Sitting at the confluence of the lush Sierra Madre Mountains and the glittering Pacific Ocean, Puerto Vallarta is a mesmerizing Mexican gem offering a tantalizing feast for the senses.
Famed for its sun-kissed beaches, verdant landscapes, and kaleidoscopic cultural scene, this coastal paradise offers a range of activities, from zip-lining experiences to canopy tours and epic kayaking excursions.
The city’s hotels embody the spirit of Mexico’s west coast, and range from traditional hacienda-style boutiques to luxury beachfront resorts. Here are my favourite cool and unusual hotels in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico (in no particular order)...
1. Hotel Mousai – Adults Only – a cool, unique and trendy property that is the first 5 Diamond adults-only hotel in Puerto Vallarta
An eclectic fusion of imagination, functionality, and contemporary design brings a sense of artistic magnitude and graceful character to this cutting-edge resort, where each area is a unique showcase of discreet luxury.
The property is graced by majestic gardens which feel as if you’re in the heart of the jungle. Soaring high above Banderas Bay, the hip and happening rooftop beach club experience is a burst of bold innovation that beckons guests to revel in awe-inspiring vistas across the ocean azure.
Staying here was a true journey of the senses, with some of the finest gourmet cuisine I have ever savoured, and a serene pampering experience offered in the on-site wellness centre.
• To book, check prices or availability for Hotel Mousai – Adults Only
2. Casa Elevar at Orchid – a hip, trendy and contemporary aparthotel perfect for large groups who can enjoy a rooftop pool and majestic mountain views
Casa Elevar sits majestically on a towering escarpment overlooking the ocean azure, and is clad head to toe in timeless luxury.
Each evening, sitting on the expansive wooden terrace while admiring the most captivating horizon sunset was a mesmerizing experience.
The sparkling turquoise tool, the palm-fringed eatery, and the luxuriously appointed guestrooms were all crafted with comfort and beauty at the core, setting the scene for a memorable, romantic vacation for couples.
A stand-out feature here is the delightful staff presence, who helped me draft up the most unforgettable itineraries, which included embarking on once-in-a-lifetime snorkelling excursions in the nearby waters.
• To book, check prices or availability for Casa Elevar at Orchid
3. San Trópico Petit Hotel & Peaceful Escape – a charming, quirky-chic peaceful boutique hotel located in one of the most renowned and safe residential neighborhoods in Puerto Vallarta
Located in one of the most prestigious residential neighbourhoods in Puerto Vallarta, this graceful boutique awaits guests with an elegant blend of nature and comfort.
Quirky artwork stands side-by-side with traditional elements, bringing a refined elegance to the interiors. The plant-fringed pool offers an idyllic spot to soak up the tropical climate, and is framed by cosy, shaded seating areas beckoning guests to savour a delicious homemade coffee.
Café San Trópico, the on-site eatery, is a popular spot amongst locals and passers-by, owing to its supreme plant-forward menus and expertly crafted beverage options.
As you retreat to your room after a day under the sun, a whole host of modern amenities are guaranteed to keep you pampered in luxury.
• To book, check prices or availability for San Trópico Petit Hotel & Peaceful Escape
4. Krystal Altitude Vallarta – All Inclusive – a cool, bright and modern place to stay in sunny Puerto Vallarta that is within walking distance from Playa de Oro
The cheerful, classy atmosphere characteristic of the Krystal brand awaits guests in a pristine beachfront setting, where rustling palms frame a selection of sparkling pools.
On-site offerings include a brand-new state-of-the-art kids club, various lounges, a graceful cafeteria, a vibrant lobby bar, and 9 gastronomic proposals ready to enrich your palate.
A timeless Mexican charm permeates the luxurious suites, which are surrounded by exuberant vegetation and steeped in a blissful rest-oriented design.
The panoramic views around the resort were a real treat, whether kicking back on my private terrace, sunbathing on the charming wooden deck, or meandering through the property’s luxuriant grounds.
• To book, check prices or availability for Krystal Altitude Vallarta – All Inclusive
5. Villa Lala Boutique Hotel – a petite Instaworthy boutique hotel that is an excellent romantic spot for honeymooners, situated in Boca de Tomatlán region
Villa Lala offers an undisturbed environment for reconnection, with its awe-inspiring natural setting on the southern coast of Puerto Vallarta.
Its vast green areas blend in seamlessly with the verdant environs, forming a dazzling spectacle which can be relished in full force from the sparkling infinity pool. I loved taking long hikes through the surrounding mountains and paddling a kayak along the nearby bay.
I booked the Tree Love Nest, which laid on top of a luxuriant tropical canopy and was accessed by climbing a suspended wooden staircase with handrails made of natural elements from the area.
The in-room washbasins carved out of stone, the impressive artwork, and the tropical hues brought a rustic jungle-feel to my stay.
• To book, check prices or availability for Villa Lala Boutique Hotel
6. Hotel Posada De Roger – one of the most artistic and swanky Mexican-style hotels in downtown Puerto Vallarta
Combining authentic Mexican architecture with the ultimate downtown location in the Zona Romantica, this charming boutique brings a cheerful, family elegance to your Puerto Vallarta vacation.
Colourful mosaic tiles, tropical-inspired embellishments, and graceful rattan furniture beautify the interior aesthetic, and the charming pool area is girdled by blue and white striped loungers offering a peaceful reprieve.
Posada De Roger was one of the neighbourhood’s first hotels, and has since expanded and modernized while maintaining its warm-hearted colonial charm. Each room is appointed with traditional Mexican décor, and dressed in a flamboyant flair with plenty of vivid artwork and bright splashes of colour.
• To book, check prices or availability for Hotel Posada De Roger
7. Maxwell Residences at Indah – a gorgeous, chic and exquisite hotel that is steps away from Zona Romántica
The high-quality service of a resort combines with the homeliness of a private residence at Maxwell, where nature and culture coalesce to form a vibrant and authentic hospitality experience.
From the sparkling on-site pools you can relish an exquisite horizon sunset, and the rooftop restaurant & bar brings an elevated sense of beachfront luxury to your vacation.
The resort is al-fresco living redefined, with floor-to-ceiling glass doors opening onto expansive terraces set before a once-in-a-lifetime ocean backdrop.
A step outside the property lands you within a mosaic of entertainment offerings, however the most exquisite culinary experience lies within the walls of the on-site al-fresco restaurant.
• To book, check prices or availability for Maxwell Residences at Indah
8. Grand Miramar All Luxury Suites & Residences – a colorful, upscale and flowery resort situated on the hills of the amazing Conchas Chinas area
With its privileged setting at the highest point of Puerto Vallarta, Grand Miramar offers breath-taking views from every suite and residence.
Inside, the modern decoration incorporates marbles, granites, fine tropical woods, and handcrafted furniture, setting a luxurious scene for your Mexican vacation.
A stand-out feature here is the gastronomy, with opportunities to indulge in traditional haute cuisine, mouth-watering local fare, and a buffet-spread. I loved relaxing on the pool terrace, where the views extended out across the horizon.
The Gin Joint is another great hang-out spot, where the 360 degree panoramas are complemented by graceful, ambient lounge music.
• To book, check prices or availability for Grand Miramar All Luxury Suites & Residences
9. Sunscape Residence Tower – a sexy tropical beachfront resort that offers panoramic views of Banderas Bay
Situated close to the historical, colonial town centre and affording epic views of the sparkling Banderas Bay from a soft sand beach, Sunscape Residence Tower is a haven of endless fun, indulgence, and luxury.
Catering perfectly to families, the kids can stay entertained with the boundless activities on offer courtesy of the animation team, while adults can relax poolside with a cocktail in hand.
The whale-watching excursion and the seasonal turtle release spectacle were some of the best tours I have ever embarked on, and the delectable dining options on-site completed the package! The guestrooms echo the hotel’s ethos of understated luxury, with many pampering amenities on offer.
• To book, check prices or availability for Sunscape Residence Tower
10. Villa Premiere Boutique Hotel & Romantic Getaway – a stylish oceanfront hotel where guests can relax and have an unforgettable getaway on a private beach
Here we have an oceanfront gem of refined luxury, which brings a serene atmosphere to your Pacific Coast getaway.
As a proud recipient of prestigious international awards, Villa Premiere blissfully re-interprets a traditional Mexican hospitality in a contemporary boutique style. It nestles just a few blocks from the iconic boardwalk ‘El Malecón’, and captivates guests’ senses through creative culinary offerings, exceptional amenity-laden guestrooms, and scintillating views all around.
Through the use of tropical woods, vivid colour accents in hand-woven textiles, and locally inspired elements, the exhilarating oceanfront surroundings are echoed idyllically here.
Each evening, sitting out on my private balcony and witnessing a majestic sunset over the horizon was a mesmerizing experience.
• To book, check prices or availability for Villa Premiere Boutique Hotel & Romantic Getaway
11. Maxwell Residences at Orchid – an urban oasis of paradise that offers great facilities such as an outdoor swimming pool and a fitness center, ideal for Millennials and Gen Zs
Set within 4200 square feet of luxuriant grounds, this eclectic resort welcomes guests to a world of contemporary luxury, where a harmony with nature is etched into the core of the property.
The open-concept dining and living spaces, the spa-inspired bathrooms, and the shimmering turquoise pools combine to bring a sense of elegance to the modern jetsetter, soundtracked by the crashing of the waves below.
My room came with floor-to-ceiling windows, which allowed the lush panorama of the Pacific to beam through and set a true pampering tone to my Mexican vacation.
The rooftop infinity pool is the longest in Puerto Vallarta, and is perched high above the Conchas Chinas Beach, affording the most idyllic cocktail spot.
• To book, check prices or availability for Maxwell Residences at Orchid
12. Hotel Boutique Rivera Del Rio – a traditional Mexican hotel embraced by Insta-worthy panoramic views based along the river in the old town district
Here we have an authentic Mexican Bed & Breakfast villa which nestles on the verdant banks of the Rio Cuale River.
As a guest here, you will be transported back through the ages where bygone-era Puerto Vallarta intertwines with a sense of architectural grandeur, crafting an opulent setting for an immersive hospitality experience.
As you take a refreshing dip in the emerald pool amid 360 degree jungle views, or relax in the Greek oyster alabaster spa, you will discover a sensuous harmony which feels worlds away from everyday life.
I absolutely loved my room, which was a work of art in itself. It boasted luscious stripes of black ribbon and chartreuse, and was apexed by painted cherubs designed by local artisans.
• To book, check prices or availability for Hotel Boutique Rivera Del Rio
13. BellView Hotel Boutique – a prestigious Mediterranean-style boutique hotel where guests can witness beautiful sunsets
Situated in Gringo Gulch, a trendy area in the heart of Puerto Vallarta, BellView offers incredible panoramic views of the bay and the emblematic Guadalupe cathedral.
From the many open-air hang-out spots, covered with bougainvillea, a gorgeous backdrop of the surrounding red roofs of the city offers the most breath-taking spot to witness a majestic sunset.
The suites blur the lines between traditional and modern, with plush linens and state-of-the-art-amenities towered over by antique vaulted ceilings.
I loved listening to live instrumental music while savouring delicious Italian and international cuisine in the evenings, before taking advantage of the comprehensive wine list in La Cappella bar.
• To book, check prices or availability for BellView Hotel Boutique
14. Hacienda San Angel – an one-of-a-kind instagrammable property that is minutes away from the iconic Parish of Our Lady of Guadalupe
This traditional hacienda-style property is an elegant spot where Gothic meets exotic, and religious effigies hide in corners.
The corridors are lit with candelabras, and lead to the cosy guestrooms where heavy wood altars are used as bed heads.
Besides the hidden mezzanine swimming pool you will find statues of angels which act as decorative fountains, and the charming courtyard is lit by hundreds of candles at night, adding an air of romance. All suites are themed differently but are all adorned with traditional Mexican tapestries and boast religious symbols in the form of art and sculptures.
I thoroughly enjoyed tucking into international fare at the on-site restaurant, which is located on a terrace with twinkly views out across Puerto Vallarta to the bay.
• To book, check prices or availability for Hacienda San Angel
15. Hotel Suites Mar Elena – a down-to-earth and travel-sustainable hotel that is near the vibrant Malecón esplanade
Here we have a stunning downtown abode, blending a traditional aesthetic with a sense of modern comfort in the heart of Puerto Vallarta.
Mar Elena is the perfect tropical retreat, which centres around a luxuriant palm-fringed garden, where an authentic Mexican style prevails.
From the soaring rooftop terrace which is dotted by cosy lounge chairs, to the intimate living room where you can recline in refined elegance, every space here has been designed to exude glamour and sophistication.
Each room is bedecked with a whole host of modern amenities, and many come with cosy seating areas and fully equipped kitchenettes.
• To book, check prices or availability for Hotel Suites Mar Elena
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Ever since he was knee-high to a grasshopper Michael has always been a sucker for an adventure. Growing up he was lucky enough to live in a handful of exotic far flung locations including Hong Kong, Pakistan, Kenya and Tanzania and since then he’s continued his taste for seeking out new cultures. So much in fact he now travels the world as a trading digital nomad, exploring everything from the sizzling street markets in Bangkok to random back alleys in Sri Lanka and everything in between! He also has a special fondness for Cohibas, street food, playing carrom, and fine wine and knows his clarets from his chiantis. He counts Cuba, Amsterdam, Indonesia, Cambodia and Italy as his favourite destinations.