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“Objective thought”
Review of San Marino Hotel

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San Marino Hotel
Ranked #96 of 123 Hotels in Puerto Vallarta
Miami, Florida
Level Contributor
26 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
“Objective thought”
Reviewed 28 May 2014

To start with the Hotel resemblance with what it is posted on the internet is weak. Reception area very small and the people attending were not precisely courteous. The Paypal somehow did not sent to the Hotel the right information. I asked for an Ocean View room and no to all inclusive meals and drinks. I paid 125.00 USD/day for a room that the air conditioning was not cooling right. Both pools where crowded all the time. Restaurants with no air conditioning at all, felt like a sauna there. Do not get me wrong, there is almost no place in Puerto Vallarta that has A/C for your enjoyment (except the OXXO stores). I left after two nights stay, I pay for 5, of course I left after 1500 so the count of nights will be 3. I doubt they will return any money, will see, I will keep you posted on that. They will not give any receipt to you about the days you spent there. I asked for that receipt and after 20 minutes waiting they return to me saying that they never give any receipt when people leave the hotel. do not rent a car to stay there they have no parking...

Room Tip: Next door Emperador, or blue chairs are better choices. Food is very cheap on the outside if you loo...
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank Hendrish P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HSMmanager, Ecommerce at San Marino Hotel, responded to this review, 30 May 2014
Mr. Hendrish, is a pleasure to San Marino to receive you at Puerto Vallarta. We are very sorry that you didn´t enjoy your stay with us. Make sure that we will consider your comments to give a better service to our clients. When you come again to San Marino you will have a better experience :)
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739 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (125)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
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  • Portuguese first
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  • Any
English first
Calgary, Canada
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 April 2014

I stayed at the San Marino for one week on April 5th-April 12th. This was my 3rd visit to this Hotel and once again, it was very enjoyable. The resort is considered to be a 2 1/2 star so this is what you have to consider. The food was fine and the drinks were plentiful. The location is the best thing about this resort, right in " Old Town" and on the beach. I have posted previous reviews in much more detail, but I feel it necessary to condemn the previous review " Run for your life - this hotel defines poverty" It is shocking when someone posts such degrading comments of other people based on "Their Own" standards. It is disturbing to hear someone call the little children of paying guests " Poverty Kids". Yes.. the Locals might have been in the resort restaurant eating and staying in the rooms, but they paid for that privilege the same as everyone else. If you don't want to spend your vacation in a foreign country with the "Local" people, then Stay At Home!!!

Just my Opinion.

  • Stayed April 2014, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
12 Thank Beachcrazy65
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HSMmanager, Ecommerce at San Marino Hotel, responded to this review, 30 May 2014
Thank you very mucho for your comment! It's a pleasure for us to have clients like you, as you said, the last comment was kind of rude. We'll be very happy to receive you again at Puerto Vallarta. :)
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Toronto, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 April 2014

Although the room was acceptably clean (thank you cleaning staff) the food was terrible. Figured we settle for breakfast only and when I lifted some bread with tongues it streamed a long black hair! Yuck. The other meals were equally as gross.
I met a really sweet local and we hung out all week - and was terribly embarrassed when they refused my friend access to the hotel with out charging me $40.00 USD to let them come to my room! Both security and the desk were quite rude to my guest - going so far as to suggest they were a prostitute (ironically they were a lawyer! lol)
Drinks were watered down, food horrible - and you pay for 'all inclusive'.
Never returning, nor should you.

  • Stayed March 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank T S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HSMmanager, Ecommerce at San Marino Hotel, responded to this review, 30 May 2014
Thank you very much for your comments, make sure that we will consider them to give a better service to our clients. Unfortunately we do not allow people to get into the hotel, unless they pay at the front desk, this is for the security of our clients.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Winnipeg, Canada
Level Contributor
20 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 9 April 2014

The San Marino Hotel is over rated at 2.5 or 3 stars and should be rated at a 2 at best! Other than the friendly staff at the hotel and it's location, there is very little positive I can say.

Positive:
It is located at the beginning of the Malecoen Boardwalk as well as next to a pier that is a tourist attraction in old Puerto Vallarta.
Breakfast was the best meal of the day as it had a decent spread of foods including a lady who made ommlettes to your liking.
The staff was very friendly and courteous.

Negatives:
Breakfast did not begin until 8 am so it does not accomodate early risers or if you have an excursion booked early in the day.
Supper was a 6:30pm which will not accomodate young families for dinner very well.
One restaurant on the premises which was adequate for variety of foods but was somewhat repetitive. The salad bar was pretty weak with it's selection.
The bar was open from 11am- 10pm which is very limiting and makes for more of a family resort which in my opinion wouldnt qualify as that.
Alcohol selection was very limited to Vodka, Rye, Rum, Tequilla all of a bottom end, rubbing alcohol quality. Beer was Mexican and not very good either.
THe bar lacked mix options as they did not have cranberry juice, Clamato, or other possible coctail additives. The caesar I ordered was made with sour tasting tomato juice which was just not good by any means.
There were no bar fridges in the regular rooms so you could not keep cold drinks in your room. You could upgrade your room to ocean view at a significant price which gives you a much larger room with a balcony overlooking the water as well as a bar fridge.
The bathrooms are in need of upgrading as the shower doors are painted fibreglass.
The beds are extremely firm.
Music was not being played all week poolside until Friday when the locals showed up and the music was turned on and activities began.
The location is apparently in "the romantic zone" of Puerto Vallarta but it should be described more as on the edge of the "gay district" as there is a strong presence in the area.
The pictures on the website are of the building and pool area as well as views but are decieving.
Location is next to a public pathway which made for the beach to be very busy with a lot of locals.

I would not recommend this hotel to patrons who are going on a vacation to drink and party as this hotel does not seem to accomodate this with the 10pm bar closing and no fridges in the standard room. If anything, I would rank it more of a bed and breakfast as you would be out and about for the whole day on excursions, etc. The only way I would return to this hotel is if I landed an amazing deal where the hotel stay was next to nothing for my daughters and I as a family trip. I have stayed at 3 star hotels a large number of times in other cities and this one by far has fallen short of this ranking!!

Room Tip: Although choosing the upgrade improves your view, gives you a much bigger room and gives you access...
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  • Stayed March 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank bmatyja
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HSMmanager, Ecommerce at San Marino Hotel, responded to this review, 30 May 2014
Thank you very much for your positive and negative comments, we will consider them to give to our clients a better service. Make sure that when you return to San Marino you will have a better experience.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
New Westminster, Canada
1 review
Reviewed 2 April 2014

A/I but only if you can do the 13 stairs to the buffet. My husband uses a walker and was unable to use the stairs to get to the buffet. Management was completely hopeless, Manager was "too busy" to address our complaint about getting a reimbursement, for not being able to use what we paid for. I have already contacted Sunwing's head office, the PV office was useless. During the weekdays, 9am-9pm there was a crew of men hammering on the cement deck near the pool to remove adhesive from old astro-turf - total headache !! Magically they did not do this when the locals arrive from Friday until Sunday-- the whole place caters to the Mexican families, so sad for the rest of us :(

Room Tip: Stayed over the entrance, low street noise at night, far away from pool noise that went on all weeke...
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  • Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Nancy R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HSMmanager, Ecommerce at San Marino Hotel, responded to this review, 30 May 2014
Thank you very much for comments, we will consider them to give to our clients a better service. Make sure that when you return to San Marino you will have a better experience.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Winnipeg, Canada
Level Contributor
20 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 April 2014

The San Marino is a great hotel for families as evidenced by the number of locals/Nationals that frequent this hotel. It is in a fabulous location, right in downtown PV. The food was ok - breakfast was the best meal of the day, but lunch and dinner were fairly repetitive and bland. The bar was only open until 10, and the pool until 9 which meant quiet nights for little ones, but no post-bedtime drinks for mommy and daddy! We were in a regular room streetside, but with a partial view of the ocean. Request rooms in the 208+ range if on the second floor to avoid the sound of the AC and kitchen smells. Staff were friendly and accommodating. If you are bothered by a supplied crib that is a bit rickety, bring your own playpen. Two restaurant locations that alternated serving - breakfast and dinner have the option of eating on the patio with gorgeous views of the ocean.

Room Tip: Rooms on the south side are street facing - go higher than second floor, or rooms 207-210 to avoid A...
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  • Stayed March 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Heather B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
HSMmanager, Ecommerce at San Marino Hotel, responded to this review, 30 May 2014
Thank you Heather for your great comments, we will take your suggests as an opportunity to give a better service to our clients. We'll wait you back again to San Marino :)
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Toronto, ON
Level Contributor
88 reviews
47 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 67 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 March 2014

Our goal for this trip was to find the best possible All-Inclusive beachfront hotel that wasn't in Cuba. We had a set budget of $1000 per person. We settled on the San Marino based on feedback from friends who had stayed here combined with our own research. We booked through Air Canada Vacations and then called the hotel to upgrade to a Junior Suite based on feedback on TripAdvisor, which was an additional $30/night (payabale at checkin) over and above the flight & hotel package. This upgrade pushed us just over our budget goal but turned out to be a great move - the Junior Suites have a full oceanview balcony and are much bigger and fully upgraded with flatscreen and nice furniture.

It's important to remember that you can't compare this to the Four Seasons or Ritz-Carleton. It's a 3-star resort that was built in the 1960's. We weren't expecting 5-star facilities or treatment, but we found the San Marino to be very clean, very comfortable, and overall a very satisfactory destination. Ownership is doing a nice job of keeping the facilities well maintained and upgraded - you can see they are putting $ back into the place. Yes the elevators are small and not the fastest in North America, but they work just fine and we had no problems getting up to the 7th floor. There are three pools, two for families in the center courtyard, and a third "adults only" pool in the front facing the beach. All are clean and well-kept. Plenty of loungers and you don't have to worry about putting your towel down early to reserve one. There is a full Spa on property for massage, etc and also a Travel Agency that can book tours or excursions for you.

In terms of food & beverage, we ate and drank well all week. They have a new chef as of Jan 01, so disregard some of the negative reviews on the food prior to that date. It is all buffet all the time, but we enjoyed the food selections and have only positive things to report. The breakfasts included an omelette station along with scrambled eggs, bacon, various meats and fresh fruits, yogurt, cereal, pastries & juice. Lunchs always had fresh fish, vegetables, different pastas, etc. Dinners again had fresh fish and two or three other meat selections, different vegtables, etc. For lunch and dinner there are always two or three dessert selections. Great coffee. There are two restaurants, breakfast & dinner are in the lower location that includes about half it's tables outside on the veranda by the beach. Lunch is in the upper location facing the adult pool. There are three bars, one in each restaurant and a third one up in the inner courtyard. Bars open at 11am and close at 10pm. Diego, Alex & Oscar gave us great service all week. Again it's not the Ritz and it's buffet only, but that is what you should expect for this price and we both thought the food was great - we never went hungry and we never saw things "recycled".

Location is one of the major "pluses" of the San Marino. You are right on the beach - you walk off the pool deck right onto the sand, you don't have a road to cross. You are right at the start of the Malecon and can take nice interesting walks all the way up to Government Square. Because you are in the heart of "Old Town", there are literally hundreds of good restaurants and bars and shopping on the cobbled streets around you. The Coffee Cup just down the block is open early if you need your java fix before the breakfast buffet opens at 8:30am. We had two great dinners at The Swedes just around the corner when we felt the need to go "off property". Tons of interesting retail all around you. We loved the fact that we were right in the center of town and also right on the beach at the same time.

We really enjoyed our week at the San Marino and will definitely come back again. We felt we got great value for the price and we loved the way we were treated and the fact that we were in a very safe environment without the need for barbed wire fences or armed guards.

  • Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank americanjim
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about San Marino Hotel

Property: San Marino Hotel
Address: Rodolfo Gomez 111 | Col. Emiliano Zapata, Puerto Vallarta 48380, Mexico
Region: Mexico > Jalisco > Puerto Vallarta
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#32 Spa Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#52 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:3 star — San Marino Hotel 3*
Number of rooms: 165
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located in Puerto Vallarta, one of the most beautiful and romantic cities on the Pacific Coast of Mexico. The hotel is nestled on the beautiful beach of Playa los Muertos, with a wonderful atmosphere and tradition surrounded by hand craft shops, discotheques, and just a short walk from town. San Marino Hotel features 165 light and airy guestrooms including 25 spacious Junior Suites with all the amenities you need to relax and enjoy in a peaceful ambience.Come to San Marino Hotel where you will be greeted by our friendly staff and enjoy sunshine days and a vacation experience to treasure forever! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
San Marino Puerto Vallarta

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