As we mentioned in our Sustainability Goals for 2021 post, our local staff are the x-factor of Safari Surf School. As the first school to open up shop in Nosara, back in 1999, Safari Surf has been a trendsetter for similar businesses in Costa Rica. In over 20 years in business in Costa Rica, we’ve learned that no one quite compares to the local community. Our staff has a deep passion for surfing, the ocean, and sharing Costa Rican culture and Pura Vida hospitality with our guests. Since we were the first surf school to open in Nosara, some of our staff members have been with us for decades. Others have come on board a bit later, but either way, our staff is our family. In this week’s Safari Surf Staff Highlight, we introduce one of our surf coaches who has been with us for years, Pio. Pio and I caught up after his morning lesson.
Hey Pio, you’ve been with Safari Surf for a while now. When did you start?
“I started working as a surf instructor with Safari back in 1999, so I’ve been with Safari since the very beginning.”
How long have you been surfing?
“I grew up here in Nosara, so I started surfing about 29 years ago.”
What kind of boards do you like to ride, and what kind of waves are your favorite?
“I order most of my boards from Cartoon Shapes, a local shaper out of Jaco. My absolute favorite boards, though, are Al Merrick Channel Islands Surfboards. Generally, I like to surf here when it’s from 4 to 6 feet. Playa Guillones is best from 4-6 on a rising tide.”
What’s your favorite place to eat in Guiones or Nosara?
“My favorite restaurant is Rancho Tico in Nosara. They serve all typical Costa Rican food.”
What do you love about teaching guests to surf?
“I enjoy seeing students catch the first green wave. After that, they always want to continue surfing, and I think it really changes their lives. People completely change their lifestyles to make surfing part of their lives. I love to watch people become passionate about surfing and then passionate about the ocean.”