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Dive Review of Pirates Point Resort in
Cayman Islands/Little Cayman

Pirates Point Resort, Jun, 2012,

by Eric A Frick, IL, US (Sr. Contributor Sr. Contributor 27 reports with 6 Helpful votes). Report 6590.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 251-500 dives
Where else diving Great Lakes, Hawaii, Caribbean
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, windy Seas calm, no currents
Water Temp 82 to 83 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 1
Water Visibility 60 to 80 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions Signal dive master @ 1,500 p.s.i., return to boat with 500 p.s.i. and do not go into deco.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

Sharks 1 or 2 Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles > 2 Whales None
Corals 4 stars Tropical Fish 4 stars
Small Critters 4 stars Large Fish 3 stars
Large Pelagics 2 stars

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter 3 stars Boat Facilities 3 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 3 stars Shore Facilities 3 stars
UW Photo Comments Cameras on main table on boat. Separate rinse tank.

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations 4 stars Food 5 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity 5 stars
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving 3 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 4 stars
Beginners 3 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments I decided to turn a trip to Cayman Brac (see my separate report) offered by my dive shop into my own Sister Islands trip by spending a week on my own on Little Cayman before joining the trip. Pirates Point proved to be a wonderful choice for a relaxing week of great diving. It is easy to see why many guests return year after year. The reservations process was a breeze and e-mails were quickly and cheerfully answered. I reserved the one room offered for a single guest which does not feature a single supplement charge. I was upgraded to a double room (#2) at no charge since there was availability.

Pirates Point is a unique resort/dive operator which will be appreciated by guests looking for the type of experience they offer. Guests stay in one of 11 rooms located on their 7-acre seaside property. Some rooms were air conditioned but those closer to the sea depend on ocean breezes and fans for cooling. In my time there in early June, a couple of the guests in non air conditioned rooms reported a bit of discomfort at night. Rooms do not include telephones and there is not a TV to be found anywhere on the property. Wi-fi is provided in the main building but apparently does not reach many of the rooms. There is a computer in the bar area for those wishing to check e-mail.

After breakfast, divers bring their neoprene, mask, camera gear and any other items they did not leave on their 42-foot Newton dive boat to air conditioned vans for the 5-minute ride to the dock. Their gear is delivered onto the boat and divers assemble their rigs. Boat rides from the dock to the Jackson Bight or Bloody Bay dive areas were 20 to 30 minutes long. Seas were not calm on the south side of the island where the resort is located but once the boat rounded the end of the island, calm seas and no current were the order of the day for the whole week on the north side. I experienced water temperatures of 82 degrees with visibility that went from 60 to 80 feet or more. Virtually all diving is on the spectacular walls with fish populations that were very good but not robust. Variety of critters was excellent.

When it is time to enter the water, divers don their gear and walk to the swim platform. Re-boarding the boat is done by passing your fins up to a crewmember, climbing the ladder and being escorted back to your seat where you are then responsible for swapping your rig onto your next tank. Crewmembers offered to handle the movement of gear on the boat for divers who might need the service. Dives were escorted and divers were asked to advise the dive master when they reached half a tank, obey depth limits outlined in the dive briefing, return with 500 or more p.s.i. and a computer that had not gone into deco. Once the group returned to the mooring, divers were free to explore on their own with their buddies. When the resort is full and all guests are divers, conditions can get a little close on the boat but not overly so.

After the brief van ride back to the resort from the dock, divers drop the gear they have brought back at the rinse tank and then hustle to lunch since by this point in the day it is between 2:00 and 2:30. After lunch, divers rinse and hang their own gear. Two dives a day is the offering here with an optional night dive from shore during the week offered for $50. An incoming barge prevented us from using the pier for the night dive so we entered at a beach area through swarms of mosquitoes. It was not a bad dive but not quite worth the effort.

An appetizer appears on the bar at 6:30. Cocktails are self-serve from the well stocked bar. All beverages are included in the price for those reserving the dive package. Dinner is served at 7:30. Meals feature one main course and a generous number of side items plus dessert. Chefs Jeff and Dianne provided wonderful, imaginative dishes that are a cut above those I have had on other trips. They asked each guest about dietary limitations and vegetarians on the trip complemented their efforts. Breakfast and lunch could be enjoyed outdoors under shady trees by the pool with an ocean view.

A weeks stay cost me $1,895 plus $284.25 (15%) gratuity plus $56 tax. This is no operation staffed by interns and college kids. Owner Gladys Howard has built something special here and it has attracted a staff that is experienced and very customer-oriented. Divers looking for a megaresort with music piped through speakers 18 hours a day and heaving buffets with dizzying arrays of average food along with valet diving four or five times a day should look elsewhere. Non-divers who want to read by the pool, pedal a bike or beach walk will find this place fits the bill but will not find much else to do. A couple of days before departure, staff members contacted Cayman Airways Express to confirm flight arrangements. Chefs saw to it that no guest missed a meal when a night dive or a flight would mean doing so. Dive master Mike is the resident iguana specialist and his Friday afternoon iguana tour is worth your time. I was personally thanked for my visit by Gladys and by others on her staff. More than one fellow guest confirmed their reservations for their next stay before they even completed this stay. That says something.
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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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