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Reviewed 19 July 2018 via mobile

We booked the Riu Vallarta in July 2017 for a holiday in June 2018 and I read every single review posted in between. Quite often I wondered about changing hotels but was very pleased we didn’t.
The room was very clean on arrival & as previous reviews have said it was quite dated. Sheets and towels were spotless and changed most days. The safe was very easy to use and I can’t understand why people don’t use them as they are provided free of charge.
Drinks in the fridge were topped up every day but we didn’t use the optics.
We food the food was very good. Lots of choice and good quality. We went to Nirvana twice and that was also very good.
Drinks were also good quality. Prosecco was a nice touch too.
We are usually very boring on holiday but found we actually really enjoyed the pool scene with the swim up bar! Also the entertainment round the pool was good.
The beach was lovely and we were lucky enough to see dolphins three times over the two weeks we were there.
I emailed the hotel before we arrived and asked for a quiet room which they provided and on our wedding anniversary we returned to the room to find a bottle of champagne so thank you Riu Vallarta we had a great time!

Stayed: June 2018
7  Thank KarenH201
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 July 2018

We stayed at the Riu Vallarta for 2 weeks in the middle of October last year. We really enjoyed our holiday here.
The food was fabulous and I loved the fact that you could go to the A'la Carte restaurants as many times as you wanted and they gave you a pager so you knew when to go back. The Flamingo restaurant was excellent to go to at night as the food was great and the sunset was spectacular. The Sir George was rather posh but the food was fantastic and great if you were celebrating a special occasion, on my daughters birthday they dimmed the lights and brought out a full sized cake and sung happy birthday to her which was a nice touch. The food in the buffet restaurant was also very nice and they had , plenty of different options, although towards the end of the second week it was getting a bit samey, especially the breakfast (if we had stuck to one main course on our plate a night rather than loads we probably would not have thought this lol). My least favourite of the restaurants was the Asian, which was fine but I didn't feel it had a great variety. The drinks were fab, as well as the cocktails on the drinks menu you could ask for other cocktails and they would make them for you, no problem. The optics in the room and the minibar was always topped up regularly.

The adult pool was great,if a little rowdy in the afternoon and usually had a great atmosphere, especially at 3 oclock when it was time for the days Crazy Game. The animation team worked really hard and tried to get everyone involved in the daytime activities, aqua aerobics, Zumba, Spanish lessons waterpolo etc.and every day had a different crazy game which was always a great laugh and got the guests mixing and cheering each other on etc. The childrens pool was generally a bit quieter and more appropriate for younger children or folks looking for a more relaxing time. The beach was fabulous and the kids loved going in the water with the boogie boards. We never tried the spa. All the hotel staff were lovely and nothing was too much trouble. Through the day they often set up stalls round the pool with snacks and different drinks.

The evening entertainment was a bit of a hit or a miss, there were a couple of good shows but mostly it was an overload of watching dancers so soon became a bit boring. The shows put on by the animation team were just as good if not better that the professional shows they put on. After the evenings show there was a band playing in the courtyard most nights, I would describe the music as elevator or lobby music and would have been fine on alternate nights with something different in between, but them same slow music type band every night became a bit boring. One night they had a rock band playing and they were great, much more upbeat.
It would also have been better if they had put the karaoke on more often or for more than a couple of hours one night a week. The themed nights were very good, Mexican night, Circus night etc. and they really put a great effort in to these.

We had reasonable wifi service in our rooms which was great but be aware that you only get 2 free wifi logins per room which was not great when we had 3 teenagers in one room.

The rooms were really large and cleaned every day,we had a great view from our 5th floor room of the sea and the mountains to the side. As there were 5 of us we had 2 rooms with an interconnecting corridor in between which gave great peace of mind having kids there.

The only real downside is the location as we generally like to go out for a walk around shops etc, through the day but this isn't possible unless you want to walk for an hour to get to Bucerias or wait for a bus to take you downtown to Walmart area. It is 2 buses to get right down to Puerto Vallarta malecon.Taxis are reasonably cheap but as there were 5 of us we had to pay the equivalent of a double journey so we didn't get out and about as much as we would normally. It would be great if they had a little tourist minibus that went about picking people up from the hotels and taking them out and about to all the main places of interest.

The Tui excursions were really expensive and we booked a swim with the dolphins from a travel stall at the flea market in Bucerias for much cheaper and had a fantastic time.

All in all we had a fantastic holiday at this hotel which is why we are going back again this October.

  • Stayed: October 2017, travelled with family
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Service
9  Thank Audrey Y
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 July 2018 via mobile

Reception and check in quick and easy.
Room on the 5 th floor had partial see view, but very noisy at night due to the room being near the lifts where people would gather at 2-3 am and talk/ shout and scream. Got moved no problem to a room on the 1st floor much better. Rooms clean and dated but you don’t spend to much time inside. Bath towels were rough my husband actually rubbed skin from his ankles after a shower.
Right trips! You have to pay for your own way to the Vallarta adventure centre 90-100 mxp nearly £5 each way most of the trips went from there so there is no getting away from it. Never been anywhere where you have to pay for your own transport to a day trip.
Tui did have an offer of 3 for 2 trips which is good but I would suggest you book online before you come as the price goes up a lot !
Rhythms of the night was worth it very humid and full of biting insects use lots of sprays!
Boat ride from Vallarta adventure centre takes about an hour or so but you get to see the sunset. We thought it was a long way to go for an hours entertainment. Food was so so. The entertainment on boat on way back was good too.
We also did silver dolphins which was absolutely brilliant and well worth the money, you get to go under water holding on to a dolphin and then one pushes you along on a bogie board it was lots of fun.
The pool! Well it was busy as the day went on, the life guard spent lots of time trying to keep people from throwing balls and there was lots of big inflatables and not much room.
Some days there was music from the entertainment and other people with there music on so you had music from all directions, not very relaxing if you like to read.
The entertainment team provided games around the pool which were good and broke up the day. There was plenty of shade and sunbeds even when busy. The beach was never full and had plenty of shade and sunbeds, but there were no chairs to sit on round the pool or at the beach. Sea was rough on a few days and windy in the afternoon which was good for keeping cool.
Food was not bad they did different themes daily and the buffet could get very busy, the staff worked so hard at relaying tables and getting drinks, they were very friendly and helpful. We did not try the sir George restaurant as the menu did not suit us, but it was very busy.
The internet which is free works at the pool and I got it down by the beach but not in the rooms as they want you to pay extra but you can manage with the free WiFi.
The evening entertainment is on a weekly rota and finishes at 10pm then there is a night club and the team organise a trip to a local night club at 11pm a couple of nights a week.
The live music we saw was very somber and more lift music, very lovey dovey love songs and could be quite depressing if your not on honey moon!
The Michael Jackson night on a Friday is worth watching.
If you get a taxi to paradise plaza there are shops and McDonald’s, subway and dominos as a bag of m&ms can cost £5 in the reception shop.
Check out can be busy! Now I know why reception is so big!
You don’t have to check out between 9-11 you can check out earlier and avoid the big cues you can still get drinks and food after checking out.
I would recommend getting a taxi to and from the airport as it’s much quicker and it doesn’t cost that much and your not waiting around you can get to the airport before everyone else.
I would not go back to Rui Vallarta as being that bit older I find it a little club 18-30 especially during the day we were there for 3weeks and it got a bit tedious and we resorted going to the beach everyday for the last week for a little peace and quite.

Stayed: July 2018, travelled with family
7  Thank Joanne T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 July 2018

Reception was very polite & knowledgeable. Our room was beautiful & clean, with a great view of the bay. It was all-inclusive, and our every need was attended to our satisfaction. The food in all the restaurants was delicious. We especially enjoyed the Oriental restaurant. We found ourselves attracted to the bar on the main floor, directly across from Reception. Music & shows at night were great medicine for the stress from the bad weather back home.

My wife is a school teacher, & it was great to see her relax and kick back before the final push to the end of the school year.

  • Stayed: April 2018, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
5  Thank ted36
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 July 2018

Family with 3 kiddos all under 9 had a blast at Riu Vallarta in July. All of the staff worked so very hard for us with smiles. It was extremely hot and humid but were able to cool down in the room and at the restaurants.

We stayed in the Family room that had a king and double bed, with a huge balcony on the 8th floor just over the entertainment. The noise at night time was not a problem at all for us. The air conditioning worked well and had a great ceiling fan. The bathroom was very nice and large. Our room was cleaned so nicely every day. We felt very safe every where and the safe in the room worked great for us. Any and everything that we asked for of the hotel staff was promptly taken care of.

Every where that we ate all of the food was excellent. My kids mostly had pizza, fries, and jello for most meals while my wife and I tried everything! :) Ate once at all of the specialty restaurants, wow were they ever nice!

Kids enjoyed the kids swimming pool with slides. We stayed at the adult pool for a day, with the kids, and really liked that pool as well. We spent several mornings at the beach, much cooler on the beach in the mornings, and the beach was truly beautiful. We used the Bullfrog Mosquito coast sunscreen and no one got mosquito bites or sand lice bites.

All of the evening shows were a lot of fun and well done. We usually arrived early for our table and just played Uno for the hour before the show started.

Our little family of 5 highly recommends this hotel to all, thanks Riu for a great vacation!

Room Tip: 8th floor for a view!
  • Stayed: July 2018, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
7  Thank Casey H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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