My husband and I stayed at Dreams VM for 6 nights, arriving home on October 18th. We had a GREAT time. I’m a little (a lot?) addicted to reading TA reviews before we visit a new resort, so in thanks to those that have written in before me, this one will be a little detailed, hopefully not too tedious.
First things first: arriving at the PVR airport. If you are a first time visitor, the time share sales people can be confusing and downright rude. They will pretend to guide you to your travel connections, or offer free transportation – don’t fall for it! Once you pick up your luggage and go through the X-ray machines you will walk through a series of rooms. Don’t pay attention to anyone approaching you until you reach the exit of the airport. If you want to arrange for a taxi, the taxi companies are located at the exit. We paid $25 to the attendant, who then gave a guy who works for the taxi company a voucher. That person then led us to a taxi and gave the taxi driver the voucher. I don’t believe you can give the taxi driver cash directly. If you have booked transportation, your drivers will be located OUTSIDE. They will have signs with your name and/or the name of the transportation service. Regarding the aggressive airport salespersons: Don’t despair – they will be the last unkind person you will encounter in Mexico. (At least, this has been the case in our past experiences.)
Fortunately, we booked this trip four months in advance. In doing so, we were able to book a non-stop flight from LA as well as upgrade to the preferred club for little extra money. When we arrived, we were directed to the check-in desks. When front desk employee looked up our reservation, he stopped and directed us up to the 8th floor to the “preferred club” check-in desk. There was no waiting and we were never asked or approached about coupons or going to a time share presentation. We were directed to our 8th floor room and our luggage arrived within five minutes. The room was great – just like the photos. As previous TA reviewers have noted – the ocean view rooms look over the pools and have a beautiful view of the ocean. However, these rooms are not located in the ocean FRONT building as the buildings closest to the ocean are the time-share condos. We were certainly close enough to enjoy the sound of crashing waves when we opened up the sliding doors. The PC also includes wireless internet service which was very helpful to us. I’m not sure if was because we upgraded but on my birthday we received cake and a bottle of champagne in our room.
Based on TA reviews, we had two concerns regarding this resort before we arrived: Screaming kids in the adult pool and the alleged “terrible” or “limited” food options.
What we found regarding the adult pool: there are no signs at the adult pool indicating that it is indeed an adult pool. So unless the parents study the map of the resort that they received at check-in, they wouldn’t even know that it was an adult pool. To make it more confusing, this particular pool is located outside the Explorer Club (kids club). In the end, at least for us, it didn’t make a difference. All of the pools were lovely, there were always lounge chairs available, both in the shade and in the sun. It very well may have been because we were at Dreams VM in October, but there were few children at the resort (mostly babies and toddlers) and even fewer school aged kids. So there was no splashing or screaming. Instead we saw visitors relaxing, reading and sometimes napping. As some previous reviewers have noted – this could be a very dull resort for those people looking for loud music or an action-packed itinerary, but for us it was exactly what the doctor ordered. And despite my last comments, there actually are some lively games of pool volleyball every afternoon if you are so inclined.
Regarding the food, I am simply confused by previous reviews. Some people had mentioned that the breakfast buffet was limited. Every morning they offer a toast station, a juice station, a fresh fruit station, cereal, yogurt, muffins, Danishes, French toast, waffles, pancakes, scrambled eggs, poached eggs on English muffins, an omelet station where you can request eggs any way you want them, chilequiles (tortilla chips with red or green sauce, red onions and crumbled cheese) and creamy refried beans. In addition they offered different potatoes and different meats every day. I’m not quite sure what was missing…
We loved lunch at Oceana, again maybe it was the season, but it wasn’t too warm to eat al fresco. Upon being seated they served chips with three salsas – the orange salsa is addictive! We loved the ceviche, the fish tacos, and the skirt steak and shrimp burritos. For us, the burger was good, not great.
We actually preferred dinner at El Patio to Portofino, but both were very good and the air conditioning was flawless at both.
Room service was also good – and fast. We liked the club sandwich and really enjoyed the chicken fajitas.
The bars were fun. It seemed like the beach and two pool bars closed around 6 or 7 every night, but the lobby bar was open late. It’s true that there are not a lot of bar stools at the lobby bar, but there are many seating options around the lobby bar. In addition, they have four tables near the lobby bar where had two flat screen TVs airing baseball and the NFL. The rooftop bar was fun too. It was closed until 10:30pm on two evenings for private parties but it’s kind of quiet up there until around that time anyway. It was nice to catch the sunset up there when they were open early, but we got the same view from our rooms when they weren’t. (Also, because we were in a PC room, we received a tiny bottle of rum, whiskey and vodka every day, in addition to beer so that we could enjoy a cocktail with that sunset every night.)
The beach was super. There were always lounge chairs available, the water was warm and the waves were big, we took many walks in both directions.
Most importantly, the service was tremendous. From our preferred-club check in gal, to every bartender, waiter, cocktail server, sushi maker, maid and mini bar re-stocker, we were never disappointed.
We understand that tipping is not expected at any all-inclusive resort. From what we observed, most visitors were not tipping and also received excellent service. I’m not sure if it makes a difference in the service that we receive, but we always start collecting $1 bills a couple of months before our Mexican vacations. The resort employees just seem to go out of their way to make our vacation the best it can be, and in appreciation, we are more than happy to tip.
We’re not sure why, but the taxi back to the airport (on both Mexican coasts) is always less expensive than the taxi ride from the resort. As I wrote earlier, it was $25 to Dreams and only 140 pesos back to the airport (around $12). We didn’t make any reservations – once we checked out we asked the valet/bell man for a taxi and one arrived in about two minutes.
I hope this information helps. Have a great trip!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Dreams Villamagna brings Unlimited-Luxury® to families, couples and friends in a picturesque setting with the Sierra Madre Mountains in the distance. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Dreams Villamagna Nuevo Vallarta Hotel Nuevo Vallarta
- Dreams Villamagna Nueva Vallarta Nuevo
- Dreams Villamagna Nueva Vallarta Hotel