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Dive Review of Fish N Fins/West Plaza Desekel Hotel in

Fish N Fins/West Plaza Desekel Hotel, Feb, 2005,

by Lucius Foster, MN, USA . Report 1684.

No photos available at this time

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

Accommodations 4 stars Food 4 stars
Service and Attitude 4 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving 2 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 3 stars
Advanced 4 stars
Comments Palau was a wonderful place and the locals were always very polite. I put together my two week trip by calling Fish N Fins and asked for a package deal to include two tank dive per day and lodging. They put me up at the West Plaza Desekel Hotel that is a five min. walk to there dive shop and dock. I was given a room in the middle of the second floor without windows (kinda wierd but I got use to it), a small living room with television (the cable had four channels only) couch and a closet, hallway kitchen, full bathroom, and bedroom with television. The hotel was above a grocery store that supplied most things I needed for the kitchen (Twinkies and Yoohoos)during my stay and was walking distance to all kinds of resturants from Sushi to American BLT. The room was very clean and the staff always smiled and went out of there way to make sure I had everything I needed, including doing my personal laundry. So, if you are like me and bring two bags, one for dive gear and one for profesional camera gear, you will be just fine bringing a few t-shirts trunks and shorts in your carry-on backpack because they will clean your clothes for a couple bucks. As far as Fish N Fins, Tova Bornovski (owner)was a fantastic host and she was there most every day to make sure you were enjoying yourself and the diving. Her husband and partner Navot was away on business during may stay so I did not get the pleasure on meeting him. I must say I am an easy to please person and do not find myself picking at all the little things that I read so many others do. I also own a business and know exactly the things that make or break you. This dive operation was top knotch from the first person I talked to when booking to the divemasters who showed me there ocean home with genuine enthusiasm. The dive sites on the walls and reefs had great visibility while most of the wrecks (that are closer to land) had enough visibility to make them great wreck dives. While I was there we did not have much in the "no kick drift diving" I read so much about before my adventure. However, one day we took a trip to Peleliu and dove the famous Peleliu Express. We were cruising on a wall dive with a slight current, as we came up to the area were the divemaster signaled to get ready to set your reef hook, it was to late. The current was ripping so hard in the channel that all anyone could do was hold on for dear life to the floor bottom and look straight so that your mask did not get ripped off. Everyone on the dive was a rescue diver or better and we all managed to hold on and wait for the divemaster to let go so that all of us would release at the same time and stay together. Now that was exciting and I guess it was OK to piss all over myself since I was in a wetsuit. We all followed the 20 to 30 mile an hour current and made our safty stop before our final asent. When we came up you could barly see land and our boat captain was nowere to be seen. But within 2 minutes he came and picked all of us up. We were all a little shaken and with the story of a lifetime to tell others of the Peleliu Express!. Palau is known for large fish and great drift dives. It delivered on both ends, however, the drift dives, with the exception of Peleliu Express, were very mild and easy. I saw sharks on every dive except one wreck, lots of huge manta rays and sea turtles, schools of dolphins, and many pelagics. The coral seemed to be starting to rebound after the bleaching from El Nino and the small fish were everywere. The only thing I did not seem to find alot of was nudibranches and small stuff for the macro lens, however, I belive it was because of two things, one, I was so busy looking at all the huge stuff and two, I am over fourty and the reading glasses were not on the dive with me.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 101-250 dives
Where else diving California, Lake Superior Minnesota, Hawaii, Jamaica, Cozumel Mexico, Anguilla B.W.I., Southern Florida East Coast, Florida Keys, Bahamas, Roatan Honduras
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny, dry Seas calm, noCurrents
Water Temp 80-82°F / 27-28°C Wetsuit Thickness 3
Water Visibility 40-120 Ft/ 12-37 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions Back on boat with 500 psi
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

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

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

Subject Matter 5 stars Boat Facilities 2 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 4 stars Shore Facilities 5 stars
UW Photo Comments POSITIVE: Fish N Fins has a wonderful photo and video shop with profesional staff that ranges from rental, repairs, film and processing, computer use for digital corrections and then download to disk with Adobe Photoshop (I believe), PADI photo courses, cameras only huge fresh water cleaning tank, and plenty of table space. NEGETIVE: The dive boats have no rinse bucket or place for camera or video equipment. You must store on floor or under seat. However, the divemasters and boat captains are great with handing off equipment before and after the dives.
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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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