We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Grand Cayman Westin and SMB trip report

new york
Level Contributor
39 posts
3 reviews
Save Topic
Grand Cayman Westin and SMB trip report

just returned from 4 days in Cayman. We stayed at the Westin on the 5th floor overlooking the ocean. all the rooms had balconies with 2 chairs and a little table, which was great. i would definitely pay extra for the oceanview room.

the weather on the first day was perfect, but it rained for about an hour in the afternoon. we rented a kayak for 1 hour, $25, and took it to the governor's reef, very close and snorkled. the water was very calm with little waves.

the second day we were told a cold front was coming in. no water sports were offered through the hotel (which works in conjunction with red sail sports). that means no kayak, no jet ski, no parasailing, etc. the waves were a little stronger, but still pretty calm compared to long island new york waves. the sand churned so the water was not as clear and we didnt see any fish while snorkeling.

since there were no water sports, i went horseback riding. the westin was not very helpful if you choose to do activities that are not though red sail sports. pampered ponies would not take me out as a solo rider, so i found another company for $125 USD for 1 1/2 hours. we went on a beach that was completely deserted (in national park) and went swimming with the horses bareback. it was amazing. it was the other side of the island, so no waves at all. i am a rider, but i was told that novices could do it as well. i have to admit, i was sore for 2 days afterwards! (but its not everyday you ride bareback in the ocean).

monday afternoon i went on a charter boat fishing. once again, the hotel was not helpful and told me i had to charter my own boat at a cost of about $900-$1000 USD. however, when i went to get breakfast at EATS Cafe across the street (seems like everyone from westin goes there, it was quite reasonable, about $6 for 3 pancakes or $7 for 3 french toast), i saw a store called Capt. Marvin's. i went inside, and it is a little convenience store that also books water boat trips. they got me on a charter boat with 1 other couple for 4 1/2 hours for $125. we went fishing in the ocean (the boat was 5 min by van they pick you up and drop you off). i caught 2 sharks (and released) and some other fish. it was great. the captain let me snorkel as well, and it was a huge boat for the 3 of us. the boat was new, clean, and that activity was worth the money.

tuesday my friend and i went to Capt. Marvin's again since Red Sail Sports at the hotel would not take any boats out due to the cold front coming in. to be honest, the weather was perfect! for $35, we went on the afternoon boat tour. there were 2 snorkel stops and the visit to stingray city. there were 20 other people on the boat, but about 5 crew so they really help you out. they give you water, punch and snorkel equipment. stingray city was scary at first, but the rays grow on you! they are rubbery on the bottom and are friendly.

wednesday morning my friend and i took a helicopter tour arranged through the westin. they picked us up and took us to the airport. that was $105 and about 15-20 min ride across the island. we saw seven mile beach, stingray city, georgetown and a few other places. it was short but awesome. the entire island tour is longer but also costs $300+, which was a little out of our price range. the coptor fits 6 passengers, so ask to sit in the front!

we ate at Deckers-- very good, but a little expensive. it was $160 USD for 1 bottle of still water, 1 appetizer, 2 entree and 1 dessert. (no alcohol). we also ate at The Wharf, and at Guy Harvey's. Guy's was not good.

overall, i had a great time. my advice would be to check out Capt. Marvin's across the street, since the prices are reasonable and they will accommodate you if you are solo or want to be flexible on times. also, buy your waterproof camera there. it was $11.95 Cayman at that store but $23 in the hotel.

the hotel itself is nice, this time of the year there were not many people, and the staff was friendly. if you are there for a short stay, take advantage of all water sports while you can, because you never know when they will stop the activities due to weather. (even though the weather seemed perfect to us).

hope that helps and let me know if you have any questions!

Mentioned in this post
Grand Cayman
Grand Cayman
Cayman Islands
The Westin Grand Cayman Seven Mile Beach Resort & Spa
The Westin Grand Cayman...
581 Reviews
Grand Cayman
Grand Cayman
Destination Expert
for Grand Cayman
Level Contributor
10,465 posts
81 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Grand Cayman Westin and SMB trip report

Thanks for your report. Glad you enjoyed your stay. Too bad about the weather. The government shuts down Stingray City activities and snorkeling etc in the North Sound when bad weather is around (they did last week as well). Many of the boats are brought a distance around the island put into a safe hidey hole. Unfortunately this takes time and weather prediction is not an exact science (nor is it evident looking out on protected areas). It is a pain for the guys who work there not to mention a loss of valuable tip money for them and overall revenue for the ops, etc. They don't like to do it. I definitely agree that especially if you only have a couple of days, get your water activities in. Usually the seas are disturbed for more than a day at a time and it really cut into your trip. Next time you will have to stay longer!

Mentioned in this post
Stingray City
Stingray City
5,948 Reviews
Grand Cayman
2. Re: Grand Cayman Westin and SMB trip report

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This topic has been closed to new posts due to inactivity. We hope you'll join the conversation by posting to an open topic or starting a new one.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.

Removed on: 5:19 am, September 26, 2009
Get answers to your questions about Seven Mile Beach