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Park Hyatt Aviara - REVIEW - MASTER THREAD

Park Hyatt Aviara - REVIEW - MASTER THREAD

Old Jul 17, 2010, 1:03 pm
  #46  
 
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Originally Posted by lili
pdx_fam, sounds like I got the same room as a lowly gold. #437.
Yes, our first room, #427 (IIRC), was just a few doors down.

Originally Posted by A-Game
I was "upgraded" to a lagoon/golf course view but it seemed like a standard room.

Grounds are very nice but not very Park Hyatt (e.g. modern).
I think the only difference between room categories is the location/view.

We enjoyed looking at all of the tropical trees and plants around the resort, as being from Oregon, it was a noticeable difference from what we are used to and it made it "resort-like" for us.
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Old Jul 17, 2010, 10:11 pm
  #47  
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Originally Posted by pdx_fam
There is also a Costco nearby (~3 miles). I don't know if they have Hyatt certificates, but they did have Glenlivet for $21.99

There is also an In-n-Out slightly further away, and we noticed that we weren't the only ones walking into this swanky hotel carrying their food bags...
Thanks for the great review and all the on going commentary...much appreciated!
Oh, and happy anniversary! ^
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Old Jul 19, 2010, 1:53 pm
  #48  
 
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Just did a quick, one night BWB stay over the weekend.

Self Parked at the tennis center. (Saved $30!!) Saw one shuttle go by and then I called front desk on my cell and another shuttle was sent down within 5 minutes. Hill is way too steep to walk with if you have any type of luggage, fyi.

Checkin went smoothly. Was "upgraded" to panoramic view king. 5th floor, lagoon/ocean view. I doubt anyone will get a suite on a BWB stay as they are much more expenisve, looking at the rack rates. Was offered amenity of the day, which was a dessert platter of some type. I gently inquired about "wine" and the FD clerk quickly offered a bottle in lieu of the dessert.
Got a bottle of a mid-level merlot (not Canvas) about 30 minutes after I arrived in the room. About an hour later, someone delivered the dessert platter as well. So we got both! Nice bonus!

Room was very nice but was a bit dated decor wise. 4seasons style is a bit more "regal" than PH in general. Just not as modern as most other PH's. I suppose if they re-do the rooms in the months to come, it will be more like other PH's. Balcony was large and had nice chairs. Great view even though the ocean is at least 3 miles away. Linens/towels were great. Toiletries were nice as well. Bed was very comfortable. Main complaint of the room was a remote that had a mind of its own. Did not really notice until end of the evening and felt it was too late to deal with engineering, etc. to try to switch it out.

Had dinner in the room. Service was top notch and the food was very good, not incredible. Priced on par with this type of property. Really was worth not getting dressed to go downstairs after a few hours at the pool, so this was a smart choice for us.

Went to "adult" pool late on Saturday afternoon and we were only ones there for quite awhile. Was an awesome pool, heated and great layout.Towels everywhere, umbrellas everywhere. Hot tub was REALLY hot but was great too. On Sunday, pool had about 25 to 35 people total at around 12 noon. Very relaxing. Great pool attendants. Really noticed the higher level of service! Did not really check out the "family" pool so can't comment on that.

My wife used gym and the spa/sauna. She was very happy with the experience and treatment.

Breakfast on sunday was a mixed bag. Was seated right away but service was spotty. They were busy but not packed. As almost everyone chooses the buffett, I don't know how the service would be so slow in terms of getting the coffee, juice, etc. on the table. Seemed to be 3 or 4 managers and 12 or so servers but was always having to look around or ask to get something. This is the one area that was the least 5 star part of the stay.
The food was quite good and I have no complaints about that at all.
Charged to room (had to remind at checkout to take it off, which they did, including the gratuity that I had left for the server).

Overall, I give the place 4 out of 5 stars. Could be 5 stars, but not quite there. Will go again in a month or so, hope to be impressed fully on that trip!
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Old Jul 19, 2010, 2:02 pm
  #49  
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Just had a weekend stay at the property and wanted to give my feedback.

Pulled up to the valet, (did not even look for the shuttle/tennis club option as it clearly is not intended to be used as self parking and too inconvenient in my book) and was greeted by a large number of valet's.

Valet was 30 USD a night. My guy asked me my name and escorted me to the front desk and introduced me to the front desk crew. They had a letter with the Diamond benefits listed and I was offered the points or the sampler mentioned in the thread. I was asked what newspaper I wanted and I requested the New York Times.

The manager on duty then showed up and thanked me for being a loyal Hyatt customer and escorted me to the upgraded room (465). It was fairly large and was fronting the lagoon, it looked like one of the largest rooms on the 4th floor. It did seem a little dated, but high quality furniture, plasma TV and luxury bedding. The bed was pretty soft and needed to be replaced IMHO. The bathroom was large; it had a separate tub, shower and also a door to the toilet. Usual PH Porticos and very good quality towels and two bathrobes of equal quality. Minibar had Laurent Perrier LP Champagne and other goodies. Room service and mini bar prices were pretty reasonable for a luxury property. Shoe shine service bags (complimentary as it is at all luxury properties) were located in the closet along with 4 extra pillows.

It was my girlfriends birthday and she was arriving later, when the manager left the room, he told me he would make sure there was a surprise waiting.

I had some time that afternoon so I went and took a look at the grounds. Very nice family and tranquil pool areas with great staff. Complimentary sunscreen (30) and ice water/newspapers by the pools. The pool area is well covered with Wifi (13 USD, free for elites)

Back at the reception, there was a complimentary ice water and ice tea station. Very nice touch, but they were both totally empty. They are only available at certain times of the day.

It was time to head to the surprise bday party and I got the car back from valet very quickly and they asked me if I wanted a bottle of water for the road, nice touch, Four Seasons and Ritz Carlton usually just leaves a bottle or two in the car without asking. Kind of like the not asking way of that touch
When we arrived back at the hotel, they had done a turn down service that did not meet luxury hotel standard. No water provided on the night stand, no chocolate. The turndown service was pulling the curtains, removing the little quilt at the bottom of the bed and putting on the clock radio.
Roomservice had, however, provided a complimentary bottle of Cava and chocolate covered strawberries for the celebrations. Very nice touch.

Saturday morning we got up around 9 and headed to the breakfast. My paper did not show up at the door that morning, a little disappointing. It was a very good buffet, we got a table on the balcony. A perfect day and a very good breakfast. I went to the concierge after breakfast and asked for the paper. The guy next to me had also requested the NY Times and not received it. My concierge said they didn’t have it the other concierge corrected her and said they did, but you had to pay for it. Only the local paper, USA Today and WSJ was complimentary. Not what I was told at check in. I went to the gift shop and bought the paper instead. Back at the room I realized it was yesterday paper I had just bought and went down to the reception. I went through the whole newspaper debacle with a person who couldn’t be more apologetic. He went to the backroom to fetch a fresh NY Times and guaranteed that I would have my paper delivered in the morning, complimentary.

We then headed to the pool and the staff greeted us and set everything up. Comfortable sun chair covers and plenty of towels and ice water was provided. The free sunscreen was a nice touch so no need to get a bottle if you are not checking your bag.
Lunch at the pool was great. Had a few beers at 7 USD a pop, girlie drinks were 13-14 bucks. Food was reasonably priced. Had the Ahi tuna wrap and nachos which was enough for two. The total was a little less than 100 USD for an entire day at the pool, quite reasonable.

Service by the pool was great and attentive.

When we came back to the room, the manager called and apologized for the paper incident and offered to comp us 100USD credit throughout the resort and also comp valet parking. Very unexpected and unnecessary for a small inconvenience.

That night we ordered roomservice which took 35 minutes to be delivered. The food was excellent and well presented on the balcony. Great meal, the total was around 80 dollars with 18% gratuity and 3USD delivery charge.
The next morning we were heading back to breakfast and guess what… No paper :rolleyes.. I went to the gift shop and just bought the paper, essential for my Sunday.

I mentioned it at check out and they again apologized and took the 6USD charge for the paper off my final bill. The final bill had one of the breakfasts on it and they again apologized and removed it.

All in all a great stay at a property with great potential. The majority of the staff had a “training” sign on them, I gave them my feedback and they take all feedback very seriously, so I assume they will get up to par soon. That they failed providing the paper for me on Sunday after apologizing a million times on Saturday is a little puzzling to me, but it was a minor detail, but IMHO, that’s what luxury properties are all about: Being perfect on all minor details. That’s what you pay extra for. And the Park Hyatt Aviara cannot compete with the competing properties in the area – yet. But the potential and will is there. I hope they step it up. At less than 300 USD, this property is still worth it, especially with the magnificent breakfast for Diamonds.
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Old Aug 2, 2010, 4:16 am
  #50  
 
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I spent a couple of nights here on the free nights promotion. Was a little apprehensive having read much on here, in summary I'd say mixed reviews.

On the plus side, the front desk staff were excellent and seemed genuinely eager to please, the hotel facilities were very good for families (nice pool, games room with Playstations and some arcade games etc) and an excellent breakfast choice.

On the negative side, well, the decor and furniture has been mentioned a few times and I was disappointed. It tries to be upscale, but just looks bad with the peach and green everywhere. Staff by the pool and in the restaurants seemed to take an age with simple requests - e.g. on a cool day by a deserted pool it took 20 mins for 2 drinks to arrive and the order was then wrong - and, my main annoyance in many American hotels, you get the "hanging around" effect when people want tips for the most basic service provision. Guys at valet were particularly bad, given it's $30 already I was more than happy to play the ignorant Brit.

Both my wife and I came to the conclusion that if we'd paid for the hotel we'd have been disappointed at current market rates, it's a low-$200s hotel at the moment masquerading as something more.
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Old Aug 5, 2010, 11:49 pm
  #51  
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Not empty anymore

I wanted to book a weekend at this property and it looks like it's quite booked for the upcoming months. Glad that they are succeeding
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Old Aug 6, 2010, 8:48 pm
  #52  
 
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I am not going to go into detail and give this prop a chance. Having just come from another Southern California Hyatt Resort property miss it already. The financial woes this property has experienced show in delayed maintenance. Frankly I am surprised the Four Seasons would allow it to get to the condition it has in the rooms. I noticed in the lobby pictures fading due to exposure to direct sunlight. Most of the Diamond benefits I received straight away. In regards to a upgrade in room accomodations. They needed coaching. This place might need a little time to get to Park Hyatt standards let alone Hyatt Regency standards or maybe the other resort should be a Grand Hyatt.

Funny. When I think about it. I stayed here when it first opened as a FS. Walked after the first night. It was not IMHO at that time up to be a FS and now will have to work to be a PH. My opinion.
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Old Aug 6, 2010, 11:30 pm
  #53  
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Originally Posted by RTWSTARALLIANCE
The financial woes this property has experienced show in delayed maintenance. Frankly I am surprised the Four Seasons would allow it to get to the condition it has in the rooms.
As I said in post #37, I'm not sure if FS was the one who neglected to properly maintain the property. They were the management company and perhaps needed the authorization from the owners for non-urgent maintenance.
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Old Aug 7, 2010, 12:26 am
  #54  
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Originally Posted by RTWSTARALLIANCE
I am not going to go into detail
Please do. Isn't that what Flyertalk is all about?
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Old Aug 7, 2010, 12:26 am
  #55  
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Originally Posted by francophile
As I said in post #37, I'm not sure if FS was the one who neglected to properly maintain the property. They were the management company and perhaps needed the authorization from the owners for non-urgent maintenance.
Even if FS is just the management company, clearly they have standards that the owners must meet.
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Old Aug 7, 2010, 2:32 am
  #56  
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Originally Posted by JFKSFOLAX_friend
Even if FS is just the management company, clearly they have standards that the owners must meet.
Based on my understanding of publicly available information (one source in the link below), the owner did not believe that FS managed the property in the most efficient manner. I've stayed at many FS properties around the world and have always found the maintenance to meet or exceed my expectatons for a luxury property. I speculate that FS wanted to do maintain the property to its usual standards but the owners didn't want to put in more money to refresh the property.

http://lhonline.com/development/mana...ns_dolce_0511/

I'm not an industry insider and do not know the full story so I could be completely wrong.
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Old Aug 7, 2010, 4:40 am
  #57  
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Originally Posted by francophile
As I said in post #37, I'm not sure if FS was the one who neglected to properly maintain the property. They were the management company and perhaps needed the authorization from the owners for non-urgent maintenance.
They did not need the authorization, they actually needed the owner to pony up some money...

During the times of increasing real estate prices, many owners overpaid massively for real estate and often also for construction/renovation, especially in hot spot areas like the greater San Diego, greater New York or Miami Beach area.

Basically, when you bought and constructed/renovated at the wrong time the venture was already doomed, we are talking about renovation projects worth more than $ 100 millions in some cases...

FS probably just managed the Aviara, meaning they received a certain fee for managing the resort, everything else was up to the owners.

Recent history has shown us that at a certain point, when the owner is facing liquidity problems, the managing partner will be blamed for running the hotel in the ground, Fairmont can sing a song about it as well. It would not surprise me, if The Victor faces the same issues...

At a certain point, it becomes a thin line between cashing in the management/reservation system fees and jeopardizing your standards, if the owner is not willing to invest some serious money...Hyatt managed some properties in the greater San Jose area some years ago that were close to a Motel 6

About 2 years ago, Hyatt had appr. 120 properties in the pipeline, some of them being at the beginning of a long pipeline, some of them were more or less already refined. Since hardly anyone is able to raise cash for a hotel project these days, let it be for the real estate or the construction costs, many many projects are seriously delayed or completely off the table, e.g. Grand Hyatt Moscow & Residences or the Park Mallorca, Spain.

The Grand Hyatt Duta Kuala Lumpur is another perfect example...
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Old Aug 7, 2010, 7:06 am
  #58  
 
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That is true. FT is about telling it like it is. That being said by me also aware too much can stain a prop for a long time. Not that I have any influence. It seems like line agents are not empowered to do ANYTHING. Something is going to have to change. The mindset of employees may be stuck in the malaise of financial trouble and not moving forward to the PH way of quality and service. Seems like that is the FS way also. At this point I would have no reason to return.
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Old Aug 7, 2010, 12:20 pm
  #59  
 
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I reviewed my bill on tv before heading out. Billed for wired internet. After pointing out to clerk and that I was a Diamond member promptly removed. I was not billed for parking. Also brought this to attention to agent at check-out. Was told no bill for parking as I was on award. That did not sound right but appreciated. Please confirm the later upon check-in. Do not assume you will not be charged for valet parking on award. I was on BWB.
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Old Aug 21, 2010, 8:30 am
  #60  
 
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The Resort has been very responsive to my concerns.
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