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“A Rustic Getaway”
Review of Casa La Ventana

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Casa La Ventana
Reviewed February 8, 2010

Boca de Tomlatan is a tiny fishing village about 12 miles south of Puerto Vallarta. We arrived by the VIP van service Christina had arranged for us. Her staff helped ferry our luggage across the river and to our room, while her husband Don led us across the footbridge, and up the path and a long flight of stairs, to the lovely hacienda that is Casa La Ventana. We stayed in La Montana, which was just gorgeous: a large apartment with bedroom, bath, kitchen, living room, and a huge deck with a table, chairs, swinging hammock, overlooking the valley and the jungle mountains in the distance. We blended our own margaritas, cooked some of our own meals and ate out on the deck (Christina serves a wonderful breakfast each day). We took a hike to colamita one day, also walked down to the beach to sunbathe, and watch kids surf. There are several small restaurants and tiendas in town, so you don't need to go into Puerto Vallarta for anything unless you want to. It's a 30 minute ride by bus, and we did so several times for the fun of it, and the people watching, and the view of the coast. We also took the bus out to the Botanical Gardens for a party one night. Christina and Don are great hosts. We'd definitely consider coming back!

  • Stayed: January 2010, traveled as a couple
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Thank ppereira5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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75 - 81 of 84 reviews

Reviewed January 12, 2010

Our trip to Mexico would not have been as good as it was if w had not stayed at Casa La Ventana. Christina and Don were the most gracious hosts anyone could ask for, aside from being completely informative, welcoming, and kind; they included us in their post New Years party and we had a big group dinner on their open air veranda on one of our last nights.

Their B and B is spectacular. We stayed in La Montana facing the mountain side but the beautiful building is constructed on the mountains across a brooklike river overlooking the bay, ocean, pueblo, and surrounding mountains. Their a meticulously manicured gardens with flowers even wrapped around parts of the balcony. The hacienda style easily transplants one to a simpler mexican pace of life instead of the hectic and tourista style of downtown Puerto Vallarta. The top floor open air veranda was a great space that my boyfriend and I thought would be spectacular for yoga retreats and group seminars.

Our own room came with a queen bed and standing shower with great wall adornments. A kitchen (with a water cooler---in case you werent sure how to approach Montezuma's Revenge) a fridge and a bar seating area. There was a living room with a table where we played cards a few mornings waiting for breakfast. We ate breakfast every morning on our balcony overlooking the mountainside and often laid on the hammock reading and listening to the plethora of birdsongs that we were so lucky to have within reach.

The breakfasts were superb by far the best meals we had in Mexico were crafted with love and creativity by newly acclaimed Boca chef Christina Martell. Our first breakfast were crabmeat stuffed mushrooms, local sliced tomatoes, scalloped fried potatoes, homemade banana bread with a fresh berry assortment. When we thought bed and breakfast we expected pastries and bananas...maybe an egg if we were lucky! This was above and beyond our expectation!!! Even the morning we left Christina packed us up with homemade streusel coffee cake for our journey. We were so grateful.

Christina and Don were also so kind as to introduce us to a local restaurant in right on the beachfront. We ate there almost everyday for at least one meal. All the seafood is local and fresh caught and the family owned enterprise is run with an atmosphere that caters to your needs, your vacations...no problem. We were given a sunset view table every night and lots of company (or peace and quiet) whenever we wanted it.

The surrounding activities were great. We took a beautiful hike to a look beach, Colomitos where we wound up being left entirely to our own devices with no one to mind us. There is also a nearby botanical gardens that is working on building an orchid conservatory in addition to the beautifully kept grounds. There are also boat taxis that go to further south beaches like Yelapa. All of this is easily accessed and there is even more that we didnt get to do. Christina and Don gave great recommendations about places and were able to provide good advice about times to go (like our trip to the Malecon on Sunday night at sunset)

Frankly, I dont think we would have had such an exceptional visit if we had stayed anywhere closer to Puerto Vallarta. This little town has all the makings of a perfect retreat or a romantic getaway without making you drive hours away from an international airport. You also dont feel like a stranger roaming in a strange land; the wonderful relationship that Christina and Don have made with their community has makes each patrons visit feel like they are part of the extended Boca de Tomatlan family.

We absolutely cannot wait to go back!

  • Stayed: January 2010, traveled as a couple
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Thank babyjewel911
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 7, 2010

Casa La Ventana’s luxuries are many, and it’s ambiance immeasurable. In Boca de Tomatlan you will find a beautiful home, gracious hosts, and a thriving community. If you want to learn more about our neighbor to the south, its people, culture, and food, look no further. If you prefer a pool bar, copious vacationers, and bland fare, you should seek a resort in Puerto Vallarta.

We found our happy spot at Casa La Ventana. We arrived late in the afternoon and were greeted by one of the locals, Freddie, who called Christina and Don to let them know we had arrived. Christina and Don are fixtures in the community, supporting many local charities, businesses and Bocans. While Don and Chapa worked the bags, we walked to the Casa with Christina, and found the La Montana room and its fully stocked kitchen to be polished and stocked with our requested order: cervesa Corona, fresh fish, tortillas, homemade salsa, and local cheeses. After a short decompression (a beer and tequila), we cooked our fresh taco dinner before heading out into the pueblo for Christmas Eve. We met a number of folks that night, bought some homemade fire-crackers, and in all had a great time mingling with the locals before retiring to a comfortable bed overlooking town.

We spent the rest of our six days enjoying all that the Casa La Ventana, Boca and Christina had to offer. Each day started with Christina’s personally-delivered delicious, fresh breakfasts. We spent many days hiking on a well marked trail along the Coast dropping into secluded, turquoise water beaches, spotting butterflies, iguanas and macaws along the way. One unforgettable day, Christina arranged a visit to the Marietas Islands, but the seas did not cooperate, we could not land the boat. Captain Sergio, threw out a few lines and moments later we had our tuna dinner, the best fish tacos you I’ve , ever had, including homemade tortillas and fresh salsa. Heading back and away from the rough water, we were treated to a once in a life time whale show. We watched for an hour, while three humpback whales breached, slapped and banged their heads on the water, too incredible to describe. (See pictures.)

We loved this trip as it was interesting, beautiful and plenty for us to do for a week. Boca de Tomatlan has a lot to offer to those that want to get a little off the beaten path. We always felt safe and ate on the street and in a local home restaurant with no issues. That said, it is not for everyone. Though the casa is has no streets on its side of the river, it can be somewhat loud, especially during the holiday, as this is an active town. Boca is a small working town in Mexico, it has its poor, and run down areas.

A stay at Casa La Ventana is trip to Mexico, not a visit to a USA manufactured Mexican ideal.

  • Stayed: December 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank Bootboiler2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 19, 2009

In April, my wife and 5 year old son, and my best friend, his wife and 3 year old son, stayed at Villa Ventana at Casa La Ventana in Boca de Tomatlan. During our week's stay we were able to play on the beach with our kids, watch them try to catch tad poles in the river, take the for their first kayak rides in the lagoon and have a local a very dependable teenage girl take over and play with the kids when we wanted to relax and have a little adult time. In short, it doesn't get any better than this. We spent a day a the Vallarta Zoo, just a 10 minute drive from our villa, which was an amazing zoo experience kids (or adults) just don't get in the U. S. anymore. We spent another day at the Vallarta Botanical Gardens, where after a tour and lunch, the kids got to play and swim in the river below.

Our accommodations were like "home away from home" and Christina was a helpful and gracious hostess. She even catered dinner for us one evening on the top level of the Casa. The views were great and she pulled out a box of toys that entertained the boys while we enjoyed an after dinner cocktail.

We hope our boys can return many times as they grow up to play with other children in the village and learn that there is more than one way to grow up and experience the world.

Thanks Casa La Ventana!

  • Stayed: April 2009, traveled with family
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Thank SeattleBeachFamily
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 21, 2009

My partner and I took a long needed get-a-way to a small fishing village south of Puerto Vallarta and stayed at Casa La Ventana Hacienda Guest Quarters. We found it on the Internet and went with no recommendation. What a find!

Our room was beautiful, romantic and private. We had lovely views from our quarters and balcony. Our breakfasts were served each day on our varanda and were amazing. Christina and her staff made us feel welcome and comfortable. We borrowed books from her reading library and were able to check our email each day on her wireless Internet.

She loaned us a kayak one day to take on a "voyage" south of the village where we found a wonderful and private sand beach to pull our kayak onto and enjoy the sun, the water and the dolphin show that came to entertain us. Other days we hiked, snorkeled, visited the nearby Botanical Gardens and enjoyed beers on the beach just down the stairs from Casa La Ventana.

We had incredible massages in a private but open air setting on what is called the Tree House level of the casa for very reasonable prices.

We will return soon and highly recommend it for anyone who wants a wonderful alternative to a large hotel or resort setting. You won't be disappointed!

  • Stayed: April 2009, traveled as a couple
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Thank tiredwashintonian
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 20, 2009

Wonderful spot, just a short bus ride away from Puerto Vallarta but Boca feels like a million miles away in terms of a place to relax, chill out and really experience Mexico. Casa La Ventana is very welcoming spot with a very special and helpful owner Christina. Spent a week there and it was worry and hassle free.
The rooms are big, bright and very clean.Casa La Ventana is built into the side of the mountain overlooking the Boca fishing village. Make sure you are able to walk up stairs as you will get a good workout going up and down them from Casa La Ventana and the beach. I would go back without hesitation.

  • Stayed: March 2009, traveled with friends
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Thank notex
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 13, 2009

I spent ten days as Casa La Ventana and just loved it! I was taking a course offered there once a year, the Joy Class - also highly recommended by the way (Google for more). I was really happy with the food (wonderful fruit and great variety), my room (clean, great view, lots of windows and air moving) and the gracious hospitality offered by owner Christina.

Particularly enjoyed the local fare -- the once weekly 'fish on a stick' caught and BBQ'd by locals, and Concha's enchilada's - cheap and the best I've ever had. Also try the seviche on tostadas on the beach. Christina has great tips for activities in the area, as well, including kayaking, private beaches, private massage and more. Highly, highly recommended!

If you're looking for traditional hotel complex, or find it difficult to climb stairs (the Casa is built into a mountain, so there are lots of stairs and rough paths) this isn't for you. Also, be comfortable with the wild (though friendly) doggies running around, and the chickens that announce the dawn. I kinda liked them...added to the experience in my book.

If you want a comfortable, unique and authentic Mexican experience, you'll love it!

  • Stayed: March 2009, traveled with friends
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Thank KfromTO
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Casa La Ventana

Address: Rivera del Rio 17, Boca de Tomatlan, Mexico
Location: Mexico > Jalisco > Boca de Tomatlan
Amenities:
Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #3 of 4 B&Bs / Inns in Boca de Tomatlan
Price Range: $105 - $170 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 3
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located on Puerto Vallarta's South Shore in Boca de Tomatlan. This hotelito is tucked in steep jungled mountains and perched overlooking the river, the pueblo and the Boca Cove to the Bay of Banderas. Accommodations types include bed and breakfast guest quarters, one bedroom with kitchen and one guest quarter with two bedroom, two bath villa with grand balcony and great views. A great alternative to a crowded resort and an opportunity to experience real Mexico, enjoy hiking, kayaking, beach and relaxing. A new and private swimming pool and palapa lounge area was added in October, 2012. Wireless Internet provided. Coffee service delivered to your guest quarters each morning and breakfast can be served on your private balcony or in the Tree House, where views and lounging areas abound. Massage available by appointment and private catered dinner and events available in the Tree House. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Casa La Ventana Hotel Boca De Tomatlan

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