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All reviewspersonal conciergeazul restaurantjose ramosparlor suitefrench restaurantneck massageroom servicefour seasonsall inclusive resortkids clubriviera nayaritour honeymooninfinity poolpool servicemoment you arrivepool sidedinner reservations
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Reviewed 14 March 2014

This was our sixth time to visit the Grand Velas resorts. Five times at Nayarit and one time at Maya. This is a family owned company by two brothers names Vela.

Rodolfo Gonzalez is the General Manager of the Nayarit resort. You can see his fingerprints on every level of operation and service. I have stayed with Ritz Carlton and Four Seasons and this resort is another level above them. If you never want to worry about a thing during your stay, then this will be your new home for vacation travel. My only worry is that the Four Seasons at Pointa Meta will come and steal him away!
When you arrive at the airport, you can book your cab through the hotel for $15/person. If so, as you leave customs turn to your right and you will see "VIP Services" which is the second store front before you go outside. There was suppose to be someone with a sign saying Grand Velas but there wasn't. They will provide your transportation to the resort. The other option, which is cheaper, is to go outside, turn left and look for the bridge that goes over the road. Drag all of your luggage to the other side and there are cabs that will take you to the resort. If you have four in your party then it make some sense. If you get a cab at the airport it is much more expensive.
Once you arrive you will want Alejandro Topete to handle your luggage. He has been the "employee of the year" for two years in a row. He will not forget your name during your stay and if you need anything in or out of the resort he will know who to contact. He even called us during our stay to be sure there wasn't something we needed to make our stay better. This is the bell man so you can imagine what our butler Arturo Aguirre did for us. He tracked us down by the pool every day to be sure we didn't need something. He changed reservations for us, had ice delivered twice a day and even found diet cokes at a Pepsi only resort! Gone are the glory days where you would receive a full bottle of any liquor in your room but you can have room service bring you shots of anything you desire every day. I think because to many people were carting home bottles to replenish their liquor cabinets. Also, you will not find the most popular beer in Mexico which is Corona but if you asked Rodolfo I bet he would find it for you. That's the kind of service he offers. "If we don't have it, we should have had it for you".
The rooms are very spacious and the cleaning staff does a great job of keeping everything in order. We always lock everything up in our safe just like we do at any other place. If you have anything of an expensive nature (sunglasses, jewelry, money) then just be smart and lock it up. The only negative comment is that the closet light is motion activated and doesn't stay on for very long, so take a flashlight with you or be prepared to wave your arms a lot to keep the light on.
My daughter and her friend ordered room service every morning. The last night we ordered dinner through room service. We had the same person most of the time. As he was leaving the last night he turned to me and thanked me for allowing him to "pamper" us. I was floored. It should have been me thanking him but that's the kind of service you will receive.
Every day the spa personal came by our pool chairs to give five minute head and neck massages for free! You also get this at check-in while you wait for your keys. These are the services of Silvia Velasco's staff, who is the Spa Manager, and is provided to every visitor. You will want to get to know her. I'm not a spa kind of person but I love their Hydro Therapy. (It use to be free but now you have to pay for it if you only want that treatment. You do get it with any massage or other treatment that you pay for). My daughter and her friend had massages and nail treatments and loved it.
We worked out every day in the gym. Great equipment, well maintained and clean. Try the freshly squeezed orange juice. Wonderful!
This resort is not a partying spot. By midnight most people are in bed and the place takes on a quiet, tranquil oasis feel. If you're looking for a disco and partying until 3 in the morning then plan to head into Vallarta and Señor Frogs.
At the pool, you need to find Jose Ramos and Marcos. There are several Jose's, so ask for Ramos, and you will never worry again about your chair, your umbrella, your table, your drink order, your food order or your towel. In fact, you won't have to worry about anything again around the pool during your stay. Of course, this is an all inclusive but I tip for above average service but I watched others who did not tip and they got the same level of service as I got. (Ask him to bring your food from Azul's restaurant. The grill food is usually cold and just doesn't have the same great taste the Chef at Azul's can produce. No extra charge but you have to ask). When Kelly comes by to clean your sun glasses or reading glasses please say YES. What a five diamond thought by Rodolfo to add this for free. You don't get that at Four Seasons or Rita Carlton!
The three themed restaurants are outstanding. We liked Piaf (French) and Luca (Italian) the best but Frida (Mexican) is equally as good. The food and service is outstanding. You will need to purchase wine because the all inclusive wine is average, at best.
The best kept secret is the fractional ownership. If you fall in love with this place, like we did, you will want to talk with Alda Cortes and Victor Mireles. It's not cheap but when you do the math it's a very thought out ownership program by Paul Rado, that merits consideration. If you are not into sales presentations then you will appreciate this program. If you don't like it they are ok with it and still give you the 20% off offers to all of the excursions and spa. Well worth the 30 minutes while you need to get out of the sun without the feeling of having the "sales pressure" to buy.
Be sure to book the Vallarta Adventure through Rosa at the concierge desk. If you have kids or if you're a kid at heart then book the Extreme Adventure. You get to ride the dolphins and add the sea loins once you get there for an extra $29/ person. Our daughter and her friend loved both but the sea loins are the best. Be prepared to pay $165 for all of the pictures because they will not allow you to take pictures.
If you decided to buy souvenirs at the beach shops by the hot tubs never pay more than 50% of what they are offering.
So I mentioned that we had stayed at the Grand Velas Riviera Maya. It is in no way the same comparison. It may be a five diamond resort but only because the reviewers visited the Nayarit resort. The service is not the same. Don't waste your money.

Stayed: March 2014, travelled with family
1  Thank chick925
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DirectorGVRN, Director General at Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit, responded to this reviewResponded 2 April 2014

Thank you again Sr. Chick for your loyalty and for your insightful comments on Grand Velas. As you may know by now I have not been “stolen” by another well known chain, but I have been given the opportunity to serve as Director General of Grand Velas Riviera Maya in order to maintain and solidify the consistency of service and product at our sister resort. I accept this as a great opportunity not only for myself but for the Group as well. Since you have been a loyal guest we have got to know each other very well and I truly thank you for your splendid compliments on my staff in Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit. In my stead, you will find the very capable Ignacio Rivera who also has the comfort and satisfaction of the guest at the forefront of his operation. He comes as second in administration from Grand Velas Riviera Maya and knows the owner´s philosophy on client satisfaction very well. The Vela brothers are very interested in looking for ways to better their product and will always be the vanguard of resort hospitality within Mexico. Sr. Chick, thank you for giving me the opportunity to mention these pro active changes and you can always rely on the loyalty of the Velas Group of Resorts to maintain the level of satisfaction that all guests look for in a wonderful vacation. Take care sir, and let’s keep in contact.

Take care.

RODOLFO GONZALEZ
DIRECTOR GENERAL
GRAND VELAS RIVIERA MAYA
rgonzalezgvrm@velasresorts.com

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 March 2014

We stayed at Grand Velas near Cancun last winter....great service, great food, one if the best spas we've enjoyed in the world. We had high hopes for our trip this year to the sister hotel near puerto Vallarta. Often we are disappointed with the sequel, but not this time. Sure the hotel is a little smaller and offers one less restaurant (no fusion restaurant; we really enjoyed our dinner in Cancun) but the friendliness and service of the staff exceeds the high standard set in Cancun. We look forward to our spa visit later today so I can't comment at this time.
In summary, we are enjoying Four Season-like service but I don't have to shell out $12 every time the kids want a Shirley Temple. special thanks to Jose for taking care out of every need at the pool!

Room Tip: We prefer the first floor when traveling with kids who always need to go back to the room. Why spend 1/2 your trip in the elevator.
  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled with family
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2  Thank Robert O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DirectorGVRN, Director General at Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit, responded to this reviewResponded 2 April 2014

As a chain of hotels, The Velas Group, it really makes us proud that you chose to visit my resort while coming in with very high expectations. We try to exhibit the same consistency throughout our four resorts and I believe that with your experience we can happily say that we are achieving just that. I am especially pleased that our culinary tour ranks equal to that of our sister resort in Riviera Maya and that our service exceeds even more your high standards. I only wish that I could have responded publicly to your review while you were still vacationing with us but please know Robert that your review will be circulated to all the employees including Jose in order to further motivate them in achieving their goal. Thank you very much for your loyalty to our resorts and the pleasure will be ours when hosting you and your family in your future holidays. Warms wishes to Exeter, New Hampshire. Take care.

IGNACIO RIVERA
DIRECTOR GENERAL
HOTEL GRAND VELAS RIVIERA NAYARIT
iriverarn@velasresorts.com

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 March 2014

My husband and I absolutely love this place. We are in our late 40's. Everything was great, the service is 5 star, staff is excellent! A 20 minute taxi will take you to Puerto Vallarta boardwalk you can walk the boardwalk along the beach, visit the numerous shops and have a great lunch. This was about a 5 hour trip for us and would do it again. The snorkeling was not great, water was too rough but the staff on the tour were fabulous. David from Vallarta tours, very entertaining and so much fun. You can walk the beach for miles, on the hard sand its' a great walk. At the Grand Velas the swim up bar is huge as is the hot tub. And no one under the age of 18 is allowed in there. This is a 5 diamond resort, you will be treated that way. This is not an all inclusive party place. So much different, glasses, cloth napkins, food is so elegant, not like the herd that goes in for the buffet at other resorts. There just isn't the waste of food at this resort like you see at others. We don't use the fitness center, but there's a personal trainer, fresh orange juice and it too is unbelievable. We do not have any allergies but they always ask, which is nice. The whole staff is great, they work so hard, I wish I would have seen them being tipped a lot more. I know they don't work for much but the Grand Velas should be happy to have this great team. Efrain in the pool bar, Jose at the pool, Erick in the restaurant. I just can't name everyone or say enough good things. We really didn't feel worthy of this service. But, WOW, will come back again. There was classic entertainment until about 9 am, then it was so peaceful and relaxing. We wanted to be in our room as much as outside as it was so large and the beds were so comfy the bathroom was to die for. We work hard and this was a fabulous 5 star treat for us.

Room Tip: We did an ocean view suite. The balcony is amazing! You can order room service and have dinner on your private balcony in your room!
  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank Krislakewissota
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rodolfo G, Director General at Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit, responded to this reviewResponded 27 March 2014

Thank you very much for letting us demonstrate our 5 Diamond product and luxury to you and your husband. Apart from the cuisine, service and facilities you did mention an interesting detail which was about napkins and glasses. We have taken great steps to ensure that our cutlery and dinnerware are from the highest quality. Nothing was spared in even the smallest of details in helping to enhance your overall vacation experience. I am also glad that you got the opportunity to venture outside of the resort to explore Puerto Vallarta and the surrounding region. All your observations that you express certainly add up and combine to form a very satisfying vacation. Thank you for your kind words on our service staff. The persons that you recognized in your review will feel very proud when they receive a translated copy of your letter. And of course you should feel very worthy of the attention that you received because you worked hard to be here and you the client deserves nothing but the best that we have to offer. Thank you again for your motivating comments and we wish to exceed your now lofty expectations for when you return. Take care and all the best to you and your husband.
RODOLFO GONZALEZ
MANAGING DIRECTOR
HOTEL GRAND VELAS RIVIERA NAYARIT
rgonzalezrn@velasresorts.com

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 March 2014

This was our first trip to Mexico and the Grand Velas resort did not disappoint! The staff is very friendly, many calling us by name. The food is excellent and the resort is beautiful and meticulous. The only reason I didn't give 5 stars is because we felt that the evening entertainment options were a bit lacking.

Stayed: March 2014, travelled as a couple
1  Thank Alecia B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rodolfo G, Director General at Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit, responded to this reviewResponded 27 March 2014

Thank you for choosing Grand Velas for your first trip to Mexico. It is our honor to have been your hosts for that first experience and I am pleased that “we did not disappoint”. Please be assured that we have already taken into account the lack of entertainment mentioned by adding live music to the itinerary. I hope that we were able to leave a good enough impression on you to warrant a second trip to Mexico and especially to Grand Velas. Thank you again and kind regards to Cary, NC. Take care.
RODOLFO GONZALEZ
MANAGING DIRECTOR
HOTEL GRAND VELAS RIVIERA NAYARIT
rgonzalezrn@velasresorts.com

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 5 March 2014

My Husband and 10 year old son and I stayed at the Grand Velas from Feb 15 – 25th:

Check in: a breeze, quick and painless and very friendly.

Room: We had a Palor Suite, excellent, large, spacious, clean, cozy, separate bedroom, lots of drawers and closet space. Beds were spectacular, extremely comfy, great pillows, and nice cozy down duvet. Awesome. Even the pull out bed in the living room for my son was super comfy. Nice private deck with a wonderful view of the pool and ocean. (3rd floor is great, high enough up to have a super view).

Service: Impecable!! Waiter service around the pool was excellent, thank you Marcos and Alfonso! The service in Azul (where we ate breaky & lunch every day) was excellent, most sincere thank you to Chef Eliseo, as he made me the most delicious Gluten Free Pancakes & muffins and breads. And he personally made me my omelets a couple of times. Super wonderful guy! Very caring to people’s food allergies. Also the service in the Frida, Mexican restaurant, and Lucca, the Italian restaurant was awesome. The food quality in all the restaurants was superb!! The Menu for Lucca had symbols to identify which items were Gluten Free. The other restaurants really should do the same thing. Once they were all aware of my specific food issues, they all took great care in providing me with the best gluten free food.

Resort: Was gorgeous, very well laid out, large 3 part pool so lots of space for everyone. Great comfy cushioned lounge chairs. The beach was awesome, nice sand, no rocks, no seaweed and the ocean was great for boogie boarding! The resort is not large and even though was very busy (with a group of families from Edward Jones) it was not wild and crazy, it was nice and comfortable.

They had a few Picnic Parties in the afternoons and the entertainment was great! They had other activities throughout the day but they were most certainly not pushy about getting you to join in.

Overall this is a fabulous place! Highly recommend it! Especially for families!

  • Stayed: February 2014, travelled with family
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1  Thank Lana H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DirectorGVRN, Director General at Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit, responded to this reviewResponded 31 March 2014

I am very pleased Lana that every aspect that you mentioned was a success and enjoyed by all of your family. Whether it is in the comfort of your spacious suite, in the restaurants or in the pool area our goal is to present to you the highest in guest care and product quality. As you are now aware we are very pro active concerning special diets and culinary preferences. You made a great point in mentioning to me that all of our menus should highlight the gluten free options and that will soon be rectified. Thank you very much Lana for that observation. I am also very pleased that you felt the resort to be in control while you were in the pool areas and restaurants, even while sharing the full resort with a company incentive group. We have taken certain important steps to maintain a happy balance amongst all guests and to not greatly affect the overall ambience of the resort. And I am glad that those steps are now showing positive results. Lana it would be our pleasure to host you and your family again in order to relive the “spectacular” vacation that you just spent with us. On behalf of all of the 520 employees I send you warm greetings to Calgary, Alberta. Thank you and take care.

IGNACIO RIVERA
MANAGING DIRECTOR
HOTEL GRAND VELAS RIVIERA NAYARIT
iriverarn@velasresorts.com

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