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depelos

Big Disappointment at KBR

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My wife and I were at KBR in 2005 and our expectations was the diving. It was exceptional. We never over-anticipate 3rd world rooms and food, even though they might think its delicious. We were very pleased with our rooms (not 5 star but very satisfactory) and the fact that they supplied mosquito coils to burn and fend off the bugs. I am at Coco View right now and am getting eaten alive in my bed!! The food at KBR was good if you hone in and find the right menu items for you. Not everything is American-expected quality so you gotta find those items you like. I also had an initial concern about NOT GETTING ANY PICTURES because the group was too big and the bottom got stirred up easily. I talked with their manager and he made some small adjustments that made a huge difference. I would go back to KBR in an instant.

 

Joe

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In November, we were surprised to read of "Depelos" disappointment of his experiences at KBR. As we were scheduled to dive there in late December, we with held comment until returning from our most recent visit. We had previously dived there in 1997 and twice again in 2005.

 

I am offering our comments, not to argue with other members but to share our observations of KBR based upon 65 other foreign dive trips over the past 29 years.

 

These are in no particular order:

1. With a resort capacity of about 35 divers, KBR processes a large number of divers through each year. They have the system developed and if one stays within it, it works very smoothly. We have seen it improved over the past visits.

2. When they are at about 50% full or more, breakfast and lunch is buffet style. Other wise it is order from the menu. If you do not see your item in the buffet, it can be requested. Since most of the food from the menu is cooked to order, one can not expect to place an order and have it arrive with in minutes. This is clearly explained at arrival. We normally head for breakfast about 60 minutes before the morning dive and have more than enough time. The menu is a combination of Indonesian, Euro/American and Mexican food. Coming from southern California, we find the Mexican selections to be quite good and the food service, in general, to be above average. We consider KBR to be primarily a diving resort and if one seeks a higher level of dining, a resort more directed towards that area would be more rewarding!

3. We stay at the upgraded cabins for a slightly increased charge. This includes; A/C, mini bar, TV, 24 hour room service and increased maid service. Requests for extra pillows or bathroom tissue are usually completed with in minutes. At a daily rate of about US$225/day including 3 dives and food, this is approximately $100/day below quality live aboard rates. It is a good deal!

4. The 'muck' at KBR is composed of very fine, black volcanic sand. It gets into every thing, including your camera gear. Consequently, camera care/maintenance is paramount! A well lighted, separate camera work room is located near the dive shack and it is better to work here rather than in an air conditioned room where cold induced moisture could be problematical. At the beginning of one dive we had a strobe go down. With no time to replace it before the dive boat left, the resort manager offered his own personal camera for our use. You can't ask for more!

5. Divers are usually assigned to the boats with respect to groups traveling together or as to their skill/photographic levels. Each day, telephone calls are made to the other resorts in the area to co ordinate dive sites and to respond to diver's requests for particular subjects. We believe the dive guides are among some of the best in the world; some are new, while others have been with the resort since it's beginning. They consider it a challenge to 'fill' out a list of special subjects. Beginning last year, they are being sent to dive masters school (PADI?).

6. As with many dive sites, they wax and wane over the years, however we believe KBR to be among the most consistent producer of unique photo subjects.

 

Well, that's about enough. As can be seen from reading other postings in this thread, divers have varying expectations and as for us, we're already thinking about out next return to KBR.

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