Pros

  • On beautiful Banderas Bay, with a secluded beach area and water sports
  • Breakfast-only or all-inclusive packages available
  • Stunning sunset views from all parts of the property
  • Laid-back, family-friendly atmosphere with adult-only areas
  • Casual rooms and suites, all featuring balconies with full ocean views
  • Air-conditioning, flat-screen TVs, living areas, and kitchens come standard
  • La Cascada restaurant offers nightly theme dinners and ocean views
  • Barefoot Bar hosts daily happy hours with live entertainment
  • Two outdoor pools, including a family pool and a quiet pool for adults
  • Live entertainment every evening
  • A small spa, plus a fitness center with Life Fitness cardio and weight machines
  • Free Wi-Fi and parking
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Cons

  • Small beach disappears at high tide
  • Some rooms could use updating
  • Meals and drinks are on the pricey side
  • Certain liquors and menu items cost extra, even with all-inclusive package
  • Extra charge for room service
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Bottom Line

Costa Sur Resort & Spa is a family-friendly, mid-range property on a secluded stretch of beach on the Bay of Banderas, and stunning sunsets are not to be missed. The 200 casual suites, some in need of updating, all feature kitchens, living areas, and balconies with full ocean views. Air-conditioning, flat-screen TVs, and free Wi-Fi come standard. There’s a Mexican restaurant offering theme dinners and a bar with daily happy hours, as well as a cafe and a snack bar. There are two outdoor pools, one family-friendly and one designated as a quiet pool, as well as a small beach area, water sports, a spa, and a fitness center. Breakfast-only and all-inclusive packages are offered. Tropicana Hotel is a mid-range property offering similar amenities in the city center, but there’s no spa. 

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Oyster Hotel Review

Costa Sur Resort & Spa

Scene

A laid-back, family-friendly resort that’s a mainstay on the Puerto Vallarta hotel scene 

Set in two large towers overlooking the Bay of Banderas, Costa Sur Resort & Spa could feel like another sprawling, overwhelming resort, but it doesn’t. Instead, the property feels cozy and manageable, thanks largely to the fact that all of the key amenities are located right in the middle. There’s an undeniably family-centric vibe, with lots of small children enjoying the main pool from the time it opens until well into the evening. Pockets of peacefulness do exist, though, including a lovely quiet pool tucked in a corner under palm trees and adult-only floors in the hotel, which appeal to couples.

Costa Sur is one of the older properties in the area, and its age shows in the decor of some of the rooms and public spaces. Guests don’t seem to mind, though, if the number of repeat customers is any indication. Regular activities, daily happy hours, and live entertainment draw an eclectic mix of guests to the Barefoot Bar, which sits at the center of the action. The sunsets are simply breathtaking, and the sound of crashing waves can constantly be heard, even over the hum of the air conditioner.  For guests who want a good range of amenities at a decent rate, Costa Sur Resort & Spa is a great option.

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Location

South of Puerto Vallarta’s old town on the beautiful Bay of Banderas 

Sitting directly on Highway 200 south of central Puerto Vallarta, in what’s sometimes called the city’s South Hotel Zone, Costa Sur Resort & Spa enjoys a quiet stretch of beach with the lush hills of the Sierra Madre mountains in the background. While the highway offers easy access for exploring the city, the resort feels quiet and set apart from the tourist hordes. For those who prefer public transportation, there’s a bus stop across the street from the resort. A 10-minute drive to the north takes passengers to popular Playa Los Muertos and the lively dining and nightlife of the Zona Romantica section of the old town. A few minutes further to the north is the landmark Parish of Our Lady of Guadalupe church and the center of the Malecon, the city’s bustling oceanfront promenade, which features statues, food vendors, restaurants, and shops. Heading south from the hotel by car, it takes 10 minutes to reach Los Arcos National Marine Park, a popular snorkeling area with picturesque rock formations. Licenciado Gustavo Diaz Ordaz International Airport is about at 30-minute drive from the hotel. 

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Rooms

Spacious suites with kitchens, living areas, and balconies with full ocean views 

Bright colors and carved wooden doors give welcome touches of Mexican charm to the suites at Costa Sur. While some suites have benefited from renovations, others still feel dated and in need of updates. The suites come in two layouts: Studios and One-Bedrooms. Both choices offer plenty of living space, featuring living areas with sofa beds, dining tables, and kitchens with two-burner cooktops, refrigerators, microwaves, coffeemakers, pots, pans, and dishes. Air-conditioning, ceiling fans, flat-screen TVs, iPod docks, and free Wi-Fi come standard. Closets are supplied with safes, irons, and ironing boards. Fairly basic bathrooms offer hairdryers and a few toiletries. Perhaps the biggest draw of the suites at Costa Sur is their ocean view balconies -- every unit features an unfurnished balcony with screen doors and full ocean views, directly facing the sunset.

At the Studio level, guests can choose between Oceanfront Studios, which have not yet been renovated and feature more dated decor, and Deluxe Oceanfront Studios, which have the same setup but have been updated with newer fixtures and finishes. Some of the remodeled suites are designated as Honeymoon Suites, and are located on adult-only floors with lounge areas supplied with coffee, juice, and pastries in the morning. The largest units are the One-Bedroom Oceanfront Suites. Offering more privacy, each suite has a separate master bedroom with a full bathroom, as well as a half-bath off the living room.

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Features

Theme dinners and happy hours, plus two pools, a beach, a spa, and a gym 

Costa Sur offers a range of amenities all concentrated in one area in between the two towers, making it the lively centerpiece of the property. La Cascada restaurant serves Mexican fare and a different theme dinner every night in a covered, open-air dining area that takes its name from the water dripping down a large, moss-covered wall (cascada means waterfall in Spanish). Beside it is Cafe del Sur, which serves coffee and breakfast by the pool. A large, thatched roof bar in the center of it all houses the lively Barefoot Bar, which offers fun happy hours every afternoon, as well as the Seahorse Snack Bar, which serves ceviche and snacks during the day. La Palapa sports bar is available for events. Guests can choose between breakfast-only and all-inclusive packages. All-inclusive rates cover all restaurants and bars, though premium liquors and certain menu items like lobster and steak are extra. Meals and drinks outside of the all-inclusive plan tend to be on the pricey side, especially by Mexican standards. Room service is available to all guests for a fee. 

Beside the bar and the restaurant is a large pool overlooking the ocean, meant for families and kids. Tucked in a back corner under palm trees is a second pool, designated as a quiet pool where children are discouraged. The resort’s secluded stretch of beach is small given the size of the property, offering only a few sun loungers and umbrellas. At high tide, the sand disappears entirely. Limited water sports like kayaking, surfing, and paddleboarding are offered. A rotating schedule of live entertainment is offered every evening.

Up a set of shaded wooden stairs above the pool area there's a small but lovely spa, with two treatment rooms, as well as a modern fitness center with Life Fitness cardio and weight machines. Weekly yoga and Zumba classes are offered. A small market off the lobby sells sundries and souvenirs. Free Wi-Fi is available throughout the property. Parking is free. 

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Best Rates

Amenities

  • Air Conditioner

  • Airport Transportation

  • Babysitting Services

  • Beach

  • Cable

  • Concierge

  • Cribs

  • Dry Cleaning

  • Fitness Center

  • Full Kitchen

  • Internet

  • Kids Allowed

  • Laundry

  • Pool

  • Room Service

  • Separate Bedroom / Living Room Space

  • Spa

  • Supervised Kids Activities

Disclaimer: This content was accurate at the time the hotel was reviewed. Please check our partner sites when booking to verify that details are still correct.