Grade 3.9 out of 5 Stars
This 5-star adults-only all-inclusive resort only opened in August 2021, so when we say it is freshly opened we really mean it. It can always be a bit worrying to book a resort that has limited reviews and guest feedback about it. The Secrets brand does pack a punch, so that alone should give you some solace. We were one of the first guests through the door and this review details our experiences during our visit.
There are 278 suites at the Secrets resorts, so it’s a medium-sized resort. As some of the amenities are shared with the Dreams resort it does make some areas feel a little busy. Although the Dreams and Secrets are separate resorts, they are in such close proximity, they are basically the same resort.
The resort has beautiful architecture and aesthetics. It’s super modern and you feel like you are at a 5-star luxury resort when you step through the doors. The views from the resort are also really stunning with 180-degree views of the ocean and stunning mountain ranges in the distance.
Around a 50-minute drive from Puerto Vallarta’s International Airport and the town of Puerto Vallarta. It is definitely a more remote location for a resort and you won’t be popping into town for a bite to eat. The resort is effectively located in a Jungle, which means that there is lovely vegetation and really impressive wildlife at your doorstep.
Due to this resort being in quite a remote location, there aren’t a huge amount of organized excursions on offer. We actually preferred this setup as it forced us to explore the local area ourselves. We would recommend that you rent a car if you want to do this as everything is at least a 30-minute drive away from the resort.
- Although this is an adults-only resort because the sister Dreams (Family-friendly) resort is in such close proximity. There are a lot of areas where you will hear and see kids. So if you were looking for a kid-free experience this may not be the best resort to choose. A number of rooms overlook the kid’s pool and the Dreams resort, so when your booking makes sure that you book a room. When you’re booking the rooms that are overlooking or close to the Dreams resort have this message in their description. “Note – Resort view suites face the pool areas and common grounds shared by kid-friendly Dreams Bahia Mita.” So, just double check when you’re booking your room.
- There are tablets in each of the rooms that are located right next to the beds and these will be your lifelines for information about the resort and even for ordering room service. We found them great for checking the entertainment that was on throughout the day. So make sure you check these out.
- If you’re into surfing this is the resort for you. The resort’s full name is actually “Secrets Bahia Mita Surf & Spa Resort ” The area of Nayarita is known as one of the best areas in Mexico for Surfing. So, most of the hotels in this and the surrounding areas will have Surfing attached to the resort. The beach right in front of the Secrets Bahia Mita is a decent enough spot to catch a wave too. There are also a number of great beaches in the area and a number of tour providers offering lessons and tours to these wonderful beaches.
- One of the biggest annoyances about our time at the Secrets Bahai Mita was the number of bugs throughout the resort. As the resort is basically located in a Jungle there isn’t much getting away from it. No amount of bug spray will protect you here. It’s ok in the indoor areas and by the beach, but by the pool and some of the outdoor restaurants, the place is overrun with bugs.
- You can get an Uber from the Airport in Puerto Vallarta. It’s only around a $20 uber ride which is a decent value compared to the shared transportation that can cost between $50-$60 per person if you book outside of a package.
- The resort isn’t really close to many things outside of the resort. The nearest town is Sayulita which is a lovely traditional beachside village with loads of shops, restaurants, and bars to choose from. It’s located around a 30-minute taxi ride away but is well worth the trip if you plan on exploring the local area.
As your car pulls in there is a stunning viewpoint through to the ocean and mountains in the distance with the resort either side of you this is truly one of the most impressive entrances to any hotel.
The check-in process was smooth. From arrival to getting into our room, we were checked in, in around 15 minutes. When you pull up to the resort you will be greeted with a glass of prosecco. If you are staying in the Preferred suite then you will have a separate check-in area in an air-conditioned room, which was a nice touch as August in Mexico is hot.
The reception staff was great at outlining where everything was on the resort and also with educating us on what was included in the Preferred package, which was really helpful.
Is this a child-friendly resort?
The Secrets Bahia Mita is an adults-only resort, but like all Secrets resorts, there is always a family option that is located in the same complex as the Secrets compound. The Dreams Bahia Mita is a family-friendly offering here and is a great option.
With 4 outdoor pools and a nice stretch of beach, you won’t be short on places to have a dip. One of the elements we didn’t like about this resort was the lack of separation between the Adults only Secrets resorts and the family-friendly Dreams resorts. The pools are effectively shared between the two resorts. Although there is an adults-only pool and a kids pool. Due to their close proximity, it takes away from the adults-only experience if you’re staying in the Secrets.
In general, though there was more than enough space to find a nice area by the pool to camp up for the day. The infinity pool overlooking the ocean was our favorite spot. Looking out onto the ocean and mountains in the background was just sublime.
There are a number of courses that are located within an hour’s drive of the resort. So, it’s not the most convenient resort if you plan on golfing quite a bit on your vacation. For a resort that has a golf course located on its grounds, we suggest checking out the Finest Playa Mujeres review below.
The Litibú Golf Course is the closest course and is around a 25-minute drive from the resort. We played here once when we visited and honestly the course wasn’t in great condition. It’s a par 72 course, designed by Greg Norman, so we were surprised with the poor quality course when we played it.
Your best option is definitely the El Tigre Club de Golf which is the best course in the area and is only a 35-minute drive from the resort. This challenging course costs between $120 – $210 per round depending on the time of year and day that you plan on playing.
The gym here is a really decent size. It’s kitted out with all new Technogym equipment and it has a very luxurious vibe to it. There are more than enough cardio machines, free weights, and machine weights to get a solid workout in. The gym was never too busy even though we went at what we would consider peak times. Even when the resort is at full capacity I would find it hard to believe that it would ever be overcrowded.
Things to do during the day
Overall the entertainment here was actually very good, they seemed to put an emphasis on local and traditional music throughout the resort, which we really liked. There was a wide range of activities throughout the day and some of our highlights were definitely the Surfing lessons and the board games.
Things to do during the night
The entertainment team put on a wide range of shows. From great live music, a pretty impressive water show to the normal tribute bands and themed nights.
Does Secrets Bahia Mita have a swimmable beach?
The beach is wonderfully located in Banderas Bay with some stunning views of the Sierra Madre Mountain Range. The waters at the beach are quite choppy, so it is not a good spot for a dip in the ocean. It’s not a huge beach, but there are multiple levels to the sand area. We visited during Covid and the resort had just opened, so we never really found it difficult to get a sun lounger. This beach did suffer from the issue of seaweed washing up onto the shoreline. It wasn’t that prevalent and the staff did everything in their power to clear it.
If you’re into surfing, it seems to be a great spot to catch a wave. There were loads of surfers around and one of our favorite things to do was to grab a Cerveza and chill out in the infinity pool as we watched the surfers and the ocean.
There is a Spa at the resort. Like the design throughout it is modernly kitted out with a lovely aesthetic. They have a full spa menu here and the token hydrotherapy pools. The spa is located in a really unique location. In the middle of the resort, there is a really impressive circular fountain where waters cascade down about two stories. The main area of the spa is located below the fountain, so you get the relaxing sounds of the cascading waterfall in a lot of the areas of the spa. When we visited we did the hydrotherapy run as well as getting a hot stone massage, which was really relaxing.
The service was quite inconsistent throughout our stay. Although we did visit during the resort’s soft launch we expected a better standard of service from Secrets resorts. The biggest issue we had was the promptness of the service. Especially at the bars. The service was very slow. It seemed as if the bars were understaffed. At the main swim-up bar there was only one person working there for most of the days, which meant there was quite a build of people waiting for drinks.
We found the same issue with the poolside service. On average there would be someone that would come around to us about once an hour which wasn’t great.
The service in the restaurants was a lot better. We had no issues with the promptness of the service. Most of the other areas of the resorts were a lot better. The housekeeping team was very good and the concierge team was great at providing directions to the locals and giving recommendations of things to do.
The resort was super clean throughout and with all of the Covid protocols we felt extremely safe throughout our stay. There seemed to be a lot of staff throughout the resort that we’re constantly cleaning, which was nice to see. It almost felt like they had taken away some of the bar staff to work as cleaning staff. The housekeeping staff were also very good and came around the same time every day, which allowed us to plan our day around the rooms being cleaned.
Booking during Covid
There are a number of precautions and additional benefits that are taken by the Secrets chain of resorts to make your stay as relaxing and enjoyable as possible. Below is an overview of the elements.
- Free Onsite Testing
Before you depart your vacation if you need to get an antigen for your arrival back into your country. You can avail of a free antigen test before you depart.
- Quarantine Reassurance
If for any reason you contract COVID-19 and need to quarantine for a time period. You will be able to do so at the resort for no extra cost. This is available for up to 14 days if needed.
- Enhanced Cleaning
At AM Resorts, which the Secret’s chain is a part of. They have the CleanComplete Verification™. This is a fancy way of saying they have increased measures to make sure everything is kept sanitized throughout the resort.
As with most Secrets resorts we have experienced the room sizes are definitely on the smaller side. They are like normal hotel rooms, but they are not the size we would expect for resort-style properties. That being said the rooms are a little bigger than some of the other Secrets resorts we have stayed at. We stayed in a Preferred Club Junior Suite with an Ocean View and we found the room to be quite comfortable. Obviously, as the hotel was literally just open a week when we stayed everything was in pristine condition.
The aesthetic of the rooms was really nice and modern. Its vibe is very chic and has the atmosphere of a boutique hotel. The bed was really comfortable and king-sized, there was a lovely sitting area that was a lovely space to chill out. The showers don’t have a huge amount of privacy at these resorts, so if you’re traveling with friends it’s something to think about.
One of the things we really liked about the rooms was that the toiletries in the bathroom have literally everything you would need. Normally you are just provided with shampoos and conditioners but at the Secrets Bahia Mita you get sunscreen, bug repellents, toothpaste, and hand sanitizer. They really had everything you could think of.
There are three standards of room and each room comes with the option of an ocean view or garden view as well as having access to the preferred club or not.
Coming in at 518 sq. ft., this is the most basic suite in the resort, but although it’s the smallest suite. There is still a great feeling of luxury
There are two standards for the club room. The Club Ambition Suite comes with a garden view and is 1116 sq. ft. in size. The other option is the Club Bahia Mita Suite which comes in at 1,458 sq. ft. and is just a little more spacious than the other option. Both suites come with preferred club access.
Coming in at 2,570 sq. ft, the presidential suite is truly stunning. With room to sleep 4 adults the room comes with a dining room, living room, and a wrap-around balcony with a lovely plunge pool. This room won’t come cheap though with an average nightly price in the high season of $1000.
As the resort is on the newer side and doesn’t have an established customer base, it does come in a little bit cheaper than other resorts in the area. The Secrets Vallarta Bay which is in Puerto Vallarta is a more established resort and costs around 15% more than the newly opened Bahia Mita resort. So, there is value to be had here. The risk is that the service and running of the resort may not be as smooth as an established resort.
What’s included in the all-inclusive package
All food, drinks, entertainment, activities, tips, and taxes should be included in the cost of your package. There are a few drinks options such as bottles of wine at dinner that are a surcharge. Also included is the in-room mini-bar as well as room service.
Food + Restaurant Options
As with all Secrets resorts you can make the most of the “Sip, Savour, See” offering which allows you to dine and drink at all of the restaurants in the sister Dreams resort which is connected to the Secrets resort.
Overall, we thought the restaurant was of a decent standard. They were relatively consistent in their output and the range of choice was very good. There are 6 restaurant options at the Secrets and 4 available at the Dreams.
Ranking the Restaurants
This Mediterranean-style restaurant is open for lunch and dinner and is located in a lovely spot on the 6th floor that has panoramic views of the ocean and beach. We found that this was one of the busier restaurants given its stunning location and the food and service weren’t far behind the standard of the stunning view. The fish here was the star of the show. Whether you were having lunch or dinner the fish dishes we always the star of the show. The fish tacos here were our favorite.
- Himitsu (Dreams side of resort)
This Asian-style offering serves up an array of different Asian cuisines. From sushi, Thai food, Ramen, and Korean food there will be something for everyone’s tastes. The sushi here was definitely the standout. The tuna sashimi was delicious and of a really good standard for an all-inclusive resort.
There is a hibachi experience here too. Tables for this can be quite hard to come by. You will need to book these on the day at the front entrance of the restaurant. Be sure to ask the reception what time they are taking bookings and arrive early as there is always a queue.
- BlueWater Grill
This steakhouse restaurant warrants a spot in the top three offerings at the resort. Mainly serving grilled fresh cuts of meats, it was one of the better options in the resort. Now don’t get us wrong the steaks were good but not great. The rib-eye was decent enough quality for an all-inclusive, but if you got that in a proper steakhouse restaurant, you would be underwhelmed. The standout dish for us was definitely the braised short ribs, these were top quality.
This Italian restaurant serves up all of the traditional dishes you would expect of your local Trattoria. This is another option that is located in a lovely setting. The ricotta and spinach ravioli were a wonderful dish.
- Seaside Grill (Dreams side of resort)
Serving up your typical poolside grill staples. You can get burgers, tacos, and grilled fish and meats. The food here was good, everything you would expect from a poolside offering. The seating for this grill is outside and the bugs in this area were always an issue, so it did take away from this spot a little. The tuna tartare was the best dish at the Seaside grill, we got it literally every day.
- Barefoot Grill (Dreams side of resort)
The perfect spot to grab a bite to eat at lunch, this is basically a carbon copy of the seaside grill.
- Market Cafe
This is the main buffet offering at the resort, which is open for breakfast and lunch. It has all of the typical offerings of an all-inclusive resort. Omelet stations, a wide selection of cuisines, and a number of cooking stations throughout. The quality of the food here was actually really good and this was one of the better buffets we have been at in an all-inclusive resort.
- World Cafe (Dreams side of resort)
Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. This is the largest restaurant offering at the resort. There is a huge array of food on offer here. The restaurant is so large it almost feels like a dining hall more than a restaurant, but the staff did manage to deliver decent quality on all of the dishes we tried.
This French restaurant oozes fine dining vibes. With white linen tablecloths and a lovely feel to the restaurant it really does take you to the streets of Paris and back in a night. Serving up all of your traditional French dishes our favorites were definitely the French Onion soup. Overall the food was a little disappointing at Bordeaux. Although the atmosphere was very good, the food just didn’t match it.
- El Patio (Dreams side of resort)
The Mexican offering at this resort had high expectations for this restaurant as it’s always one of our favorite spots in the other Secrets resorts we have visited. The bones of a good restaurant are there. The menu is nice with some lovely traditional dishes, the vibe of the restaurant was very good, the food was the only issue that we had. The ingredients they used tasted fresh, but the food came out to us lukewarm.
The positive thing is that this is something that can be easily fixed, we imagine it’s just a timing thing and as the staff gets a few more weeks under their belts they will iron these kinks out. The flank steak we got was really well seasoned and the meat was good quality, so once they fix the timing they will be off to the races.
Bars and Drinks Offering
The is a wide range of local and international top-shelf offerings at the Secrets. We didn’t really have any issues ordering our favorite tipples. There was a nice choice of top-shelf options, from Bombay Sapphire, Absolut vodka, and Hendriks Gin to name a few.
In recent years speakeasies have become on-trend. You know once all-inclusive resorts have started to include them in their resorts that the trend has gone too far.
Sadly we didn’t get to sample this hidden bar as the roof had actually fallen through from heavy rain, so the bar was under repair. Hidden behind what looked like a wall was a small bar and it looked like a perfect spot to grab a quiet drink away from the hustle and bustle of the resort.
Is there a Dress Code in Place
There is a dress code for some of the restaurants throughout the resort. We did find that they were pretty relaxed about it, but we would suggest bringing some smart casual options to wear to dinners.
Is the Preferred Club Worth it?
Overall we didn’t think the preferred club offered enough benefits to warrant the increased cost. On average the preferred club rooms come in 10% more than the non-preferred club rooms. The benefits that we saw the most were the following.
- Private Check-in
We visited in early August so the weather was swelteringly hot. So, it was handy to have a private check-in area that is in an air-conditioned room. There was also no waiting around to be checked in and the whole process only took a matter of minutes.
- Preferred Club Bars
We really enjoyed the Sky bar which was only available to Preferred Club guests. The bar as you may well imagine was perched on level 8 of the resort and has wonderful panoramic views of the resort and the ocean. It’s the perfect spot for a pre-dinner drink taking in the sunset.
The staff at the Secrets Bahai Mita are impeccable. They really do everything to make your vacation as relaxed and enjoyable as possible. For all-inclusive holidays we always bake in the cost of tipping into the overall cost of the vacation. No matter the location we always tip in US dollars as we find it easier to calculate amounts compared to converting from the local currency.
Typically we tip $1 per drink and $5 – $10 for meals depending on the time of day and the type of service we get.
Before we dive into the nitty-gritty we just want to call out that we did visit when the resort was in soft launch, so there are a certain amount of issues that will be ironed out once the staff has a few months to refine things.
Overall, though, we were disappointed with the experience we had. It definitely didn’t meet the standard of the other Secrets resorts we have stayed in.
We felt like the design of the resort and its really close proximity to the Dreams resort was poorly thought out. It took away from the adult-only feeling and made it feel more like a family resort. We were staying on the adult’s side to get away from the kids, but sadly this is very difficult with the layout.
The service for us definitely needs some improvement. Some of the food we got was cold, the drinks service by the pool was a bit hit and miss.
We imagine over the coming months you will see an improvement in the quality of the resort. So, it might be worth a visit very soon.
Q. Does the Secrets Bahia Mita offer a shuttle service from the Airport
A. Yes, there is a shuttle and private transfer available from the resort. This needs to be booked at the time of booking or by contacting the resort directly. There is an additional charge for this service though.
Q. Is parking available at the resort
A. Yes, parking is available for guests and it is complimentary
Q. Is Wi-Fi included
A. Yes, Wi-Fi is available to you in your suite as well as throughout the resort.
Q. What local attractions are there?
A. As this resort is a little more secluded you will have to travel a little further to take in the local attractions.