Opinion: Kelly Slater Surf Resort in La Quinta, to be built at a cost of a quarter of a billion dollars, “an example of the most vulgar excesses of consumer-capitalism!”

For “inspirational people” and “great creators” on a “mission”.

(Editor’s note: Yesterday, it was revealed construction was about to start on The Kelly Slater Surf Resort at La Quinta, in the Coachella Valley, at a cost of a quarter of a billion dollars. It’s a real estate play, homes ranging from one mill to five surrounding an eighteen-million gallon Slater tank. “The ethos of this community revolves around the raw natural setting with a focus on sustainability,” according to a news release.)

Have you ever seen that movie Elysium?

Nice idea. Bad execution. A slice of mass-market Hollywood mediocrity.

Elysium is set in a future in which the rich live on a floating, verdant utopia, where citizens’ needs, wants and whims are served by all the amenities the more optimistic social speculators have predicted may one day exist, lots of glass, white curves, access to the latest innovations in healthcare etc.

Meanwhile back on earth, things have continued along their current trajectory. Everyone works their ass off in a dog-eat-dog hellscape to sustain a life of miserable poverty lest they slip into an existence of slightly more miserable absolute destitution.

It’s the kind of subtle, inciteful metaphor that would go over the heads of normal everyday schmoes who haven’t even won a single world title.

Kelly Slater’s Elysium won’t float, he hasn’t levelled up to those kind of powers yet, but it probably will eventually.

Some might call this kind of venture elitist or classist – a sanctuary for the approved of the species to live out the impending apocalypse. But it’s not, because it’s for surfing, and surfing’s not elitist, surfing’s cool, surfing’s spiritual, surfing’s nature, surfing’s pure, surfing isn’t golf; surfing’s immune to your criticism.

Some might call this kind of venture elitist or classist – a sanctuary for the approved of the species to live out the impending apocalypse. But it’s not, because it’s for surfing, and surfing’s not elitist, surfing’s cool, surfing’s spiritual, surfing’s nature, surfing’s pure, surfing isn’t golf; surfing’s immune to your criticism.

But not completely immune.

A certain amount of lip-service is still required. The selfishness of the endeavour must be veneered over with self-aggrandising bullshit rhetoric no one in their heart of hearts believes but serves the purpose of soothing the shame of living their lives not in the virtuous way they purport to do, but in accordance with the most vulgar excesses of consumer-capitalism.

Hence this resort (sorry “community”) isn’t designed for that “wrong” type of rich like, for example, golfers, but the “right” kind of rich, those who enrich our lives and show us how we might save our paltry and wasted existences “through lived and learned experiences”.

They’re “inspirational people” and “great creators” on a “mission”.

This isn’t play, this is a project. It’s not designed for self-indulgence, but self-betterment. It will “educate” through experiences that you can live and learn by paying for them with money.

So why not take advantage of the direct flights from Palm Springs International and witness for yourself our “focus on sustainability”?

Maybe after a long session of living and learning in the wave-pool take in a different kind of “set” at Coachella festival.

They’re our neighbours. Maybe Grimes is playing.

Hey, we know her husband. He’s alright.

Ignore the malcontents and cynics bleating on about wetlands and poverty and the one percent and taxes and embrace progress.

Embrace this haven, this Eden, this oasis we have bestowed unto this dry and arid desert.

We are the creators of the new world.

We are god.

Worship us.

Join us.

Escape with us.

Unless you’re poor, in which case carry my boards.

Breaking: Much anticipated G-Land Championship Tour event disappeared from World Surf League schedule without a whisper!

Reasons not given.

Of all the events slated for the World Surf League Championship Tour 2020/21 season, I was most excited for G-Land. That iconic East Javanese wave has been part of surfing’s lore like few others. From the Mike Boyum days and the wild n wooly surf camp he built, celebrated in Michael Oblowitz’s Sea of Darkness, to Chris Ward putting on a backside barrel clinic to multiple Kelly Slater moments.

There have been no CT contests at G-Land for 22 long years but, thrillingly, that was all set to change with the Quiksilver Pro G-Land. It had been slated to run June 4 – 14, 2020, before Coronavirus cancellation, but put back on after the just-weeks-ago restart.

Most excited but after a fresh perusal of the schedule on the World Surf League’s own website, as noticed by an eagle-eyed People™, the contest is absent.

No word from the World Surf League as to why, which gives us the duty to speculate.

Did the Pipeline fiasco, wherein World Surf League CEO Erik Logan and four busy bees contracted Covid thus suspending the event then dropped a Cone of Silence over the North Shore leaving surf media to sort out a Yago Dora connection thereby pushing a story of bungling and mismanagement cause other nations/municipalities to reconsider their involvement?

Is G-Land the first shoe to drop and should we expect Teahupoo to follow?

Will the World Surf League release a statement or hope that fans of professional surfing forgot?

Which do you prefer, the Cone of Silence or the Wall of Positive Noise?

Is Pip Toledo pleased that a heavier wave has been potentially dropped, eyeing that 5th place finish so he can win his first World Championship at 3 foot Trestles?

Give me your speculations.

That's a lotta water.

Kelly Slater Surf Resort, complete with 18-million gallon pool, set to start construction near Coachella at a staggering cost of one-quarter of a billion dollars: “The ethos of this community revolves around the raw natural setting with a focus on sustainability”

For the "wellness focussed crowd".

Who is the greater environmentalist, you think?

Greta Thumberg, the just-turned-eighteen-year-old from Sweden, who famously sailed from Plymouth to New York to attend a climate conference and who lives, it is believed, in an unlit paper cabin in the woods?

Or Kelly Slater, forty-nine, world surfing champion, whose latest gifts to the earth include the bulldozing of Queensland wetlands for a tank and houses and the-soon-to-break-ground $250 million pool and real estate play in the Californian desert?

The Kelly Slater Surf Resort, reports The Sacramento Bee, “will rise in the serene desert landscape of La Quinta, at the base of Coral Mountain and near the popular Coachella Valley Music Festival area. Developers hope to lure young adventure travelers and surfers to an area full of golf courses.”

“The ethos of this community revolves around the raw natural setting with a focus on sustainability,” according to a news release.

Another one reads, “The mission…is to attract and invest in inspirational people, engage great creators, build innovative facilities and amenities, as well as commit to educate and grow an ever-evolving sports and wellness community. Access to the amenities at Coral Mountain, including the KSWC wave system, will be exclusively available to homeowners, hotel patrons, members and their guests, and dining available to the public through reservations.”

The 400-acre setting had previously been approved for 750 homes and an eighteen-hole golf course.

The Kelly Slater Surf Resort will features a 150-room luxury hotel and 600 private joints that’ll cost between one and five mill. The golf course gets deleted, in goes the pool.

Garrett Simon, a partner in the real estate and development firm Meriweather Companies who’s doing the biz with Michael Shwab’s Big Sky Wave Developments, told the Sac Bee, “We expect the resort to be in high demand for the surf-loving, adventure sports and wellness-focused crowd in Southern California. We’re excited to create something radically different in an area that is dominated by golf courses. Coral Mountain will appeal to a range of people at all athletic levels who are looking to get outside of their comfort zones and define themselves through lived and learned experiences.”


Breaking: World’s most beautiful surfer bejewels himself in possible nod to Britany Spears; World Surf League CEO Erik Logan responds “oh boy” very cryptically!

Oops, he did it again.

Debate is what makes sport so entirely fun and this very much applies to surfing, even though it isn’t actually a “sport.” Who rode the biggest wave of the year? Scored the best barrel? Is Dane Reynold’s gouge better than Matt Archbold’s? Will John John or Gabriel emerge as this generation’s best?

There are only two things that each and every one of us agrees upon: The world’s greatest surfer is Kelly Slater and the world’s most beautiful surfer is Luke Davis.

The later has been spending much time scoring much in Morocco, Mexico and Indonesia but took time out to post the above selfie with a swipe left to a photo of vintage Britney Spears (below).

Well over 2000 people liked the photo series including World Surf League Erik Logan who also commented “oh boy” without any elucidating punctuation.

What could his “oh boy” possibly mean?

Like, an eye-roll “oh boy”?

An excited “oh boy”?

An exasperated fatherly “oh boy”?

Is the “oh boy” related to Britney Spears and not Luke Davis?

If we had punctuation, again, we could well solve the riddle but as is, near impossible.

Frustrating, per the norm.

Maybe the punctuation got lost in the patented Cone of Silence along with the Pipe Pro and Backdoor Shootout or maybe it got put behind a paywall.


Watch: Koa Rothman keeps his word, goes on whatever wave he wants at Pipeline with no hard feelings, bags a “Wave of the Winter” candidate!

Rare and wonderful.

A man who keeps his word is a rare and wonderful thing. An almost forgotten thing in this day and age of flimflam and wish-wash. Of bent spines and reeds in the wind. But you will certainly recall when, at the very beginning of this North Shore season, Koa Rothman, son of Eddie, declared via Instagram:

What’s happening you guys. I have an announcement. This year, this winter here in Hawaii, 2020, 2021, I will be going on whatever wave I want at pipeline. So. That being said, there is only a few people out there that I will not drop in. So. Yeah. No hard feelings. I’m not trying to be a dick. I’m just letting you know now that is what is going to be happening. So have a great day and watch out.

True to his word, young Rothman just bagged an entirely impressive Wave of the Winter candidate right in front of… who?

Who is that?

Clearly not one of the few but also without hard feelings. Derek Rielly regularly speaks to the joys of being dropped in on by professionals. How he can observe their technique from behind. A front row seat to greatness. Whoever was front seat at Koa’s performance is very lucky and also BeachGrit‘s number 1 candidate for Witness of the Winter.

Very cool.