My husband and I just returned from 5 days at Vallarta Palace. We'd stayed previously at both Aventura Spa Palace (loved it) and the Sun Palace (eh, not so great), but wow! This place really exceeded all my expectations. Our room was amazing - we had one of the few rooms with a full balcony (plenty of room for two chairs and a small table) and we were on the top floor (Room 8023). Props to our travel agent, Alma Garcia with Gogo Travels, for requesting this great room for us!
The hotel is beautifully decorated, very simple and modern and luxurious. Our room was on the small side, but it was cozy and perfect for us. The bed was heavenly and we used our jacuzzi tub every night. The shower was huge and the water pressure was really strong. The water would shift slightly from lukewarm to hot from time to time, but it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. (I had read the reviews of the shower problems before I went)
The pools were large and even though the front desk clerk told us the hotel was fully booked, it never got really crowded at the pools or any of the restaurants. There was always plenty of lounge chairs by the pools and the beach palapas were never crowded either.
Service was WONDERFUL!! Everyone was SO nice! I often heard, "It's my pleasure" from the waiters and hostesses... I can't rave enough about how wonderfully we were treated. I saw the chef at Mar Intimo run over to the snack bar to get a cheeseburger for a guest who requested one (even though they weren't serving cheeseburgers at Mar Intimo at the time) and they pulled a hot chocolate out of who knows where for my husband when he requested one after dinner one night.
In my opinion, the only place they could use improvement is in the quality of the food. I didn't have high expectations though since we had stayed at Palace resorts before and didn't think much of the food then either. All the restaurants seemed to serve similar stuff at breakfast and lunch, dinner is where they differed.
Mo Mo No Hana (the Japanese restaurant) seemed to be the most popular as there was always a wait to get a table. I thought the sushi appetizers were awful... everything had cheese in it! (cheese in sushi???) And the hot appetizers were no better - fried cheese on a stick (fried cheese in an Asian restaurant? Only in mexico I suppose), spring rolls, and chicken yakitori... all were not that good. Dinner entrees were a lot better though!
The other three restaurants were ok... again, nothing spectacular. My favorite was Mar Intimo (Italian) for the amazing view of the sunsets.
We went on the Rancho Pancho horseback riding tour that was included with our vacation package. Rancho Pancho itself is not much to look at, but we had a great time on the ride! Pancho took us through a small Mexican town and along some back roads. Pancho was great! We really enjoyed meeting him! We also got to meet Tatiana, the "world's smartest donkey" according to Pancho... she can shake your hand and give kissey faces. Really cute!
We also signed up with two tours with Vallarta Adventures. The Outdoor Challange was AMAZING!!! I HIGHLY recommend this tour!! It involves a jeep ride through Puerto Vallarta and up the Sierra Madres, then you transfer to mule-back, then hike up to a series of zip-lines, and then rappel (sp?) down a rock face and a waterfall. The tour guides were wonderful and the whole thing is just run so professionally and they made the entire experience so much fun. Definitely do this tour if you have the time!!
The second tour we signed up for was Las Caletas. Totally not worth the money, in my opinion. Although it was beautiful, it was just too crowded and I felt rushed through all the activities. They keep you on a tight schedule and really push things along. The snorkeling was not worth the trip out there. We did see some huge mantas though and a pod of dolphins on the catamaran trip back to Puerto Vallarta.
Overall though, a GREAT trip!!! I highly recommend this resort!
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Hard Rock Hotel Vallarta is a gorgeous, 348-room beachfront property ideally situated between mountains and the Pacific Ocean, featuring unmatched, all-inclusive luxury accommodations including in-room double hydro spa tubs, fine dining, top-shelf drinks, 24-hour room service, live entertainment and more. One of only three AAA Four-Diamond hotels in the area, this stylish property boasts six restaurants offering tantalizing specialty cuisines, four bars and lounges with top shelf drinks, two large outdoor swimming pools, children's pool, beach volleyball court, Body Rock Fitness Center, unmatched music memorabilia, signature Rock Spa(R), a Rock Shop and much more. The property additionally features 6,300 square feet of meeting facilities. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Vallarta Palace Hotel Nuevo Vallarta
- Vallarta Palace Nuevo