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“Antidote For Stress”

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Villa Bella Bed and Breakfast Inn
Comox, Canada
Level 5 Contributor
35 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 56 helpful votes
“Antidote For Stress”
Reviewed 21 June 2006

Up to your ears in pressure from work? Carpal-tunnel syndrome got your forearm padded like a hockey goalie? Blood pressure up 50 points? Longing for an intimate escape? Think warm. Think Puerto Vallarta. Think Villa Bella B&B, a short 20-minute cab ride from the Puerto Vallarta Airport, and the soothing, welcoming antidote to all your woes. Villa Bella provides pickup service from the airport.

Saunter through the gate. Banana and coconut palms beckon. Walk barefoot through the rich green grass. Gaze from this hilltop retreat while La Cruz dozes under a patchwork of red tile roofs.

Lounge in a recliner while the sun roasts you like a warm nut. Dip your toes into the impossibly-blue soaking pool. Daydream the afternoon away on an air mattress. Treat yourself to a massage under the shade of a palapa.

Marvel at a myriad of colors as the sun sinks below the horizon. When night falls, sit outside and search the starlit sky for your favorite constellation.

Everything at Villa Bella conspires to let you do absolutely nothing. While there, let hostess Elsa Alba sweat the small stuff. Let her make dinner and tour reservations. Let her order taxis. You kick back and let it happen.

If you’re used to gulping down breakfast, you’ll want to linger here. Sip your favorite coffee, tea or hot chocolate. Or enjoy an iced pineapple drink. Savor ripe cantaloupe, kiwi and pineapple chunks served in a Delft-colored oval dish. Browse through a copy of Puerto Vallarta Lifestyles Magazine while you wait for thick slices of toast and eggs done your way. Sworn off sweets? Staff will bribe you with a flaky strawberry-topped pastry.

In your private living room, lie toe-to-toe with your lover on an oversized sofa. Luxuriate in the cool breeze blowing through the hacienda-style suite of rooms.

The well-stocked kitchen has everything you need should you choose to have lunch or dinner in.

Siesta anyone? A king-size bed with a towel swan welcomes you to your bedroom. High beam ceilings add to the airy yet intimate effect. Painted cupboards with palms and tucans bring the soul of Mexico inside.

Don’t get me wrong. You’ll have to make some hard decisions. Do you go on the tour you booked or do you lie in the two-person hammock reading and napping? Do you go out to dinner or do you grill fresh red snapper and veggies on the bar-be-cue? Tough decisions.

You could spend a whole evening in the bathroom thanks to the Jacuzzi tub for two. Afterwards, slip into a white terrycloth robe and read your favorite novel.

As you might expect, there’s a downside: You’re eventually gonna have to leave. When you do, though, you’ll leave relaxed. And stress-free.

Stayed February 2006
3 Thank billyp
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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190 reviews from our community

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  • English first
  • French first
  • Portuguese first
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English first
Oakland, California
Level 1 Contributor
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 17 May 2006

After a week in P.V., my husband and I had the pleasure to spend 3 nights with Elsa at the Villa Bella! Words cannot describe how wonderful our experience was.

The first night we stood in the honeymoon suite. It is an open palapa with a view of the bay. Waking up to the sounds of nature and the neighboring roosters was a relief from the traffic in P.V. My husband had a perfectly comfortable night, however my menopausal thermostat needed A.C.! Elsa, very graciously, moved us to the Primavera room the next morning. It was as spectacular as the Honeymoon Suite, complete with A.C.!

Although we did not have the pleasure to have enjoyed Juan's cooking (he was ill), the breakfast were still fabulous! We had huevos mexicana, huevos divorcada and pancakes, all complete with fresh fruit, rolls, juice and coffee. Ahh, the coffee! I only drink decaf and Elsa had that available - and it was great! Not the Nescafe that you get in P.V.

La Cruz is a quiet little fishing village on the rapidly developing northern coast of Banderas Bay. Knowing we were only there for 3 nights, we were content to divide our time between the villa and La Cruz. For first timers or those staying longer, we would recommend a rental car.

There aren't enough adjectives to describe Elsa - she's the best!! She welcomes you into her villa with open arms and by the time you leave, you feel like you're part of her family!! Her pride in her villa is evident, her attention to details is incredible, and if you're real lucky, she will make you one of her infamous Margaritas or Pina Colada's!!

We are already planning our next trip!!

  • Stayed May 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1 Thank Portgal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cincinnati, Ohio
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 May 2006

My fiancee. Terri, and I had the immense pleasure of being part of the Villa Bella Family on our first ever visit to Central Mexico. We were so blown away by our first 5 day stay that we came back for our last 4 days, following a 3 day jaunt to Guadalajara. We cancelled reservations at a property in Puerto Vallarta that was easily three times as expensive as Villa Bella because it couldn't possibly have been any better!

Let me put this in context for all you readers. Terri is the Food & Beverage Director of a boutique hotel in Cincinnati while I, in my earlier life, was a captain in a Four Star/Three Diamond restaurant. I tell you this so that you understand that we recognize quality when we experience it.

And Elsa, the owner of the Villa Bella, presents nothing but excellence during your time with her. From the friendly greeting and ride from the airport to the property, to the breakfast following your first night's stay, to Elsa's guidance on things to do and places to eat, to the hug you get (and give) from Elsa when it's time to leave...it's truly a wonderful experience.

We had the opportunity to stay in the Honeymooner's Suite for the first part of our stay. Situated on the second (third?) floor you have a spectacular view of PV Bay from your balcony. Had it not been for our need of breakfast that first morning we would have been satisfied just sitting up on the balcony. However, as we found out, we would have missed experiencing Juan's cooking & Elsa's gracious hosting.

The Honeymooner's Suite has a wonderful bed in a breezy open air room. It really gives the guests a chance to experience what rural Mexico is like. Sure, there are roosters who insist on competing to see who has the greatest cackle but that's part of the charm! We truly thought that suite was the most perfect place to stay. Until we came back from Guadalajara!

When we came back from our three-day stay in Guadalajara we were lucky enough to be able to stay 4 nights in the Master Suite. Wow! This is definitely the most enjoyable suite we've ever stayed in. While you'll find more luxurious accommodations you'll never find any more comfortable, with more charm or character. Your own private shaded balcony overlooking the bay. An open air sitting room to watch the bay or read. A great bathroom with Jacuzzi if you so desire.

But as good as the suites were it was always a pleasure to wake in the morning, throw on shorts, T-shirts and a baseball cap so we could go up (or down) for Juan's breakfasts! That man can cook! I am so jealous. Every morning it was a medley of fresh fruits cut to bite-size perfection. Pineapple, melon, cantaloupe, papaya...what a way to start a meal! If you want coffee you'll get it brought to you...and we're not talking cruddy coffee from a big can, we're talking coffee that made a coffee snob like me very happy. But there's also sodas, juices, purified water (always available!) - whatever you desire. And then Juan would start working on whatever he decided to make on the stove that morning. One day Tamales, the next Chiliquiles, the next Chorizo and Eggs...and so on. All of it wonderful. Even if you're not a breakfast person, as Terri isn't, you'd be amiss if you don't partake of Juan's cooking!

Finally, there aren't enough superlatives to describe Elsa. Elsa went out of her way to get to know us. She gave us advice on places to eat in La Cruz (I'll let the other reviewers tell you about those), things to do, and shared with us stories about herself, her charming husband and her family. Terri and I feel like we have truly found a friend in our neighboring country. She even went out of her way to get Terri some Coke Lite to feed her Diet Coke addiction!

While Terri and I weren't overly impressed with Puerto Vallarta we absolutely fell in love with the Villa Bella, Elsa, her staff and La Cruz. I hate the fact that others know about the Villa Bella but I relish the thought that Terri and I will be visiting as often as we can to share time with Elsa.

Thank You Elsa

Stayed February 2006
3 Thank fordo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Denver, Colorado
Level 5 Contributor
54 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 91 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 May 2006

I just spent a truly wonderful week at Villa Bella B&B Inn. This was my second visit, and it was even more delightful than my first visit two years ago. Elsa, the owner, has made numerous improvements to the inn, including adding staff and extensively renovating the common, breakfast, and kitchen areas. The breakfasts are generous and delicious. The staff is helpful and charming. It is clear that Elsa has devoted a lot of time and effort to making the inn the gem that it is. Her tender loving care is also evident in the many wonderful decorative touches throughout the inn.

The small fishing village of La Cruz de Huanacaxtle held some nice surprises too. There is now a good selection of restaurants in La Cruz to choose from, offering quite a variety of cuisines, including Swiss-German, Scottish, Italian, American, and Mexican. I tried out a different restaurant each evening and all were excellent.

Although I did a couple of small excursions, I discovered I was most comfortable and happiest when I stayed at the inn, read my book, and spent a leisurely afternoon by the pool. The personal, easy atmosphere allows one to really relax and enjoy the peace and serenity. The other guests and I would step out of our rooms each morning, take one look at the beautiful view and lush surroundings, and say, “ahhhh…another day in paradise.” I will definitely return.

Stayed April 2006
3 Thank Colo-Bound
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed 2 May 2006

Elsa, Pedro and Rosa were amazing...The view from the Honeymoon Suite was increadable, but more than anything the way we were taken care of and given advice was the best. Can anyone ever get used to such pampering....I would like to try. Definately try the pool side message...what else can I say. The place is fantastic!!

  • Stayed April 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed 26 April 2006

My wife, daughter, and I stayed at Villa Bella for 4 nights over the Easter break. We had an absolutely wonderful and relaxing stay! We could not have asked for anything better. From our greeting at the airport, where Marcella was waiting for us with a smile to a narrated tour of La Cruz before arriving at Villa Bella, it was fantstic. We were greeted by Elsa who showed us our room (the guest house Master Suite) and told us aboout a great place for authentic tacos in the village. In spite of her son being sick, she was very helpful and accessible for any questions or concerns.

We had considered staying at one of the mega-resorts before booking VIlla Bella, but did not want to get involved in the tourist area crunch. We are so thankful we found Villa Bella to realize the real charm of mexico and experience true mexican hospitality. Elsa was key in making sure her guests are exposed to this part of Mexico that most "tourists" do not get to see. If you are looking for this type of vacation, we highly recommend Villa Bella. Additonally, the guests that shared the B&B with us (2 other couples) were very friendly and interesting. The morning breakfast is a perfect time to visit along while enjoying the excellent breakfast meals. We want to also mention the staff was very friendly and attentive to our needs. Even the night security guard made us coffee one evening! Try that in a mega-hotel.

We could go on and on and on... you will just have to experience it for yourself. Even the roosters crowing added the true charm of the mexican culture. After looking at the gorgeous view, you quickly factor that as part of the natural beauty of the area.

Elsa, thank you so much for a truly relaxing vacation. My wife and daughter fought back the tears when we were leaving.. we will be back!

B. Holt
North Carolina

  • Stayed April 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
4 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Diego
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 April 2006

We recently stayed at Villa Bella and are so glad that we did. The very personal service of Elsa and staff and welcoming ambience are its strong points. A lovely breakfast every morning, served poolside, cooked to order with lots of fresh fruit-quite a way to start the day! The open air "living room" is perfect for afternoon cocktails, after dinner conversations, etc. The beautiful and refreshing pool with a view of bay below was just perfect. The furnishings and decorations showed a lot of thought and good taste.

Our room, the Honeymooner's Suite, was exotic and romantic although the open air palapa structure did make it a little noisy (mainly roosters). Linens were top notch and the housekeeping was thorough. The grounds are well maintained and just so pleasant that after the first day, we had to drag ourselves away to do a little sightseeing and beach going! A very pleasant experience and we definitely plan to go back. Note: by prior arrangement, they will pick you up at the airport and drive through the town so you get the layout. A very nice perk!

This is the perfect place to stay if you really want to relax and get a feel for a relatively undeveloped Mexico. The town below is quite rustic but has a good choice of restaurants. The residents were very friendly and we often received greetings, especially after the first day.

Thank MsSeeker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Villa Bella Bed and Breakfast Inn

Property: Villa Bella Bed and Breakfast Inn
Address: Calle Monte Calvario #12 | Col. Monte Calvario Hills, La Cruz de Huanacaxtle 63732, Mexico
Region: Mexico > Pacific Coast > Nayarit > Riviera Nayarit > La Cruz de Huanacaxtle
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 7 B&Bs / Inns in La Cruz de Huanacaxtle
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3 star — Villa Bella Bed and Breakfast Inn 3*
Number of rooms: 7
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A nice and intimate property perched on the top of the hill in La Cruz de Huanacaxtle, with breathtaking views of Bandera’s Bay and the new Marina Riviera Nayarit. Peaceful, intimate with a great sense of service and attention to details by owner since 1999. Warm hospitality, delicious breakfasts and beautiful, clean and well appointed suites. Ideal for couples and romantics and rest and relaxation holidays! ... more   less 
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