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Dive Review of Rainbow Reef Dive Center/Courtyard Mariott Key Largo in
The Continental USA/Florida Keys

Rainbow Reef Dive Center/Courtyard Mariott Key Largo, Aug, 2013,

by Aaron Kelly, FL, US ( 1 report). Report 7520.

No photos available at this time

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

Accommodations 4 stars Food 1 stars
Service and Attitude 4 stars Environmental Sensitivity 4 stars
Dive Operation 4 stars Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ 4 stars
Beginners 5 stars
Advanced 3 stars
Comments The boats are right at the Mariott hotel. Ample free parking even if you're not staying at the hotel. The deckhands were very accommodating, even carrying my heavy steel tanks from the car onto the boat for me.

I did 10 dives with these guys over a few days time. Most were on a large "cattle boat". Standard as far as large dive boats go. Captain and crew were very pleasant.

My last day of diving was to be out to Spiegel Grove. It was on the smaller of Rainbow Reef's boats. Unfortunately, the captain decided to cut out of the channel early to save time on the way out and he ran the boat aground! He called sea-tow, who was unable to pull him off the sandbar. The sea-tow boat gave us all a ride back to shore, while the captain dealt with the local sheriff. We of course were given a refund for the dive.

Special note about nitrox: They will rent you tanks filled with nitrox, but will not fill tanks you own with nitrox. This was not a VIP or hydro issue, they flatly refused to do it. I had to go down the road to another op to get my tanks filled.

Overall, this was some fantastic diving. The crew stood out as a real bright point on this trip.

They do offer training (PADI I think) but I did not sign up for any.

The boats were all sold out for every dive I did with them. Several times I saw them turn folks away because they were full.

Despite the issue with the boat on the last day, I would dive with these guys again.
Websites Rainbow Reef Dive Center   Courtyard Mariott Key Largo

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 51-100 dives
Where else diving Palm Beach, Sarasota, North FL Springs
Closest Airport Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather dry Seas calm, no currents
Water Temp 80-82°F / 27-28°C Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility 30-50 Ft/ 9-15 M

Dive Policy

Dive own profile yes
Enforced diving restrictions Must be back on boat 1 hour from first diver getting wet (not from when you got in). Must have 500psi when you get back on the boat (they didn't check).

For dives deeper than 60' they require an Advanced Open Water (or better) card. They do check.
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? yes

What I Saw

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

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

Subject Matter N/A Boat Facilities N/A
Overall rating for UWP's N/A Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments They do provide a separate rinse bucket for cameras. It's Key largo, so there is plenty to photograph!
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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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