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“Fantastic food, service and diving”

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Pirates Point Resort
Ranked #2 of 4 Hotels in Little Cayman
Certificate of Excellence
Minneapolis
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Fantastic food, service and diving”
Reviewed 30 January 2010

Great spot for relaxation and diving. Very quiet on a remote island but very comfortable. Service staff are fantastic and the food is beyond what you would be served in a 5 star hotel.

  • Stayed January 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank moxieminneapolis
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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472 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (167)
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English first
Minnesota
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 December 2008

We have been visiting Pirates Point for about 10 years now and Gladys and the crew truly feel like family. What started as a novice divers' first trip, has evolved into an annual family reunion. Now each of the adult children and their partners are scuba certified and join us every January.

This is an ideal resort if you are looking for peace, superb diving, excellent food and a relaxed schedule. The accommodations are comfortable, there are plenty of shaded hammocks and for those with energy following their morning dives, there are a number bikes available for island touring. Our favorite pass-time when not diving or eating is reading. Actually I should say we intend to read, but it is almost impossible to read more than a page before the hammock and ocean breezes lull you to sleep.

We especially enjoy the relaxed schedule that allows you to sleep in a bit and eat breakfast before heading out for diving. The dive boat is well organized and the crew provides a good site briefing. They are excellent at finding and showing unusual critters. And while most of the guest divers are experienced, the crew is happy to provide tips and assistance to those who are interested.

I should add that this is a perfect resort for someone who wishes to complete their certification. The students were on the boat with everyone, but had their own dive master and were never a hinderance to the experienced group.

PPR is known for excellent food and we agree. It is fresh and flavorful with a healthy mix of fruits, vegies, breads, fish and meats. OK, so maybe the desserts don't qualify as "healthy", but they are a well deserved treat after a day of hard work in the hammock.

But I have to admit that PPR is NOT for everyone. If you are looking for a party and lively night life, look elsewhere. If you want to dive 5 times a day, look elsewhere. If you require room service or bar tenders to mix you a drink or pool staff to bring you a towel, check out one of the major resorts on Grand Cayman.

Thankfully, Pirates Point is more like visiting a good friend's hidden retreat than a 5 star hotel. And that is exactly why so many of us return year after year!

  • Liked — Great diving. Beautiful location with no crowds. Good food. Perfect for relaxation.
  • Disliked — Can't think of a thing!
  • Stayed January 2008, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
2 Thank GoldieBug
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
central PA
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 November 2008

My husband and I are repeat visitors at Pirates' Point. It is a very special place with a very special feeling. The staff are outstanding: knowledgeable, friendly, kind, efficient, and accommodating. Gladys Howard is a larger-than-life Texan character, superb cook, raconteur, and hostess. This is not your standard luxury hotel with staff who hardly look at you, says "yes, ma'am" and "no ma'am" in a quiet voice, and perhaps wish you weren't there to cause them trouble. This is a house party: a little quirky (check out the fantastic art projects done by guests each year!), very comfortable, homey, welcoming, with lovely food for any taste. What I most enjoyed about PPR is that the staff and the guests have FUN. Laughter seems to be the theme song of this place. I've stayed all over the Caribbean but for my taste, PPR is the best. Oh -- and did I mention the reef? the Bloody Bay wall? The outstanding divemasters who know everything you are seeing and can tell you all about it? The bird sanctuaries? The endangered but wonderful iguanas? geckos? crabs?
If you want a nice, predictable, boring, synthetic chain hotel, go somewhere else. It you want a one-of-a-kind experience, come to Pirates' Point!

Stayed May 2006
Helpful?
2 Thank Sn0rkeler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Ohio
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 May 2008

Unlike another review that I read, our arrival experience was very good. We were met at the airport by Michelle who did a great job of knowing what we needed at the time. She took us to our door, helped bring in our luggage,and told us short-term need to know information. Her emphasis was on relaxing after a day of travel. Throughout the week her professionalism shined from divemaster to assisting a seasick gentleman.
All of the staff work very hard performing multiple roles which we have seen at other resorts in the past 20 years of diving. Martha, Gay, Ash, Ed, Michelle, and the cooks are outstanding!
We have been to the Caymans including Grand Cayman, Cayman Brac, and Little Cayman at least 9 times. The diving is superb. The above mentioned staff are safety conscious and knowledgable. The boat is nice, snacks are provided, and it is well eqipped. However, we like smaller numbers of divers on the boat.
One of my friends who is a diver and always seeking new places to go asked me what I thought of the resort. I told him all that I have just written in this review. When he asked me if I would go back again, I felt myself hesitate to be enthusiastic. He picked up on my response and wondered why I felt that way if everything was so great. I think it is because as mentioned in another review, it is a bit like being at summer camp with many rules.
The owner even refers to the resort as " the compound."

Stayed April 2008
Helpful?
10 Thank nursefish
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Modesto Ca
Level Contributor
7 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 February 2008

Gladys Howard has created and staffed a really great resort. Pirate's Point may not appeal to you if your expectation of service is subservience. The staff is friendly,helpful and interested in you getting the most out of your time spent with them. The dive staff gives you as much or little attention that you desire. They helped me to increase my bottom time and reduce air consumption through observation and helpful suggestions. Divers were matched to groups with similar skill levels. The food was really great ,gormet fair combined with good wines and Gladys's down home touch. The accomadations are not "5 star' it is more like staying with friends at very cool place that know how to live well.

  • Liked — food ,diving, staff and owner
  • Disliked — a little difficult to get there from calif had 3 layovers makeing for a very long day
  • Stayed February 2008, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
1 Thank animal2837
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Here, there and everywhere
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 12 September 2007

We've been going to PP for more than 10 years, and every year it's like going to visit family. We're not alone; the repeat business is huge for a place with just 10 rooms -- we always run into people we've met before. The staff is incredibly stable for a resort -- fewer than a dozen all told, and more than half have been there since we started going, even though they work really hard -- they're the waiters, office staff, divemasters, room cleaners, all in the same day. They're incredibly patient and friendly.
It's not luxury in the sense of a high-end spa, with uniformed servants or formality, but it envelops you with that sense of relaxation a vacation is supposed to supply. There's no pressure. Don't want to dive today? No problem. Not feeling like eating at the appointed time? Someone can bring you something, or just wander into the kitchen and Cam, Diane or whichever staffer happens to be there can find something for you.
The heart of the resort is Gladys Howard, a Cordon Bleu-trained chef. She's 75 and doesn't do the cooking anymore (except on rare occasions), but supervises the menu -- her cookbook (available at the resort) is the guide. (Ask for the recipe for almost anything, and she'll yell in her Texas drawl, "It's in the book!") People fly from Grand Cayman just for dinner at PP, and people at other resorts book dinner, too. Cam and Diane always win top prizes at the annual Cayman Cook-Off. Food is served buffet style, but it's really, really good. Everything's included for a diver, including drinks; nondivers have an honor sheet to record soft and hard drinks at the self-serve bar. Wine -- good wine, not plonk -- is served with dinner. If you're (un)lucky, Gladys will convene a train dominoes game after dinner.
PP runs just one two-tank dive a day, which may not be what the hard-core want, but it means you get to sleep in, have breakfast, not be rushed for lunch (which always waits until the divers are back) and have some time to relax or explore in the afternoon. Plus the profiles are long -- 40 minute deep dive profile (though you can stay down as long as your air/computer will allow you), and shallow profile for an hour or more. And you can buddy up and go off on your own, or stay with the divemasters. We recommend some of both -- Gay and Martha are fabulous at spotting the little critters, and the other divers all share their finds. There have never been more than 14 divers on any boat I've been on at PP, and the average is 8 to 10. Once, it was just me and two divemasters! You can also do as much shore diving as you want -- the marine park begins at the west boundary of the resort -- and if enough people want it, a night boat dive can be had.
Bikes are free, and if Gladys is in the mood, she may take everyone to Point of Sand. The island is small enough that if you take enough water and sunscreen, you can bike around it in a few hours, though some of the roads will be sand.
The rooms are big and airy -- ask for one of the new beachfronts, which have porches front and back -- but no TV, phones or keys. When we first started going, only a few people on the island had satellite -- we were there during the 2000 election standoff, and we'd eagerly await each plane to get the latest twist -- but now PP has high-speed wireless and a guest PC. Some rooms have AC, but you need it only in the deep summer; the breezes work well in the Caymanian bungalow design.
The bar has all sorts of guest-made artwork around, and there's a contest for the best piece every year, first prize being a free week. The only rule is you have to find the material on the beach. (Why do so many doll parts end up on beaches?) There are paints, glue guns and the like to help you decorate your find, and some are incredibly detailed -- including animals and fish so realistic that a biologist would admire. Each year when we go back, we're tickled to see that one of our creations has lasted another year on display.

  • Liked — The staff
  • Disliked — Nothing
  • Stayed February 2007, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check-in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
3 Thank Directrice
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Portland, Oregon
Level Contributor
89 reviews
51 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 162 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 June 2007

My husband and I have been regulars at Pirates Point over the last 10 years – I remember our first visit because it was our honeymoon. We return frequently as do many of their guests.

The diving: Bloody bay wall is always stunning. Because it has marine park status and a small number of visitors, the reefs are in great shape. The spectacular underwater drop off into that deep bottomless blue is always a thrill. It’s like being dropped into an aquarium.

There aren’t a lot of pelagics and no wrecks. There are lots of colorful fish and corals typical to the Caribbean with usual sightings of turtles, nudis, eagle rays and a shark or two. The combination of warm water with good vis and little current calm makes this a place for watching fish as they clean, court/mate, protect, etc. Wrasse and squid were courting on this last mid-June visit.

The dive crews at Pirates Point are expert at alerting you to local and seasonal fish behavior and will offer helpful tips on perfecting technique and buoyancy, so you can watch fish do their thing without scaring them off. If you’re interested in learning more about this special place and diving, this crew is generous with their insights but they never coddle or crowd you. Their watchful eye insures safety, which is a priority I appreciate. It ensures that all level of divers are having fun, learning good technique and not putting others or themselves at risk. I always learn something from watching Gay underwater, and the crew loves scouting out exotics.

They are extraordinarily helpful to photographers and divers with special needs. The minimal current allows divers to enter the water and go to depth when they are ready, so it’s all pretty relaxing. Pirates Point attracts divers who are experienced, self sufficient and open to learning. On this trip the suggested max bottom time was 90 minutes per dive in 84 degree water and the vis was very good (it’s often excellent). The schedule is two dives after breakfast with afternoons free. With interest from guests one night dive is offered during the week. The boat is very comfortable with sun and shade available. Distance to dive sites is about 30 minutes.

The food: fresh salads, veggies, fruit, wonderful fish, sadly I can’t pass up a good dessert - the main courses are served buffet style, with cloth napkins, china, - wine and candles at dinner. This is not your typical dive hotel fare. There are too many dive spots in the Caribbean that I don’t go back to because of the bad food and/or heart breaking poverty. Fortunately the Caymans are economically well off so poverty, theft and security just aren’t problems. I don’t know how PP gets it’s wonderful fresh food but it’s the best food on the island and comparable to the best you can get on Grand Cayman.

The facilities: The island is small with few inhabitants and no shopping or nightlife. This is a great place to write a book (like Gay did) or catch up on your reading and relaxing. Most guest hammock, or bird, or do some minimal island exploration in the afternoons. At hors d’oeuvres there is often a diver that has put together a video or photos from the day’s dive. After dinner there is coffee, cards games or dominos. I just retire.

Pirates Point consists of a few beachfront (no A/C) duplex , one triple, and a set back quad cottage (with A/C, the rooms a little smaller rooms) for a maximum of about 20 guests. If you need 400 count sheets, body spray showers, gym with spa and room service this is not the place for you. The rooms are plainly furnished, no phones, no tv.

PP is keenly aware of the need to conserve and protect their sensitive environment. Bad runoff water has ruined good diving in lots of places. That means no phosphate soap bars, not running the A/C if you’re not in the room, not wasting water and minimal personnel. Bring what you need with you or just do without for a few days – it’s island life.

The people: The guests are usually companionable Americans or Brits, mostly divers with a few bone fishermen or birders. I often travel there on my own and always feel very comfortable being a single. Your hosts, Gladys, Gay, Peter, Cam, Ingrid, Martha, et al. are always thoughtful and very hard working.

Getting there: Cayman Airways is not very well organized. There are usually hoards clamoring at the ticket counter and little to no signage for correct gates and counters. So be sharp and find your way, then it’s a short hop on a small, old prop plane that seats about 25 in sub minimal comfort. The landing strip is still gravel.

Stayed June 2007
Helpful?
2 Thank hhl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Pirates Point Resort

Property: Pirates Point Resort
Address: 328 Guy Banks Road, KY3-2501, Little Cayman
Phone Number:
Region: Caribbean > Cayman Islands > Little Cayman
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 4 Hotels in Little Cayman
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Number of rooms: 11
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Pirate's Point is an excellent choice for those who want to get away from the crowd and have a vacation truly focused on relaxation, some of the best diving in the world, fabulous food, and great comradery. We offer all-inclusive packages for divers and non-divers alike. We strive to provide our guests with a gracious and welcoming atmosphere where comfort, safety and leisure are our top priority. Pirates Point has a private, spacious dive boat and well trained dive staff. Beginners and experienced divers are welcome. Great snorkeling is found right in front of the resort. Guests also enjoy fishing, swimming, nature trail hikes, bicycle rides, picnics, iguana and bird watching. Pirates Point offers accommodations that are simple, tasteful and immaculate. Our features include: • 11 rooms in cottages • 4 of the 11 rooms are oceanfront with oceanside porches • 5 of the 11 rooms offer air conditioning and are set back from the oceanfront. One of the rooms is designated for singles only (no single supplement). • 1 large oceanfront room with air conditioning ideal for 3 people ($10/day usage fee on AC) • 1 large ocean view room with air conditioning suitable for 4 (parents with children only) ($10/day usage fee on AC) • Daily maid service is provided ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Pirates Point Hotel Little Cayman
Pirates Point Resort Little Cayman, Cayman Islands

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