Updated: 2 days ago
Hilton has been expanding its portfolio of all-inclusive resorts, and the Hilton Vallarta Riviera All-Inclusive Resort is one of the newer ones. This all-inclusive opened in 2021 after major renovations to the property by Hilton. As someone who is a budget traveler, but is huge on utilizing credit card points, I figured it was finally time to check out an all-inclusive using our points. Here's my Hilton Vallarta Riviera All-Inclusive Resort review as a frequent traveler who doesn't typically choose all-inclusives.
The Hilton Vallarta Riviera All-Inclusive Resort is a popular beachfront resort in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. It's part of the Hilton portfolio and offers a range of amenities and services for a relaxing and enjoyable vacation. Here's an overview of what you can expect from this resort.
Note: I paid for my stay here using points. Find out how here.
Situated along the Bay de Banderas, the location of this hotel is beautiful. You get sweeping views of the bay from the restaurants, bars, rooms, and infinity pool. It's located less than 20 minutes from the Zona Romantica and downtown Puerto Vallarta as well as 10 minutes from Mismoloya Bay, where you can snorkel and see some of the best wildlife in the area.
One of the main reasons we chose to stay here was the location. It's easy to get an Uber into town or drive yourself from the airport (this is the option we chose). It is far enough away from the bustle of town to have a relaxing feel, but close enough to ensure you can explore places outside the resort without spending the whole day getting there.
Puerto Vallarta is absolutely stunning and well worth a visit. I've been to Mexico four times, most recently Tulum, but Puerto Vallarta was my first time along the Pacific Coast of Mexico, and it did not disappoint.
What started as a small fishing village in Banderas Bay along the Pacific Coast of Mexico is now a major destination for travelers, and it's no surprise why! Puerto Vallarta is naturally beautiful, with fantastic food, plenty of activities, and unique places to stay. This region of Mexico has so much to offer. Here's my itinerary for a trip to Puerto Vallarta!
A basic partial ocean view room ranges from $370 - $500 a night (for two people), depending on your dates. Rooms escalate in price from there. We booked our entire stay with points; for the two of us, it was 90,000 points a night for an adult only - partial ocean king room- and because of our Hilton status, we were upgraded to a superior king ocean view room. Learn more about how to travel hack.
For the cost, I think this Hilton did a pretty nice job offering a variety of things to do and food options. Our ability to make reservations and have the concierge readily available to help make everything easier! More on all of this later.
When you check-in, you're given a wristband. The wristband acts as your form of payment and your room key and has a QR code for you to scan to get the weekly schedule. I liked this because there was no worry about carrying too many things around with you while at the resort.
As mentioned, this is an all-inclusive. What's included when you stay at an all-inclusive Hilton?
Daily breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks
Unlimited drinks and cocktails
Beach and pool service
Fitness center access
These items are included, but what are the extras?
Premium offerings at restaurants like steak or lobster
Private dinners and experiences
Starbucks: located in the lobby
Tips (bring cash for staff!)
Perks for Hilton Status Diamond Members
Special wristband for service
Reservations at restaurants
Guests who book an Enclave room experience elevated rooms and get extra perks with their stay.
private check-in and checkout
Enclave Lounge with food and beverage
in-room welcome amenities
Souvenir beach bag
The resort features a variety of room and suite options, including ocean-view and pool-view rooms. Some suites come with private balconies or terraces, offering stunning views of Banderas Bay. Below are the room options.
All of the 444 rooms are oceanfront and feature a private balcony. The partial ocean view rooms will have you overlooking the pool or palm trees with the ocean behind them. The full ocean view rooms are on the hotel's higher floors and offer spectacular views of the Bahia of Banderas and the Pacific Ocean. The Premium Guest Rooms are called the Enclave, and Suites offer Club Lounge access, with private check-in, stunning views, breakfast, and happy hour.
We stayed in an Ocean Front Superior King Room. Our room was spacious, clean, and the balcony was outfitted with two comfortable chairs we enjoyed watching the sunset from! Staff cleaned it every time we requested, and we always had fresh towels we needed.
My only complaint about the room is the shower door. It was impossible to keep water from getting out of the shower and onto the bathroom floor. It was a constant struggle to keep the floor dry in there! The toilet is also in the same room as the shower encased in glass, but there's a window into the room. I didn't find this too annoying because there was a shade, but it's worth noting.
There are 14 different dining options at the resort. There are 8 restaurants, room service, poolside food trucks, snack bars, and beachside food service. During our stay, we got to dine at almost every one of these options, so I'm excited to share the details.
At this all-inclusive resort, you'll have access to multiple dining options, including buffet-style restaurants, à la carte dining, and snack bars. You can enjoy a diverse range of international cuisines, including Mexican, Italian, and more.
All the dining options are casual, but we enjoyed dressing up for dinner! You'll see people more dressed up later in the evening. It's when all the couples come out to dinner. You'll also avoid the family crowd by eating a little bit later.
I saw in reviews before we visited that there were complaints of long wait lines for the restaurants. I could see this being a potential issue, but we went in August and didn't see any restaurant lines. Plus, because of our status, we were able to make reservations at every restaurant. However, this is a perk you'll miss if you're not a Diamond member. The only one that was difficult to get into was the steak house which is reservation only and includes an up-charge.
Our Favorite Eats:
La Luce: Excellent Italian food with pasta, pizza, and more.
Maxal: Mexican food with unique approaches and regional styles with recipes from around the country.
Cocomar: Enjoy seafood and ceviche here. Only open for lunch.
Room Service is great for breakfast. It's available 24 hours a day, but we found scheduling it to come about 20 minutes after we woke up so lovely!
Poolside food trucks: quick bites and fresh options like local fruit, hummus, and salads. Open in the afternoons/lunchtime.
Bars and Lounges
There are five different bars that can make practically any drink you'd like. Every single one offers a view, making having a drink even more fun.
Skybar offers a great view over the ocean as you sip on drinks. They also have multiple hot tubs there, making it a great spot for a drink at sunset, where you might still want to be in the water, but a little warmer.
Mojito Lounge can make all different types of mojitos (as well as other drinks) and has fun swings/chairs you can lounge in.
Martini Lounge is an adults-only bar on the 12th floor. It's the highest spot regular guests can get to in the resort and the quietest in our experience.
The swim-up pool bar is located on the adults-only side of the pool and opens at 10 am daily.
The Lobby Bar is the perfect spot for a drink right after you arrive, especially if you have to wait for your room to be ready because of an earlier arrival!
Pools and Beach
Hilton Vallarta Riviera often features two swimming pools and direct access to a beautiful beach. You can relax by the pool, soak up the sun, or swim in the ocean.
Both pools are infinity pools, but the adult-only pool has a swim-up pool bar and is much more relaxed. You'll find you can wade in the kid-friendly pool, and there is a kiddy pool on the end, as well as beach volleyball and ping pong.
We found there were lots of beach loungers around the pool and the beach, but they filled up quickly. People will put their towel and book down to save their spot for the day. Cabanas are available too, but they are an extra fee. We didn't rent one because we felt they were expensive when you could just get a free beach chair instead.
There was poolside food and drink service in addition to the swim-up bar, and the staff was great at checking in on us!
The beach has several different sea walls around it, which keeps the water calm and makes it easy to hang out in the water here. We also saw people snorkel here, with the sea wall creating a natural spot for sea life to flourish around the rocks.
We liked swimming at both the beach and the pool. We found they were less crowded before lunch and after 3 pm. However, it was never too crowded for us to find a lounge chair or enjoy swimming. August was the perfect time to go to avoid crowds.
There is a lifeguard on duty at both the beach and pool.
Entertainment and Activities
The resort offers a range of entertainment and activities, including live music, dance shows, and themed nights. You can also partake in water sports, fitness classes, and more.
We took advantage of a few of the different activities at the resort and had a great time! Kayaking and SUP were some of the most popular. They open daily at 10 am, and you have to put your name down for a time. It was nice because you could come back at whatever time you signed up for and had no worries about lines.
As mentioned, when you check in, you're given a wristband. The wristband acts as your form of payment and your room key and has a QR code to scan to get the weekly schedule. The schedule will tell you all the different things going on at the resort for the week.
A new schedule comes out every Sunday, which isn't as convenient if you arrive on, say, a Friday and stay through Tuesday like we did because we didn't know the details on what was happening our last two days until Sunday. It was not a huge deal, though, because we were more interested in the activities outside the resort.
They offer daily activities like dance lessons, yoga, or crafts, as well as things like volleyball tournaments and ways to interact with others. In the evenings, there's entertainment in the lobby and other activities like casino night, silent disco parties, and DJs in the lounges. We did attend a few of the shows and activities. I think the performances were fun, but we always ended up leaving them early because we were so tired or hungry.
The Eforea Spa is onsite at the Hilton Vallarta Riviera and is open daily from 9 am to 9 pm. It offers a variety of spa services for an upcharge. We ended up doing a hydrotherapy session while there and thought it was fun. They have hydrotherapy pools, steam rooms, saunas, whirlpools, massages, facials, and body treatments. We were a bit disappointed because some of the sauna rooms and hydrotherapy jets were not working while there.
Adults Only and Kids' and Teens' Club
One thing I liked about the resort was that it included adult-only activities and areas. There's an adult-only pool, adult-only guest rooms, and bars/lounges for adults only. I liked this because we didn't want a party resort, but we did want a resort where we could relax with the city nearby. I feel like this was the perfect combination!
If you're traveling with children or teenagers, the resort often provides kids' and teens' clubs with supervised activities and games.
The Kids Club is a colorful, bright indoor space with games and activities. While there, we noticed that they had special things going on at different times of the day. The room had windows across the front, making checking in on your kids easy. The activities and programs are for kids 4-12 years old.
For teens, there are sports tournaments, art workshops, photography classes, and music and dance classes. There are also teen nights and activities geared toward teens.
We had amazing interactions with staff throughout our stay. From checking in to the staff at restaurants and bars, everyone was wonderful to interact with. We often wondered if it partially had to do with our wristbands being a different color, but really, we think people here were kind and happy to help make sure you had a nice stay!
We also spoke in Spanish with staff when we could and had small US dollar bills on hand to give tips. Small acts of appreciation are always a good idea.
Overall, I do recommend staying at this resort. We really enjoyed our time here, and it's convinced me that I actually am an all-inclusive resort person; I just had to stay at the right kind and... this was it! This resort provides an opportunity for a relaxing beachfront vacation in the beautiful setting of Puerto Vallarta.
Please note that the specifics of amenities, services, and packages offered by the Hilton Vallarta Riviera All-Inclusive Resort may change over time, so it's a good idea to check their official website or contact the resort directly to get the most up-to-date information on what they offer, including pricing, availability, and any special promotions.