As a relatively new diver (16 dives), I really enjoy this place. There are a lot of ways to hone your diving ability. For the beginner, this is a safe and fun way to log some bottom time. It can get crowded and mucked up on the weekends, so I suggest early morning during the week. Let the classes have it on Sat/Sun. I have no complaints about Vortex; it's a great experience, and great for winter dives! Well worth the drive over.