Divi Flamingo Beach Resort and Casino
How has this resort rated in the past?
Historical Traveler Reviews Divi Flamingo Beach Resort and Casino Kralendijk
Took our trip Dec 6 thru Dec 13. This was a much anticipated scuba trip after reading all the hype on the diving in Bonaire. Start with the hotel. Yes, the reviews are fairly accurate on the customer service of the Divi staff in Bonaire. If you are flying American, you will get into Bonaire late at night. Our transfer was waiting outside the airport, which was nice. But once we got to the hotel, you could feel the unconcerned attitude of the receptionist. She really did not care. Name and credit card was about all she said. But the bellboy did bring us a drink while we were waiting, which was really nice. We had an ocean front room reserved and were apprehensive about what we would get. We were pleasantly suprised. The room itself is nothing to brag about, but the view was incredible. Could not ask for a better view. You could literally spit and hit the water. Awesome. We only ate at the Divi once, the breakfast buffet, which cost us $27. Did not eat there again. I guess the best part about the hotel itself is it's location. Only five minutes walking to all the resturants. Room was cleaned daily and we had no problems whatsoever with the staff, although we really did not talk to them during the week. Checkout was simple, but again, they were not friendly. Not rude, just not friendly. Now the dive shop. This was our first trip to Bonaire, so cannot compare it to other shops in Bonaire, but they were exceptional. Great service. Very helpful and friendly. They have a walk in storage for your equipment right on the dock with tanks right there as well. You can put your gear together, suit up, and do a giant stride without walking more than a few steps total. And the best part? Of all the diving I did in Bonaire, with the possible exception of the Salt Pier, the shore diving right off the dock of the Divi was the best. They have a huge anchor which is great for pictures. Saw an octupus, turtle, tarpon, eels, lobster, porcupine fish, and great coral all right there off the dock at the Divi. There boats were nice and uncrowded and the dive masters were exceptional. My only regret about the trip is that we booked 5 days worth of boat diving and only used 3. My recommendation for anyone going to Bonaire is to not reserve the boats, reserve a rental truck instead. All the diving can be done from the shore, although the surge can be tough and you must walk out over rocks and coral. Boat diving is definitely easier, but you dive on their schedule. And having a rental gives you a chance to drive around the island, which should not be missed! To summarize, I don't think you will find a better run dive shop on the island. If I was rating the dive shop only, it would be a 5 star excellent. As for the hotel, we give it a 3 star average. Having only gone to Bonaire once, cannot compare to other hotels, but we did drive around and look. The Divi has the best location by far and their accomodations did not look any better than the Divi. If we ever go again, and I hope we do, I will difinitely stay at the Divi again. Only think I would change is to not reserve boat dives and only do shore dives.
This was our second visit to Bonaire. The Divi was a perfect fit. We booked through AA vacations. Which is a great value. The restaurant was great, especially after you have 3 dives under you belt. The house reef is great. The dive operation is "on time" and efficient. This resort is a 5 minute walk from town which is a BIG plus.We stayed at The Plaza last time. The rooms are great, but the resaurants have "A LOT" to be desired. The shore diving is "inconvenient" the dive lockers are on the lagoon side of the resort, but the dive site is a good 5-8 min walk from the lockers.The Divi is highly recommended for the SCUAB guest.
The Divi dogs
We stayed here in Feb of '02, mostly to be dive certified. We arrived a day late (due to a mechanical problem on our connecting flight), the dive shop helped us arrange a workable schedule with an instructor very quickly. The facilities, instructor and gear were all top notch. The 'barefoot' casino is very small, but I found it a great place to exchange money. I found the staff in the restaurant to be pleasant, granted they operated on 'island-time', but that's to be expected. They had prepared a fancy Valentine's day dinner and the staff had spent all afternoon making balloon bouquets, that they seemed very pleased with, to give all the women. The food was fabulous. The short walk to town was handy for the grocery store, liquor store and other restaurant choices. The staff did not seem rude to me, just not conversational.
Only word of warning for this resort is please make sure not to get the ocean front room at the far end of the resort. I had requested that end because it is close to the second dock. Right next door is someone's home and private dock. They had several large dogs that would bark thier heads off at anytime day or night. The resort was very full, so we couldn't move to any other ocean front rooms. It was kind of funny after awhile.
Things To Know About The Divi
The good:1) Has a small beach. I haven't found any other hotels that do.2) Close to town. About a 5 minute walk to restaraunts and shopping.3) Good dive outfit. Experienced, competent, friendly dive leaders for boat dives.4) Good shore diving.The bad:1) Wait staff is unmotivated, unfriendly, and at times downright offensive. I understand they are unionized.2) Travel arrangements are difficult and expensive from Houston. Check for yourself.
Absolutely Loved It!
We made reservations prior to reading the reviews on tripadvisor. We are so glad we did not change our minds after reading the more negative ones. We had the best vacation we have ever had at the Divi and are planning a return trip in November. Most of the staff was friendy and helpful. The restaurant at the Divi was excellent. The diving was the best we have ever done. I would highly recommend the Divi to all of my friends. I can not say enough good about the wonderful time we had. Just keep in mind that the environment is a casual one and very comfortable. Do not go expecting the Ritz Carlton. The rooms are comfortable and you have everything you need. As I said, I would most definitely recommend this and it is now our favorite place.
Divi Flamingo Bonaire March 2003
Just got back from a glorious week at Divi Flamingo Bonaire. We were a bit nervous about going there because we did not see any great reviews about this property, we were pleasantly surprised. After you get past the front desk people who are very unfriendly and unconcerned you are in a special place. The accomodations are great, not too much walking, everything is close by. The food was excellent, the dive operation very good. Didn't have crowded boats and they pretty much let you do your own thing. The shore diving which is free is amazing and totally convenient. Just walk to the dock, get a tank and jump in. No dragging, lugging and toting. Our room faced the pool and ocean was well maintained and cleaned early every day. We found the restaurant food to be above average. Overall, we disagree with any of the bad press we have seen about the place, other than the front desk people. Any more information you'd like please feel free to contact me at email@example.com
Great time at Divi Flamingo
The Divi Flamingo is a beautiful, friendly resort. I knew the diving would be fantastic, but I had no idea the resort itself would be so terrific. The resort is laid out along a central pathway. Along this main street youll find everything you need. You can go to the restaurant, get snorkeling gear, sit on the beach or pier, rent a car, get a haircut, buy souvenirs, swim in one of the two pools, visit the casino, have a massage and, of course, go diving! There was an excellent breakfast outside every day from 7 to 11. The pools were beautifully landscaped. The gear shed was accessible for diving all day and into the evening. The house reef had so much life we dove there many times and saw something new each time. Also, there were improvements happening right before our eyes. By the end of the week, the area to the right of the shed had a new bench and porch to facilitate gearing up.On Bonaire, we kept reminding ourselves that we were on "Island Time" and it really is different from the faster paced lifestyle most of us lead. Once you have accustomed yourself to the slower, more laid-back pace, waiting for service (anywhere) won't seem irritating, but relaxing.Every good thing you hear about Bonaire is 100% true!
Pass on the Divi
The diving on Bonaire is magnificent. The Divi is not. The only reason to stay here is to have a decent dive shop and be close to town to walk to all meals and the grocery store and shopping. The dive masters are all very nice and knowledgeable but the dive mgmt. is quite lacking in their attitude.
The hotel staff is so poor in their attitude that I would never go back despite the good diving nearby. But then the diving everywhere here is great. They have no desire to help you in any way other than the rental car office which was very accomodating.
Spend the extra few bucks and go someplace else. The grounds are quite unkept and unattractive.
Divi Flamingo - Positive Experience Overall
I stayed at the Divi Flamingo earlier this year and had no problems... While not overly fancy, the staff was fine and I thought the food at the main restaurant was quite good. The oceanfront views are amazing and most importantly for scuba diving, the dive shop for me was terrific... the people at the dive shop were extremely nice and helpful... one general Bonaire recommendation is if you rent a car, make sure the Hertz or any other car dealer logo is not on the vehicle since this shouts "tourist" and could lead to thefts on the island while diving. Overall, at the Divi Flamingo, though, I had a positive experience.
Terrible Service, Mediocre Accomodations, Great Location
We just returned from a week in Bonaire and a stay at the Divi Flamingo and my wife and I had 2 lasting impressions of the Divi Flamingo 1) The staff at the Divi ranged from indifferent to our visit to down right hostile and 2) The ocean front rooms afford some of the best views into the crystal clear carribean that can be found on the island.
First more on the bad: The very first minutes in the reception are of the Divi were a clear indicator of the service (or lack thereof) we would expereince for the remainder of the week. The lady at the front desk did not greet us with a "hello" or "welcome" just simply a "name" followed quickly by "credit card". The breakfast staff admonished us loudly for sitting at an ocean front table that needed cleaning versus choosing a clean table in the bar. Far be it for us to dare want to sit on the sea after traveling 2000 miles for vacation. Our final dealing with the staff at the Divi came back to the front desk where changing a $20 was too much of a challenge for the clerk, even though you could see the availability of change from our side of the counter. From that point on we took all of our non-sleeping business to the local bars and restaurants surrounding Kralendjik. Our advice, for those planning a trip to the Divi, eat at Richard's, Mona Lisa, De Tuin and City Cafe all provided better service and very good food.
The room was small, Disney's All Star Resort small, the smoke detecter was beeping on low battery (the staff fixed this by removing the battery and not replacing), but the basics A/C and sliding door to the balcony worked fine.
Which brings me to the only reason for staying at the Divi, the ocean was lapping up to the base of the balcony, had a perfect view of the sunset and we could watch the parrot fish swim by the room in the clear water.
Stay at the Divi only if you need the ocean front room and you can completely suspend any expectation of service.
TripAdvisor Reviews Divi Flamingo Beach Resort and Casino Kralendijk
Travel Blogs from Kralendijk
My first time to snorkel!! Dads done it before. It was tricky practicing only breathing through my mouth. I wore a full body zip up suit that protects from UV. Because I was a newbie with a bad ankle, they had me just hold onto floats, with a float around my middle and no flippers. Basically I just had to lay there and they hauled me around. The sights were spectacular. There were at least four types of fish that they rarely see. The variety and ...
... This was a nice dive but didn't really have anything noteworthy. Lots of fish and schools of them. Dont' get me wrong...this is a good dive it just gets hard to list out highlights after a few days!
For our third dive we went to an unmarked site called the rock. Another nice dive like Alice. The entry was easy which was a big plus.
Three of us were ...
... a bit the doorman, but finally we can get in.
This nice young venezuelian waitress brings us to the restaurant,
which is on a little peer just next to the wonderful private baech,
where we first take a drink. We then talk about our projects to go
for a swim before having diner. Then the waitress asks us if we a
have a day pass for the beach. What ? No… Ok, then you have to pay
40dollars to go on the beach. Hmmm, a bit expensive. But we just want
... to catch up with all of them also. All the Costello's are always into something, and there is always a good story to be told around the dinner table.
One of our very last events - the weekend before we left Melbourne in fact - was my cousin Jana's engagement which we attended at the Sloaney Pony in Port Melbourne. Ray and I decided that we would take my Mum and my Sister out for dinner there (as they had a nice little restaurant attached) ...
Kralendijk, the capital of Bonaire, ws originally founded as a small trading village. In the sheltered bay between Bonaire and Kleine Bonaire, the large cargo ships safely anchored while waiting to load up with salt. With them, they brought fresh produce and foodstuffs from Holland. White tradesmen settled down at the ships' main point of unloading which as Kralendijk (coral dyke). The tall coloured obelisks that guided the salt ships to ...