and all we asked for was 4 fresh towels in each room each day. I'm not gonna list all my complaints, but there were lots of "little" things - and they all kind of add up .... We talked to people around the pool - many solicited us about what we did for tipping. We were surprised to hear that many of them were not tipping at all.
mini bar service was not done daily.
At Capers Restaurant on our first night for dinner - they "forgot" about us a dinner then tried to suck up - we were there for SO long - one guy came and asked us if we'd like dessert and we said we haven't had dinner yet - he was stunned - what ?? well, 5 guys were on us like hotcakes all serving us dinner at the same time and bringing us drinks we didn't order / want / need. Our empty water cups were filled. Prior to that we had been sitting there, after our appetizers for AGES....

Mexican Restaurant - had GREAT service from Jose Angel and Daniel
Grand Salon Mariachi Night - got Jose Angel again - he remembered us and gave us great service.
We've read and heard there's supposed to be service in room twice a day. We've had bare minimum once/day and it's been late - like 3 or 4 pm the first few days then 5 - 6 pm the rest of the trip.
we didn't get turn down service with the newsletter and "chocolates" for the first 3 nights then got it sporadically after then when I enquired at the front desk. It was also my daughters birthday when we were there and I had let them at the time of booking, in followup confirmations, upon arrival, when signing her up at kids club, etc. They didn't put it on the newsletter and they don't do anything for you.

service at pool is ok. they take forever to bring a drink, you tip them and you never see them again. I gave one guy $2 at the first delivery and said just keep them coming. never came back !!
If he had come back, I would have given him more $, but he didn't. We went to self serve bars after the 2nd day - didn't want to have to worry about tipping and crappy service. I expect to get a drink within 15 minutes. I don't think that's unreasonable. 45 minutes is way too long!

Juan at the self serve bar is great - I'm just going there now - he's friendly and helpful too - we tipped him and sought him out if he was serving at the pool.

our alarm clock time kept resetting to 12 oclock. maid seems to hit it everyday . we kept fixing it. what a hassle !!

Room Tip: all rooms were good locations - they ALL have a great view.
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  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with family
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3  Thank FamilyofFour841
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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2,302 - 2,308 of 2,979 reviews

Reviewed March 14, 2013

My husband and I celebrated our anniversary March 6 - 9 at the Amber Now PV. This resort is amazing!! Everything was perfect for us. We were greeted with champagne; Champagne in our hotel room and other surprises during our visit for our anniversary. The staff was awesome and always seemed happy to greet you and help! We enjoyed the food, beverages and snacks so much. We were sorry we didn't get to try all restaurants because of our short stay. However, no complaints of the restaurants we did eat at. I highly recommend the "Romantic Dinner on the Beach". We did this on Friday night and it was wonderful. Food and service were outstanding. Having dinner while watching the sunset was so special. We cannot wait to go back to the resort with our family. We always felt safe and loved the gated entrance into the resort. I loved the coffee shop and also having drinks always fresh while sitting by the pool or beach. We never had trouble finding places to sit by the pool or the beach.

Have I mentioned how beautiful the open air lobby is and how relaxing it is to have a nice drink while sitting out on the lobby patio area? So peaceful in the morning to have our coffee (after breakfast) there..

My only food concern was the Mexican Fiesta night on the beach. The Mexican buffet was not great, but even still, you could snack there and eat at another restaurant.

I would highly recommend this resort and am anxious to return there again!

Room Tip: Ask for a room on a higher floor. All rooms are oceanview, but the lower level views are mainly the...
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  • Stayed: March 2013, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank travelvantx
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 14, 2013

This is the new resort in Puerto Vallarta. It's really close to downtown. Cabs were like $5 - $7 which was great because I love going into the flea market and walking down the Malecon.
This is two resorts in one. When you arrive you are directed to which lobby to enter.Both resorts look very similar and sit up high with an amazing view of the ocean. The bell hops greet you with champagne and cold towels. We were in the preferred club tower so as soon as they saw that they took us straight over there so we didn't have to wait in line. You sit down at the desk and the check in process was easy. The longest part was when we realized my parents were "upgraded" to the Secrets side but we didn't want them all the way over so we upgraded them back to a Master Swim up suite so we could be right next door to each other.



And this is extra why I loved this resort: my room category. Clients make comments all the time like "I'm not in my room very much so it doesn't matter." Oh it does matter! It matters if it sucks (I will hear about it!) and it totally makes it better if it's awesome! The room had 2 bathrooms with a huge living room and the best part - a huge balcony with a pool! The pool is just for the swim out suites in the preferred club section. I think there was about 8 rooms. There are 2 "garden view" mater swim out suites right next to each other. You could totally still see the ocean from them. This was the balcony. And one of my favorite parts is they have that middle part so you can lay in the water and the waitstaff would walk right up the side of the pool and bring drinks or guacamole. This is vacation to me!
The resort is kind of like a cruise where they put a daily activity schedule in your room each night with their turn down service. They had dancing lessons, archery, black jack (which I won a bottle of tequila at BTW), beach volleyball and the list goes on. I love places like this because it gives you options of being involved or not.
The NOW Amber side is the side that allows kids. The week we were there (our anniversary week) is when school is in session so there was probably about 10 kids at the whole resort. They had an awesome kids program (or at least it looked awesome). Big kids camp area with tons of stuff to do.
There are lots of restaurants to choose from. Some of the restaurants are in the main building kind of between Secrets and Now so they share. I was skeptical about all of this esp thinking if I was paying to stay on the Secrets side but I ended up really liking it. It made it so all the restaurants were open every night. I've stayed at several Secrets Resorts and it would be like only the main restaurant and one other option was open each night. They had an Asian teppanyaki style restaurant which was adults only and a Mexican one in the middle. Each resort had a seafood/steak restaurant which was sooo good. I had the mahi mahi and they said they buy it fresh at the docks. Then there was also the main buffet restaurant which was just so/so. As good as buffets come I guess. I'm never a buffet's biggest fan.
Ok and on to my second favorite part besides my room category:

THE SPA!
A big bonus with being right next to a Secrets is you get the amazing spa. They had lots of plunge pools and water treatments you did before your treatment you bought. There was an attendant that brought you cookies, almonds, cucumber water or hot tea. They had a sauna and steam room.
I did a facial one day and a seaweed wrap the other day. I loved both of them. So professional and my mom kept saying "Lets go back to the spa". We both loved it.
Most of the time when you book you get coupons for the spa too which helps with the price and they really were not that overpriced for everything you get with it. This is a must do.

Room Tip: If you are traveling with a group, get the swim up rooms! If you do the preferred club swim up jr su...
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  • Stayed: December 2012, traveled with family
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2  Thank liavincent
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 14, 2013

Had never been to Puerto Vallarta before, but we will come back to this resort for sure. We stayed in the adult section of the resort, Secrets in a swim out suite. It was a beautiful room with a king seize bed, soaker tub, and a multi head rain shower. Everything is new and kept in good condition. Fully stocked minibar with pop, water, beer and 24 hour room service. Free international phone calls back to Canada and the US. Our swim out pool was a treat, so warm. We spent lots of time in it even on cloudy days. The only downside to the pool on the Secrets side is that you do not get any sun during this time of the year. The other side, Now Amber gets awesome morning and daytime sun in their swim outs. Food was awesome, did not miss anything. My favourite was the Japanese at Now Amber. The spa was fantastic, we had lots of massages that were nice and I had a pedicure which was ok. They have different deals on every day, so we would walk down after breakfast and book then for the same day. What else... The perfered side had suits to die for. We would have upgraded if there had been availability for the swim out.
Totally recommend this resort, enjoy!

  • Stayed: January 2013
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4  Thank 940Sunshinelover
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 13, 2013

Everything about this resort was amazing. My wife and I had a perfect 11 day holiday at the Now Amber. The food is amazing, the resort is clean, but where the Now Amber really excels is it's service. The two staff that stood out the most for us were Alex, from the entertainment staff and Nayely from the Carnival breakfast and lunch buffet. Alex worked tirelessly to ensure every guest had the opportunity to participate in all the activities and was easily the kindest man I have ever met at any of the resorts we have stayed at in Mexico. He went the extra mile to remember our names as well as several other guests and made us feel at home. They would be crazy to let this young man go. Nayely's bright smile and enthusiastic "HOLA!" were the best parts of our mornings. She also remembered our names and made sure that we were well taken care of. On our last day she had the kitchen bring out a cheesecake with a kind farewell message written on the plate in raspberry syrup. My wife was almost in tears having to say goodbye to these incredible people. Our stay was memorable but it was the kindness and assistance of Alex and Nayely that will bring us back. I hope that someone from the company reads these reviews and takes note of the workers that make their business shine!

Room Tip: All rooms have ocean views. The higher the better!
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  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank Kurtus34
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 13, 2013

Wonderful stay for a week at Now Amber. We stayed at the recommendation of some friends, and we were completely satisfied. The only reason I give this a Very Good rather than an Excellent is that some of the restaurants for dinner were just ok in our opinion -- the food was never spectacular, but it was better than most all inclusive hotels that I have stayed. Also, the men have to wear pants and closed toed shoes to the majority of the restaurants. The buffett breakfast was probably top on our list with a close second followed by the sushi/Japanese restaurant. It was so fun having dinner at a hibachi grill one evening, but make sure you get reservations -- it fills up fast!
We also did the "sales tour" where we got 2 free 80-minute massages. We felt is was probably worth it, but we went 2 other times to Healing Hands just outside the hotel, and I might rate those massages as better than what we got at the spa.
The gym was also very nice but does fill up quick in the mornings. Great equipement and weights are available for use.
The room and pools were spectacular. The only negative thing we had to say about the room was the quality of the bed linens. They were very scratchy. Otherwise, we enjoyed them verymuch and the wait staff around the pools are there to serve you from the second you put your towel down to whenever you leave to go upstairs for the day, We would definitely return if we ever visited PV again.

Room Tip: Definitely book at Junior Suite
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  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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2  Thank Megan S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 11, 2013

This is an unique property in the fact that two hotels Now Amber and Secrets share the same arrival area and then split into 2 different hotels that basically mirror one another. Now Amber allows children and Secrets does not. There are no wristbands or reservations required at any of the restaurants (except for the Japanese grill). We ate at all of the restaurants, food is a matter of opinion and in ours we were satisfied at each restaurant. The food choices were varied, the service was good in all of them, although sometimes slow. I ordered something not offered on the menu at lunch and was happily granted my special order! The waiters keep up with bar service the best they can based on demand and the amount of bartenders to make the actual drinks! Patience is a virtue, these people work hard and fast to make you happy! You can have lunch delivered right to your pool chair or room service right to your room. The pool chair situation is what it is. If you want to sit in the same spot everyday then you will have to get up and get it, if you are flexible you will never want for a chair as there are plenty to go around! The main pool was heated and too warm in the hot afternoon sun, the other pools were cooler. The beach is groomed daily but rocky to walk, it is just the tide and location. The rooms were small but comfortable, the balconies were disappointing for me, I like to sit outside and have a drink or coffee and the balcony was very small and narrow with just a small table and 2 uncomfortable chairs, not somewhere where you will want to spend any amount of time sitting. That being said, all rooms here for the most part have a beautiful ocean view. We were on the 8th floor and had a gorgeous view of the ocean full front on! I would not pay for the upgrade not enough was offered there to justify it. The internet was hit and miss, but was attainable in the lobby if you brought a computer or ipad. There was free international calls to the US that was a nice perk! There is no nightlife here, some small shows but when they are done you are left to make your own fun or listen to music in the lobby, Many people our week went into town and talked about it at the pool the next day! We are not club or bar scene people so that did not interest us. They did have a nice Oscar Party we attended that and they did a great job making that event special. We moved freely between the two resorts and their bars and restaurants, when we wanted to get away from other peoples children we could do that by just going over to the Secrets side. There were vendors on the beach everyday, just something to watch or look at they were for the most part respectful when you said no. Just to mention, we did go directly outside the gate of the hotels to both massage places and we were not disappointed! Massages were 25.00 for 1 hour plus a nice tip as the manager keeps the 25.00 you need to tip the gal that actually gives the massage or she does not get paid! The atmosphere was authentic Mexico, clean and efficient. If you are looking for NYC spa atmosphere, then stick to the very expensive Hotel Spa! I have been to over 20 all inclusive properties and I would return here it was nice and the staff was able and willing to help. Just a side note, our balcony was not cleaned when we got to our room and the floor was very gritty, we made them aware and they took care of the issue. We did not get turn down 2 nights and one day had to call for room cleaning until we called at 4:30 in the afternoon. Housekeeping is unreliable and needs work here!

Room Tip: Get a higher floor to get an unobstructed view of the ocean! Upgrade does not provide enough upgrad...
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  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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8  Thank grz1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Now Amber Puerto Vallarta

Address: David Alfaro Sisqueiros 164 | Col. Zona Hotelera Las Glorias, Puerto Vallarta 48333, Mexico
Phone Number:
Location: Mexico > Jalisco > Puerto Vallarta
Amenities:
Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Restaurant Room Service Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #18 of 123 Hotels in Puerto Vallarta
Price Range: $254 - $875 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Now Amber Puerto Vallarta 4.5*
Number of rooms: 327
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Perfectly situated on a golden sand beach showcasing infinity views of Banderas Bay, Now Amber Puerto Vallarta welcomes families with teens and tweens as well as couples and friends. Now Amber a AAA Four Diamond resort located in the heart of Puerto Vallarta, is only 5 minutes away from the famous “El Malecón” boardwalk and just 15 minutes from Puerto Vallarta International Airport. Guests of all ages are treated to an Unlimited-Luxury® escape with lavish accommodations at 327 suites, luxurious accommodations and pristine facilities. Seven dining options and five lively bars will tempt even the most discerning palates. Family-oriented activities and entertainment will keep guests enthralled all-day and night long. And that’s not all – adults can enjoy time at the spa while kids and teens enjoy supervised fun! ... more   less 
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