FIRST CLASS DINING ROOM - THE LADY (Maximum depth 45 - 50m)
To do this dive you enter the water and swim across the hull to Euart's Door. This is the door that Captain Elwood Euart was attempting to exit when the President Coolidge sank. For more details on this, see the article on the ship's sinking. The door was the main entrance to the ship (starboard side) when it was tied up at a wharf. The door accesses the main Lobby.
Once at the door (about 22 metres), you drop down and as the door now lies at an angle, it is a bit of work to get through the door. When you are in the Lobby, for a morning dive drop down to the bottom and you will find some crockery. There is an entrance to the dining room here and you can swim along the bottom to the other end. At the lobby end of the dining room there is a lift on either side of the ship. For an afternoon dive, go through the upper entrance to the dining room up near Euart's Door. There is a dishwasher here and some crockery inside (cups mainly).
|Kelly entering via Euarts Door||The Lady in the First Class Dining Room|
Inside the dining room you swim to the far end of the room. There are some interesting lights in the dining room. These make quite good subjects for photographs. Look closely at them and you will see that they have a star shape on the bottom. When you get towards the end of the room, look to your right and down and you will see that there is a well over the dining room. This had a set of stairs at the far end and provided the main access into the Dining Room.
|One of the Dining Room Lights||A closeup of one of the Dining Room Lights|
The Lady now resides here. She is located towards the rear of the room, about 39 metres or so deep. After she fell from her original location in the First Class Smoking Room, she was attached to the ceiling (the right side as you enter) and was upright rather than on its side as it used to be. However, sometime before mid-2007, she was moved to the far end of the dining room and placed (attached with weight belt straps!) to the wall. The orientation was changed so that now she sits basically the same as she did before. This is far better. (NOTE: I believe that she may have been moved again to the front of the dining room)
As I have mentioned elsewhere on this site, for some reason a habit (cult if you ask me) has developed that divers kiss the Lady when they dive here. I do not know who or when this started, but it certainly was not around when I dived here in 1991, 1995 or 1998. What a stupid thing to do! If you are a sheep, well do it, but if you are an individual, then look at her for all her glory.
|A wide shot of Kelly lighting|
the Lady with a ceiling light on the right
|A closer shot of The Lady|
If you look really close you can see that she even has eyeballs and the workmanship is fantastic. Amazing that after over 60 years in the water her colour is still brilliant.
Sometimes access to The Galley can be done from here by dropping down from the Lady and entering a door to the rear. This goes into private dining areas and then to the galley. Only do this if you are with a guide. See Galley.
|A closeup of The Lady||A closeup of the unicorn|
The Doctors Office is up and to the right from the Lady and this is also a way back from the Engine Room.
Anyway, for a normal dive to this area, you will return to the forward entrance and then the lobby. Have a close look at the ornate lights on the ceiling if you did not already do this.
There are many ways to continue the dive and it will depend on your air consumption so far and your guide's plan as to what you will do. The current way (as of 2007) that seems most popular is to drop down the Lobby till you can swim along it (actually go up levels in the ship). As you drop, look back towards the dining room that you have just exited and you will see the concertina doors of the starboard side elevator that ran from the bottom deck to the upper deck.
As you go through the Lobby, look to your left and up and you will see the elevator shaft with the elevator cables still in place.
|The elevator doors outside the First Class Dining Room||Kelly and the C Deck toilets|
You can go up a level to B Deck and go towards the bow. Ahead you will see a wall. To your right and down a bit there is a small door. This comes out in Hold Two. From here, exit the hold through the cut or the hatch and go to the deco stop.
If you go two levels to A Deck, you can travel though the accommodation levels and come out in Hold 2. You can go all the way out of the Lobby to the now collapsed area where you will see the toilets. You can swim back via The Continental Lounge and Library, or along the Promenade Deck or on the outside of the superstructure.
If short on air when leaving the dining room you may exit out Euart's Door. Alternatives are to go through the passageway forward and below Euart's Door. This comes out in Hold Two. An alternatve is to go through a rust hole at the top near the door. This passes by another group of toilets, two rows of nine. This also ends up in Hold 2.
Return to the SS President Coolidge Dive Index Page.