This Place Called Vallarta

by Emma Hackwood

Planning a trip to Mexico? Our Travel Expert Matt Weagle shares his experience in beautiful Puerto Vallarta on Mexico’s pacific coast. From where to eat, to where to stay, he shares his tips for making the most of your Vallarta experience. 

Perched atop the rooftop patio at Chez Elena’s in Puerto Vallarta with some newly-made friends from Toronto, we found ourselves sipping coarsely salted -rimmed lime Margarita’s, enjoying the panoramic view that is the Pacific – Vallarta styles.

You know it’s funny, having sold travel for over seven years now, I rarely see people get overly excited about booking a flight to Puerto Vallarta. Whether they’ve been before, desired something a little more exotic and impressive, or simply got a better deal the year before, there is a bit of an anti-climatic scene during the planning and booking stages.

Well I’m here to pump a little life into this place called Vallarta.

matt at velas vallarta resort

This April I stayed at the Velas Vallarta, (in the Marina part of town, approximately ten minutes from the Puerto Vallarta Airport), and had a trip that I’ll remember forever. The Velas Vallarta rates as a 4-4.5 star, with excellent reviews, that I must admit I’ve never booked before. We recently had a training session in Canada that showcased the property, and the timing seemed right to visit.

After eight days, seven nights, it’s hard to imagine I’d go anywhere else in the area. One enters this mini-paradise by walking through an impressive lobby with arches that make you feel like you’re looking at the entranceway to the Colosseum in Rome. Every room has a balcony that faces the ocean, and is equipped with a full kitchen should one wish to cook. If not, there are two magnificent restaurants there to serve your every need with a variety of options for breakfast, lunch, & dinner, (with rotating menus for the A La Carte Dinners nightly). The service was excellent, and the food very well prepared, seasoned and plated. Between Italian, Spanish, French and Mexican, they always seemed to deliver a quality meal. (I would recommend eating outside on the patio whenever possible).

fresh salsa

At only 105 pesos away from downtown ($10.50CAD), it was an easy journey to the Malecon, and all the sites and sounds that make-up Puerto Vallarta. Whether you desire a fancy meal out on the town (check-out Coco’s for Brunch, or Fajita Republic for Dinner), a cocktail or two down by the water enjoying some local music, or bartering for some Mexican blankets at the night-markets, this city has it all – and reasonably priced despite our struggling dollar.

When you’ve had your fill of fun, you’re still not far to head back to the Velas for the pools that are warmer than the air at dusk, with a mojito, beer, or wine at hand. Don’t mind the Peacocks that are cawing all day long, as you’ll be kept occupied by Ambrocio who is happy to entertain, (challenge him at Table Tennis if you dare). peacock in Puerto Vallarta

When you’re ready to retire, you’ve got your beautiful suite, with balcony, to finish the night off with a game of rummy, or simply a toast…as you’ve had one heck of a day – Again.

iguana velas vallarta resort

Having been to Puerto Vallarta multiple times now, and coming from someone who has travelled most of Mexico, (as far south as San Cristobal, bordering Guatemala) – the time to come see me to book your next adventure is now.

For more information on travelling to Puerto Vallarta, contact Matt by connecting with him online, visiting him at the Hillside Flight Centre.

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