I just came home from two American Bar Association Section of Labor and Employment Law midwinter meeting in Puerta Vallarta, and here are my top ten tips anyone heading to down to the Westin for an ABA LEL meeting.
1. The Westin's pools so very lovely. The kids pool is much quieter and usually has plenty of shaded open space. The other pool has the swim up bar, but waiter service is also available (I like the shrimp quesadilla). There are even three giant pool cushions in the very shallow area. Those fill up first. As you enjoy the pool, remember that the lovely "island" slowly slope in to the pool, and so if you are walking around the pool, watch your footing.
2. I heard a rumor that the Westin's fancy restaurant on the beach has "sexy coffee" which is sounds like the Mayan coffee in the link. My greatest regret from the trip was not trying it.
3. If there is a sunset cruise option for the conference, I recommend it. It was great. If you wind up feeling a little seasickness, remember to watch the horizon, and sit near the front of the boat.
4. Silver and tequila shopping in Old Town/Romantic Zone is a blast. I like to take a taxi to the landmark church in the center of old town, and walk Sounth toward the Romantic Zone, walking through town to hit the slops and walking back along the beach to enjoy the "board walk" feel. My friends and I split a really delicious coffee meringue at one of the tiny storefront bakeries.
5. I'm very jealous of who went to the taco tour with Vallarta Eats. Next time, this is on my must do list
6. Puerta Vallarta's Malacon is the walk way along the beach filled with mostly international tourist during the day and Mexican tourists at night. There are amazing fancy restaurants all over town, which I have heard great thing about. But shrimp fajitas at a place like Bar Oceano had a much more local feel, which was also a fun and more affordable excursion.
7. If you want a shrimp fajita closer to the hotel, the marina's Fajita Banana is also a fun and affordable (sports bar) option.
8. Consider a side trip. I arrived two days early and went south to Xinalani for few days of glamping at a yoga resort. I enjoyed sleeping in the budget friendlier dorm room, under a mosquito curtain with the sound of the waves.. The food was delicious, and the surf lesson was a blast. The resort is not at all accessible those with mobility issues, and has A LOT OF STEPS, and require a ride in a small boat and ATV to get there. But, for the right crowd, it is a super side trip and I especially recommend getting a coco loco or fresh coconut. After drinking the beverages, they will offer to machetes out the meet and added chili spices. It was really delicious .
9. Before you go, enroll in the hotel loyalty program. Even if you never earn a free night, you can qualify for free wifi during your stay.