August 20, 2019
By Cvent Guest

The story began 25 years ago with the construction of Velas Vallarta. It wasn’t meant to be a hotel. Initially, its suites were built to be used as condominiums and were mainly sold to the American and Canadian markets, since that was the trend in Las Marinas at the moment.

How Velas Vallarta Became a Hotel

A recession came and the sales of condominiums stopped completely. Velas Vallarta only had sold 25% of its inventory. The family decided to request a loan for its construction.

How did Velas Vallarta become a hotel? The owner, Juan Vela, chatted with his brother, Eduardo Vela, on how to market unsold suites under an hotelier format. This moment started the beginning of selling Velas Vallarta as a hotel for vacations and groups. Moreover, this was the beginning of the Vela family successful career into the hospitality industry.

How Grand Velas became a brand

After seven years of promoting the Velas Vallarta, the expected occupancy percentage was finally reached. The Vela brothers met again and asked themselves what kind of hotel Velas Vallarta should be. Since the Vela family loves to travel, the first step needed to define the type of hotel was to become familiar with the different types of accommodations offered by national and international brands. As a result, they found a market need and decided to create their own concept with a set of standards. The Grand Velas was born.

Grand Velas' Characteristics

Grand Velas defined itself as a luxury, all-inclusive resort for the MICE market with no more than 550 suites per hotel. Suites would also be 1000 sq. ft. or bigger. Its biggest differentiator, though, was inspired by the family's own experience when deciding where to travel. They would (1) choose the destination, (2) choose the hotel, and (3) choose where to eat. So the family decided that food would be the brand differentiator for Grand Velas.

Food and Drinks

From the family's traveling experience, they created the Grand Velas food experience with three main components in mind:

1. Night and Day Restaurants: With a wide variety of freshly prepared food, the experience must feel personalized but also to have the option to choose from an extensive buffet or à la carte menu. The evening restaurants were created (which are completely different from the ones open during the day) and designed according to the cuisine they represent. Each having its own chef (national and international) who are free to make his or her own creations with ingredients from around the world. To this experience, a wide selection of domestic and imported wine was included, which change constantly depending on the trends.

2. 24-hour Suite Service: Guests asks at least once for suite service. The suite service has a wide variety of dishes on the menu, with exquisite presentation and available 24-hours.

3. Minibar: Starting with Nespresso machines in each suite, premium brand teas, and an extensive variety of snacks, chocolates and wines, take the classic minibar to a whole new level.


In order to guarantee great service, the most prestigious accreditations in the industry were sought including The Leading Hotels of the World and the 5 Diamonds by the AAA. Both guarantee the highest level in facilities and standards in service worldwide.

Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit

With all the traits mentioned above, the 267 suites of Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit were created 12 years ago. Its culinary experience has been recognized with 4 Diamonds in all of its gourmet restaurants. The most prestigious companies book their conventions with us.

Casa Velas

After opening Grand Velas Riviera Nayarit, a property of 80 suites was bought inside the Marina Vallarta Golf Course. All the standards were applied to the brother hotel, with the only difference that this property was thought as a boutique and adults-only resort. With 4 Diamonds by the AAA and a Convention Center in front of the golf course, it has hosted countless events for prestigious national and international companies.

Grand Velas Riviera Maya

Finally, in 2008, Grand Velas Riviera Maya was opened and considered one of the most spectacular hotels in Mexico. Specializing in group management and conventions, it was designed in three natural and unique environments: 254 suites in the jungle, 195 suites with ocean view, and 90 oceanfront suites. Its culinary experience proudly offers one 5-Diamond and three 4-Diamond restaurants.

It all started 25 years ago with the question, how difficult it would be to operate as a hotel? Nowadays, the inventory consists of more than 1200 suites between the four properties. Velas Resorts is a 100% Mexican company. It would be a pleasure to host you and your next event.

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