July 17-31, 2021
Villa Del Palmar
Puerto Vallarta

Good time But on your own for Covid safety!

We arrived at the resort to a mass of people, lined up, unmasked in the lobby. All staff were masked but there was No enforcement of Covid masking and social distancing. ( these were mandates at the time we were there, as Covid was spiking to its highest levels ever in PV).
I contemplated getting back in our car and leaving seeing this. I felt worried for all, myself and staff included who were masked but many as yet not vaccinated. We were vaccinated and did expect the same protocol we had seen in June on a trip to another resort to be enforced but alas, that was not the case.

I had requested a one bedroom with 2 bathrooms. I was told yes it had been assigned to me but who knew when it would be ready.
Did I want to take another room in a different building that was ready? We agreed to look at the room and it had a totally different layout so we opted out, stating we would keep the one on a lower floor that was assigned to us. No hurry, as we went off to Costco to stock up on snacks etc. The timeshare salesperson/concierge ran for us and of course wanted to give us our envelope of resort maps, complimentary drink and VIP card, we said okay but just give it to us as we are going shopping while waiting for our room. She removed the complimentary coupon for two drinks and the VIP card. I asked why she was taking things out & so on, but never got a reply. Later in our stay we mentioned this to them as it is complimentary and does not state conditions of listening to their timeshare spiel. We got nowhere with that but sadly it did change our respect for the resort.
Four hours later with lines still in lobby of unmasked folks, some masked but most not, we asked for our room. Nope it was not ready and could be hours more, apparently they wanted our room for someone else, well, I am not easily swayed so no problem we will go eat and return but we are not changing the assigned room. After getting something to eat and a few more hours we finally returned to a less packed lobby and yes ,yay , hooray our room was ready.

As I stated it was a one bedroom with 2 bathrooms one off the master bedroom and one in the hall. The kitchen was a galley style with a decent size refrigerator and freezer. Had most things you needed. The living room was off kitchen which had a bar for seating and it had a TV, some chairs, a couch, and a murphy bed. Off the living room was a balcony with a table and chairs for four. We were on the second floor so you could see everything on ground below easily. The bed was comfortable, pillows not so much. Tv in bedroom as well. Couch not comfortable but we made do. Kitchen had coffeemaker, toaster, blender, dishes, microwave, cabinets, and sufficient space, even the knives, which I bring our own, were sharp.
We were happy with our room, though quite dated which was wonderful as we would soon find out we would be spending more time in it than expected.

The room was clean. The resort clean though food trays and trash frequently left in halls on top of garbage cans where it might be days before removed. The resort itself was packed, masks were not enforced at all, we used the stairs only as no one wore mask except staff. No matter when you went into lobby there were lots of folks lounging around unmasked. No social distancing anywhere including by pools, in lobby, in the market etc. Very disappointing and frankly scary. I reported more than once that masks were a mandate in public areas but nothing changed. There were no towel cards by pool and getting a seat was difficult and you might be right next to another group. We solved that by using the pool at Villa del Mar and putting our towels over two loungers and using a table. We left many times as someone sat near us, coughing, sneezing and unmasked. Okay no masks while swimming or seated but roaming about halls and around pool masks should have been enforced. Activities went on daily as though nothing was different, without mask. Even in the Palomita market people were unmasked.
I like this resort but this was totally against city mandates and truly made for an uncomfortable vacation. I will think from now on until Covid is decreased where I will vacation in PV. Such a shame that such a small thing could not be enforced in public areas for the safety of all.

We spent some of the day by the pool usually getting lunch , having a swim if not crowded and then back to our room. The restaurants on site were crowded every night so that was not a choice we wished to choose.

We lost power in our room quite a few times during our stay which was not a pleasant thought thinking about groceries we bought and rooms get quite hot this time of year. Thankfully only one night it went out for many hours otherwise it was no more than a few hours. Generator??

The maid did a simple job in our room but rarely left refills of amenities like shampoo, conditioner etc. I went out and bought my own after a few days.

We did a few things off site and I will review them separately.
We made the best of a not great situation, had an over all good time, were thrilled when Covid test came back negative but disappointed in the resorts overall attitude about it, when hospitals were at 100% capacity and money and such was obviously more important than people's lives.

Will we return? Likely but not in high season and not if the hotel is over capacity and in a situation as we experienced. There are resorts who actually do follow the mandates. This was certainly not what I expected of this resort, so giving grace to hard times, I do assume they will up their standards to continue to have safe, happy guests at their resort.