Ziva Puerto Vallarta REVIEW MASTER THREAD

Old Aug 11, 15, 1:07 pm
  #181  
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
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Got a great rate on this hotel for next week when I booked on AA.com with a flight. $250 a night for 2 adults and 2 kids.
I'm a Platinum and asked the hotel directly how much to go from a ocean view double to a jr. suite ocean view double.
They want 71 usd x 7 nts = $ 497 usd total
They said the room is a Jr. suite on the club tower ( 1st - 5th floor)
So for a 23% upcharge is there any reason I should do this? I've read every message in this thread and saw the club is nothing special and the club tower rooms are larger but not renovated.
Last weeks in August tend to be fairly empty at the hotel as I've done it for the past two years. The children in Mexico have already started school. I probably should just roll the dice and go the check-in desk and see what they offer me.
I always bring a small box of local chocolate to the front desk upon check-in and the $20 expense has gone a long way towards getting great upgrades at a discount or complimentary. :-)
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Old Aug 21, 15, 9:16 am
  #182  
 
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Originally Posted by david4455 View Post
There are a few new pictures on the Ziva PV website. I was surprised to see them as I thought all the Plunge Pool suites were in the un-remodeled building. Have you seen all the photos on Oyster. They are out-dated ( from when it was Dreams) but it gives you a good idea...

http://www.oyster.com/puerto-vallart...te-ocean-view/
I've got a plunge pool suite reservation in January. Hopefully I get one like the room shown in the pictures on Hyatt's site. Both look nice, but the rooms in the picture on the Hyatt site look like they have a much bigger terrace around the pool.
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Old Aug 21, 15, 1:01 pm
  #183  
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Originally Posted by spgplat21 View Post
I've got a plunge pool suite reservation in January. Hopefully I get one like the room shown in the pictures on Hyatt's site. Both look nice, but the rooms in the picture on the Hyatt site look like they have a much bigger terrace around the pool.
The pictured plunge pool suite is in the remodeled North tower.

I think that some of the pictures of the Presidential suite have mixed in with the Plunge Pool suite pictures... my research tells me that the larger terrace is not the Plunge Pool suite but an image of Presidential suite.
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Old Aug 24, 15, 4:44 pm
  #184  
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wow...what a piece of work this reviewer is

Read the newest PV Ziva review. It immediately makes me suspect when they describe their 2nd floor plunge pool suite...which are all on the top floor.

http://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Rev..._Vallarta.html

But she did "travel 1st class".
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Old Sep 2, 15, 5:11 pm
  #185  
 
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Originally Posted by david4455 View Post
Yes the non-remodeled tower. And no...only the plunge pool suites ( found on the top two floors) are two story. But...you are you are guaranteed a balcony being in that building as every room has one.
Originally Posted by mdskyguy View Post
No they are single level more like a junior suite, some with jacuzzi, some not. Very nice though.

Belated thanks to both of you for the descriptions! We are here now, arrived last night. I appreciate the help, and would be happy to try to answer questions from other FTers.

The first night, we were on the 19th floor of the club tower, in a dated double-room that had a great view, good beds (but daughter complained of weird pillow smells), and a broken outdoor Jacuzzi. It was certainly smaller than the 704 SF that we'd been advised would be the DSU room we booked.

When I advised the young, helpful, but not especially informed greeter that we were hoping for a suite that better accommodated the three of us (e.g. seperate sleeping area for our daughter), was told that all their better rooms were booked...which seemed odd given that occupancy is very low right now. Also odd was his blank reaction when i explained that we were not only only diamond, but had used a DSU. But to their credit, they did move us today to one of the plunge-pool, top-floor suites in new tower, which is absolutely lovely. They explained it was in recognition of our Diamond status, but no mention of our DSU...? (Suspect someone above the greeter made the decision based on all factors, but not sure.)

More impressions to follow.
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Old Sep 2, 15, 5:24 pm
  #186  
 
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Originally Posted by skunker View Post
Additional thoughts:

The spa menu posted above has been repriced in USD. Since the hold on a credit card is in MXN it will be interesting to see how they covert during checkout.
Can anyone address this?

We will be settling our bill using Hyatt gift checks. I stressed this at check-in, explaining that I'd happily follow whatever procedures make this easier for them. They wanted to know if we wished to "open a credit line" by making an "authorization"--not a purchase--to our credit card for $200. No problem, I said. Well, the authorization was for $25,000 pesos, or more like $1486 dollars (and our room is set to run $1,305 for the five nights). So I'm guessing they just estimated an amount above our room cost...?

It won't be an issue as long as it gets sorted out properly, and I trust it will. Would be helpful if they were better about explaining up front how they did all this.
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Old Sep 3, 15, 2:34 pm
  #187  
 
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[QUOTE=DaveH;25368891]Belated thanks to both of you for the descriptions! We are here now, arrived last night. I appreciate the help, and would be happy to try to answer questions from other FTers.

Thanks for a Q&A session...hope you have a great time at PV.

Planning a stay in the near future and have some questions the room types.

Staying 3 nights (two with Chase CC award nights and one with a paid say).

The first paid night I used one of my DSU and got upgraded to the "Club Tower Ocean View with Hot Tub room". This should be in the "yet renovated room that is slightly bigger than the renovated other tower" right?

So the other renovated tower also have suites with hot tubs? Which one do you think is better for the overall experience?

Since I'm paying for one night and two are award nights, planning to stay one night at the upgrade hot tub club tower room then ask for a renovated room at the other tower...do you think this is a good idea? Where's the 24 hours bakery/cafe?
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Old Sep 3, 15, 2:47 pm
  #188  
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DaveH: Thanks for your insight . We too are staying in a plunge pool suite North tower in a few months. Any additional description you can give would be helpful. I am must interested in the size of the terrace and outdoor spaces.

I'd also be curious as to your food/restaurant experiences.
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Old Sep 3, 15, 2:55 pm
  #189  
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The first paid night I used one of my DSU and got upgraded to the "Club Tower Ocean View with Hot Tub room". This should be in the "yet renovated room that is slightly bigger than the renovated other tower" right?

So the other renovated tower also have suites with hot tubs? Which one do you think is better for the overall experience?




There seems to be a bit of confusion about the rooms and towers.

Yes...the Club Tower ( South) is un-renovated ( but refreshed) and the rooms are slightly bigger. Hot tubs are located on the upper floor balconies of this tower.

The renovated tower (North), as far as I know ( from my past visits when it was a Camino Real) does NOT have any hot tubs on their balconies. (They may have put some in the interior of the rooms...but not outside.)

Perhaps it is just me...but in all the visits we made to this property over the years I don't think I ever used the hot tub on our balcony when we had one..in fact I missed the extra lounging space it took up.

Last edited by david55; Sep 3, 15 at 3:04 pm
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Old Sep 4, 15, 3:22 pm
  #190  
 
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Originally Posted by DaveH View Post
Can anyone address this?

We will be settling our bill using Hyatt gift checks. I stressed this at check-in, explaining that I'd happily follow whatever procedures make this easier for them. They wanted to know if we wished to "open a credit line" by making an "authorization"--not a purchase--to our credit card for $200. No problem, I said. Well, the authorization was for $25,000 pesos, or more like $1486 dollars (and our room is set to run $1,305 for the five nights). So I'm guessing they just estimated an amount above our room cost...?

It won't be an issue as long as it gets sorted out properly, and I trust it will. Would be helpful if they were better about explaining up front how they did all this.
Yay, it's a pain and makes no sense. The spa menu is in USD but when you pay at the spa they charge for the service and tip in MXN. That charge is then shown on your bill at checkout (in MXN of course). The conversion rate used is unknown.

I don't know why they advertise in USD.
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Old Sep 13, 15, 5:20 pm
  #191  
 
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Apologies for not following up here until now, been catching up on work since returning to SEA...

[QUOTE=nowstime;25373408]
Originally Posted by DaveH View Post
Thanks for a Q&A session...hope you have a great time at PV.
Thanks. The resort was excellent. There were a few quirks that resulted from language barriers / cultural differences, as well as unfamiliarity with certain details of Hyatt operations (e.g. gift certs). But they were minor.

Food was quite good. Ironcially, the Mexican restaurant was easily the weakest. We liked Blaze the best (and what spectacular views!) We settled into the same strategy others suggested: buffet for breakfast and lunch (let us get in and out faster, as well as eat some more nutritious options), and one of the other eateries for dinner. Perhaps a stop by the 24/7 caffee for Ms DaveH's latte or dessert if nothing on the menu appealed.

So the other renovated tower also have suites with hot tubs? Which one do you think is better for the overall experience?
Not sure if this was addressed to me or not...? Anyway, I'm not sure if the new tower suites had hot tubs as we didn't check the floors in between our top floor (with the pools) and the bottom floor (with the swim-up pools). But the new-tower suite we were booked in was *fantastic*. Plenty large, nicely redone. About the only nit we could pick was both my wife and daughter noticed that the lighting was poor for getting made up, in both the bathrooms and bathrooms. But they agreed, if that was the biggest complaint one could make...

Since I'm paying for one night and two are award nights, planning to stay one night at the upgrade hot tub club tower room then ask for a renovated room at the other tower...do you think this is a good idea? Where's the 24 hours bakery/cafe?
I don't think you'll regret being in the new tower. The 24 hour cafe was in between the two towers (which are on opposite ends of the resort)...easily reachable from both.
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Old Sep 13, 15, 5:28 pm
  #192  
 
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Originally Posted by skunker View Post
Yay, it's a pain and makes no sense. The spa menu is in USD but when you pay at the spa they charge for the service and tip in MXN. That charge is then shown on your bill at checkout (in MXN of course). The conversion rate used is unknown.

I don't know why they advertise in USD.
I will say that once we routed our bill to the front-desk supervisor (Eugene IIRC), they were perfectly capable of using our gift checks without incident--they just needed maybe 15-20 minutes to run the eight of them we needed. Moreover, the bill was actually $1.66 cheaper than advertised, after their conversion to Pesos and back to USD. So no complaints there.


Generally speaking, I would offer two suggestions regarding currency. First, the ATMs at the airport were the easiest, most affordable way we found to convert USD to Pesos. (These were beyond the two long walkways, just before you exit to ground transport.) Cheaper ATM fees then we found elsewhere in PVR, including the Ziva (where they run about $4-5 USD each, even for small withdrawls--and at least once the one on-property Pesos-dispensing ATM was out of order. And while the hotel will exchange currency, they offer a poor 14 MEX to 1 USD ratio.

Second, try to keep lots of small denomination bills with you at all times. We found that cabbies, vendors, etc. often pleaded that they weren't able to break larger bills..but were only too happy to offer to take USD instead, at exploitative exchange rates.
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Old Sep 13, 15, 5:41 pm
  #193  
 
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A note on Diamond treatment

I think this property is still sorting out just how they want to honor Diamond members. While they may have recognized our status only belatedly, they more than made up for any tardiness once they did.

First, their was the marvelous room upgrade detailed upthread. The top floor new-tower plunge pool suites were magnificent, and well above a DSU obligation.

Second, they invite Diamonds to a Friday night reception where the GM and the rest of his staff take delight in mingling with Diamond members. They treated my entire family quite well, and we particularly enjoyed our informative chats with the F&B director (Emanuel Santana), and the Entertainment director. They seemed genuinely interested in whether their hotel was doing all it could to make our stay pleasant, and they handled all feedback very graciously.

Finally, the night after the reception, we received a note under our door inviting us to a special dinner on a night of our choosing prepared their Executive lead chef, Adjid Velasco. Unfortunately, we flew out less than 24 ours after receiving this invitation, so we couldn't take advantage.


So, while the base DSU is nothing to write home about, our experience certainly suggests that Diamond status can be very well recognized at the Ziva.
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Old Sep 13, 15, 5:45 pm
  #194  
 
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Originally Posted by cmjaffe View Post
Is the tour operator that hotel books with, and you're charged directly with them (not on folio). I'd suggest going through their webpage, since they have some really good excursions that have a buy 2 get one free offers (my 20 something kids LOVEd the adventure excursion -- ziplinging, etc. was best they've done ever (and they've been "around").... they were picked up at the hotel (no extra charge) and thought it was a great value too.
A key note on the www.vallarta-adventures.com site. They do indeed have some great discounts. However, as of 9/15 all discounts require five days advanced booking. (The site says 96 hours, but in practice we found that on Wednesday we could only book for the following bookings on Monday). So be sure to research what you want to do before you arrive!
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Old Oct 7, 15, 8:46 am
  #195  
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Lounge Chair Shenanigans??

Can anyone tell me if the Hyatt Ziva PV is cursed with the lounge chair game? ( getting up at the crack of dawn to reserve a chair)

Heading down there for our first stay in a few weeks.

Thanks.
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