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Dive Review of Scubaqua/Old Gin House in
St. Eustatius

Scubaqua/Old Gin House: "Pristine diving, old Carribean setting.", Apr, 2017,

by David Ross, QC, CA ( 1 report with 6 Helpful votes). Report 9553 has 6 Helpful votes.

No photos available at this time

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

Accommodations 3 stars Food 3 stars
Service and Attitude 5 stars Environmental Sensitivity 5 stars
Dive Operation 5 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling 2 stars
Value for $$ 5 stars
Beginners 5 stars
Advanced 5 stars
Comments The good: Diving like it used to be: small island, no mass marketing, pristine coral, massive sponges, Inteesting history (was once the largest port in the Caribbean- still litttered with ballast stones, anchors, artifacts (Please leave in place!). Underwater topo courtesy of local volcano which has left long lava extrusions criss-crossing the area, making for extensive overhang habitat for critters up the wazoo. The dive crew was professional yet flexible, Rental equipment of good quality and well-maintained.
Did I mention the Free Nitrox?
Average profile: square - 60 ft/20 meters.
Nice new Newton dive boat and a little Boston Whaler for those quickie excursions.
I am a photographer with a big fat pig of a rig. They took good care of it, entering and exiting the boat. Surprised they didn't collectively herniate. Not a word of compliant.
They took me out all by myself one afternoon, because I had asked (everyone else was sated). Really nice.
At the risk of straining credibility, have precisely zero negatives to report on the dive op. Good people, solid pros, personable and knowledgable.
[ link]
The not-so-good: a bit of a bugger for we Montrealers to get to. Travellers beware: the local oligarchy owns the local shuttle airline (WinAir) which is over-priced and synchronizes rather poorly with major flights out of St Maartens.
The food at the hotel is over-priced (but improving! New chef!). Before too much time goes by, go for a wee walk (like, wee - 4 minutes or so) up the street to the Blue Bead or up the hill to the Ocean View. Much more for much less! If you dont like crashing waves, dont go for the ocean-front rooms. The hotel is old, but very,very clean.
We loved the place, and appreciate it even more now.
Consider it.
Respects and regards, and thank you for reading this report.
David Ross
Montreal, Qc, CAN.
Websites Scubaqua   

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 501-1000 dives
Where else diving Rest of Caribbean. Red Sea (N and S). Phillipines.Bali. Great Barrier Reef.Various nasty Quebec quarries.
Closest Airport Getting There Via St Maarten.

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas calm
Water Temp 80-82°F / 27-28°C Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility 30-80 Ft/ 9-24 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions Max depths were approx 100-120feet. No wandering off . Advise DM at 1500 and 500 psi. First to 500 escorted up by a DM - others are NOT forced to terminate! (Hurray!). Use your head. Marine park, so hands off the shells / artifacts / etc. You find a blue bead, you keep it.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

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

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

Subject Matter 5 stars Boat Facilities 4 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 4 stars Shore Facilities 4 stars
UW Photo Comments Dedicated photo table - basic but serviceable Dedicated photo dunk tank (on boat and at dive shop). Took my rig back to the hotel (about 33 feet away)
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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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