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Dive Review of Sunset House in
Cayman Islands/Grand Cayman

Sunset House, Jun, 2006,

by Carol Cox, FL, USA (Contributor Contributor 16 reports with 1 Helpful vote). Report 2570.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience Over 1000 dives
Where else diving Palau, Truk, Guam, Turks & Caicos, Bahamas, Roatan, Cozumel
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather windy, rainy, cloudy Seas surge
Water Temp 82 to 84 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 2
Water Visibility 35 to 60 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions None
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

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

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

Subject Matter 4 stars Boat Facilities N/A
Overall rating for UWP's 4 stars Shore Facilities 2 stars
UW Photo Comments Fresh water rinse tanks used for all scuba equipment; not just cameras. Cathy Church's Photo Center is on site, but you can no longer get E-6 slide film developed. According to Cathy, you can't get it developed anywhere on the island. The facilities looked pretty good for digital photo photographers.

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

Accommodations 5 stars Food 5 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 3 stars Shore Diving 4 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 5 stars
Advanced 3 stars
Comments We stayed at Sunset House prior to our Aggressor trip. We were there when Tropical Storm Albert was beginning to develop. The room was very comfortable with a large king bed, plenty of desk and dresser space for camera gear, and plenty of storage space. The furniture had been upgraded since my last visit, and looked very nice. The king bed was adequately comfortable, especially after a day of diving. The air conditioning worked very well; and I kept it on a warmer setting because we had cloudy conditions and I got chilled easily. The bathroom had a large shower, but no tub which would have been convenient for the camera gear. In some rooms, the hot and cold knobs were reversed. I enjoyed having a ground floor room. Walking up the stairs to the 2nd floor rooms was a challenge in the rain because the tile became very slippery when wet. The room my friends stayed in, above mine, developed a leak in the wall during heavy rain and the floor got a little wet. I could see where the water was leaking behind the wall in my room, but the floor stayed dry. I got some rain that came in under the door, which I controlled with a towel.

Overall, the property was very pleasant with lots of flowering shrubs and trees. It was very nicely landscaped. Although we had a "courtard" room, we had some water views. The pool had a lot of sand blow in, but it was promptly cleaned. No one was using the pool and hot tub because of the rainy weather.

We were able to rent tanks easily from the small scuba facility on site. We were also able to use dive lockers for free with a $5 refundable deposit. Lockers were very convenient for our wet gear and storing extra tanks for night dives. Two divers could share a locker.

The two saltwater pools made entry and exit very easy. When it got a little rough due to formation of Tropical Storm Albert, we were still able to make a comfortable entry in the second salt-water pool.

The reef had enough critters to keep our interest for several dives. We saw turtles, French and Gray Angelfish, anemones loaded with blennies and crabs, rock beauties, hamlets, squid, tiger groupers, and all the other reef creatures. We also explored the small house wreck and the mermaid statue. I would sign up for their boat trips if staying longer than a couple of days, because the house reef would only hold my interest for a few dives.

Sunset House closed the shore diving when conditions got to rough because of Albert. They put up a "No Diving" sign and pulled the ladders when they were sure all the divers had exited the water. It was probably just as well, because visibility deteriorated to zero on the surface and it was getting bad below. I don't know if it was an act of kindness, or an oversight, but we weren't charged for our last tanks. We made the best of things and spent the afternoon in town.

After exploring our options, we decided that My Bar and Seaharvest had some of the best food around and they have some of the best views of any restaurants within walking distance of Georgetown. We enjoyed every meal there. You should check your bill before paying because the tip is added to the cost of your food, which is the custom on much of the island. They served up a good variety of American, Cayman Island, and Indian food and the prices were reasonable when you consider that the tip was included. Salads were fresh and nicely sized and service was excellent. Breakfast choices were slim, but the food was good and very filling. I highly recommend the conch fritters and the dolphin (mahi).

One tip on walking into Georgetown--the road between Sunset House and Georgetown is very narrow with no sidewalks. Walkers are very exposed to traffic. However, you can take a cross road to another street with wide sidewalks that will take you straight into town. Ask the front desk for directions.

I know this probably should have been in the other review I filed, but I want to give a big kudos to PADI. Since my husband is an instructor, we booked our Sunset House and Aggressor trip through PADI months in advance and got a 5% PADI Professional commission (basically a discount, but they call it a commission). Less than a week before our trip I noticed that Aggressor was giving a 10% discount to military personnel while checking their web site. I contacted PADI and they quickly refunded the difference to us and another military couple we were traveling with. This kind of service will keep us coming back to the PADI travel professionals. I'd also like to thank Aggressor for the nice discount. :-)
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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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