PDA

View Full Version : Grand Cayman Trashed?


HollyH
02-06-2005, 07:26 PM
A work associate of my DH just got off RCL's Western Cruise which included a stop in Grand Cayman. He told my husband the island was completely trashed and given what they had been through, the islanders were not very receptive to visitors so soon after the hurricanes so no one was very pleasant to deal with. Anyone who recently sailed experience this or is his work-mate exaggerating?

disneylover5
02-06-2005, 07:29 PM
The island is beat up. The people were wonderful that I dealt with. We went to Royal Palm beach and everyone was nice. I had my 81 YO DM with me and she is in a wheelchair...maybe that is why everyone everywhere was nice, not sure.

We had a great day there,
Lsia

lbgraves
02-06-2005, 07:43 PM
We cruised 12/4/04 and were not impressed with GC at all. When you looked out over the island from deck 10 you could really see the destruction to the landscape. Everyone who we saw was friendly enough though. When we went the Hard Rock was still closed down. There were buildings closed down all along the street due to damage.

LindaBabe
02-06-2005, 07:59 PM
I went on the 12/4 cruise also. I found the people warm and welcoming. Some thought letting cruise ships come back in November had been a bit premature, but they certainly felt more ready to welcome them by December. Yes, they've got a bit of a mess there. But they're also working hard to recover. They need tourists to enable them to recover - the average Caymanian is far from wealthy.

ChrisnSteph
02-06-2005, 08:02 PM
We just got back from there. The island is pretty beat up. Most of the trees along the beach are just gone. I can imagine that is once a beautiful island, but it needs some time. The Hard Rock Cafe was open while we were there. And many of the locals seemed pretty grouchy, but I guess I'd be too if my home was destroyed.

fasttj2004
02-06-2005, 08:08 PM
We just on the 1-29 western and Grand Cayman has a lot of damage in the areas outside of the main shopping area. We found the people very friendly and they welcomed the tourists.

TooPure4u
02-06-2005, 11:11 PM
I also was on the 1/29 Western and thought GC was just plain boring. Granted we didnt venture out to far because we were orginally going for the stingray excursion but my son got a massive ear ache and we had to cancel. All in all, you walk a few blocks one way and a few the other way and that was it unless you had something planned. I bought a t-shirt at the hard rock cafe and a picture frame. I took money out of the mac machine but it came out in GC bills so I had to find a bank and exchange it. My plan was not to spend it on GC but to have it for Cozumel and for when we returned home. I found some of the locals to be grouchy but some were very nice. I have no desire to explore this island any further. Now Cozumel we can talk about :)!!!!!!!

MarkRG
02-06-2005, 11:19 PM
As GC has been my favorite stop on DCL, I took a very close interest in the hurricane and the island. Basically the hurricane all but went over the island. A large part of it was actually submerged by the tidal surge.

Now, there are tons of pictures of what the island looked like after it passed, here's probably the best overall source: http://www.davidolson.com/

I was frankly heartbroken seeing this aftermath as it was a wonderful lush island. A lot of the greenery will take YEARS to come back. Some will bounce back, but unlike the effort Disney made with fixing CC after, GC don't have that kind of resources to replant an entire island in plant life, they will have to grow back on their own. By now they have most of the port cleaned up, a lot of the excursions and such are back in operation, but large parts of the island are still in very poor shape and will be for a long time to come, unfortunately. Here's a good source for updated info on how things are going as far as all the tourist venues. Note some placesstill have dates going into the end of the year to reopen. http://www.caymanactivityguide.com/projections.htm

Skallywag
02-07-2005, 03:32 AM
I feel rather upset by the statements made about the condition of this Island through no fault of their own. Surely we should be sympathetic to their plight not finding fault with things over which they had no control. We are due to visit for the first time on our October cruise and appreciate it will take time to get things back to some sort of normality. Here in our part of England we had the minor hurricane years ago and I remember the devastation left by that. Please be patient and just enjoy your holidays.

MarkRG
02-07-2005, 07:49 AM
Sorry, I am not trying to make it seem that way. I've been on all the regular DCL cruises, and the special 10-day, and GC is still my favorite stop, and I would like to get back there. The only place I put blame for the condition of the island is on the weather. Just don't want people going cruising there in the near future getting a big surprise when they go there. The level of damage those islanders are having to deal with is not something anyone could fix quickly.

treesinger
02-07-2005, 08:06 AM
I feel rather upset by the statements made about the condition of this Island through no fault of their own. Surely we should be sympathetic to their plight not finding fault with things over which they had no control. We are due to visit for the first time on our October cruise and appreciate it will take time to get things back to some sort of normality. Here in our part of England we had the minor hurricane years ago and I remember the devastation left by that. Please be patient and just enjoy your holidays.
I think you're jumping at shadows. I didn't see anyone here complaining that the Caymanians weren't working hard enough or were to blame or were upset that their vacation was ruined because of the damage. There were a couple complaints about grouchiness (and we all understand why and don't blame them) and one "it was boring" comment. GC isn't for everyone. GC being boring wasn't a function of the destruction.
You make it sound like we're "ugly Americans" for noticing that the island was ravaged and the people aren't all smiles about it. I think you're overreacting a wee bit. All we're doing is observing the general condition of things.

lbgraves
02-07-2005, 08:44 AM
I was disappointed that we went to GC in December. We were only the 2nd cruise to return for DCL I believe. IMO they returned too early. I am sorry for the people who experience the hurricane. Living on the coast of North Carolina, we have experienced the worst of what can happen as well. We have had destruction of our property and our town was surrounded by flood waters for a week which meant that no fresh food could be brought in...the store shelves were empty for some items for a while. While I sympathize with them, we paid alot of money to go on a cruise for vacation. An island that is recovering from a major hurricane is not on my list of places that I would chose to go for relaxation & fun on a vacation. We may try it again in 2006. We also didn't care for Cozumel but they weren't recovering from the hurricane. With kids, Key West wasn't a draw for us either so it was all the Western ports...including the American one. For right now, we are going to stick with the Eastern.

jel0511
02-07-2005, 09:28 AM
We were the first DCL cruise to return to GC (11.6.04) and the island was trashed. I was suprised they allowed cruise ships to come back, when they weren't alloweing regular tourists yet. I've been to GC before, so to see the island so devastated was mind blowing, to say the least. I also believe they didn't wait long enough to allow cruise ships to dock, but they only way GC is going to get themselves back to where they were was to again allow tourists. It is the main source of income for the island, and they do desperately need it.

mackymaddyconnorsmom
02-07-2005, 09:31 AM
We loved Grand Caymen on our 12/4 cruise. We did the stingray tour and the stingrays were there . We did turtle farm/island tour/ hell tour. We had a great time. We saw a lot of devestation from the hurricane. That was very sad. The people of Grand Cayman were happy to get tourists back. I asked them and they said they need them. Banking and tourism is there major source of income. The people were very nice and my family got to be in an article in the USA Today for tourism back in GC> You will love it and everyone will be nice. My friends are going there in 2 weeks.

Skallywag
02-07-2005, 09:55 AM
I am sorry if I upset anyone but feel that trashed was such an unpleasant word to use in this instance. According to my dictionary it means waste or worthless and felt this perhaps was the wrong termanology in this instance.

TheWog
02-07-2005, 10:52 AM
Trashed was a 3rd party comment the OP was trying to verify if true or not. I think it has been done.

GC wasn't what it may have been prior to Ivan and not the picture of paradise I had in my mind. I understand the plight they have and the destruction is awful. The trees uprooted along the way, houses without a roof or one being repaired. Hotels are working hard to get back to normal. Sea Grape beach was windy, because, as a local told me, the trees are gone and that means the natural wind barrier is gone. Overall, we had a pleasant day and would love to see it again once it is back to its original state or a version thereof.

treesinger
02-07-2005, 01:12 PM
I am sorry if I upset anyone but feel that trashed was such an unpleasant word to use in this instance. According to my dictionary it means waste or worthless and felt this perhaps was the wrong termanology in this instance.

"Trashed" is often used as a colloquial term to mean "wrecked" or "destroyed". Trashed means that the situation is in need of intensive repair and settling, but that it is not unrecoverable.

Ok, we're on the same page I think. We just use the term "trashed" differently. We probably use the term "flesh wound" a little differently too. :)

vossjemi
02-07-2005, 02:11 PM
Ok, we just got back from Grand Cayman. We were there on 1/22/05. This was the 2nd time we've been there...one pre-Ivan and one post-Ivan. Granted, there is still some storm damage, but this is one of my favorite islands without a doubt. Here is a cut and paste of my review of this island from another website.

We have been to Grand Cayman before. Went last Jan 04 on our Navigator Cruise. When we picked this PC itinerary, we were so excited that GC was on it as we loved it there soooo much.

Last year, we rented a car through www.grandcaymancruiseexcursions.com. We got their cheapest car with full ins for $43. They pick you up at the Blue Iguana, a few blocks from the pier. When the took us to their airport office, no cheap cars were left, so we got a free upgrade to a Black Jeep Wrangler. Woohoo! No complaints there. We drove the whole east side past the blowholes and the wreck of 10 sails seeing some of the most beautiful scenery I think I've ever seen. I absolutely love the blue green of Cayman's water. Its breathtaking. We also saw some gorgeous condos and mansions on the east side and finally ended up at Rum Point. This is what dreams are made of. No chair hogs here. We had also discovered that Red Sail Sports does a glass bottom boat Stingray snorkel from their Rum Point location, so we had that pre-booked. It was fantastic!

Ok, enough about last year. This time we wanted to rent a car as well, but the same company had none available. All were rented to locals after the hurricanes. Someone said Andy's had some cars but you had to get to his office as there was no pier pickup. So, we all decided to just make a lazy day of it and take a taxi to SeaGrape Beach. Anyway, we didn't leave our ship til almost 9am, so everyone did get to sleep in a little. I'm not sure why, but our Navigators told us if we left before 9, we didn't need tender tickets, but if we left after 9, we had to go to Guest Relations to get free tender tickets. We didn't want to have to deal with that hassle, so we left before 9. We took a taxi bus to SeaGrape for $4pp. This is a very beautiful beach about 3 miles from the pier.

As for hurricane damage, the downtown area looked great. On the trip out to Sea Grape Beach, the damage is still readily apparent. Many houses/buildings with roofs missing, many with black plastic as the roof. All the palm trees are torn up. The beach side of the road looks beautiful. The island side still has lots of debris everywhere. Seagrape is only 3 miles from downtown, but they still could not use credit cards there as the phone lines hadn't been installed that far yet. Still a lot of work to be done, but the beaches are wonderful!

We rented chairs and an umbrella. The chairs were $10pp and umbrella $5, and it includes a free soda/water. We brought our own snorkel gear, so we did snorkel some from here. It gets pretty steep pretty fast, and there was some coral/marine life, but nowhere near as pretty as what we saw at Aruba. Sea Grape also has waverunner rentals for $65 for 1/2 hour, but none of us felt up to it. It was a gorgeous day. We enjoyed just being lazy and swimming. We then decided to order some lunch around 2pm. Calico Jack's is the beach side bar/restaurant. DH & I had some delicious conch fritters and a mahi mahi sandwich we shared. Yum!

We went back to town around 3pm, for another $4pp. There is an international calling station in the building by the pier across the street from columbian emeralds. It cost $12.50 for 24 minutes I think. So, we got to have a good long talk with the family. DH & I then headed over to Blackbeard's for some Rum Cake and Hard Rock for some t-shirt souvenirs for family members who did the airport runs for us. Then, back to the ship. Ahh, I love Grand Cayman. I will go back there again some day!

WMILLER86
02-07-2005, 02:55 PM
I am booked for this years Thanksgiving magic cruise, and on the itinerary it shows us NOT going to Grand Cayman, but to Costa Maya, instead. I do not know exactly why, but RUMORS are that Disney is not real happy with the many complaints about GC since the hurricane.
I was at GC on the 2004 thanksgiving Magic cruise, and she was pretty battered. But Capt Marvin himself took us on a great snorkel trip!

Willie

MarkRG
02-07-2005, 06:48 PM
I am sorry if I upset anyone but feel that trashed was such an unpleasant word to use in this instance. According to my dictionary it means waste or worthless and felt this perhaps was the wrong termanology in this instance.

It's ok, in american slang, trashed means very messy or badly damaged, such as in referring to a fictional kids bedroom that is well overdue for a cleaning: "Jason's room is trashed." I know sometimes the words we use over here can be very vague.

MarkRG
02-07-2005, 06:51 PM
Ok, we're on the same page I think. We just use the term "trashed" differently. We probably use the term "flesh wound" a little differently too. :)


Hehe I didn't even read the second page. Sorry!

But to let you know we love you guys over on that side of the big pond all the same..

http://monorailgreen.info/smilies/SpanishInquisition.gif

Skallywag
02-08-2005, 03:28 AM
And let me say we just love coming to your country and meeting with you.
Two countries sometimes separated by the same language I think. Just thought that Trash was something you put out once a week for collection by the Dustman as we call them over here.

Anyway we are looking forward to our cruise in october if we ever get over the contact problems between us and Disney Cruise Line. No toll free here and they just never reply to either our travel agent or ourselves. Want to do a tour of the Island but understand they take our passports away at the onset and wonder how we get into Grand Cayman without them. Perhaps they will keep me there for the winter - really feel I would not mind that and not have to come back to drab winter in England.

Is it worth hiring a car and doing things yourself?

goofytoo
02-08-2005, 10:23 AM
Has anyone been to Rum Point Beach since the storms?
I thought that there was a thread about this but, I can't seem to find it.
We are going in May and would like to do the stingray city and rum point beach excursion but, I don't want to go if the beach is shall we say "trashed"


Disney Inn May 1987 Honeymoon
offsite May 1992
Port Orleans 2000
Disney Wonder 2001
Wilderness Lodge 2002
Disney Magic 2003 Western
Beach Club Villas May 2004
Disney Magic Western May 7 2005

Hi My name is Lisa and I am a obsessive compulsive over planner :banana: :banana:

MarkRG
02-08-2005, 10:39 AM
And let me say we just love coming to your country and meeting with you.
Two countries sometimes separated by the same language I think. Just thought that Trash was something you put out once a week for collection by the Dustman as we call them over here.

It's ok, I know a lot about England, I am also into auto racing, and words like boot and bonnet and tyres make me used to the small differences in our two ways of speaking. :)


Anyway we are looking forward to our cruise in october if we ever get over the contact problems between us and Disney Cruise Line. No toll free here and they just never reply to either our travel agent or ourselves. Want to do a tour of the Island but understand they take our passports away at the onset and wonder how we get into Grand Cayman without them. Perhaps they will keep me there for the winter - really feel I would not mind that and not have to come back to drab winter in England.

Is it worth hiring a car and doing things yourself?

I can't help you with getting in contact with DCL better, but I can answer the passport thing. You don't need them to leave and board the ship at the ports, only a photo ID for the adults and the Key to the World card which is your room key/onboard charge card. They use it to check you off and on the ship.

Considering the shape the island's in, I'd more suggest using whatever taxi service they have as they'll know the island better than you will.

jel0511
02-08-2005, 11:29 AM
Has anyone been to Rum Point Beach since the storms?
I thought that there was a thread about this but, I can't seem to find it.
We are going in May and would like to do the stingray city and rum point beach excursion but, I don't want to go if the beach is shall we say "trashed"


Disney Inn May 1987 Honeymoon
offsite May 1992
Port Orleans 2000
Disney Wonder 2001
Wilderness Lodge 2002
Disney Magic 2003 Western
Beach Club Villas May 2004
Disney Magic Western May 7 2005

Hi My name is Lisa and I am a obsessive compulsive over planner :banana: :banana:
Last I heard, Rum Point was going to be closed until at least March, but with things working on island time, it could end up being later. I'd take a wait and see approach.

suez live
02-08-2005, 11:46 AM
I am sorry if I upset anyone but feel that trashed was such an unpleasant word to use in this instance. According to my dictionary it means waste or worthless and felt this perhaps was the wrong termanology in this instance.


I hate to toss an additional insight on this discussion, but being from Pensacola Florida—who was hit a few days after GC by the same Ivan—while you may find the term unpleasant, “trashed” is a sad, but very appropriate, term.
Unpleasant it is—and the recovery is very, very slow. Right this minute there are hundreds of thousands of pounds of debris still waiting to be collected and removed right down the street from our home and all over the Florida Panhandle as well. Considering we have FEMA to help, we can only hope for the most speedy recovery for every small island that was devastated by Ivan and the other horrific storms of 2004.
-----------------
Just an FYI from December 5, 2004 for one county:
Debris pickup is covered 90 percent by FEMA, 5 percent by the state and 5 percent by local government.
Escambia County, Florida
• Projected debris/Pensacola Beach cleanup cost: $300 million
• Projected local cost: $15 million
• An additional $75 million in costs is expected for hauling debris off private property.
• Estimated number of workers being used by the county at peak: 1,900
Debris collected so far:
• Vegetative waste: 4,011,318 cubic yards
• Construction and demolition waste: 527,287 cubic yards
• Sand: 788,758 cubic yards
• Total: 5,327,363 cubic yards
Source: Department of Solid Waste Management (as of Nov. 29)
City of Pensacola
• Estimated total cost: $25,033,583
• Local cost: $1,251,679
• Vegetative waste: 1,014,775 cubic yards
• Construction and demolition waste: 132,140 cubic yards
• Total: 1,146,915 cubic yards
• Number of truck loads: 32,192

Clovis
02-08-2005, 01:39 PM
I just got back from the Magic Western cruise. Grand Cayman was not as nice as I expected and yes, there is still major hurricane damage. The people seemed friendly and the cab rides to the beach are inexpensive ($3-4). We went to 7 Mile Beach ("Holiday Inn") for a few hours and were not impressed. There was garbage all over the beach (not hurricane damage but beer, soda bottles, etc that looked like it had been there for weeks). I realize some tourists are slobs but some effort should be made to keep the beaches cleaner. Maybe it was just this particular beach.

-Clovis
pirate: