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Reviewed June 18, 2009

Dreams was a total last minute trip and we picked it solely on its reviews... The beach is AMAZING! It is completely private because of the two mtns enclosing it and the hotel.. Loved it! We spent 6 days in PV and only went into town once.. the hotel had everything we were looking for!! The restuarants were really good and we loved having 4 to choose from.. our favorite was El Patio and Seaside Grill. The buffet was great too and we ate there everyday for lunch! You have to have their green juice for breakfast and their ice cream! It is kinda hidden but worth looking for!!! And make sure your guy brings pants (not jeans) and some dress shoes - to get into Portofino! We missed out on that one!! Heard it was really good and romantic!!

The shows every night were really great! There was one lame one but for the most part they were very entertaining! My husband got chosen to be onstage for the comedy night and it was hilarious!! The Mexican Fiesta was fabulous and we loved that they had a buffet right there - with lots of authentic fare! And they brought in a bunch of artists with all their artwork, pottery, jewelry, blown glass, dresses, etc... And honestly I think they were cheaper than in town and you saved the taxi fare!! They were also on the beach selling everyday but they were very polite and didn't push! And there were only a few - so you weren't annoyed ever!!

The entertainment crew did a great job planning activites every hour.. beach and water volleyball, futbol (soccer), american football, kayaking, water trampoline and climbing, bungee trampoline, snorkeling, rappelling, jungle trek, tennis, yoga, water aerobics, scuba clinic, cards, ping pong, and a family movie on the beach every night! I wanted to just lay on the beach and relax but my husband can't sit that long - so it was great having the entertainment guys there he could hang out with when he was bored with me! We also did ziplining (canopy tour) with La Vista Canopy Tour and it was SO FUN! I am terrified of heights and I loved it! They beg for tips at the end with is annoying but they claim that is their main source of income! Plus they are really fun! We kinda wish we had done the Outdoor Adventure instead only cause they included boats, mules, rapelling, ziplining, waterfalls, traversing a rope bridge and unimogs all in one day! I was too scared before but now looking back we should have done that!!

The only thing I had a hard time understanding was the hotel staff... they just didn't seem very accomodating... we asked to upgrade to the preferred tower and they claimed there was no rooms.. yeah right! Swine flu and off-season June - it was empty! I was even willing to pay and they didn't care! Plus I could barely understand him so it was hard to negotiate anything! That is another rough part - it really helps to know spanish! And GET PESOS before you go there !! We paid $15 US via taxi from airport to dreams and it would have been $11 if we had pesos - not much but if you do a few trips it adds up!
Speaking of taxis - at the airport go straight past all the timeshare taxi guys and go outside... Look for the yellow cabs.. they are the real thing! We were so confused - cause they are all begging you! But if you go outside - you should be good! So back to the hotel.. I really wanted to be in the new tower so I was disappointed! THE GOOD: It was clean, spacious and had a little couch and chair and the bathroom and flooring was updated, the ocean view was really nice! THE BAD: tv was OLD and staticky, décor and furniture was really tacky, you couldn't keep the door cracked to hear the ocean and the a/c on at the same time - so try to get the preferred tower!

My IPhone worked great everywhere - except actually in the room, just had to stand on the balcony - and texts are supposed to be 50 cents each to receive and 5 cents to send so that is how we communicated to our kids. (make sure to turn off your data roaming before you go!!) My husbands Verizon phone didn't work at all.. We went to relax away from our kids for a few days but once we were there we really wished we had brought them... they had so many activities and our boys would have loved it all! We are planning on taking them back in a few years!!! If you have kids I would definetly consider bringing them - it is very safe at the resort and seems almost tucked away from everything else - which I loved!! Overall the resort is really nice! We had a few issues but nothing that wouldn't bring us back.. I just wish they would have upgraded us to the preferred tower and I would have thought they were AMAZING.. They are certainly not a Fairmont property in regards to customer service!!! But the gorgeous beach made it worth every penny!!

  • Stayed: June 2009, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank coltontalon
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 17, 2009

This is probably my 10th all inclusive resort I've visited in Mexico, so I have a pretty objective opinion on Dreams Puerto Vallarta.

The Bad: We stayed our first night in the Dreams Tower (Old Tower) 5th floor, with the exception of the view, the room was pretty much a run down motel 6 type room. It was small and old w/ an uncomfortable bed (no headboard), old school 25 inch t.v., and old and cheap furniture. The bathroom was tiny w/ a small & stained bathtub accompanied by a "dingy" shower curtain. No lobby, w/ outdoor entrance to the elevator. The A/C was as loud as my gas powered electric generator I use at home when we lose power. I would honestly give the Dream Tower a very poor rating and list it as a 2 or 3 star hotel. We stayed only one night before upgrading to the new preferred tower (extra 67 bucks a night after negotiation) but what a major difference.
Pools= Very small for a 4 star resort w/ rather cheap pool side lounge chairs, due to the size of the pools, they stayed cluttered w/ people. we avoided the pools.

THE OKAY: Entertainment: like most all inclusives, the entertainment was pretty cheesy and this resort really didn't have much of a bar/club for nightly entertainment. The sports bar was usually empty, but it did have one bar tender and a dance floor and a pool table. It was pretty empty every night. Unfortunately, this bar wasn't open during the day. Unless you went to a pool bar, their really wasn't a sit down bar to frequent during the day.

The Good: The Preferred Tower: Unlike the old tower, this tower was very lavish, very new, w/ large bathrooms with whirl pool tubs, a walk in shower, good a/c, plasma t.v., 4 post comfortable bed, excellent patio and view. It also has it's own indoor lobby w/ concierge, free computer/internet access, snacks, coffee etc. Comparing this tower w/ the old was like comparing motel 6 to a Hilton.

The food was suprisingly good at all the restaurants, we had good experience w/ room service food as well. (and the room service was quick, 20 minutes)The only bad things we had were the pizza and burgers. However, that's very good for an all inclusive.
Drinks: the drinks were very good, and they carried some decent liquor, make sure you ask for it or you get the bottom shelf liquor.
Beach: The beach was amazing. very clean w/ excellent service from the drink waiters. I enjoyed lounging, body surfing, and snorkeling. If you get out past the breaking waves, the water was calm and I saw plenty of marine life. Some folks were scared of the rays that liked to ride the waves, but I was told the resort has never had an incident of someone getting hurt by them. The beach is in a cove bordered by rock cliffs on each side; it's probably about 1/3 of a mile long.

Service: Overall the service was very good.

Location: I thought the location was good because it was just five minutes from town (50 peso cab ride)

I would consider returning to this resort, and consider recommending it to a friend, but only the Preferred Tower, The Dreams Tower is pretty much run down lacking anything very nice.

Stayed: June 2009, traveled as a couple
7  Thank KD070770
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 16, 2009

The resort staff, especially the Kid's Club Staff were amazing. The 2 restaurants on the beach were just beautiful. Swimming at the beach was a lot of fun; beautiful water and amazing scenery. We wish we had brought surf shoes with us as there were sting rays in the morning and we did not want to step on one. The movies on the beach eash night were a very big hit with the kids.
Our biggest dissapointment was our room. We thougth we were going to be in the new building. We got to the hotel late and found that we had been booked into the old building and into a room woth one bed for 4 people ( the travel agent we used has since left her job - good move). To remedy this the hotel staff was able to give us a room with 2 beds. We looked over the room which looked more like an old Holiday Inn rather than the room pictured on the website. The headboards are painted onto the walls. The big concern, however, was that the railing outside the sliding glass doors was pretty wobbly. With 2 young kids we knew we needed a different room. We were also put off that only one elevator in the building was working. Going back to the front desk with our concern, we were told that the other building was sold out and we had no choice but the old building. We asked to be one the first or second floor and were told those rooms were "out of order". We came to realize that since the old building was not very full, they had closed off the first 2 floors and that is also why one of the elevators was turned off. With a little persistance and a really nice night clerk we were able to get a room on the first floor. This worked much better for us. Same fake wall headboards, a lamp that did not work, air condidtining that did not work well at night, not able to get the internet access to work ($18 per day in the old building) but the floor were really pretty and the maid was great. Dreams needs to really work to improve these tired looking rooms. The main pool needs some new floats as the ones there had torn sides and some mold in the tears.

It was pretty hard to hear other guests raving about the gorgeous rooms in the "New Tower" when we were so dissapointed by our room. We thought we had paid for a "dreamy hotel room" which did not happen.
We tried to make the best of it and enjoyed the resort amentities since this was a major vacation for us. Being close to downtown was also nice. What we did learn was to double or triple check what the accomidations will be before you leave. Please know that Verizon cell phones do not work in the resort but will work in downtown Puerto Vallarta. Also, the interenet at the hotel business center gets shut down at 9pm. Another thing we realized quickly, which was different than other all-inclusive we had been to was that tipping (which was listed as included) was going on and almost expect at the pool bar.

The staff and food get a five star rating. Our room gets a 2 star rating. We could only recommend this hotel if folks stay in the new building.

  • Stayed: June 2009, traveled with family
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9  Thank 3kidsmomVa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 15, 2009

We had all of our guests stay here and they LOVED it. We booked a year in advance and I'm glad we did. We got an incredible deal from a great travel agent and our guests loved the all-inclusive. Definitely stay in the new tower, its gorgeous!! Best restaurant is the Italian one. Worst one is the Mexican one. Staff can be a bit dizty, but hey, we didn't mind.

  • Stayed: April 2009, traveled with friends
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1  Thank tunaboat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 14, 2009

Appreciated the hospitality and kindness of the adventure/activities team. In particular, Alex, Ramon, and Paco, made this experience pleasurable. Would recommend the hotel based on these three individuals alone. Always kept an up-beat attitude, and always tried to get everyone involved.

  • Stayed: June 2009, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Thank bkuno80
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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