Inside Peak- The Germany- Costa Connection

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Safari Surf’s German Connection

marlon smile

I have always been fascinated by the depth of Marlon Illig. For example, he speaks fluent German. For a lad raised in rural Nosara, this strikes me as interesting and unusual. Marlon is one of the New Breed of Safari instructors that joined us this season. Safari hosts a fair amount of Europeans this time of year and many happen to be German. Imagine coming to Costa Rica from Germany to a surf school and finding that your instructor speaks German! Marlon is educated, informed, and quite worldly. I was intrigued the other day when I overheard him talking movies and critiquing actors and directors with some guests. Oh yeah, he also speaks fluent English! I sat down with Marlon to get the skinny.

PL: Everyone knows you as Jeffrey’s brother, but he doesn’t speak German?
Marlon: Well it’s a long story, but I was adopted!

PL: So explain the Germany connection.
Marlon: I was born in Germany and am a German citizen as well as Costa Rican. At 2 yrs old mom moved us to Nosara. She had been there before and longed to return. So Nosara is where I grew up.

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All Men are Brothers!

PL: When did you start surfing?
Marlon: I started 4 years ago. Since I starting teaching with Safari this season I had a kind of “rebirth” and fell in love with surfing all over again. I can’t get enough now!

PL: You are a great with people and seem to have found the perfect fit with surf instruction. What do you like about it?
Marlon: The best part is watching the transformation that people go through here. When they arrive they are all white and pasty and stressed from their busy lives. After a few days they are totally transformed, physically, mentally, and spiritually. They develop a new self confidence and inner stoke. It is such a priceless thing to observe and be part of!


marlon carrie

Carrie Learns Proper Waxing Technique


 

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Kids at Play

marlon cutback

marlon boardPL: You recently turned 18. What are your future plans?
Marlon: I am going back to Germany in two months, after high season. My dream is to become a pilot and I am looking to enroll in flight school there. I plan to return next high season (Dec-April) to work at Safari, save money, and continue my schooling in Germany.

PL: Wow what a great goal. Viel Glück an euch mein Bruder! (Best of luck to you my brother).

instructors

                             “The New Breed” (Kevin, Marlon, fan, Jordani)

Plus Erich!

erich

For more on Marlon check out Safari’s new instructor video here:
https://vimeo.com/119782826

Inside Peak- Higher Learning Through Surfing

Posted by & filed under The Inside Peak.

Higher Learning through Surfing at Safari Surf School

SurfU

“Study Abroad” – the phrase conjures up images of earnest students absorbed in esoteric topics enhanced by their unique surrounds – English Lit studies at Oxford, Italian culture and language studies in Rome, Ancient Greek civilization studies in Athens – but surfing in Costa Rica?? In January Safari Surf hosted a group of students from Guilford College in North Carolina lured by the enticing title: Surfing Centuries: An interdisciplinary introduction to riding waves, past and present. In the intro syllabus Professor Maia Dery, an avid surfer, describes the course as follows: “You all “surf” almost every day. Surfing became the runaway metaphor to describe the freedom and possibilities of the internet. How did that metaphor come into being? How did surfing, a fully embodied indigenous pastime, become such a powerful cultural trope?”

I was hooked!  “College courses have come a long way since my graduation from Cal Western University San Diego in 1973” I mused. Maia is a stoked and dedicated surfer of many years. Was this just a clever way to go on a surf trip? One glimpse at the 16 page syllabus would dispel that shallow notion. This was a bonafide heavy-duty full credit academic assignment fraught with multiple texts books and several evaluation criteria. The group spent 18 days with us and became like family. With the opening of Olas Verdes Sustainable Surfing resort this summer, we look forward to more study abroad groups, as we collectively expand our horizons together through surfing.

group

Required Reading

For emphasis on my “how times have changed” reflection, I draw your attention to the textbooks for this course. Five texts and several articles were required to pass this course. But wait a second, take a look at some of these titles: Surfer Girls in the New World Order, Waves of Resistance, Empire in Waves: A Political History of Surfing. These are deeply academic compendiums with complex concepts and big words!

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Student Blogs

Professor Dery was kind enough to share some of the student’s blogs with me which reveal the “seriousness” of how they viewed their assignment. There was no surfspeak “killer tasty tubes dude”, but rather acutely insightful and sensitive reflections on their Nosara experiences. Here are a few examples:

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CHARLOTTE

“Today our rowdy group of twelve returns to volunteer at La Escuelita de Verano, a summer school that offers a space of creative, artistic and physical engagement for children in elementary and middle school. The playful joy of the children is contagious, and rejuvenating in every essence of the word. These encounters complicate and deepen my process of distilling my time here; this presents for me questions of how personal relationships motivate us in our actions and aspirations. Our experience on earth is comprised of overlapping, unpredictable relationships with ourselves and the people and places that surround us. Relationship entails emotional awakeness; a mindfulness of your own needs and those that surround you. A willingness to give, receive, compromise, reciprocate. The quality of relationship determines the extent to which we defy the logic of self-preservation–it determines a turning point in which giving to others can be self-gratifying as well. I would propose from all of the love I have encountered the last couple of days, impassioned people offer parts of themselves for a greater need because they are emotionally guided towards something bigger. And the result is a form of gratification that expands and nourishes in all directions.” 

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NATE

Sandland

“What if you were a piece of sand? The beach is your world. Ocean waves the only force, besides feet, controlling your life. A sand hierarchy exists in your world; those below you are not seen. Those above you get all the credit for the great beach you all have created. Without waves, your place in the social sand hierarchy is fixed. You cannot make your way to the top of the beach, or be brought deeper.”


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ROSE

“Moving into this experience I am finding myself most interested in the media canon of surf culture and the way it effects cultural inertia. The Endless Summer has undoubtedly had a profound impact on surfer culture, but how far reaching is it? How have the escapist fantasy ideals laid out in The Endless Summer impacted the activistic ambivalence that all of our readings have condemned. Does this have anything to do with how it’s the ‘outsider groups’ -the surfer girls and surfers of color- that are creating surfing spaces that are being held up as sustainable and culturally aware models of surf culture? My personal lexicon of surf media and culture is too small to even start ball-parking answers to questions like this, but they’re the sort of questions that I have been taught by my theater studies to ask about media: what does this piece of popular media say about the culture it comes from? What is this piece of media doing to the culture it comes from? I have said several times over the course of these last few days that all media is political, and it could even be argued that everything is political (or that everything is media), leading me to ask these questions of just about every text we’ve been introduced to.”

 

PROFESSOR MAIA DERY

“My goal in offering this study abroad experience was to inspire and facilitate an atmosphere we call informed engagement. Surfing has been a personal passion for me over the last 8 years. My vision is to construct creative ways to incorporate surfing into academic studies to invigorate students’ curiosity. Our experiences in Nosara were profound and life-changing. I most certainly will try to return next year!

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Does your professor surf this good? Maia Dery – doin’ her homework!

FAMILY

Having a group of energetic and motivated college students with us for nearly three weeks was nourishing for all of us. For one thing, college students eat a lot! Safari’s amazing kitchen duo Maritiza and Alycia created and served magnificent meals, incorporating local flavors of Tico ‘tipico’ cuisine. The kids helped with food prep and dishes. Their field trips to the local summer school fostered authentic culture interactions. We thank you all for coming and wish you the very best – Hasta Pronto!

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Alma Mater

Cal West

Back in the day, my college graduation in 1973.

English major, what else!

 

INSIDE PEAK- HAPPY NEW YEAR

Posted by & filed under The Inside Peak.

HAPPY NEW YEAR FROM SAFARI SURF!!

 All of us at Safari Surf look forward to this New Year, full of waves, smiles, and personal growth. The opening of Olas Verdes Sustainable Surf Resort will certainly be a highlight. Scheduled to open its doors in June or July of this year, the resort plans to have a “soft opening”, with a Gala Grand Opening slated for November 2015. Olas Verdes will fill a needed niche in Nosara providing upscale accommodations with a soulful surf atmosphere! Stay tuned to the Safari website (www.safarisurfschool.com) for updates.

Thanks and Pura Vida to all the great folks who spent the holidays with us. When I travel north to Orlando, Florida the planes are full of Costa Rican families taking their dream vacation to Disney World. Most of the Southbound passengers, however, are coming to Costa Rica to explore its natural attractions: surfing, fishing, kayaking, yoga, hiking, ziplining and passionate, fun-loving people. We had a mob of good folks descend upon us over Christmas; families, kids, solo trekkers, nature buffs, young professionals, and aging soul surfers. To see the joy and exhilaration surfing brings to all guests is priceless. Surfing your ‘own wave’ brings a sense of accomplishment in an atmosphere of camaraderie and instructional support. It doesn’t take long for this group of strangers becomes a tight-knit family, a dynamic that always fascinates me.

Laura and John Guitar share a wave at sunset

New Crew

Safari Surf School is stoked to have recruited four new instructors who proved themselves “up to the calling” over the holidays. It was not unusual for an instructor to teach up to five lessons per day, emerging from the water with wrinkle-skin, crow’s-feet, and salt-reddened eyes! Thanks and Welcome Aboard to our new team members.

Kevin

Marlon

Jordani

Erich

 

 

Families Families Families!

The best part of Christmas vacations are the families who come and experience Costa Rica together. When is the last time you sat around the dinner table with everyone in your family enjoying the art of conversation and just catching up? If you are feeling distanced from your family due to your crazy-busy life – take a surfing vacation at Safari Surf – we will fix it! Many thanks to the Curley, McCaulley, MaGrann, Panagos, Patch, Robison, Guitar, Chandler, Wasserman, Goldstein, and Wagner families – you guys made our Christmas memorable! And Keep Surfing wherever life takes you this year….

The McCaulley Family

The Guitar Family

The Curley Family

     

                Kids, Kids, Kids!

SAFARI BEACH BUGGY

                                                                          

Elias Shredding

 

Leo’s Treasure

Lilly Tandem

 

 

 

 Families That Play Together……..

I’ve gotta say that being amongst all these families somehow made me feel “connected” to something larger than myself. In Hawaii it is called OHANA, or extended family. Family means nobody gets left behind or forgotten. The concept emphasizes that families are bound together and members must cooperate and remember one another. In the larger picture, we are all one big family. Sharing waves with family is an indescribable joy. The Chandler family of Sandy Hook, New Jersey gets the “Leave it to Beaver/Father Knows Best Nuclear Family Award”! They would play dominoes every morning at breakfast, surf together twice a day, and enjoy many a great meal around the dinner table. Last time The Chandlers were here I was lamenting that I didn’t have many pictures of them surfing. I remember telling them “but this will change”. Here’s proof:

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Jeff- Nice Bottom Turn

 

Tess and Kerry (Daughter and Mother)

Football Toss- Son, Sam and Papa Jeff

Kerry’ Sister Pam and Son, Sam

Tess Chandler

Cousin Liam

Sam and Mom Clowning

 

 WELCOME TO 2015

Mitch Stoked!

 

The New Olas Verdes Resort- Opening This Year!

 

*Many thanks to Jeffrey and Alonso for their great photography* 

Inside Peak – Feliz Navidad from Nosara

Posted by & filed under The Inside Peak.

Happy Holidays from Safari Surf School!

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Safari Surf Senior Instructor Extraordinaire Helberth Ruiz

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Beautiful empty tube photo by Graham Swindell

The Holiday Season is upon us in Nosara with perfect sunny days and all-day offshore winds. It is amazing how dependable these conditions are in our dry season. Safari Surf School looks forward to welcoming our new guests and immersing them in Aloha and Pura Vida! We meet lovely folks from around the world here all seeking the same spirit and joy we find through surfing. Here are a few of their Christmas stories….

Christmas in Nosara Costa Rica

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Maritza and Alycia of Safari Surf
“Our ‘Tradiciones de Navidad’ are centered around a large family gathering on Christmas Eve. Parents and grandparents, brothers & sisters, aunts, uncles, and cousins all gather at papa’s house. At 8pm we all go to La Iglesia (church) for Mass, and then return to papa’s for bocas (appetizers) and drinks. At midnight on Christmas Eve we have a big dinner of chicken and pork tamales, and a bebida dulce (sweet drink) called chicheme – made from pulpo de maiz morado (purple corn pulp – yummie!). Afterwards we gather around the Christmas tree and open gifts. On Christmas Day we look forward to working at Safari Surf!!!”

Christmas in Holland and the United Kingdom

ellen
Safari Alumni Ellen
“I am originally from Holland but have been living in England for many years!
In Holland the big holiday is celebrated on December 5th when Sinterklass (St. Nicholas) visits. The children leave their clogs by the fireplace hoping that Sinterklaas will fill them with presents.
In the UK they go all out with heaps of decorations, parties, and lots of presents delivered by Father Christmas. It has become quite commercial, very similar to the United States actually. On Christmas Day the entire population eats turkey and Christmas (or plum) Pudding.”

Christmas in Finland

tina
Tina
“Well everyone knows that Finland is the home of Santa Claus right?!! This means that he will stop there first to deliver his presents! On Christmas Eve families celebrate with a big early supper of pork, potatoes, and rice pudding. Then Santa comes around 7pm to deliver presents and sing with the children. Gifts are opened around the tree and everyone plays with them late into the night. Of course I will celebrate in Nosara with my novio Luis and his lovely family!”

Christmas in the United States

jaida
Jaida (my granddaughter!)
“On Christmas Eve we go to church and everyone holds candles and sings Silent Night. Then we go home and go to bed early so Santa can come and leave presents. On Christmas morning we open our stockings and lots of presents and play play play! Then in February I get to come to Nosara to celebrate my 4th birthday with my pa-pa, ma-ma, and my mommie!”

A Rustico Christmas in Nosara Village!

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FELIZ NAVIDAD & PROSPERO ANO NUEVO
FROM ALL OF US AT SAFARI SURF!
sss-group
“COME ON DOWN AND CATCH A WAVE WITH US!”
santa-surf

Inside Peak – Nosara Restaurant Guide

Posted by & filed under The Inside Peak.

SAFARI SURF SCHOOLS’ RESTAURANT GUIDE

surf food
With all of the great restaurant choices in Nosara, Safari Surf School management has decided to make Sundays an “Open Meal Day”, providing guests with an opportunity to eat at establishments of their choosing. To assist we have created a restaurant guide comprised of eateries we recommend. Nosara has an impressive assortment of restaurant offerings. With each new season we see at least 3-4 new places open; some survive, some don’t. Most restaurants here these days accept Visa and MasterCard as well as U.S. currency. Be prepared for a mandatory 13% sales tax and 10% service charge to be added to your check. I usually leave another 10% for the server if service is good. There are a few “mainstays” you can always count on: For Romantic go to Dolce Vita, for ocean front dining La Luna. IL Basilico makes awesome pizza, and for burgers the newly opened Burgers and Beers is the ticket. Rancho Tico is the place to go for excellent local ‘tipico’ cuisine and Harmony is popular for excellent sushi. It is rare to get a bad meal in Nosara as everything is generally prepared from scratch. Table service has improved vastly from the old days, but remember that ‘cooked to order’ still takes longer, so sit back, relax, and enjoy the Pura Vida. Make sure to call in advance to verify hours, etc. And don’t hesitate to talk to fellow travelers and ask for their restaurant recommendations. Provecho!


Harbor Reef

Harbor Reef

*Recommended for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

On-site at Harbor Reef Surf Resort is a pool-side restaurant known for local fare from farm and sea, a fully stocked bar with swim-up access , live music and a roof-top smoothie bar. The Reef Restaurant menu is updated daily to reflect the freshest, finest ingredients available; also featuring desserts by Ems Yums.

Location: Main Street Guiones/walk from town
Price Range: $5-$20
Phone: 2682-1000
Web: http://www.harborreef.com


Rosie’s Soda Tica

Rosie’s Soda Tica

*Recommended for Breakfast and Lunch

Rosie’s Soda Tica serves authentic traditional fare at very reasonable prices. New location next to tennis courts on Main Street Guiones.

Location: Main Street Guiones/walk from town
Price Range: $5-$10
Phone: 2682-0728


Harmony Hotel Bar and Restaurant

Harmony Hotel Bar and Restaurant

*Recommended for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

The Harmony’s restaurant showcases the bounty of the Nosara area. We use fresh, local ingredients whenever possible and work with producers who share our sustainable values. We also source produce from our very own nearby farm. We serve breakfast, lunch and dinner (including an amazing sushi menu). Full bar and wine list.

Location: Main Street Guiones/walk from town
Price Range: $5-$30
Phone: 2682-4114
Web: http://www.harmonynosara.com


Bagelmens

Bagelmens

*Recommended for Breakfast and Lunch

Bagelmens features breakfast specialties, wraps, salads, soups, desserts and a variety of bagels baked fresh daily. Indoor and outdoor patio dining. Bagelmens opens daily at 7am for that early coffee wake-up.

Location: Main Street Guiones/walk from town

Price Range: $5-$15
Phone: 2682-5448
web: http://www.bagelmenscr.com


Robin's Ice Cream

Robin’s Ice Cream

*Recommended for Breakfast and Lunch

Known for amazing home-made ice cream and sorbets, Robins also features breakfast selections, sandwiches, salads, wraps, crepes, coffee drinks, smoothies, and milkshakes

Location: Main Street Guiones/walk from town
Price Range: $5-$15
Phone: 2682-1607
Web: http://www.robinsicecream.com


Café de Paris Bakery

Café de Paris Bakery

*Recommended for Breakfast and Lunch

Excellent freshly baked goodies; homemade sandwiches, croissants, deserts, baguettes, celebration cakes, pies and more. Good take-out option for tour excursions, fishing trips, etc.

Location: Main Street Guiones/walk from town
Price Range: $5-$10
Phone: 2682-0087
Web: http://www.cafedeparis.net


Marlin Bills

Marlin Bills

*Recommended for Dinner

American styles steakhouse menu featuring steak, chicken, fresh fish, burgers, pastas, and salads. Full bar menu.

Location: Main Street Guiones/walk from town
Price Range: $7-$25
Phone: 2682-0458
Web: https://www.facebook.com/Marlin Bills


IL Basilico

IL Basilico

*Recommended for Dinner

Il Basilico is a locally owned talian restaurant. The ambiance is rustic, with incredible food at affordable prices. Il Basilico offers everything from pizzas, to specialty salads, pasta, seafood, and much more. Several nights a week live music can be enjoyed. Come join us for a wonderful evening!

Location: South Guiones/taxi from town
Price Range: $6-$15
Phone: 2682-1472
Web: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Restaurante-IL-Basilico


Kaya Sol

Kaya Sol

*Recommended for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Extensive menu, all meals. Fresh seafood, free-range steaks, pasta, burgers, salads by popular Chef Jorge. Full bar and wine list.

Location: North Guiones /taxi from town
Price Range: $5-$20
Phone: 2682-1459
Web: http://www.kayasolsurfhotel.com


Gilded Iguana

Gilded Iguana

*Recommended for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

A Nosara landmark since 1986. In November (2014) former owners of popular seafood restaurant Pacifico Azul assumed management of the Gilded Iguana hotel and restaurant.
The restaurant serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner with a wide variety of fresh selections with an emphasis on seafood. Full bar. Live music Tuesday and Friday nights.

Location: North Guiones/taxi from town
Price Range: $5-$20
Phone: 2682-0259
Web: http://thegildediguana.com


Burgers and Beers

Burgers and Beers

*Recommended Lunch and Dinner

Monster burgers and hand cut fries. Excellent handcrafted beers.
One visit will you keep coming back for more!

Location: North Guiones/taxi from town
Price Range: $10-$15
Phone: 2682-5558
Web: http://www.facebook.com/burgersandbeerscr/info


La Luna

La Luna

*Recommended for Lunch and Dinner

Ocean front restaurant, great for sunsets and special occasions.
The eclectic menu has Asian and Mediterranean flourishes; excellent wood-fired pizza. Deserts by Ems Yums.
Full bar and wine list. Call ahead for reservations.

Location: Playa Pelada/taxi from town
Price Range: $7-$25
Phone: 2682-0122
Web: https://www.facebook.com/pages/LA-LUNA


La Dolce Vita

La Dolce Vita

*Recommended for Dinner

Upscale Italian cuisine in romantic setting. Proprietor/Host Roberto DeSilvio proudly oversees every detail and table nightly. Good wine list.
Location: South Guiones/walk from town

Price Range: $5-$40
Phone: 2682-0107


Rancho Tico

Rancho Tico

*Recommended for Dinner

Located in Nosara Centro, Rancho Tico is great for tipico food:
Casados, Lomito jalapeno, and fresh seafood. Full bar.

Location: Nosara Centro/taxi from town
Price Range: $6-$20
Phone: 2682-0006
Web: https://www.facebook.com/RanchoTicoNosara

nosara-restaurant-guide

Inside Peak – New Season Starts for 2015!

Posted by & filed under The Inside Peak.

Safari’s New Season Off and Running!

New-Safari
Safari Surf Schools 2014-2015 season opened with a bang as an early season cold front ushered in fresh offshore winds, sunny skies, and super fun surf. It is always a challenge emerging from the rain soaked months of “Septober” where flooded roads, stormy skies, and choppy surf keeps visitors away and locals holed up in their homes. Although the El Nino weather phenomenon did result in a “less intense” rainy season, from my perspective it stayed pretty darned wet and soggy around these parts. Most sources predict an early end to this year’s rainy season which has been evident in two successive northern hemisphere cold fronts already in the books. Around town merchants are painting, cleaning, and readying their businesses for the busy high season ahead. Safari welcomed a good number of new and “alumni” guests this week, so I thought a little recap of our 1st week would be fun.

summer

Hot and Glassy & nobody out – get down here!

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Safari Manager Jeffrey with ‘El Jefe’ Tim Marsh

We’ve been stoked to have Safari President Tim Marsh here this week to help us kick off the new season. I sat down with Tim to get his thoughts on the upcoming season and the “New Safari Surf”.
PL: Welcome back Tim, fresh from Indonesia, where did you go?
Tim: I was in the Mentawai Islands boating from break to break.
PL: Well here we are, a brand new season. What’s new for Safari this year?
Tim: We are very excited about this new season. We have trimmed down to our “core staff” and are focused on making our surf lesson teaching system the best in the business. We interview all guests as to their experience and
ability levels and structure their equipment and instruction according to a new multi-level rating system. This way we can focus appropriate attention on each student. No longer will a complete beginner be paired with an experienced rider. We are also investing in our instructors training and personal development towards attaining their Level 2 International Surfing Association coaching and instruction certification. In December we will take delivery of 35 new surfboards made specifically for Safari Surf School. We have just opened a new branch of Safari Surf in Nicaragua and look forward to growing that program, and of course we have the ongoing development of Olas Verdes Sustainable Surfing Resort right next store. Our new website will launch soon so stay tuned to http://www.safarisurfschool.com for all the latest safari Surf news!

verdes

Olas Verdes

The Week in Pictures

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Surfer Town comes to Life

arrival
love-nosara

Safari Guests

Kate-and-Charlie
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Kate & Charlie                                                                                                                                                            Helberth, Mary, & Catherine

Catherine-dallas

Catherine from Dallas
Mary-UK
Mary from UK
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Jessica from NYC
Alejandra-Canada
Alejandra from Canada
Skye-NYC
Skye from NYC
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Tim Marsh in Indonesia

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PURA VIDA – see you soon!

I would like to dedicate this blog to my dad, William Lewis, who left this earth last Monday. Dad loved the ocean and instilled in me a love for the water and waves that lives on today.

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bodysurf-Log

Inside Peak – Equinox

Posted by & filed under The Inside Peak.

Spring has Sprung! (sort of!)

summer-break (2)

On Monday, September 22, 2014, autumn began astronomically in the Northern Hemisphere. This also marked the start of spring in the southern half of the globe. The September equinox is the moment when the sun appears to cross the celestial equator heading southward. At the equinox, the sun rises directly in the east and sets directly in the west. In the Northern Hemisphere the southward equinox is known as the autumnal equinox. In the Southern Hemisphere it is known as the vernal or spring equinox. Even though Costa Rica is located at 9 degrees north in the northern hemisphere, the names of the seasons are commonly flip-flopped and the September equinox is referred to down here as ‘spring’, and ‘summer’ starts late in November. From what I can determine this is based on local folklore and tradition, not science! What does this all mean for us optimistic surfers? Spring is here in Nosara! Summer is coming! In November we begin to usher in the dreamy offshore wind season. As the Southern Hemisphere winter winds down, we begin to see our surf “source” spawning from singular primary directions, drop in size a bit, and become more spaced apart, lined up, and very clean. Our dry season begins “sometime in November”. This year, due to the El Nino weather phenomenon, there is a good probability that our rains will taper off early in the month and sunny days, starry nights, and offshore winds return!

Up North

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pumpkins
weather map
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winter
shovel
footie
xmas
wetsuit (2)

Down South

beauty
sunset
yoga
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soft wave
mono
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blow
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Safari-House-BBQ-(3)
kid surf
Safari Surf School’s New Season Starts November 1st!

Take advantage of predicted early summer conditions, less crowds, learn to surf in paradise.
We’ll be waiting for you, “hasta pronto” – (see you soon)!
~Pura Vida~

Inside Peak – Surfers Who Stayed: Emily

Posted by & filed under The Inside Peak.

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Camilla---final

Name: Emily Lewis

Status: Year-round since 2008

Business: Owner of Ems Yums deserts/Dog Rescuer

The Road Less Traveled

One of greatest things about our beach here is that it seems to pull you into the water. The gradual sloping descent of the ocean floor creates numerous fun zones where the white water regenerates into smaller/mellow new waves. I believe this is one reason Nosara seems to appeal to a “slightly older” demographic interested in learning and experiencing surfing. Look and you will see this; healthy, tan, and active folks that ain’t kids anymore. Look closer and you will see a number of surfing senior citizens out there catching waves and surfing well. Nosara has one of the oldest and well established expatriate communities in Costa Rica. I married Emily 31 years ago in San Diego. Our life compass has taken us to many shores, all water places. In 2008, we sold everything we had, and moved from Florida to Nosara. I guess these days this may not seem such a big deal, but for two baby boomers in their mid fifties, uprooting from an American Life and moving to Costa Rica was definitely The Road Less Traveled…at least for us! Here is Ems story:

em-bake
school-cookies

“The Cake Lady” baking at home                                                          Spreading the love at local school fundraiser

 

Emily’s Story

“In 2004, long after my prime years of nursing had passed and “burn out” set in; we had an opportunity to run the “hotel on the point” (Hotel Playas de Nosara). Our daughter and a friend rented our house and cared for our two dogs and off we went! By June 2005 we knew that our parental responsibilities were not over and we returned to Florida to work and pay the bills. Peter worked for Surf Express, a travel company that arranged surfing trips to Costa Rica. This enabled us to explore the country extensively. Once we saw Nosara, well it sort changed everything for us, it was like finding Shangri-La, an earthly paradise! Finally, at the end of 2007, Peter flew to Nosara to meet with our builder and plan out our house design. Nine months later we arrived at the Miami airport with 3 dogs in kennels and 4 suitcases. We had sold all of our possessions and were starting over, “looking for the seventies” as Peter puts it. We’ve had many adventures and ‘misadventures’ in the six years we’ve lived here, all valuable learning experiences.”

Starting Ems Yums

“I have always loved baking for special occasions, etc. and have accumulated some great original recipes over the years. The owner of La Luna Restaurant (Angelina) asked me if I could come up with some “special desserts” for the restaurant.  My longtime favorite Carrot Cake and newly created Mocha Chocolate Chip Cake filled that niche well. Newly arriving Safari guests are treated to a ‘Welcome (carrot) Cake’ which is a nice touch. Currently my cakes are available at la Luna, Harbor Reef, and Robbie’s Guiones mini-market. I receive quite a few private birthday cake orders as well. I also bake muffins, cheesecake, cookies, fudge-nut brownies, and pumpkin pie. I think I give away more that I sell! It’s a labor of love for me; it’s worth it to see the smiles of happy customers.”
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Dog Rescuer/Animal Advocate
“When we moved here my goal was to be retired and do volunteer work with local stray animals. I was immediately drawn to the number of malnourished dogs in Nosara. I assembled a ‘road kit’ with food and medicines, and stopped wherever I saw an emaciated dog(s). Over time my profits from Ems Yums were used to buy bags of dog food which I donated to local families who couldn’t afford to feed their pets. Realizing the immediacy of slowing the population growth of these unwanted/neglected dogs, I became involved with Nosara Animal Care, and took as many strays as possible to be spayed and neutered. The most rewarding part is when I am able to find new homes for these animals. An offshoot of this work was the creation of ‘Dog Tales’, an educational outreach project involving local schools. The kids would write cute stories about their pets in both Spanish and English, and share them with their fellow students and friends, fostering awareness and pride in their care of pets and local animals.”

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   Dog Mobile                                                     My dog Blinky                   Hungry Beach Strays “Still Surfin” After all these Years

There is no feeling like catching a wave and riding it to the beach. I still go surfing occasionally; as much as my busy schedule allows. I admit to being a small wave whitewater surfer and just love being out in the ocean.

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Jaco Beach 1999                                                                                                                                                         Playa Guiones 2007

Family

“People are generally fascinated that we were able to uproot and move here. We seemed to have less “anchors” in the ground holding us back so we just went for it. We have great support from our family members and they visit here as much as possible.”
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A Changing Nosara

“Nosara life can only get better in the future. In our six years here, we have seen a proper full service gas station and national bank open, and the government is taking a more active interest in Nosara. Last year a major dike was constructed in the Nosara River to prevent flooding, and the recent visit here by the new president left us all with high hopes that our roads really will be paved. Nosara has more year-round residents and services than in past years, and the activist community here strives to keep things clean and green and limit development. The growing number of “healthy lifestyle” businesses here attracts good people and inspires everyone to seek ‘wellness.’ We came looking for “a more interesting life” and certainly found that here!”
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The vigilant Nosara Civic Association………………..keeps high rise development away

Inside Peak – Surfers Who Stayed: Robbie Vickers

Posted by & filed under The Inside Peak.

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SURFERS WHO STAYED

Name:Robbie Vickers

Status: Year-round since 2005

Business:Owner: Mini Super Guiones

“When Irish Eyes are Smiling”

It seems most folks are drawn to the melodic ‘Irish Lilt’. My friend Robbie Vickers has one; he was born and raised in Ireland. Ireland is a beautiful country with lots of open green spaces, and heaps of waves of all descriptions. One wonders how he came to call Nosara home. Robbie and his wife Nella own and operate the Guiones Mini Supermarket. If you’ve been in Guiones in the last couple of years it’s very likely you been in their store. It’s centrally located in the middle of “Main Street Guiones”, adjacent to Surfing Nosara and next to Robins Ice Cream. Last year they totally renovated the store and property, expanding the markets shelf space and building two very stylish upscale rental flats upstairs. Robbie and Nella have two beautiful daughters, Sophia (15) and Isabella (4) and are expecting a third girl, Camilla, in September. They are both widely known and loved in town.

Robbie’s story is original and inspiring, and we are lucky to have this lovely family here!

 

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  Nella, Isabella, Robbie (with Camilla in oven!)                                           Mom and Sophia

Robbie’s Story

“I was born and raised in Ireland. It was great as a kid growing up. I remember we used to get long beautiful summers with lots of rain the rest of the year. I used to travel to the west coast with my dad almost every weekend – he would fly fish the rivermouths for salmon and I would go surfing. If there were no waves I would fish with him. I left Ireland when I was 19 years old to attend my friend’s wedding in Montauk New York. I fell in love with the surfing and fishing scene there and decided to stay. One of my first jobs was working on a commercial fishing boat, which I did for two years. Fishing allowed me to save enough money to travel and surf in the winter months. I spent a lot of time in Puerto Rico back then. The waves were great but it just got too crowded for my liking. I began to focus on saving enough money to start my own business. My painting company Robbie Vickers Custom interiors employed 28 people at one time and we painted mansions on eastern long Island in a place know as The Hamptons. Being self-employed allowed me to take some cool surf trips. I spent two months in Indonesia and experienced the best waves I’ve ever surfed. But it was on an extended trip to Central America where I first saw Nosara.  I arrived at the beach and looked out upon perfect blue-green waves peeling off up and down the beach that did it for me.I wanted to be somewhere where the surf was more consistent and the water was warm and Nosara offers that. I returned to New York and realized that after twelve years it was time for a change. I got very lucky and sold both my house and business two days before the collapse of Bear Stearns financial empire. I moved to Costa Rica 2 months later and built my house in Nosara. I met Nella three years ago at the Nosara Fiesta and it was truly love at first sight”.

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Nella and Robbie – Stop in and say hi

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Luck of the Irish! Robbie likes the power, punch, and hollows of Playa Ostional and also surfs Guiones regularly. Here he exits the pit with full beard commitment! When not surfing or running he’s at the store taking care of business. The recent expansion of the market has enabled him and Nella to increase the product line with an emphasis on quality and diversity. Healthy/organic selections and varied ethnic items are available as well as fresh produce, fine wines and beers.

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With a major renovation/expansion last year, Mini Super Guiones is has grown with the town.

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Plus two Uber-Chic New Apartments!

Inside Peak – Surfers Who Stayed: Richard Jordan

Posted by & filed under The Inside Peak.

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If you have visited Nosara there’s a good chance you liked it so much you found yourself fantasizing about living here.

Wanderlust, escapism, dreamscaping – it’s a natural part of the travel experience. End of the road places always seem to have memorable distinct characters, expats and the like, who took the road less traveled and moved to paradise. The lure of living in a surfing paradise has drawn many such colorful folks to Nosara. Some are snowbirds escaping cold weather months in the north, others stick it out until the end of August, and still others come to call Nosara home year-round. In this post I begin a series of profiles on select surfers who stayed, and how they contribute to the Safari Surf experience.
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PARADISE AWAITS

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Richard Jordan

Name: Richard Jordan

Status: Year-round since 2001

Business: Heart of Guiones Wellness Center

Richard is the classic California expat, tall, tanned, and super fit. He comes from San Diego California, a classic surf town. Richard is a registered Holistic Health Practitioner and has been a bodywork and movement educator for 30 years. Richard discovered Nosara on a surf trip 15 years ago. He loved the town and waves here but it was the chance encounter with Nosara Yoga Institute founders Don and Amba Stapleton during a teacher training seminar that sealed the deal. Upon learning of Richard’s background and qualifications they enthusiastically offered him a job…..and he eagerly accepted. He embraced the jungle, ocean, and people here and decided to make Nosara his permanent home. With quality year round surf and a yoga teaching job in hand, he loaded his 1989 Ford diesel pick-up with surfboards, massage tables, Russian Kettlebells, and a Gyrotonic Transformer fitness machine, and left California behind, making the drive in nine days. In 2002 he opened Nosara Workout Beach Gym, focusing on general fitness training for his mainly surfer clientele and local residents. In 2003 he taught six Nosara women the art of massage, free of charge, and Tica Massage was born. Richard’s prime location across from Harmony Hotel on main street Guiones has become a well know landmark in the area, and Casa Tucan (Safari Surfs former home for 13 years) was just steps away. Richard’s first sign is iconic in Nosara, which I still remember today. Upon turning into the cul-de-sac servicing Casa Tucan and Richard’s facility you are immediately overwhelmed by the image of a huge blue hollow wave with Richard slotted in the sweet spot. “Is that here?” everyone would say, and Yes it was here, captured right out front by the legendary photographer Soul Arch Matt.

“DUDE – IS THAT HERE?”
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tica-massage-signThe convenience of having a workout studio and massage spa located right next door led to a business relationship with Safari Surf which still exists today. Safari guests could take fitness and yoga classes and get a massage right after surfing all day, it was ideal. As Nosara grew into The Surfing and Yoga capital of Costa Rica, Richard added new structures and fitness programs and changed the name to Heart of Guiones Wellness Center, which encompasses Tica Massage, Studio Guiones, and Pilates Nosara. “Being a Health Practitioner myself I’ve always had my finger on the pulse of the growing trend of wellness in Nosara, and I’ve made adjustments to accommodate this blossoming “industry”. Safari Surf looks forward to working with Richard and his excellent facility in the future!

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Pilates Nosara packs ‘em In!

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  – SAMPLE SCHEDULE –

(Your Safari Yoga-Pass good for all classes!)

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Richard exclusively rides big surfboards shaped by legendary California craftsman Tommy Lewis. He likes big, clean and hollow waves and is a standout in the lineup to this day.

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     Family Car Outing with Kids Mey, Travis, and Maggie-Dog