Good, Bad, & Ugly PDC AIs

Feb 21st, 2008, 08:48 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 16
Good, Bad, & Ugly PDC AIs

We are going to PDC in June and looking for an all inclusive resort. Since we have not been there, I was wondering if anyone had suggestions on where to stay and where to avoid.

brandieb is offline  
Feb 22nd, 2008, 07:01 AM
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,077
There are not as many AI's in PV as in the Caribbean side of Mexico. Most people don't receommend AI's in PV since there are many great restuarants. In the actual PV area look at:

Buenaventura Grand Hotel & Spa

Canto Del Sol Plaza Vallarta

Crown Paradise Club Puerto Vallarta

Golden Crown Paradise Club - Adult's only

Hola Puerto Vallarta Club and Spa

Holiday Inn Puerto Vallarta

Las Palmas by the Sea

NH Krystal Vallarta

Plaza Pelicanos Grand Bch Rst

Playa Los Arcos

Villa Premier - adult's only

Most people who like AI properties recommend the 2 Crown Paradise Club hotels and Buenaventura.

We stayed at the Playa Los Arcos and enjoyed it. It's a lower budget hotel and for the price we paid it was worth it. We did have a few issues with the room, so I would suggest getting one of the suites. The location is excellant. Within walking distance to resturants, bars, entertainment, shopping and the Maceleon, which was more important to us then a fancy hotel. We did the AI plan for $150 total for the both of us for 4 nights. Absolutely worth it in drinks alone. The food was sound. We ate the breakfast buffet twice, the Mexican Fietsa night buffet, which was good and one other evening buffet that wasn't that great. It was still worth in to us though. We ate out several times also. It was the best of both worlds.

KVR is offline  
Feb 22nd, 2008, 08:07 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,007
The OP was looking for Playa del Carmen info, not Puerto Vallarta. Would be a bit of a commute!
beanweb24 is offline  
Feb 22nd, 2008, 08:10 AM
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 515
Is it for all adults? If so, The Royal PDC or Royal Hideaway both great. Shangri La is not AI, but you get 2 meals a day with them so it leaves time to explore local places (and there are many). Beaches can be questionable in Playacar. Both the Royal PDC and Shangri-La have nice beaches.
beachbum2 is offline  
Feb 22nd, 2008, 12:30 PM
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,077
ooops, sorry misread the initials

In that case, I agree with the Royal Playa del Carmen. Other choices would be Royal Hidaway, Secrets Capri, any of the Barcelo, Iberostar, RIU or Palace resorts. There are just so many AI's in that area. You might list a few things that your are looking for or is important to you.

Many hotels in the Mayan Riviera are set pretty far from the town of Playa del Carmen. Look closely at the location if that matters to you.

KVR is offline  
Feb 22nd, 2008, 08:11 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 16
It will be me, my husband, & two girls 12 & 6. We are interested in AI just for the ease. However the hotel with the two meals a day sounds like a good option too. We are looking for a place with a suite option, beachfront, a/c (this is a must!). While we are there, we will probably spend time visting one of the ruins, horseback riding, & snorkeling. I greatly appreciate all of the advice. It's our first trip to Mexico with the kiddos.
brandieb is offline  
Mar 30th, 2008, 07:48 AM
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 23
hey KVR I like your knowledge-- I am still ( husband!!wants ease, no brainer of AI) weighing AI in maybe Playa de Carmen vs not AI Turks...... 2 teens 14 and 18 we dont love huge crowds and they want water activities they dont care about other teens/ they actually like to hang with us on vacation. looking at maybe $8000 including airfare? would you recommend AI most in Mexican Caribbean coast? if Aruba where might they like?
jencla is offline  
Mar 31st, 2008, 06:49 PM
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 20
Last october, my wife and I, along with my wife's sister, brother in law, and their two children 9 and 15 yrs, spent one night at the reef club, was great, and are planning a return to PDC this june, are thinking of trying sandos caracol, just to check different places, read many good reviews. I think one would enjoy most of the resorts along the Riviera Maya. I find that it is best to ignore negative reviews as with some people, nothing cane be done to their satisfaction.
mrfreeze is offline  
Apr 2nd, 2008, 06:10 AM
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 4,077

It really depends on what your wanting in a vacation. We love Mexico and been several times due to we can get a really inexpensive package at a great AI hotel. We are going back to Cancun in 3 weeks. There are lots of things to see and do off property. One of the negatives I have regarding Playa del Carmen is there are not many AI hotels in the vincity of the town of Playa. I really don't like going to the huge mega AI complexes that are set out in the middle of nowhere.

Another thing is, the Playa del Carmen area and Cancun has some severe beach erosion right now. So if a great beach is important, research carefully.

In Turks & Caicos, Grace Bay Beach and the other surrounding beaches are just awesome. What we didn't like about T & C was that the food/drinks prices were quite high, all activites are water related and quite expensive. There is no day or evening entertainment and the shopping is quite limited. We were bored. However, if your ideal vacation is sitting on a wonderful beach, snorkeling, diving and boating, T & C is the destination for that.

Our new favorite Island is Aruba. Sorta reminds me of Las Vegas meets the beach. There are many restaurants and bars all within walking distance of each other and the hotels on Palm Beach. There are many things to see and do off the resort that not just water related. We like the overall atmosphere. There is good evening entertainment. Though we love AI resorts, AI in Aruba is not recommended. Eagle Beach is very nice. I would suggest a hotel there. However, Palm Beach has water activity kiosks, and it closer to resturants, bars and shopping. The bus to downtown is convenient and inexpensive.
The only negative I have for Aruba is the distance from the US. A 5 hour plane ride is not fun, but worth it in the end.

If your interested we have our vacation pictures posted at:
KVR is offline  
Apr 2nd, 2008, 11:30 AM
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 23
Since you are taking young children, I would suggest Barcelo Maya Beach Resort (nice beach and lots of things for the kids to do) Royal Hideaway is really nice, but its "adults only". Barcelo is a lil south of PDC, but a very short shuttle or taxi ride IF you feel the need to go into town! I took my 2 daughters to Barcelo Maya a few years back and they LOVED it - never at a loss for things to do and lots for my husband & I to do as well (we played tennis everyday!). We spent most afternoons relaxing on the beach - so can be very laid back too if you prefer it that way! also a great pier for snorkeling-lots of fish!
blondie_ski is offline  
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