Where should I stay? With hundreds of hotels in Puerto Vallarta, it may seem like a daunting question. But fret not—most of the legwork has been done for you. The selections here represent the best this city has to offer—from the best budget digs to the sleekest designer resorts. Scan "Best Bets" on the following pages for top recommendations by price and experience. Or find a review quickly in the listings—search by neighborhood, then alphabetically. Happy hunting!
Need a Reservation?
Hotel reservations are an absolute necessity when planning your trip to Puerto Vallarta—although rooms are easier to come by these days. Competition for clients also means properties undergo frequent improvements, especially late September through mid-November, so when booking ask about any renovations, lest you get a room within earshot of construction, or find your hotel is temporarily without commonplace amenities such as swimming pool or spa.
Overbooking is a common practice, so get confirmation in writing via fax or email.
Most resort hotels have air-conditioning, cable TV, one or more restaurants, room service, and in-room irons and ironing boards. Many have voice mail, coffeemakers, and hair dryers. Ethernet or Wi-Fi Internet service is common in guest rooms; if not, there’s likely a guest computer or three in a common area. Most hotels above the budget or moderate price level have fitness facilities; alternatively, visit a nearby sports club or gym (there are many). Some hotels are entirely smoke-free, meaning even smoking outdoors is frowned upon or prohibited.
Can I Drink the Water?
Most of the fancier hotels have reverse osmosis or other water filtration systems. It's fine for brushing your teeth, but play it safe by drinking bottled water (there might be leaks that let groundwater in). Note that the bottled water might cost extra, although there's usually a notice if it's not free. Buy a few bottles at the corner grocery instead.
Staying with Kids
Puerto Vallarta is a popular destination for both foreign families and nationals, and in general its hotels have adopted a family-friendly attitude. Some properties provide in-room video games, playgrounds, game rooms, children’s swimming pools, and other diversions; others have suites with kitchenettes and fold-out sofa beds to accommodate the family’s needs. Most full-service Puerto Vallarta hotels provide roll-away beds and babysitting, but make arrangements when booking the room, not when you arrive. Beach resorts often have kids’ clubs to allow their parents quality adult time.
Tried-and-true chains may have excellent rates and can be good last-minute options. There are hotels from the Holiday Inn/InterContinental Group, Marriott, Sheraton, and various Starwood chains, including Westin and St. Regis.
Small boutique hotels are another option in Puerto Vallarta, especially in the Zona Romántica and El Centro. Some of these are simple, some luxurious, but they all offer hospitality and comfort on a more intimate scale.