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Dive Review of HMS Minnow/Westin Resort - Key Largo in
The Continental USA/Key Largo, FL

HMS Minnow/Westin Resort - Key Largo, Jun, 2003,

by John, nj, usa (Reviewer Reviewer 5 reports). Report 534.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 51-100 dives
Where else diving [Unspecified]
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather cloudy Seas calm, noCurrents
Water Temp 82 to 84 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 0
Water Visibility 35 to 80 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions 500 psi on returning to boat. Depth not an issue on these reefs
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks Lots Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles 1 or 2 Whales None
Corals 4 stars Tropical Fish 5 stars
Small Critters 5 stars Large Fish 3 stars
Large Pelagics 2 stars

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

Subject Matter 4 stars Boat Facilities 5 stars
Overall rating for UWP's N/A Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments [None]

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

Accommodations 3 stars Food 3 stars
Service and Attitude 2 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving 3 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 5 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments We took a family SCUBA trip to the Keys. My wife and 2 youngest sons had just been certified (in NJ) the prior fall. We wanted an easy and interesting first trip so that they could get comfortable. The Minnow's Capt. Jeff Jarvis is a first rate operator. The boat is a 6 - pack so it was perfect for the 5 of us. On a total of 6 days diving we only had a 6th diver with us once. The boat is big enough to be comfortable and small enough to get to and from the dive sites quickly. Capt. Jeff leaves the docks early (7:30am on morning dives and 12:30pm on afternoon dives) so you are always the first ones on the site. This is great on the morning dives as we saw all the big stuff before the other dive boats could scare them off. Jeff was always making sure our gear was set up right and helped us in and out of the water. By the time you got your fins off and got back to the gear bench your tank was switched over for the second dive. I can't say enough about how good it was diving on the Minnow. Because we had new divers on board we didn't dive any of the more challenging sites (Speigel Grove, Duane, Bibb, etc) but Jeff would take divers there if they were up to it. We were allowed to dive withing our own limits, just return to boat with 500psi. Jeff's hand drawn maps of the dive sites and breifings were very helpful for navigating the reefs. He's a diver and that helps. The diving in Key Largo is great. Tons of fish (mostly small) and some turtles, big grouper, sharks and eagle rays. Great time. The Westin is a nice hotel but needs some refurbishing and some better management. For the price it wasn't really a good value. Housekeeping never came before 4pm and did a poor job at best. The food was outrageously priced and since we were diving every day we didn't really use the facilities much.
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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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