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Dive Review of Golden Rock/Old Gin House in
St. Eustatius

February, 2007, an Instant Reader Report by Jeffrey Johnson, IL, USA (8 reports)
Report Number 3097

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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
101-250 dives
Where else diving
Grand Cayman, Belize, Roatan, Florida, Saba, Palau, Fiji, Cozumel, Little
Cayman
Closest Airport
Getting There

		

Dive Conditions

Weather
sunny, windy  
Seas
surge  
Water Temp
79   to 81    ° Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
0
Water Visibility
30   to 200    Feet  
 
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
yes  
 
Enforced diving restrictions  
Return with 500 psi, max depths recommended  
Liveaboard?
no 
Nitrox Available?
N/A 
What I saw
Sharks
1 or 2 
Mantas
None 
Dolphins
None 
Whale Sharks
None 
Turtles
> 2 
Whales
None 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Corals
  4 stars
Tropical Fish
4 stars  
Small Critters
  3 stars
Large Fish
2 stars  
Large Pelagics
  2 stars
 
 
Underwater Photography  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Subject Matter
4 stars  
Boat Facilities
1 stars
Overall rating for UWP's  
2 stars  
Shore Facilities  
1 stars  
Comments
[None]
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
Accommodations
4 stars
Food
4 stars
Service and Attitude
3 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
N/A
Dive Operation
4 stars  
Shore Diving  
1 stars  
Snorkeling
N/A  
 
 

Overall Rating

Value for $$
N/A    
Beginners
2 stars   
Advanced
4 stars    
Comments  
The diving experience was very enjoyable.  Interesting coral formations,
walls with black coral etc, and wrecks.  We saw more lobsters than we have
anywhere, lots of turtles and spotted morays, a few stingrays, lots of the
usual carribean fish including scorpionfish, schools of barracuda, small
stuff including fireworm, shrimp.  First time we had ever seen Flying
Gurnards with wings spread underwater.  Conditions were good at beginning
of week but storm came middle of week, didn't effect topside much but
stirred things up underwater.  Charlie Brown wreck is a must dive, we were
going to do penetration but conditions too murky.  We probably should have
used Nitrox because bottom time opportunity was significant, found we got
close to decompression time sooner than we would have liked on second
dive.

Golden Rock dive operation does a good job, accomodating, laid back, and
competent.  Boat was not crowded, had safety gear, no head but you return
to land between dives.  Other dive operations seemed to have smaller more
crowded boats.  Nothing moves too fast but that's the Caribbean.  If we
were to return to St. Eustatius, we'd use them again.  Glenn and Michelle
are owners, very helpful, also GMs of Old Gin House. 

Old Gin House had excellent accomodations, no problems with a/c, water,
housecleaning,etc.  Our room was on water side, had great sunsets.  We
didn't see other resorts that seemed to be in same league but then we
didn't explore much.  Don't go to St. Eustatius for the beach, they don't
have much.  You can snorkel out to old sea wall.  Food at Old Gin House was
very good, particularly at dinner.  Had beach bar barbeque + band on
Wednesday, lots of fun.  Allow plenty of time for breakfast, service is
very slow and not particularly good.  We didn't venture too far from Old
Gin House for meals, did go to Blue Bead a few times for lunch and dinner,
also very good.  I was struck by few fish dishes on menu, particularly at
Old Gin House.  Other people seemed to like the Chinese place in town, a
restaurant by old fort, and another place on beach road, none of whose
names I remember.  

We didn't explore island much. It has a great history, once was major
seaport and trading area.  We did go to town to get some provisions, had
everything we needed.  Visited old fort.  We didn't do it but hiking up and
into volcano supposedly worth doing, plus other side of island supposedly
had better beaches.  If we hadn't concentrated on getting our quota of
daily dives (didn't take any off days), we would have rented a car and
explored.  Taxis are available also.

If you go, don't count on Winair to be on time, to give you any
information, to get your luggage there on your flight, or to care about any
of it. 

All in all, an enjoyable trip.  We'd recommend St. Eustatius, Golden Rock
Dive Center, and Old Gin House.  This probably won't be a repeat
destination for us, but then we like to visit new places.

Jeff & Chris Johnson     
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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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