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Dive Review of Looe Reef Resort in
The Continental USA/Florida Keys

Looe Reef Resort, Aug, 2007,

by Raymond Clark, NJ, USA ( 1 report). Report 3540.

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 501-1000 dives
Where else diving NY, NJ, Pa, NC, FL, Ga, Tx, Ca, Labrador, Bermuda, Bahamas, Bonaire, Roatan, Utila, Coz, Holbox, GC, Fiji, Galapagos
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather sunny Seas calm
Water Temp 86 to 88 Fahrenheit Wetsuit Thickness 0
Water Visibility 50 to 60 Feet

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions 60 minutes
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 3 stars
Small Critters 2 stars Large Fish 4 stars
Large Pelagics 4 stars

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

Subject Matter 3 stars Boat Facilities 2 stars
Overall rating for UWP's 3 stars Shore Facilities 1 stars
UW Photo Comments Other than rinse bucket there were none, not enough outlets in room for charger

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

Accommodations 3 stars Food 1 stars
Service and Attitude 2 stars Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation 2 stars Shore Diving 1 stars
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 5 stars
Advanced 2 stars
Comments Looe Key Resort is actually a motel with a dive shop attached, with a resort you could pay for everything at once but at Looe Key you can pay the room fee for the time you are staying but they want you to pay daily for the diving. They take cash, MC and Visa but not AMEX.
The Tiki bar is open for lunch and dinner but I cant comment on the food because the help never came to our table and we left, we were told by a local the help would rather hang out with the regulars. There are plenty of other good places to eat on US1 and in Key West. The fish sandwich at Guy Harveys was almost as good as Hobos.
If you are not going to be hanging out with the locals at the Tiki bar you should ask for a low number room to be away from the noise. On the other hand you may need ear plugs to block out the noise from the air conditioner. Considering most of the guest are divers you would think there would be some place to hang the gear to dry. The dock is only a few feet from the back door but you cant use that because they dont give you a key. The key for our front door didnt always lock the door, you had to double check it. No brochure in the room that might explain anything at all; you're on your own.
The good news is the rooms are clean.
If you want to use the WiFi ask for the password at check in because after that no one seems to know it! And check-in closes at 7 pm. For breakfast there is coffee available at the gas station next door, there is no coffee maker or fridge in the room.
We chose this resort because it had a pool but the pool was waiting for a part that was coming tomorrow. Like most islands tomorrow never gets here and we heard from a local that the pool had been green for a while.
The diving on Looe reef is real shallow; during the week expect a few snorkelers on the boat too and on weekends about 15. There are four gates into the water and two ladders back on but the snorkelers like to hang on those ladders to watch the fish and barracuda under the boat.
Their boat, the Kokomo Cat does 3 dives for $80 and according to their website Hotel Guests receive 10% discount on trip prices but we did not. 15 years ago they charged me more than the web price so this was no big surprise. Dives are limited to one hour each apparently from the time he ties on, sixty minutes later they will be using the dive recall signal to get you out of the water! If I was on another boat and heard that I would think someone is in trouble. The boat then moves about two hundred feet to the next mooring and the pool is open again. There is no SI required for these depths, max we hit was 26.
If you are good on air and using your own tanks two will be enough but dont think bringing your own tanks will save you money, it will actually cost you more! Our boat trip includes the use of our air tanks and weights. It does not include air fills for those who elect to use their own tanks. Nitrox is extra.
Water is provided on the boat but if you want anything else either pack it or bring cash, the boat crew sells soda, chips and chicken dogs which is what they are usually doing when you get to the ladder and would like to pass up the camera and fins..
The reef is healthy with lots of fans, fish and critters. Everything from cleaning shrimp to big barracuda and sharks, both reef and nurse.
At the dock the dive Nazi puts a chain across the exit, please stay in line and dont put your rental gear down until the list has been checked, then you will get your C-card back. Dont even think of ducking under that chain even if you didnt rent gear!
BTW, except for Wednesdays when they do a wreck all dives seem to be on the same three moorings. We grew tired of that, checked out early and went to Key Largo and Ocean Divers were great.
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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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