One of the things I will forever be the most grateful for is the love for adventure and travel that my parents have instilled in me. Every family budgets their money differently, while some save up for a newer car or a newer TV, my family saved up for airfare. I was less than a year old my first time out of the country, I can not recollect a time where international travel was not a part of my life. While I wouldn’t be able to pick out my most favorite place to travel to, there is one place that so many of my most cherished memories have stemmed from.
Sometime in the mid-70s, my mamma and her first mother-in-law (aptly referred to as my Nana Cleo) bought into a timeshare together with Vacation Internationale.
Timeshares can get a bad rap, and anyone who has exited the customs area in the Puerto Vallarta airport will tell you that some of the salespeople are at times needlessly aggressive with their tactics. Thankfully, it’s never really been like that with VI. While they have a bunch of locations, we normally stay at Vallarta Torre.
This was the pool that my parents taught me to swim in. They used to have to drag me out of the water to reapply sunscreen while joking that I was part fish. When I was little, there used to be this dolphin statue in the middle of the pool.
Even though it’s not there anymore, remembering climbing to the top and jumping off into the water still brings joy to my inner child. Though small children jumping off of it is probably part of the reason it was removed. Good call on their part to be honest. I was a hellion.
Now, when I spend time at the pool it’s mostly just lounging on the chairs, reading books and religiously applying sunscreen. Interspersed with having a few cocktails at the palapa bar with my mamma.
Anyone who knows me will tell you my utmost favorite thing in this world is reading a book in the sunshine with a good cocktail. This trip was no exception. In my five days there I was able to make it through five books. Out of the mostly thrillers that I devoured, my favorite was actually a book on the last execution to take place in Iceland – Burial Rites by Hannah Kent.
Vallarta Torre is located close to the marina on the beach. It’s been really fun watching how it’s evolved over the years. There’s an onsite restaurant, bar over the pool that serves the pool and beach areas, sitewide wifi (which extends to the beach), and (most recently) a little workout area. Each room has a balcony facing the ocean, and I will never tire of these views.
Another thing that we love is that each room has its own little kitchen area. Which we use quite a bit. We actually go grocery shopping at the Costco down the road and the little grocery store across the street so we can make meals in our room. Followed by a few bottles of wine and many hands of pinochle, because I’m not sure it’d really be a vacation without a few drunken card games.
When we do leave the hotel, it’s usually to our favorite places in old town. A taxi downtown / old town Puerto Vallarta from Vallarta Torre will usually cost about $120-150 pesos each way.
Vista Grill recently just moved to the beachfront next to La Palapa. It used to be more in the mountains with the most gorgeous view of the city, though the views beachside were just as gorgeous.
The food also still impeccable. The mezcal drinks just as refreshing.
After dinner, we walked up to Cafe Tizoc and had a few Spanish Coffees as a nightcap.
Whether it’s five days or two weeks, the time always flys by much too quickly. As much as I love traveling to new places, there’s something relaxing about coming back to a home away from home. It’s the perfect place to recharge and slow down. I’ve only been home a few days and I’m already looking forward to next year.