Puerto Vallarta is without a doubt Mexico’s most gay-friendly city, so it’s no surprise couples flock here for the romantic trip of a lifetime. Now with same-sex marriage beginning to expand throughout Mexico and temperatures dropping north of the border, this more-than-affordable destination — with its tropical setting, stunning views, tantalizing tastes, and endless chances for adventure — is just right for sparking the flames of a new relationship or a seasoned one. It’s a place where passion blooms and lives: the late great Elizabeth Taylor even once favored the city as the stomping grounds for her decades-long love affair with Richard Burton, forever branding it a timeless place of legendary love. The city is now back to romancing as usual after Hurricane Odile ravaged Mexico’s west coast in September. We checked in on P.V. post-Odile and, luckily, found it as vibrant as ever. Check out our latest recommendations below:
At Casa Velas, a TAG-approved, all-inclusive adult-only boutique hotel, you’ll find the perfect suite decorated in authentic Mexican fashion to match the occasion: one-bedroom and two-bedroom suites, each with a king-sized bed, a lush garden terrace and private immersion pool; or the Grand Class Plus Suite featuring garden or golf course views, and Italian marble bathrooms with a Jacuzzi for two. Also available on property is a giant deep blue immersion pool; free wifi; concierge; fitness center; Emiliano’s Restaurant, serving gourmet Mexican cuisine for breakfast, lunch and formal romantic dinners daily; and total access to the resort’s private beachfront Ocean Club with infinity-edge pool and hot tub, and sister resort Velas Vallarta, a family-friendly resort which hosts even more dining, amenity and activity options.
The gay-owned-and-operated Casa Cupula sees many LGBT visitors staying in its modern suites, each uniquely furnished and decorated with works by local artists, and offering luxury in-room amenities like free wifi, cable and flat screen TVs. Guests may also make use of the hotel’s PUMP Gym, private main pool, hot tub, and rooftop sundeck with a lounge and infinity dipping pool surrounded by breathtaking views of the Sierra Madre mountains and azure waters of Banderas Bay — an ideal spot to catch one of Puerto Vallarta’s beautiful sunsets. For maximum romance, in-room spa service packages for two are available, or you can make a reservation for two at one of the city’s top restaurants, Taste Restaurant, which is also located on the hotel property, serving up Asian, Mexican and Mediterranean cuisine for breakfast, a poolside lunch, and dinner. Casa Cupula is situated only a few blocks from Zona Romantica, Puerto Vallarta’s gay neighborhood, so it’s within walking distance of the city’s mix of gay bars, nightclubs, lounges, the boardwalk Malécon and art galleries spread throughout historical Old Town.
For the ultimate sensual dining experience, Café des Artistes in Old Town Puerto Vallarta cooks up a nightly prix-fixe menu of fresh Mexican ingredients prepared with European techniques and paired wine by owner and chef Thierry Blouet, paying intense attention to the color, texture, aroma and flavors of each course. It’s a dinner to remember, whether you dine inside in the fantasy-like dining room surrounded by floating glass sculptures, candlelight, piano bar, and a violinist who visits each table taking requests — or outdoors in a jungle-like setting under the stars.
Truly get lost in the dream world that is Puerto Vallarta by visiting Vista Grill in its elegant hilltop restaurant for a romantic dinner of delicious Mexican cuisine creatively prepared with fresh, locally grown ingredients. Indulge your tastebuds while gorging on the goosebump-inducing ocean and skyline views for a once-in-a-lifetime dining experience that you would be pressed to find in any other world-class city.
Vallarta Adventures is Puerto Vallarta’s premier tour operator offering activities that range from extreme zip lining and flyboarding to surfing and kayaking. If you and your sweetheart are looking to create some lasting memories that will shock your senses, horseback ride through waterfalls, scuba dive with tropical fish over colorful reefs off the coast, or swim with the dolphins.
At sunset, experience Rhythms of the Night in Las Caletas, a private cove beach only accessible by boat from Puerto Vallarta. Once here, you’ll follow a trail of torches to a dinner buffet on the sand. After dinner, enjoy a firelit show of Mexican dancers recounting stories and ancient rituals on a jungle pyramid stage, set to the beat of native drums.