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Reviewed 16 September 2018 via mobile

The WiFi SUCKS (pretty much nonexistent). Roads are Very poorly marked, poorly maintained. Now for the good...Staff was extremely nice and accommodating. The dive masters were very helpful. Housekeeping did a great job. Rooms nice and cool. Water breathtakingly beautiful!!!!

Stayed: September 2018, travelled with friends
2  Thank Carol C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
734frontdesk, Interim – Operations Assistant at Captain Don's Habitat, responded to this reviewResponded 26 September 2018

Dear valued Guest, Thank you for choosing Captain Don's Habitat to enjoy your diving freedom. We truly appreciate your feed back and will for sure share this with our team members and hope to see you soon back.

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Reviewed 12 September 2018

Captain Don's is a nice resort on Bonaire located not too far from town. My room was quite spacious and it had a mini-refrigerator and balcony with ocean views. It also had a shelf on the balcony to hang dive gear. The only thing that was weird is that the hotel charged me to use the in-room safe.

The food at the resort was good - I took a breakfast package. To my surprise the package included a made to order omelet station in the morning.

The dive facility was great. It was easy to grab tanks for shore diving and there were always tanks available. The dive staff was friendly and pointed out cool creatures during the boat dives. Also, the dive facility has dive lockers near the dock/shore to store your gear - I would suggest bringing a lock. However, people would leave their gear out overnight and it would remain untouched.

Room Tip: Rooms with Ocean views are very nice.
  • Stayed: August 2018, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Service
2  Thank djhenryhall
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
734frontdesk, Interim – Operations Assistant at Captain Don's Habitat, responded to this reviewResponded 26 September 2018

Dear valued Guest, Thank you for choosing Captain Don's Habitat to enjoy your diving freedom. We truly appreciate your feed back and will for sure share this with our team members and hope to see you soon back.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 September 2018

This was the first time we've visited Bonaire (and Captain Don's) during the summer months. I found the air temps were not noticeably hotter than in the spring, but the water temps were much warmer. We did a "one boat dive / unlimited shore diving" daily package that included breakfast and nitrox. We rented a truck from Avis to get around the island and dive where we wanted.

As I've said in an earlier review, Captain Don's has become kind of a "no frills" diving operation. The dive staff is great and takes steps to accommodate. While we were there, their nitrox compressor went down, but we only had to do 2 dives (the morning the system went down) on air... they made arrangements with the neighbors at buddy dive to fill their nitrox, and got a system rolling so the nitrox tanks were full every morning. Captain Don's is great for independent divers who don't want to dive with "the horde" underwater... even on the boats, the divemaster's let us go off and do our own thing, as long as we're back to the boat around 60-70 minutes. We generally did 2 dives in the morning, a boat dive, and another shore dive (or two) in the afternoon.

We were a little bummed to show up at a time when the resort was basically booked with large groups. ALL the morning boats were "closed" and reserved for the specific groups, except for 3 spaces on the over-crowded pontoon boat. This wasn't a huge deal because we mostly wanted to shore dive and frankly, if the boats full with 20+ divers, I don't want to be one of those 20+ people. We had actually paid for (and planned) and extra day of diving... most people depart Saturday but we planned a Sunday departure. We figured we could make up a couple of our missed boat dives on Saturday, when the big groups were flying out. Unfortunately, we were told that the staff, due to all the big groups recently, had not had a day off in several weeks and the resort would not be running any boats on Saturday. Again, it didn't impact our shore diving, but it kind of stings to pay for stuff that's not getting used.

On a side note, regarding missed things we paid for, I would also like to commend the resort for stepping up and doing the right thing. Through no fault of the resort, United Airlines stranded us for 24 hours in Newark, New Jersey, and we showed up 24 hours late (as did a large portion of one of the groups that was also on our flight). Our 8 night trip became a 7 night trip, and our 7 days of paid diving became 6. When the dust settled, Captain Don's worked with Maduro Travel (their booking agents) and the missed night day of diving that we missed due to the cancelled flights.

The diving staff did a good job of meeting our needs and recognizing we were independent divers. We asked about sea horse sightings locally, and they gave us the general area for one that had been on the "house reef" for the last few days. We found it without too much trouble. Again, so nice to be able to dive and not have two dozen other divers scrambling on top of you to get a look at something barely larger than a writing pen.

The resort itself was no different than in the past, and might have actually dropped a bit in quality. We had a two-bedroom suite with a kitchen. The beds were the same, and they've never been super comfortable. The wifi was great... we never had a weak signal in the room or at the bar. Unfortunatley, we discovered a massive under-sink link in our kids bathroom upon arrival... the p-trap was disconnected at the union with the wall, so any water that ran down the sink simply flowed out into the cabinet below the sink. With tools at my own house, I would've had that fixed in less than an hour. We reported it immediatley to the front desk, who seemed unconcerned. We stayed 7 nights and it never got fixed. Seems like they'd want to protect their cabinetry and drywall, but who knows.

The grounds were acceptible and the breakfast is average. When diving, we just want something quick anyway. We found a bunch of great restaurants a 5 minute drive away in town, and only had dinner once or twice at Rum Runners.

Other than the resort staff not seeming super motivated (maybe they're just understaffed), Captain Don's is a great place to dive and stay and we'll probably be back.

Room Tip: Ocean View rooms only have one bed, but nice views.
  • Stayed: August 2018, travelled with family
    • Location
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank divindk3483
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 24 August 2018 via mobile

We were told by a local about Captain Dons amazing view and sunset location. We went for Happy Hour which is strictly followed from 5:30-6:30 daily which results in 33.49% reduction in drinks only. The view is amazing the food was very good and consistent. We ordered the same think two nights in a row and it was perfect both nights. We went first three days ago and will go there every day until we leave the island. The bartenders are a blast from the past 200% bull shitters and highly professional also highly entertaining. The tarpon fish come up to feed near the underwater lights after sunset every night. If you are in Bonaire this is a don’t miss it experience.

Stayed: August 2018, travelled with friends
1  Thank Steve C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
734frontdesk, Interim – Operations Assistant at Captain Don's Habitat, responded to this reviewResponded 30 August 2018

We appreciate your feedback and will share this with the concerned department. Hoping to see you soon back.

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Reviewed 20 August 2018 via mobile

I’m giving a full review of all my experiences, you can make up your own mind. This is how I approach all reviews.

We had a party of 50 and most rooms were not ready on arrival (3:30 pm). Ended up being ready between 4:30 to 5 pm.

WiFi service was terrible in the bungalows for both iPhones and android devices - on all 3 of their networks.

Separate bar tab and
Hotel / Dive bill is inconvenient. If the dive shop and hotel are in synch, the restaurant and bar should be too.

Manual checkout inconvenient - long wait times and queues.
Just shove bills under the door and have a key drop system where patrons write down their Dive/room number.

Grabbing a bite to eat in between dives is very easy as the restaurant is next to the gift and dive shop.

Gift shop hours are great and they also have a drop box for the Bonaire animal shelter.

All you can eat bbq on Mondays, and the animal shelter folks come by as well on Monday evenings.

No theft on property which was amazing considering all the theft that goes on in the island.

The resort management should really think about laundry machines and dryers in some of the bungalows or at least have a shared laundry room.

The interior man-made stream by the bungalows was empty of water so it was an eyesore.

Overall through, Beautiful location, amazing view and sunsets from the dock/bar/restaurant.

_______
Not impressed with Bungalow 2005
Misses:
The doors need to be unlocked with a key even from the inside. This is a fire hazard as you can literally be locked in.
Fans don’t work.
No bar or liquid soap for sink.
The body wash provided in shower smelled like dishwashing detergent.
No rug outside the bungalow to clean feet/shoes off.
Kitchen Table and cabinet outdated.
Not enough hooks inside to hang stuff.
Hangers in the closet seemed to be leftovers from other guests.
No nightstands by the bed, and not enough drawers.
No recycling which is a huge disappointment.

Neutral or positive:
Safe is easy to use.
Great table outside in the patio but a hammock or recliners would have really hit the spot.
Clothes line with pins are hung on the patio and that’s very helpful for drying things out.
Outdoor sink helpful to rinse gear.
The beds were very comfortable and extra pillows are provided.
The kitchen is stocked with dinnerware, microwave, oven, full size fridge/freezer. However you need to bring your own dishwashing soap, paper towels, napkins.

——-
_____
Dive operation

Dive staff was great, totally on top of things. unfortunately some of the guests were not. Be a good Diver and pay attention to instructions. Divemasters should be tipped $5-10 per Dive, and general tip should also be given to rest of staff in the tip tank at the Dive shop. Staff helped our group with several gear issues, and gave a lot of info on any questions we had. Dive site name history given dubious but humorous. Long tenured staff that works very well together.

Boats go out out at 8:30, 11, 2 pm. If you do both opening dives you can keep your gear onboard as long as you stow it, so staff can change tanks out. You are responsible for assembling your own gear.

If you want to go on the 2 pm boat you can simply leave your gear on the dock in between dives.

Plenty of dive lockers available and you can buy a lock or bring one with you. There are dunk tanks/sinks but they get gnarly pretty quickly.

2 outdoor fresh water showers are very convenient between dives.

For shore diving, Nitrox tanks are on the upper level and air tanks are on the lower level. As far as diving from the house dock, location can’t be beat on the whole island. Bari Reef all the way to Cliffs are all swimmable from there. Diving can be done 24 hours a day.

All boat dive sites are printed on your bill which is great if you keep track of that.

Dollies and loading parking make taking tanks for shore diving convenient.

Many other Dive operators have fish ID books available for reference for Divers, that would be appreciated here.

Divers please remember to stay off the reef unless your bouyancy is controlled. I saw too many coral kicked and damaged.

Don’t forget to get the Dive stamp before you go.

_______

Stayed: August 2018, travelled with friends
4  Thank TravelTheWorldGal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
734frontdesk, Interim – Operations Assistant at Captain Don's Habitat, responded to this reviewResponded 30 August 2018

Dear valued guest, Thank you for taking the time to share your experience with us. We appreciate your input and i will surely share this with our team members and wiil work on the small issues you have been experiencing.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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