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Garza Blanca Resort, Puerto Vallarta 

Carretera Barra de Navidad, Km 7.5
Puerto Vallarta
Tel: 52 322 176 0700
view web site ›'s insider take:

Cupping a small cove south of downtown Puerto Vallarta, Garza Blanca epitomizes the kind of sunny serenity you'd expect from a five-star resort on the Pacific coast of Mexico. The centerpiece is a free-form tiered pool staffed by butlers who deliver fluffy towels and chilled water to your umbrella-shaded chaise longue—plan on watching a margarita sunset from the horizon tier, which sits right above the beach. Inside, the 79 cream-colored, sea-facing suites have floor-to-ceiling windows, plush platform beds, and dark-wood furnishings; amenities include flat-screen TVs and iPod docking stations, along with whirlpool tubs in the shiny marble bathrooms. Wrought-iron chandeliers hang above the suite dining rooms beside chef-worthy kitchens, and hammocks big enough for two swing outside on oversize balconies. The waterside tables on the terrace at Blanca Blue restaurant are in high demand, and the menu—which might include beet sorbet, shrimp wrapped in prosciutto, duck with foie gras, and amazing truffled poached eggs at breakfast—rivals any on the Puerto Vallarta's gourmet dining scene. The lunchtime scallop and mango ceviche at Aquazul, a casual snack bar by the pool, is mighty fine as well.—Maribeth Mellin

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