Booked this with a package through Funjet. We added on the hotel transportation from the airport (Island Sun Experience). On the transportation… Just get a taxi (get fee before the trip). This was a joke. $130 for four round trip tickets. At the end of our trip, they never picked us up. We had to take a taxi back, which they paid for… Oh and… When you get through customs, just keep walking until you get outside. All of those people you see trying to flag you down are “time share” salesmen. DON’T STOP!!
The hotel… A nice looking hotel. Everything is “open air”, so no A/C in the lobby, hallways, elevators, the theater area and the Flamingo restaurant. If you cannot handle humidity, this will not be your place (actually all of Mexico, lol). We are from Houston, so we were good with it. Inside (Lobby/Theater) looks like the 1920’s or 30’s. Upon check-in, we were handed drinks. The bags were automatically taken to your room. The key to the room is an actual key. We had a minor problem getting in our room. When you insert the key and turn, sometimes it would turn freely without unlocking. You had to really work it to catch the latch just right. The room was nice. All tile everywhere. That does get a little annoying when you may have a little sand or dirt on your shoes… Then it’s in the room, etc… We had the “family” room, one king, one double. The balcony had two chairs and a table. The TV… Just in case you want to watch it, if you just used the channel button, it would only be a few Spanish channels. If you entered various numbers, you will find several cable channels, a few English speaking… The bar had a coffee maker and a fridge. The fridge was stocked with 6 regular Tecates, 3-4 very large bottles of water, 2-3 bottles of Pepsi, Diet Pepsi, Club Soda and 7UP. They had 4 full size bottles (in a case) of tequila, gin, rum and vodka in a dispenser (one shot at a time). They are supposed to refill every other day. It did not happen. We asked to have it filled and it was taken care of that day. There is a safe in the room, plenty of towels and a shampoo dispenser in the shower. The beds were somewhat comfortable. It did help that they had a ceiling fan in the room. This may be coincidental, but after the first night, we tipped the housekeeper… That day, we received a towel animal in the room, along with some Hershey Kisses. That was really neat to find in our room and unexpected. This happened every day afterwards. On a side note… Whoever came to fill up our minibar stole two kisses that were on the bed with the towel animal. Really? Are you kidding? It wasn’t much, but it was the principle of the matter… That someone would come in our room to do a job and take something that wasn’t theirs. What else did they take or would they have taken more if I had left it out? We reported it as a “thought you should know” type thing. Later that day, the housekeeper came by and gave us 4 more. She was sweet, but that was not what we were looking for. Overall, very quiet where we were (middle of the hall).
The pool… You get towel cards when you check in. Don’t lose them, it will cost you $20+US to replace. You use these to get towels down by the pool. You can keep them overnight, etc… As long as you have your cards when you check out. The adult pool was fun. The kids pool was crowded. We have a 12 and 16 year old and the really didn’t want to hang out at the kiddie pool. They stayed with us (they didn’t act like kids… Just sat in the pool)… I only saw them move a few “young” kids out for acting like kids. Of course some of the adults were acting worse… The bar there… If you are a guy or older couple, it’s hard to get drinks consistently, tips or not. If you were a female or in your 20’s, you got it made. Most of the time, I had to get my drinks.
The buffet was good, had a huge assortment of all kinds of food. They serve Dos Equis, wine and sodas in that area. This place serves breakfast, lunch and dinner… The Flamingo, Nirvana and Sir George need reservations. Don’t bother with the Flamingo. The steak was terrible and just wasn’t worth the effort. It’s on the beach and you have to dress nice. Men can wear shorts (even though it does not say), just a nice shirt will do. Didn’t try the Nirvana. Sir George was the best. If you make reservations, try to get there as much as you can. The food was very good. The place was booked two days in advance. You do have to dress nice there. Well worth it!!!
Drinks… All drinks are included. Go to any bar and order whatever you want. Everything was good and never got sick with the “rot gut” type alcohol. All seemed very good. Yes… You can drink the water there. All water served in the hotel was good to drink. Just don’t drink the tap/shower water. The ice from the ice machine was good as well.
Entertainment… It was ok. Some of it was good; some of it was just ok. The Michael Jackson show was very good. They did a good job with make-up and he had the moves like Michael. Looked good from our seat, 40 yards away.
Beach… You are right on the water. We rented (included) body boards (one hour at a time). You can use all of their non-motorized toys. They did have servers at the beach, getting you drinks. Only a few vendors came by, but never harassing. This is a beautiful area on the beach, looking out onto the bay, sunset right over the mountains to your left.
Staff… The staff you saw at the pool in the morning may be the same at lunch and at dinner. It seems they are there all day, wearing 2-4 different uniforms. Some seemed to work very hard for their pay. Tip when you can… Pesos only (Pesos everywhere)! We had great service, but got even better when you throw down 20-50 pesos.
For the money, we couldn’t beat it. For the price, we’ll be back!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- * In Riviera Nayarit, overlooking the Pacific Ocean * Located on Playa de Flamingos beach, 2 km / 1.5 miles from Nuevo Vallarta * Complimentary sun loungers on the beach * 9-story building * 3 km / 1.86 miles from various shops * 13 km / 8 miles from the airport * 1 km / 0.62 miles from Flamingos Golf Club * Credit cards accepted: Visa, MasterCard, Amex ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Riu Vallarta Hotel Nuevo Vallarta
- Riu Vallarta Nuevo