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Dive Review of Inn of Last Resort in
Honduras/Roatan

Inn of Last Resort, Apr, 2005,

by Barry Clegg, MN, USA . Report 1672.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 101-250 dives
Where else diving All over the Caribbean
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, cloudy Seas calm, choppy
Water Temp 80 to 82 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 60 to 80 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions Limits were suggested. None were enforced.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

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

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

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

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 2 stars Shore Diving 3 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 3 stars
Advanced 3 stars
Comments The Inn of Last Resort is on the north side of Roatan, a few minutes away from West End. It is located near many of the best dive sites on the north side of the Island. This was our first time there - we picked it because it was smaller than the monster resorts and because of good write-ups in Undercurrent. Frankly, we also picked it because it doesn't advertise "activities for the kids" - we don't have any and prefer a resort not swarming with kids. Kids are certainly welcome at the Inn of Last Resort but they don't market for them, as a result I don't think they get many (none while we were there). All in all a great trip and I would certainly go again - but see below.

The resort is 10 years old and very nice. It does not have a sand beach - it has a "hard beach" - i.e. coral. On Roatan, this is actually a huge plus as it means fewer (but still some) sand fleas, which plague some of the operations that do have more sand. Bring DEET no matter where you go on Roatan. The rooms are large and modern, all with AC. The bar and restaurant areas have great ocean views. The food service is NOT buffet, which we thought was a plus. Entrees change daily and were very good. They did ask about food preferences and allergies and were accomodating to special needs. The service at the resort was excellent - the owners are very customer service oriented and this attitude is common in the staff at all levels.

We enjoyed the diving. They do 3 boat dives per day with unlimited shore diving from their lagoon (which is actually about 100 yards from a dive buoy - a good dive site). They do one boat night dive per week. The reefs were in good shape. The area is still heavily fished by the locals so not as many fish as in more protected areas. Our dives ranged from 135 feet (Hole in the Wall) to as shallow as 40 to 60 feet. Their boats will comfortably hold about 14 - 16 divers but probably have a theoretical capacity of 20. The resort was crowded when we were there (see below) and there were probably about 16 divers on most dives - a potential disaster if the divemaster insists everyone stay together and we all come up when the first heavy breather runs low on air. This was NOT the case here. The divemasters were flexible and would let folks do pretty much what they wanted. Most times, my buddy and I would hang with the group to see the feature of the dive and then signal to the divemaster and be on our separate way with no problem. A disadvantage of this flexibility, with so many on the boats, was that people were all over the place at the end of the dive - and there were some in our group that wanted to take pictures at 30 feet until their air ran out - so those of us who did a 90 feet or greater profile often had to wait a long time for them.

The resort has a theoretical capacity of 70 and there were 55 or so there when we were there. The resort staff, the bar and the restaurant were great - even with the crowd.

The dive operation was, unfortunately, overmatched by the crowd. The resort only had 2 of it's own boats when we were there (a third was being rebuilt on site in dry dock - interesting to see), and they needed four for the crowd, so they borrowed 2 from other resorts (one from Fantasy Island and one from Cocoview). As you might expect, when you borrow a boat, you don't get the best of the fleet. The Cocoview boat half sank tied to the dock when it's captain inadvertantly turned off the bilge pump - it was refloated but the engine was water damaged and it was towed away. On the last day, one of the Inn's boats had transmission troubles and was not usable (they finagled another boat from somewhere). They didn't have enough Nitrox tanks to serve everyone who wanted Nitrox - so that was hit and miss. Despite all that, we thoroughly enjoyed the diving and would go back, although we might check ahead to see how full the place was.

One other comment on the Anthony's Key dive operation. We overlapped with them at several dive sites and were not impressed. At the wreck of the Odyssey, they arrived at the wreck after we did and left before, the divemasters clanging their tanks constantly at every little thing (our own divemaster told us she would only clang the tank if she saw a shark or there was an emergency, which we appreciated).
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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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