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“Dissapointed”

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Canto Del Sol Plaza Vallarta
Ranked #31 of 123 Hotels in Puerto Vallarta
Certificate of Excellence
A TripAdvisor Member
“Dissapointed”
Reviewed 8 May 2006

My 12 yr old daughter and I returned 2 days ago after 1 week stay at Canto del sol. While I made sure to read the reviews on this site before we left I thought most of them sounded positive. We left on the 29th of april and I just read the latest reviews before posting my own. I would have to agree "the food is terrible". I have been to many all inclusives before and this is the worst food hands down. Thes last 5 or 6 reveiws seem to depict the true color of this establishment.
It was overcrowded in, and by the pool every day, as someone had stated there are many people there for the day and line ups for food . I did not feel welcomed. A couple of the staff were very freindly, Daniel and Jorge seemed to be on the ball and working for the guests. We barely ordered from the waiters coming around offering us beverages because it only happened half a dozen times in one week. we were also waiting on drinks that never came as he forgot us. (so much for tipping to ensure proper service)Waiting in line at thecounter for a drink was another experience , you can't be shy or you will be ignored they will ask the person beside you or behind you practically.
There was also a Mexico Lions convention the last few days we were there they were treated like we all should have been. Boy I wish I had been a Lion.......they had taken away the tables and umbrellas by the beach on two nights and put up dining tables and chairs for there parties and the rest of the guests had nowhere to sit and eat if you were at the snack bar, which by the way is probably the only place my daughter ate(other than fruit loops or pancakes for breakfast)
I guess because it was so busy food trays were empty and waiting to be replenished at most meals. I was told one morning at breakfast that we couldn't sit by the pool in the retaurant because they were tables for 4 and we were only 2, this I could understand if it was full but it was 8am and there were only 15 other guests dining. Also when we arrived I purchased a cab ride to ensure a first arrival for a good room. The room was okay (we arrived at 8am) After looking around the hotel I saw a room we prefered with more of a view of thebeach and stage so we could be at our room in the evening forgoing the parties. I asked for this room with cold response , I talked to others who were unhappy with room and nothing was done. I guess I should have been more firm and direct, basically it was a waste of 20 dollars for a cab ride which by the way is tooo much. The cab from the hotel is only 5 to airport. There is a taxi union and they are not allowed to ask for more so look into this if you plan on taking cabs.
We did take a snorkelling tour to los arcos and enjoyed that .S hopping in town is fun even the bus rides are great they come every 2 minutes. We also got pedicures and manicures at London salon right around the Hotel and only paid $40 for both of us , plus tip of course.
I like PV and while I would return, I would not stay at Canto del sol or refer it to anyone.
They were not welcoming at anytime, did not inform us of any of the activities for my 12 yr old or myself , food bad, hard beds(really hard) Service (other than maid and a few waiters)poor. Adios

Stayed May 2006
Helpful?
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed 7 May 2006

I just got back yesterday from 7 nights at Canto Del Sol. I will start with the positive. Upon arrival, we got to check in early which was great since we got there fairly earlly. We weren't too pleased with our room becuase it had only a window and no balcony, so we checked at the front desk and were given keys to some available rooms, so we took a look at them and picked our favorite. I thought this was very generous as they were busy. We got a decent, clean room with a nice view of the pool and ocean. Just a FYI though, rooms do not come with coffee makers or hair dryers. So the room was fine, food...the 2 special restuarants by reservation were good, the pool snack bar was good for lunch, but beware there is a gap from 11:30 until 12:00 were there is no food availble anywhere. Not a huge deal, just seemed to be when I always got hungry!! The buffet leaves a lot to be desired. Breakfast was good with lots of variety, but dinner was not so good. Each night is a theme night, but they were equally bad. I ate lots of fruit and steamed veggies for the week! The resort was FULL of families...many, many children and tons of locals. Spanish is definitely the prevailing language. Yes, we were in Mexico, but in visits to other areas of Mexico have never encountered the large population of locals. Also, the small, rocky beach is not too great if you like to walk the beach. You can go down further, but there still are rocks, large and small everywhere. The beach directly in front of the resort is crawling with beach vendors. Be prepared to be approached every minute or two. Seriously...this is not an exaggeration. Their prices, however can be dickered and you may get almost as good a deal as you would get in town. A tip....they will lower prices a lot later in the day...by 5 or 6 they are ready to make a deal. Another beware....don't do the timeshare presentation. To make a long story short, they make big promises and don't deliver. I never did get my $25 gift certificate they promised. Seems they can find a loophole to get around giving the gifts they promised. Even after approaching the top 2 senior mgmt. in the resort, they still would not make good. Despite all the negatives, we had a good time. Downtown the Malecon shopping is fun, and eat at Pipi's mexican restaurant, it was fantastic food and full of ambiance. I will not visit Puerto Vallarta again, but it was still a nice vacation.

  • Stayed May 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
8 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed 7 May 2006

My friend and I just got back from a week's stay at the Canto Del Sol and loved it! We booked through Expedia and got a free room upgrade to a spacious suite which was very nice. The room was clean and the air conditioning was great. We had a balcony which was nice but unfortunately we weren't in the room enough to use it (we like to explore).

All the staff were very friendly. The evening dancing shows on Thursday and Friday were definately our favorites, they were amazing! As it was my first time at an all-inclusive I did not know what to expect but the food was good, my favorite was the french toast and eggs for breakfast. The food was similar every day but as I loved the chicken and fish I did not mind eating it every day! The desserts and salad bars were good as well. Some reviewers mentioned the food was bland, but as I do not like spicy food I was quite alright with it and did not find it boring at all.

The water was 100% purified and we were supplied with a bottle of water each day which we used to take on our excursions. However the only problem we had was a couple of times the maid forgot to leave them for us, but the staff at the front desk were helpful and gave us the water when we requested it. It was also nice having a fridge in our room as it kept the water cold!

We ate our two a la carte meals at the Italian restaurant and the service was incredible. I could never finish everything as I was just too full by the end of the meal! There was never a line up to request the a la carte reservations, we were able to pick from a variety of meal times and days. The bartenders on the beach were great, they always made sure my friend and I had drinks or water. There were always lounge chairs available and the towel service was great. The location of the hotel was perfect, right on a beautiful stretch of beach and right beside a shopping complex. It was only a 40 pesos cab ride to downtown ($4US), or a half hour walk (along the beach). The busboys were always terrific about getting us a cab which were always present at the hotel.

There were a variety of people present, definately children friendly, all the kids looked like they were having a wonderful time! My friend and I are in our early twenties and found the pool and everything to be clean and never too crowded. The hotel grounds were kept clean and we were never harassed by any time share people. The only thing we noticed was the amount of people trying to sell their goods. There were always a few walking around, but upon our travels we discovered they frequent the majority of the beaches along the hotel zone, and a simple no or head shake was deterrent enough for them to leave us alone.

We took plenty of tours, and booked through our Expedia agent who met us at the hotel. The topical excursions and canopy ziplines were great. We went on the Pirates of the Bay ship to go snorkelling and also swam with dolphins at the Sea Life Park, it was quite an experience! I noticed there were many tour desks in the hotel and along the main streets, and therefore if you are looking for a bargain you could probably shop around as well.

Overall we had a fantastic time, everyone was super friendly and helpful. The negative points were few: one of our lamp lightbulbs burnt out towards the beginning of our stay and after submitting a maintenance request it still wasn't fixed by the end of our stay. As well, my family had tried to reach me at the front desk via faxes and phone calls and I never received any of them.

However I would definately return again, being my first time in Mexico I was pleasantly surprised by the cleanliness of the resort. Puerto Vallarta was quite an interesting place, and I found the shops to have better quality merchandise and gifts than the marketplace. The marketplace was cheaper because of the lower quality, however there were some unique gifts my friend found there that weren't in any of the shops. Upon walking around and seeing the other hotels along the strip, I would definately say we lucked out with the Canto Del Sol. It was a beautiful place and quite a value for the money we paid. If you are unhappy with your room you can always request a new one the next day as some friends of ours did, the staff had no problems with it.

  • Stayed April 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
13 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Michigan, North Dakota
Level Contributor
8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 May 2006

We went to canto del sol for spring break. The hotel is in agreat location close to everything. The food though was horrible. There was not alot to choose from the quality was really bad. We did eat lunch at the snack bar it was very good, everything else was sub standard. We had a room right off the lobby, it was very noisy and it needed a lot a work (mold was growing along the ceiling in the bathroom, and the furniture was very old and stained. I tried to get a new room but they acted like I was a crazy lady. I will never return to the canto but I will go back to PV the town was great and my daughter and her friends had a great time at the clubs.

  • Stayed April 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank pkh1004
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
A TripAdvisor Member
Reviewed 5 May 2006

Our vacation club travels twice per year and decided to try something different this time. I am here to tell you that Canto Del Sol is NOT the answer to your vacation dreams.
In all fairness I must admit that the rooms were very clean. Jorge at the pool bar was awesome, and the bartenders at the pool bar were very nice. But for the most part the praise ends there.
We have been traveling all inclusive for many years and are perfectly familiar with the buffet scene and the fact that it can get old after a few days. It should also be a given that depending on where you go, you will have to adjust to the customs of the area foodwise. That said, the food here was TERRIBLE!!! I decided to have an omelet one morning and waited so long in line that my party was done eating when I got back to the table. I guess I wasn't the only one who could not stomach what the buffet had to offer. The a-la-carte restaurants were better but the options were very limited. The hostesses were all very rude and the waiters for the most part were not very accomodating. We were lucky to get a waiter who even attempted to understand what we were saying. Breakfast is served at 7am and when we sat down with plate in hand one morning at 7:15, we were told we could not sit there because the table was not ready. It was missing a fork!!! We had to take our plates, coffee, juice and all and move one table over rather than them just giving us a fork.
The pool is gourgeous but good luck trying to relax poolside. Apparently the hotel sells day passes for local folks and those in neighboring towns to enjoy the pool, food, and drink for the day. So now you have a full hotel and a pool full of locals on top of it. They converge all around the edges of the pool and plant themselves on the pool bar stools for the day. All entrances to the pool are blocked by the little ones who cannot swim alone yet. Dirty diapers are left both outside and along the inner edges of the pool. Food is thrown in the pool. By noon the pool is a cloud. Good luck keeping your chairs even if you get up early to reserve them. One little jaunt to the bar or to grab an inch of poolspace and you take the chance of loosing your chair. Don't worry about your stuff though, becuase they carefully place it in a pile before taking the chair away.
I really don't know about the night life at the hotel because by the time we finished dinner each night, the locals had gotten comfy in the lounge and good luck trying to get a drink much less a seat. And the bartenders have favorites so you could be next in line and still take backseat to anyone depending on who is tending bar.
The beach seemed nice initially until we took a walk and found beer caps lining the beach everywhere and huge piles of trash off to the side of our hotel. This did not get touched once during the time we were there. Not appealing to say the least.
All in all it was a very disappointing visit to Puerto Vallarta. Don't waste your money on this resort.

  • Stayed April 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
billyar
Level Contributor
41 reviews
39 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 260 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 May 2006

I should admit that I am not fond of "All Inclusive Resorts" and that while I had some unfortunate friends that did stay here; my accomodations were, happily, elsewhere. So I only had to pay to visit this place during the day: as one can't enter without paying a fee and being leashed.

This hotel is a poster child for bad "All Inclusive" resorts everywhere. There are certainly good all inclusive resorts; this is certainly not one of them.

They aim low at every level from service, to rooms, to food. I have seen better buffets at the Midnight Mission--at least they replenish the trays. And no, this is not about a picky American. This slop is about as Mexican as Taco Bell. I enjoyed the posative review below where the reviewer explanied that this is the best one can get in a food challenged place like Mexico. The fact is the Canto del Sol is food challenged; not Puerto Vallarta.

Combined with the terrible location, ersatz Mexican Village decor, small, tacky rooms, cheap booze, terrible service, and prison-camp security; this is a truly awful place. I can only assume that many of the guests were, mercifully, too drunk to notice.

  • Stayed March 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank billyar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sunnyvale, CA
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 May 2006

I would not go back to Puerto Vallarta unless I stayed at a much nicer resort. Canto Del Sol was clean and the people were very friendly but their were way too many children in the pool and in the pool area. There was no adult pool and there were activities constantly in the pool, water aerobics, poker by the pool, volleyball and hockey goals in the end of the pool, it was loud most of the day. If you are looking for a relaxing resort environment around a cool pool with a swim up bar this is not the place. There were even children taking up the bar stools at the swim up pool. The bartenders were great and the drinks were great but fighting your way through the kids to get to the bar was a pain.
If you have a family and want the kids close by you'll probably like this resort, the location of the hotel is also convenient to everything and their is good shopping close by, but be warned though that the shopping by the hotel is more exoensive than the 10 minute cab ride into town.
Be wary of the timeshare people, my sister and I stood our ground to got really good discounts on a boat trip for $30 a person and the El Eden canopy for $40 per person, the presentation was over 90 minutes though. The boat ride was terrbile, the crew was very nice but the snorkeling was horrible, we saw maybe 12 fish total and I got stung by something in the water and have 4 inches of marks on my legs that have not faded in 2 weeks. Avoid the boat trip Vagabundo if you want good snorkeling, their prized Caletas snorkeling area is a joke. We did hear that others had good snorkling experience at Los Archos. I would recommend the El Eden Canopy zipline through the jungle, it was a lot of fun, there is a lot of walking up and down hills so be prepared for a workout.
Additionally, don't forgot to take lots of one dollar bills, everyone expects you to tip everywhere you go. Oh and be perpared for cab drivers when you arrive at the airport, they will swamp you charging 17 or 18 dollars for ride to the hotel zone, you can avoid all of that by exiting the airport and taking the walkway across the street where you can grab a cab for 10 dollars.

  • Stayed April 2006
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank wwwredhead
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Canto Del Sol Plaza Vallarta

Property: Canto Del Sol Plaza Vallarta
Address: Jose Clemente Orozco 125 | Int. 10 Zona Hotelera Norte, Puerto Vallarta 48333, Mexico
Region: Mexico > Jalisco > Puerto Vallarta
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#13 Top resorts Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#13 Business Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#19 Family Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#24 On the Beach Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
#31 Romantic Hotel in Puerto Vallarta
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3 star — Canto Del Sol Plaza Vallarta 3*
Number of rooms: 398
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Conveniently located in the center of Puerto Vallarta’s hotel zone, right on Banderas Bay, breathtaking sunsets draw visitors and locals alike to the evening display. Canto del Sol’s colonial-style resort offers guests outstanding value, with an extensive All-Inclusive Program that features: a championship Tennis Club with four outdoor clay courts and four covered Laykol courts; windsurfing; water polo; tequila volleyball; and dance lessons. Guests can choose a vacation as active or as relaxed as they like.The sparkling turquoise water of Mexico’s Pacific Riviera caresses the beachfront of CANTO DEL SOL PLAZA VALLARTA. This perfect vacation resort offers an atmosphere of Fun, Tradition and Tranquility, where guests have everything for their wonderful Puerto Vallarta holiday. Escape from the ordinary, and discover this magnificent oceanfront resort. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Canto Del Sol Plaza Vallarta Hotel Puerto Vallarta
Canto Del Sol Puerto Vallarta
Canto Del Sol Vallarta

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