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Dive Review of Dive St. Kitts/Marriott Royal Beach Hotel & Casino in
St. Kitts and Nevis

November, 2009, an Instant Reader Report by Henry & Carol Ziller, CO, USA
Sr. Contributor   (23 reports, with 1 Helpful vote)
Report Number 5286
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Reporter and Travel
Dive Experience
101-250 dives
Where else diving
Carribean, Mexico, Central American, Indonesia, Micronesia
Closest Airport
Getting There


Dive Conditions

sunny, dry  
calm, no currents  
Water Temp
80   to 83    Fahrenheit  
Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility
40   to 80    Feet  
Dive Policy
Dive own profile
Enforced diving restrictions  
Inform the divemaster when you are at half a tank.
Safety stop with 750 psi back on the boat with 500 psi  
Nitrox Available?
What I saw
Whale Sharks
1 or 2 
Ratings 1 (worst)- 5 (best):
  4 stars
Tropical Fish
3 stars  
Small Critters
  3 stars
Large Fish
Large Pelagics
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  
There was a large dedicated camera bucket on the boat, but no place to work
on a camera except on the bench seat area.
Ratings and Overall Comments  1 (worst)- 5 (best):
4 stars
3 stars
Service and Attitude
4 stars
Environmental Sensitivity  
4 stars
Dive Operation
5 stars  
Shore Diving  

Overall Rating

Value for $$
4 stars    
5 stars   
3 stars    
Tourism is relatively new to this island. It used to rely on sugar for the
livelihood of its population. The islanders have abandoned their fields for
tourism, we hope it works out for them. A tour of the islands main
attractions cost us $80 for three of us and took two afternoons to
complete. The cruise ships come in most days and shopping is typical in the
area where they dock. 
We stayed at the Marriott Hotel and Casino located in Frigate Bay on the
southeast (Atlantic) side of St Kitts. This is a very large hotel and also
has time share condos on site. It has several restaurants and bars. The
swim-up bar has the best happy hour, but all the restaurants are expensive.
A cab to downtown costs $10 - $12 to less costly restaurants. Try Ballahoo
restaurant for the best burger ever according to our granddaughter. There
are some about a mile or less from the hotel that are good. Try Buddys for
bar-b-que ribs or chicken, or Ciao for Italian. The hotel has a nice beach,
pools, spa (more expensive than stateside), basketball court, tennis courts
and a golf course across the street. Power is 110, water is safe
everywhere, and the rooms are huge. We had a one bedroom/two bath unit with
a jacuzzi tub, separate shower, fridge, but no micro-wave.
We made reservations for diving with Dive St Kitts via email and Mike
responded promptly. They offer a three to six day package, but he will give
you the best deal at the end of your diving. You can change your diving
without a penalty. We picked up a night dive and got a discount on it. We
also dropped a couple of third dives mostly because they informed us they
were taking some people out for discover scuba so the dive would be short
and close in. That heads up from them was pretty nice I thought. Dive St
Kitts is located at the Bird Rock Beach Hotel on the southwest side of the
island and takes about 7 minutes to get to from the Marriott. Dive St Kitts
has complementary pickup at your hotel. Mike is the Manager of Dive
Operations and runs a pretty tight operation. All the staff, Captain Crabby
(Kent), Dave, Jeremy and Elvis all share duties of dive master and boat
captain. There is storage in the dive shop for all your gear so you dont
have to lug it back to your hotel. They will take your BC and regulator
from the boat and rinse them daily and make sure it is back on the boat all
set up on the tank the next morning. You carry your wet suit and mask,
fins, etc. Diving is from a covered 35-ft boat with two 250 hp outboard
motors. Life preservers, oxygen, first aid kit, etc. are stored in a dry
enclosure in the front of the boat. You can store anything you want to keep
dry in there. Entry is back roll and the ladder for climbing back on has a
center post so you could climb up with fins on but they have you hand up
weights, then they take your BC and you take off fins in the water. Surface
intervals are under the canopy at the rest/bar. Fruit and water is offered
most days but one day was banana nut bread. The restaurant has pretty good
food and drinks so after diving it is great for lunch. Dive St Kitts will
call for your ride back to the hotel just let them know about 20 minutes
before your ready to go. 
The diving is about what I expected. Most sites are 5-15 minutes away
including the signature dive - River Taw wreck. It is a good wreck dive
with lots of fish, an octopus is hidden in the front bumper of the van
located between the two sections of the wreck, and a very large old turtle
hangs out at the wreck. Visibility was not too good on our three visits to
the wreck. We did the dive one afternoon, then as our night dive with our
granddaughter (her first) and then again in the day time with her. I really
liked the Green Point dive. It has a reef that runs along the coast and
ends in the sand at about 50-ft. There were lots of fish, but mostly small,
a lot of babies, some rays one quite large (about four foot diameter),
spotted drums, lobsters, and garden eels. Visibility was better on this
dive. There are a significant number of flamingo tongues and they are
killing the fans and other soft coral so the divemasters are removing them.
I counted 20+ on one fan. Water was warm and calm. We used skins and were
never cold.
The entire staff at Dive St. Kitts is down to earth and we enjoyed relaxing
with them each afternoon. If we return to St. Kitts we will stay at Bird
Rock Beach Hotel provided the staff remains about the same.
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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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