For more information, contact:
Alejandro Olea at 011-52 (624) 142-2771
Good, Long Ride
After 20 years in business, Los Cabos’ first surf
shop still shreds
SAN JOSE DEL CABO, Mexico (Fall 2006
) — The
1980s were a hostile decade for surfers in Baja California Sur.
Images of good-for-nothing slackers plagued the local Mexican community
and tarnished the sport from Todos Santos to the East Cape.
However, where many Los Cabos locals saw vagabonds and wasted
time, a quiet 14-year-old saw an industry waiting to be tapped.
So, as a teenager in 1986, Alejandro Olea set up shop doing ding
repairs on Costa Azul beach.
“From the time I was young, I knew the sport of surfing
would grow in Los Cabos,” Olea says. “And I knew I
wanted to be a part of it.”
He started small, to be sure, but at the
time, Olea set an auspicious trio of goals for himself. “Number one, I wanted to be a
great surfer. Number two, I wanted to make my own signature boards
and number three, I wanted to have the leading chain of shops in
Baja Sur,” Olea says, his voice trailing off and curling
into a shy smile.
Twenty-one years later, Olea is a stand-out surfer and Costa Azul
Surf Shop now has three locations (Costa Azul, Los Cerritos Beach
and Todos Santos), a staff of 10 top-level instructors, impeccably
maintained rental boards and equipment, a running stock of more
than 250 signature-design surfboards, client transportation to
the hottest breaks, a junior waverider team and a regular client
list that includes the likes of Adam Sandler and Jason Kidd.
“We’ve come a long way,” Olea nods his head
and smiles bashfully before his face turns serious and determination
flashes across his eyes. “But I feel like we still have a
long way to go before we’re where I want us to be.”
In the mean time, Olea continues to fill his shops with innovative
apparel that turns heads; and his line of signature surfboards,
which run the gamut from retro to modern, continues to evolve.
In fact, Olea and his team are exploring new materials, shapes,
styles and technology to create the most competitive boards available
However, on par with innovation is doing
business with heart. If nothing else, Olea’s early days are a constant reminder
of what can happen when kids are given a chance. As such, Costa
Azul Surf Shop sponsors the Team Riders, a group of 10 local Mexican
and American kids who are dedicated to surfing, clean beaches and
a wholesome surfing community. In turn, they receive specialized
instruction, Costa Azul apparel and assistance with their equipment.
What’s the first Team Rider sponsorship requirement?
“Be happy and lose the attitude,” Olea says. “Smile,
help people if they need help and share the waves.”
After all, sharing the waves is what it’s really all about
for Olea and the Costa Azul Surf Shop team. “If I can share
the surf experience with one person, I’ve had the best day
of my life,” Olea says, letting loose with a beaming smile
that lingers in his eyes even as the smile fades. “But if
I can share the surf experience with 100 people a day in our shop,
on the water or even on our website, that’s incredible.”
For more information, visit www.costa-azul.com.mx
or any of our three locations in San José del Cabo,
Los Cerritos Beach and downtown Todos Santos. To schedule an
interview with Alejandro Olea, contact firstname.lastname@example.org