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Dive Review of Dive With Martin/Plaza Las Glorias in
Cozumel and the Mexican Yucatan/Cozumel

Dive With Martin/Plaza Las Glorias, Jul, 2004,

by William & Frances Ungerman, CA, USA (Sr. Contributor Sr. Contributor 24 reports with 2 Helpful votes). Report 1120.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 501-1000 dives
Where else diving Sipidan, Solomon Islands, Papua New Guinea, Palau, Truk, Yap, Hawaii, Caribbean...
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, dry Seas calm, currents
Water Temp 83 to 84 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 1
Water Visibility 100 to 130 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions [Dive your own profile within limits, i.e., stay above the dive guide.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

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

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

Subject Matter 3 stars Boat Facilities 1 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 3 stars Shore Facilities 3 stars
UW Photo Comments Not set up for UWP. No rinse buckets or anything else related to UWP.

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

Accommodations 2 stars Food 3 stars
Service and Attitude 4 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 4 stars Shore Diving 1 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 4 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments Here's the good, the bad and the ...well, you know. Dive With Martin has five or six fast boats and is headquarted at the International Pier. We stayed at the Plaza Las Glorias which is about two miles north of the Pier. We booked a week of three boat dives a day (five days, two AM, one PM). Now the problem is DWM would not come and get us for the PM dive. Our options were to stay with the boat while they re-provisioned at their shop and miss lunch or forget the PM dives. They relented on our last dive day and took us to the C-53 wreck only because I mumbled something about Undercurrent reviews.

Now, DWM's web site states unequivocally that you have the option to go out on the 0730 or 0900 boat and again at 1330 and 1500. BS. There is no 0900 or 1500 boat and, for us, there was no 1330 boat, although if you were lodged at a facility south of the Int'l Pier, they would pick you up. Thus, we lost four PM dives. We elected to dive Nitrox at $9.00 per tank extra. They will provide any percent you want, presumably to 40%. We dove mostly NOAA 1 and II (32% and 36%, second dive). When asked for the oxygen analyzer, the week-long response was, "it's on another boat, Lo siento amigo." We had to take their word for the tank gas content or forget Nitrox. But there is the free video and night dive when you book a package, although the video is generic and unedited with an attrocious choice of background music.

While bringing up my wife's BC out of the water, the dive crew smashed her octo, nonchantly shrugged it off, accepted no responsibility nor offered any apology. They provided her a substitute but anguished over having to install it every dive day. "Pablo" the Dive guide shrugged and tried to convince her she didn't need one. Oh well.

Notwithstanding, the guides were extremely acomodating as to dive sites. We never did the same site twice and did The Devil's Throat and Maracaibo without a flinch or request for extra dinero. Tips, of course. They however would not go to San Juan and Barracuda stating the currents were too severe, "this time of year." That was as the Del Mar Aquatics boat was returning from both sites. Aside from "Pablo's" slight intransigence and occasional smarmy atitude, the guides and crew were knowledgeable and professional. Fruit and bottled water was provided between dives. We got to see an alligator in the water, ostensibly washed down into the sea after three days of torrential rain in mid-June.

Twice in five days divers with us ran out of air. Pablo took a look at one guy and immediately attached a ten-foot octo to his reg. Sure enough, twenty minutes into the dive Junior was out of air. He was attached by the umbilical cord for the balance of the dive. The second incident involved omitted decompression. The diver surfaced eight minutes short of full decompression because he ran out of air. Never saw him again.

The covered boats are all extremely fast with twin Yamaha 115 HP outboards. In five days of diving we saw the biggest Green Moray on the planet (I shoot you not, ten feet if it was an inch). Also the biggest Jew Fish ('scuse me, "Goliath Grouper"). Marine life was good to excellent and viz your usual Cozumel great. Currents were mild compared to to some previous trips here. The seas were flat. This is the first trip I never had to use Dramaamine. Coming up from three dives it was pouring rain, which lasted about twenty minutes, than back to 97 degrees and sun. The entire reef has been declared a "Parque Nacional," and is so tagged U/W. None of the operators bother to provide divers with the requisite wrist bands except on those days everybody knows the park police are checking.

The Plaza Las Glorias has been sold and will soon be renovated or torn down. None too soon. ALthough still nice, it is showing wear and there isn't much maintenance being done. On our last day the maid decided to sweeten the deal and bagged my gold chain left on the night stand. I kick myself for not using the room safe.

San Miguel has changed unalterably since our last sojourn, nine years ago. Hordes of cruise ship pasengers clog the streets and condo hawkers waylay you. It's starting to look like downtown Charlotte Amalie. Once you leave town, it's still the same old Cozumel. Chankaanab Park has raised the fees to $12.00 US per person but you can SNUBA or bounce on aerial trampolines for a few dolars more. Don't rent a car from "JE REntals." We did. It had no shockes, A/C, someone ripped out the radio, the sun visor fell off while I was driving, the convertible top didn't work, the windows didn't roll down and the steering wheel was off a Tonka Toy. It was like driving a Disneyland Autopia car, but not as much fun.

In conclusion, Cozumel is still a great vacation spot for divers. Check ot Coco's on the Hill and the 30 albums of bare breasted chicks who've hung it all out. Eating at Ernesto's for Fahitas used to cost five bucks. Four of us chowed down (two of them kids) and it cost $75.00 and that didn't include La Propina. I hate being negative, so I'll end on a high note. The diving was great and despite a few setback, a fun time was had by all.
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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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