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Category Archives: Things To Do

Thanksgiving in Puerto Vallarta

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It feels like summer just ended and Thanksgiving is already just around the corner! November brings perfect temperatures to Puerto Vallarta and for an escape from the fall chill, there isn’t a better destination. If you visit this month during Thanksgiving, you can still easily celebrate the holiday with the help of several restaurants and chefs from our area. Here are some options:

Dine Out. Several restaurants within walking distance from Pinnacle Resorts will be offering traditional Thanksgiving dinners with turkey and all the trimmings. Some of our recommendations include Azafrán Restaurant and Café des Artistes.

Dine In. One of the nicest features of choosing a vacation rental at Pinnacle Resorts over a hotel room is that you have a full kitchen in your suite. If you love to cook, you can do an entire Thanksgiving meal right in your own Pinnacle Resorts kitchen, and you can even have all of the groceries delivered by an excellent grocery store, La Comer.

Delivery. Every year, several restaurants and catering companies offer “Turkey to Go” and they will deliver a full Thanksgiving spread right to your door. You can also have a private chef come to your suite and prepare everything for you. Your Concierge will have a list of catering recommendations from which to choose.

Dine in Nature: For 2020, the beautiful Puerto Vallarta Botanical Gardens is doing a special Thanksgiving at the Garden dinner, which will be a lovely way to break bread with others in an open-air environment surrounded by gorgeous garden views. Find more information here.

Be sure to talk to your Pinnacle Resorts Concierge when you arrive or contact us in advance for further details, as seating and catering are limited, so reservations should be placed in advance.

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Dia de Muertos

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Traditions in Puerto Vallarta

If you are traveling to Puerto Vallarta during the first week of November, you’ll be visiting during one of the most important annual cultural celebrations in Mexico: Día de Muertos. Also, called Día de Los Muertos, the “Day of the Dead” is actually a two-day event, on November 1st and 2nd, and though the name may sound like a time of sadness, Día de Muertos is a celebration of the happy remembrance of family and friends who have passed.

One of the things that you will see during this time in Puerto Vallarta are colorful altars that hold the memories of loved ones. Altars will have photographs, flowers, colorful cut paper flags, candies, candles, religious images, favorite foods and drinks of the departed, and the iconic sugar skulls of Mexico decorating them. The altars are not only to honor loved ones but offered as a comfort to the souls of those being remembered, with their favorite dishes and treats to enjoy in the afterlife, candles to light their way, and flowers to bring joy.

You will also likely spy La Catrina at this time of year, the representation of animated female skeletons dressed in fanciful hats and European dresses in the style of the early 1900s. A creation of Mexican artist Jose Guadalupe Posada around 1910, La Catrina has come to be a widely popular part of Día de Muertos celebrations throughout Mexico.

And another part of Día de Los Muertos in Puerto Vallarta that you will want to try is Pan de Muertos, a soft and sweet bread traditionally served for the occasion. Pan de Muertos is generally baked in a round shape to mimic the shape of a skull baked with cross pieces of dough to represent the bones of the dead and then topped with sugar. Pan de Muertos is widely available in late October and early November at bakeries, grocery stores, and cafes around Puerto Vallarta.

November is a particularly special time to visit Puerto Vallarta as the city celebrates joyful memories of friends and family and we hope to be able to host your stay at Pinnacle Resorts, centrally located in the heart of the Romantic Zone within walking distance to all the cultural attractions of downtown Puerto Vallarta.

Click here for more Puerto Vallarta luxury vacation tips from Pinnacle Resorts.

Photo by Nick Fewings on Unsplash

Mexican Independence Day

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Many people mistakenly believe May 5th to be Mexican Independence Day, but in reality, the anniversary of the country separating from Spain is celebrated on September 16th and is a national holiday that is highly anticipated every year.

Mexico is a proud country and though this year there will not be large scale public celebrations, to support the good health and wellbeing of our community and visitors, Independence Day will be celebrated in homes and restaurants in Puerto Vallarta and across the country, and visitors will be able to feel and see the spirit of the occasion all around them during the month of September. Streets will be decorated with the red, white, and green colors of Mexico, flags will fly in honor of the occasion and local eateries will be serving special meals in celebration.

One of our suggested ways to celebrate is with dinner at Kaiser Maximillian, an upscale restaurant within easy walking distance from us, to enjoy the traditional Independence Day dish of Chiles en Nogada until October 10th.  Another excellent option is Gaby’s Restaurant, a traditional Mexican restaurant in downtown Vallarta, serving delicious and authentic Mexican dishes in a casual atmosphere. Or, if you would like to stay in and watch the sunset from the terrace of your suite, have Chiles en Nogada delivered in from caterer Claudia Lovera. Your concierge can assist you in placing an order for delivery via WhatsApp message to 322 128 0120 or with restaurant reservations.

Or stay in and visit any of the Pinnacle Resorts sky bars or lounges for Tequila, Margaritas, and other Mexican wines, spirits, beers, and cocktails during our famous nightly Happy Hour when all drinks are 2×1 and raise your glass with a hearty “Viva Mexico!” in celebration.

Click here for more Puerto Vallarta luxury travel tips from Pinnacle Resorts.

Photo by Jorge Aguilar on Unsplash

Real Mexican Cuisine: Chiles en Nogada

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If you are lucky enough to be visiting Puerto Vallarta during September, you are in for not only a cultural but a culinary treat. September 16th marks Mexican Independence Day and part of the traditional celebrations is a very traditional Mexican dish called Chiles en Nogada.

Chiles en Nogada is popular at this time of year because the colors of the dish – red, white, and green – mimic the colors of the Mexican flag and the Poblano peppers are at its peak during this time. It is one of the country’s most iconic dishes and is said to have been created from a recipe made by 19th century Catholic nuns in San Andrés Calpan in the State of Puebla in Mexico.

So, what is Chiles en Nogada? It is a large roasted Poblano pepper (not found to be spicy to most tastes) stuffed with a mixture of minced meat, dried fruits, almonds, and spices. It is then covered in a rich and creamy, white walnut of Castile sauce, called Nogada, and sprinkled with juicy pomegranate seeds and garnished with parsley. It is as much a treat for the eyes and is it for the palate and is a must-try dish to add to your culinary adventures in Puerto Vallarta.

There are numerous restaurants in the Romantic Zone located within easy walking distance from your vacation rental which will be serving Chiles en Nogada this September. Ask your Pinnacle Resorts concierge for restaurant reservations or to-go/delivery options or try making this recipe in the fully equipped kitchen of your suite.

Click here for more Puerto Vallarta luxury vacation tips from Pinnacle Resorts.

Photo by Santiago Blando on Unsplash

Sportfishing in Puerto Vallarta

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Sportfishing in Puerto Vallarta

If you are planning to visit sunny Puerto Vallarta for a well-deserved vacation this summer and are an experienced fisherman or have always had an interest in trying the sport, there is no better time to be planning your trip to Banderas Bay!

Puerto Vallarta is a world-class sportfishing destination and July through November are the absolute best months of the fishing season. We asked the local fishing experts at Vallarta Sportsman about what fish are currently in season in Banderas Bay and what length of charter one should book to target each species during the summer fishing season in Puerto Vallarta.

6 to 8 Hour Charters

  • Football tuna
  • Sailfish
  • Dorado (also known as Mahi-Mahi)
  • Roosterfish

10 to 12 Hour Charters

  • Large tuna
  • Blue & black marlin, with striped marlin running September to November
  • Red snapper
  • Grouper

Although all Pinnacle Resorts properties are conveniently located in the heart of the Puerto Vallarta Romantic Zone, within an easy walk to the iconic Puerto Vallarta Pier, most charter boats depart from the Puerto Vallarta Marina, approximately 15 minutes by car. Most fishing charters come equipped with a bilingual captain and deckhand, all fishing equipment, live bait, ice, bottled water, and fishing permits included, and your crew can assist in filleting and packing your catch on ice or suggesting a restaurant in the marina that will cook your catch for you.

Fishing charters are a great way to get back out into fresh, open-air while allowing for all the safety protocols necessary as we welcome guests back to Puerto Vallarta. Talk to your Pinnacle Resorts Concierge for more details about booking a fishing charter during your stay.

Click here for more Puerto Vallarta luxury vacation tips from Pinnacle Resorts.

Photo by James Wheeler on Unsplash

Spirits of Mexico

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A quick guide to the difference between the three cousin spirits of Mexico: Tequila, mezcal, and raicilla.

The Differences of Tequila, Mezcal & Raicilla

While Tequila is perhaps the most famous Mexican distilled spirit, it has two close cousins – mezcal and raicilla – that you should sample during your Puerto Vallarta vacation. Here is a quick learner’s guide to the differences between each spirit.

Tequila

The most well-known, this spirit is made exclusively with the Blue Agave plant and to be called Tequila, it must be produced in our own state of Jalisco, in the Tequila region – much like how true Champagne must come from the Champagne region of France. Tequila comes in 5 distinct categories according to the amount of time it has been aged in oak barrels:

  1. Blanco or Silver Tequila (unaged)
  2. Joven or Gold Tequila (unaged)
  3. Reposado Tequila (aged two months and up to a year)
  4. Añejo Tequila (aged at least one year)
  5. Extra Añejo Tequila (aged at least three years)

Mezcal

Like Tequila, mezcal is also an agave-based spirit but can be distilled using a variety of up to thirty different agave plants and it is produced in several areas including Jalisco, Oaxaca, Guerrero, Durango, San Luis Potosí, Puebla and Zacatecas. Like Tequila, a Joven, mezcal has been unaged and a reposado mezcal will have been aged in oak barrels for two months to a year. However, some upscale mezcals can be aged for many years, giving the spirit a richer, deeper smoky flavor.

Raicilla

Like Tequila, raicilla is also a product of Jalisco but is distilled from two varieties of agave plants: Lechuguilla and Maximiliana. Raicilla was a bootleg liquor for generations in Jalisco, only becoming legal for sale in the 2000s, but with a sweeter and fruitier taste than mezcal, it has become increasingly popular with mixologists around the world.

The expert bartenders at Pinnacle Resorts can give you a personalized experience with all these spirits of Mexico and show you the proper techniques to drink them neat or create the perfect cocktail for your tastes. Be sure to visit Chictini by Pinnacle, Signature Lounge, or Residences Sky Bar during your next vacation in Puerto Vallarta.

Click here for more Puerto Vallarta luxury vacation tips from Pinnacle Resorts.

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Photo by Francisco Galarza on Unsplash

FREE GUIDED PUERTO VALLARTA MALECON TOURS

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No visit to Puerto Vallarta would be complete without visiting our world famous Malecon, the mile long oceanside walkway with the gorgeous Pacific blue water on one side, stretching from the neighborhoods of Cinco de Diciembre all the way to the Romantic Zone.

A favorite spot for visitors to take vacation photos, including in front of the colorful Puerto Vallarta sign and the Los Arcos Amphitheatre, the full length of the Malecon is lined with bronze sculptures from some of Mexico’s most renowned artists.

Some of the pieces include Origin & Destiny by Pedro Tello, Nostalgia by Jose Ramiz Barquet, Nature as Mother by Adrián Reynoso, The Subtle Rock Eater by Jonás Gutiérrez, The Good Fortune Unicorn by Aníbal Riebeling and Triton and Mermaid by Carlos Espino, but all of the sculptures can be easily discovered with two free walking tours offered every week during high season.

From November through April, you can choose from a Tuesday morning tour starting at 9:30am or a Thursday sunset tour starting at 6:00pm hosted by Gary Thompson, owner of Galeria Pacifico and a Vallarta resident for over 38 years. The morning tour departs from the Millennium sculpture located next to the Hotel Rosita and the sunset tour departs from Galeria Pacifico at 174 Aldama Street.

Both tours are offered free of charge, but you are invited to make a donation in support of Biblioteca Los Mangos, Puerto Vallarta’s public library and cultural center, a non-profit organization that relies solely on private donations.

Ask your Pinnacle Resorts Concierge for more details about the Puerto Vallarta weekly guided Malecon tour or other recommendations for fantastic ways to explore the city during your visit.

Click here for more Puerto Vallarta luxury vacation tips from Pinnacle Resorts.

UNCORKING THE WINES OF MEXICO

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When most people think of Mexico, they think of Tequila, Margaritas and Coronas, but winemakers in regions like Baja California, Coahuila and Durango have been putting Mexican wines on the map with some exceptional vintages.

Though the history of winemaking in Mexico dates back to the 16th century with the arrival of the Spaniards, it has only been in the past few decades that wineries have honed their craft and the demand for Mexican wines, both in Mexico and internationally, has boomed.

But for those new to Mexican wines, it can be difficult to differentiate the best bottles and grapes. Two local sommeliers, Vanusa Forster (originally of Brazil) and Natalia Villa-Lobos (of Mexico) offer you a unique guided experience into Mexican wines with Uncork Mexico.

With a new storefront located at Matamoros 425-A in downtown Puerto Vallarta, they carry a wide selection of Mexican wines of every variety and a nice selection of artisan cheeses. Vanusa and Natalia will help guide you in finding your perfect wine to take home or you can attend one of their very popular wine tasting events held every week with different themes (whites, reds, sparkling, etc.) that are paired with fine cheeses, fruits or chocolates. Uncork Mexico can also offer private tastings in the comfort of your Pinnacle Resorts vacation rental for a more personal experience and they offer free wine delivery service from their website.

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WHALE WATCHING SEASON IN PUERTO VALLARTA

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If you are vacationing in Puerto Vallarta now, you may have been lucky enough to have caught a glimpse of humpback whales swimming through our bay from the private terrace of your Pinnacle Resorts vacation rental suite.

Every year, December through March, these majestic creatures visit the Pacific waters of Banderas Bay on their annual migratory path. Huge and friendly, often accompanied by their playful babies, they are some of our most welcome visitors.  Here are a few fun facts about humpback whales:

  1. The females are bigger than males! In length, females reach 15 to 16 meters in length (49 to 52 feet), while the males only grow to about 13 to 14 meters long.
  2. An adult humpback whale weigh about 30 000 kilos on average – that’s over 66 000 pounds!
  3. On average, humpback whales live to be 45 or 50 years old.
  4. They like to feed in polar waters, fattening up in the summer on a fish-based diet, but prefer to spend the winters in our tropical waters to have their babies and play.
  5. And playful they are! They are best friends with dolphins and will often swim and jump together.

Humpback whales are mammals, meaning that they need to come to the surface to get air, pushing water out high in the air as they exhale, before breathing back in and diving back down, often waving a fin or a tail on the way.

This is the perfect time for whale watching in Puerto Vallarta and companies like Vallarta Sportsman offer whale watching and fishing charters for every level of budget and luxury.

Whether joining them at sea or watching them from your luxury vacation rental in the Puerto Vallarta Romantic Zone of our famous Pinnacle Resorts lounges or pool decks, catching a glimpse of these amazing creatures is sure to be a high point of your Puerto Vallarta vacation.

Click here for more Puerto Vallarta luxury vacation tips from Pinnacle Resorts.

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