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Diving With…. Pro Dive International – Mexico & Dominican Republic

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In this ongoing series, we speak with the people who run dive centres, resorts and liveaboards from around the world about their businesses and the diving they have to offer…


What is your name?

Susann Seifert

What is the name of your business?

Pro Dive International – Mexico & Dominican Republic

What is your role within the business?

Marketing Manager

How long has the business operated for?

15 years

How long have you dived for, and what qualification are you?

For 8 years in several locations around the world. I’m a certified Rescue and Nitrox Diver.

Photo: Stefan Heer

What is your favorite type of diving?

I love shark cleaning stations and being surrounded by big fish! Besides sharks, mantas, seals, dolphins & co., I also like lively colorful coral reefs with a current to simply drift along and enjoy.

If you could tell people one thing about your business (or maybe more!) to make them want to visit you what would it be?

With Pro Dive, you can satisfy all the fancies of your diver heart within one vacation – the breath-taking highlights of Mexico and Dom Rep from one hand, hassle-free arrangements of your dive & relax package, a great choice of beach resorts with our dive centres located onsite, big fish, macro life, shallow dives and beautiful walls, free Nitrox, the magic of cenotes/ cavern dives, cultural trips to world-heritage sites, high safety standards, a multilingual team of instructors at all of our locations, airport pickup and shuttles. Pro Dive caters for everyone from beginner to pro (CDC), divers with disabilities, kids, groups, non-diving family. Everyone is welcome!

Photo: Gerald Nowak

What is your favorite dive in your location and why?

Santa Rosa Wall in Cozumel/ Mexico clearly is my favourite dive here in the Mexican Caribbean – a spectacular vertical drop off with breath-taking formations of colourful corals, small caverns, overhangs, plenty of swim-throughs, sponges, and a diversity of marine life like huge lobsters, barracudas, Cozumel splendid toad fish (entirely endemic to Cozumel), black groupers, horse-eyed jacks, spotted eagle rays and turtles in about 18-25m depth. The corals seem to grow taller and the drop off gets steeper the further north you go. The current can be unpredictable and rapidly changing from medium to strong. A magical drift dive in all regards!

Photo: Stefan Heer

What types of diving are available in your location?

Deep, drift, wreck, cave and cavern, bull shark, reef diving… From newbie to pro and technical diver, anyone will find their favorite spot here.

What do you find most rewarding about your current role?

I can share my passion for diving, the ocean, marine life and the location itself by tickling our readers’ imagination about the unique highlights of our destinations, make them dream and want to join us for their next dive vacation. Furthermore, I get to meet many inspiring people and industry partners along the way who share the same passion, enjoy their fascinating stories, great achievements and visions.

Photo: Luis Javier Sandoval

What is your favorite underwater creature?

Among my small friends underwater, the Manti shrimp is my personal favorite – a fascinating creature. Among the larger ones, manta rays and sharks will need to fight for the top position.

Are there any exciting changes / developments coming up in the near future?

Absolutely, as Pro Dive International keeps growing! We have just opened a new dive centre in Bayahibe/ Dominican Republic – the country’s hot spot for diving. Stay tuned for more exciting news! 😉

As a center what is the biggest problem you face at the moment?

The moody weather! With the start of the hurricane season, we experienced rough seas, causing the harbor to be closed for safety reasons, which meant we couldn’t go out for local and wreck dives. However, here on the Riviera Maya/ Mexico, we are very fortunate to have the Cenotes on our doorstep – the largest freshwater cave system in the world and a truly unique experience! Hence, we switched local dives and scuba training from the ocean to the cenotes to ensure that all our divers and students had a great time, despite the weather conditions!

Photo: Duxy

Is your center involved in any environmental work?

All of our centres are actively involved! Pro Dive International is hands on when it comes to marine life conservation. In particular shark conservation has been one of Pro Dive’s major concerns. Not only do we support renowned organizations internationally, but actively the local project SAVING OUR SHARKS who focus specifically on research and protection of bull sharks on the Mexican Riviera Maya. Pro Dive has even adopted one of the females that come to visit us every year in winter to give birth! And our SharkSchool will be held for the third time from December 18-24, this year, to continue spreading education and awareness. Anyone is welcome to join!

We use biodegradable cleaning products and cups and participate in ocean cleaning days.

Furthermore, Pro Dive has achieved the PADI Green Star award (the first Mexican company), as well as several certificates of excellence recognizing their continued efforts and contribution toward the marine environment.

How do you see the SCUBA / Freediving / snorkeling industry overall? What changes would you make?

Much more needs to be done in regards to the protection of the marine environment, in particular involving local communities, to educate and inspire, refuse plastic, make safe, sustainable seafood choices, take care of the beach. This responsibility lies in each one of us, however, with joined forces we can achieve more.

Photo: Luis Javier Sandoval

What would you say to our visitors to promote the diving you have to offer?

Mexico is a bucket list destination holding many magical moments to tag off your list, like diving into the mystical Mayan cenotes to get mesmerized by stunning lightshows and beautifully decorated caverns, swimming with the largest fish on the planet – the whale shark, the encounter of majestic bull sharks, the high speed sardine hunt of the world’s fastest fish – the sailfish, the drift along Cozumel’s vibrant colourful reefs, named one of the Top10 in the world by Jacques Cousteau, the countless diving adventures to expect within one trip when combining the highlights of both Mexico’s Caribbean and Pacific-side with Socorro and Great Whites in Guadalupe, a visit of Mayan world heritage sites and one of the seven world wonders, and last but not least, the refreshing facilities of our beach resorts to get yourself pampered.

The Dominican Republic has it all, as its slogan suggests: Beautiful beaches and reefs in Bayahibe, Saona, Catalina Island, Cayo Levantado, many wrecks and macro life, but also big fish – the humpback whales. You can either observe or swim with them during the winter months, when the entire North Atlantic humpback whale population migrates south to the Silver Bank – the Sanctuary for the Marine Mammals of the Dominican Republic, for mating and calving.

No matter your choice, adventure & fun await you with our team!

__________________________________________________________________________________

Where can our visitors find out more about your business? 

www.prodiveinternational.com

reservations@prodiveinternational.com, or info@prodiveinternational.com

www.idcmexico.com

Mobile: +52 1 984 745 0763

Facebook:

@prodiveinternational 

@prodivemexico

@prodivedominicanrepublic

@prodivemexicoacademy

Twitter:

twitter.com/Prodivemexico

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Tourism Fiji celebrates Open for Happiness Campaign (Watch Trailer)

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As international borders reopen to the world this week, Tourism Fiji launched the first video piece in it’s Open for Happiness campaign. The team celebrated this at an event at Wyndham Resort Denarau Island, where they unveiled some of the content to crew who worked on the production as well as tourism stakeholders.

Tourism Fiji is delighted to partner with award-winning actress, comedian and producer, Rebel Wilson, the new Ambassador of our global reopening campaign.

Ms. Wilson has fond memories of visiting Fiji as a child and returned to share her love of a destination that offers so much to visitors and is largely vaccinated.

She was joined by a talented pool of Fijian cast and crew to shoot Tourism Fiji’s Open for Happiness campaign in the Mamanuca Islands, where she also sampled a range of experiences.

“Rebel is a talented actress and demonstrates a unique ability to bring her own style of heartfelt humour to the ad that Tourism Fiji is creating,” said Brent Hill, CEO of Tourism Fiji.

“We’re delighted to have her as an ambassador who resonates with Fiji and our key tourist markets; Australia, North America, New Zealand and Europe.”

Rebel hiked, did yoga, stand up paddleboarding, scenic helicopter tour, spa treatment, cocktails and visited a popular sandbar.  She was seen stepping out in some local designer wear from Samson Lee and Zuber and enjoyed the hospitality of Vomo Island Fiji.

Her destination highlights of Fiji were shared with her fanbase, including 10.3 million followers on social media platform Instagram, and helped amplify Fiji’s allure as a holiday destination that has now safely reopened to international travellers on December 1st.

Filmed in Fiji over the course of last month, the campaign is the result of the collaborative work of several local partners including activity providers, talented singers, entertainers, videographers, local actors, and extras on set.

“This campaign would not have been possible without the support of our industry stakeholders, and we’re pleased to showcase a global star such as Rebel and the talent of local cast and crew,” said Brent Hill, CEO of Tourism Fiji.

Rebel also enjoyed a sunset cruise featuring a live performance by talented local artist, Apakuki “Kuki” Nalawa and shared snippets across her Instagram, Facebook and Twitter channels.

“With all that’s happened over the last two years, tourism has been badly affected and the entertainment industry has been hit hard by this as well, – the live performance was an eye-opener, a breath of fresh air and gave us all hope that things will get better,” Mr Nalawa said.

“It’s so encouraging to witness a Hollywood actress and her media team enjoying not only the beauty that our country has to offer but also recognising the level of talent we have.”

Tourism Fiji’s Open for Happiness campaign with Rebel will be used into 2022. Further video clips will launch over the coming weeks.

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Announcing the Winners of the DPG/Wetpixel Masters Underwater Imaging Competition 2021

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DivePhotoGuide (DPG) and Wetpixel are proud to announce the winning images and videos in the 2021 edition of the DPG/Wetpixel Masters Underwater Imaging Competition. Once again, hundreds of photographers and filmmakers from dozens of countries competed in what has become known as the “World Championship” of international underwater imaging events.

Created by DPG and Wetpixel, two of the largest online resources for underwater shooters, the competition invited submissions to five image categories and a video category, with entries evaluated by a panel of illustrious industry experts and award-winning photographers: Florian Fischer, Imran Ahmad, Jennifer Hayes, Mike Bartick and Stephen Frink.

This year, Martin Broen received the “Best of Show” prize for his 1st place in the Black and White category. The image, a jaw-dropping capture of the pristine stalactites and stalagmites in a Mexican cenote, earned Martin the top cash prize of $1,000. The 1st place winners in the other categories were Julian Hsu (Macro Traditional), Sander van der Heijden (Macro Unrestricted), Enrico Somogyi (Wide Angle Traditional), Tom Shlesinger (Wide Angle Unrestricted) and Alex del Olmo (Video); each of them received a cash prize of $250.

In a joint statement, DPG Editor-in-Chief Joseph Tepper and Wetpixel Publisher Adam Hanlon said: “Once again, the DPG/Wetpixel Masters competition has demonstrated the incredible talent that exists in our community of underwater shooters. As many of us continue to face lockdowns and travel restrictions, these photos and films remind us of the riches under the sea and why we must maintain our collective passion to protect the oceans we love.”

The organizers are pleased to announce that 15 percent of entry proceeds will once again be donated to marine conservation efforts.

You can see the full results here.

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Egypt | Safaga, Brothers & Elphinstone | 27 January – 04 February 2022 | Emperor Elite

Jump on board this famous Red Sea liveaboard and enjoy diving the famous wrecks of the Red Sea with this fantastic special offer.  Emperor Elite offers a contemporary living space combined with the best itineraries available in the Red Sea.

Price NOW from just £975 per person based on sharing a twin cabin including:

  • Flights from London Gatwick to Hurghada with 23kgs baggage
  • 7 nights in shared cabin
  • 3 meals a day, soft drinks, red wine with dinner
  • 6 days’ diving, guide, 12ltr tank & weights, Marine Park fees and port departure fees
  • Free Nitrox

Booking deadline: Subject to availability.

Call Diverse Travel on 01473 852002 or email info@diversetravel.co.uk.

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