By Dana Niland
The island of Dominica has long been one of the best-kept secrets in Dominica.
And now the island’s largest hotel is offering a way for divers to take advantage.
The hotel, which has served as a base for divers who want to explore Dominica’s marine life, is creating customized dive experiences for its guests with the assistance of a dedicated dive concierge.
“Diving is one of Dominica’s most championed attractions and we want to help visitors have the best possible experience exploring our waters,” said Marvlyn James, General Manager of the Fort Young Hotel. “We’ve enjoyed being a base for divers from around the world and look forward to continuing to serve the diving community as an expert resource.”
The concierge can coordinate diving locations, equipment, whale watching excursions and transportation to and from the desired diving sites, including the Soufriere/Scotts Head Marine Reserve.
With their rugged pinnacles, drop-offs and abyss depths that protected the marine life from Hurricane Maria, Dominica’s waters are “a paradise for divers,”
As divers hit 30 feet and continue a gradual descent, they’ll witness a seascape of forested coral gardens, sponge life, seahorses, frogfish, flying gurnards and more.
Dominica is also a home to a natural wonder in the form of Champagne Reef, so called because of the bubbles rising up through the sand from underwater hot springs, remnants of the island’s volcanic origins.
While the island’s volcanic craters have protected its reefs, the hurricane has served to cleanse the water and make way for new nutrients for all surviving reefs, coral, fish and pelagic creatures.
Additionally, with less water sports traffic, there has been a reported influx of whale and dolphin sightings off the Caribbean Sea.
Fort Young Hotel reopened in January after completing its first phase of renovations following Hurricane Maria.
The hotel has 41 of its 72 rooms available for booking, and many of its core amenities, including the pool, jetty, the waterfront Warner’s Bar, food and beverage services, in-room spa services and one of its meeting facilities and operational.
The hotel is expected to fully reopen in October of this year.
Divers interested in booking a stay at Fort Young Hotel can reserve dates immediately.
The hotel is offering a package that includes: five or seven nights accommodations, daily breakfast, airport transfer marine tags and three or five days of two tank dives and all taxes.
Rates start at $1,256 per person, and for a special deal, groups of ten only pay for nine.