Shane Dorian Costa Rican retreat, $48,000
Come join Shane Dorian on a four-day retreat that includes three days of personal instruction from the big-wave icon and former world number four.

Surfing icon Shane Dorian offers epic $48,000 four-day surf camp on Costa Rica’s magical Nicoya Peninsula!

“Personal instruction from world-champion surfer and head coach of the U.S. Olympic surf team, Shane Dorian.”

Hawaiian-born Shane Dorian, the second-best big-wave surfer in the world if we’re to accept, as we should, the notion that Kai Lenny is untouchable, is best remembered for his debut on BeachGrit in 2014 where he instructed readers on how to catch a twenty-foot wave and discussed what it’s like to have an infant deer die in your arms.

Now, the daddy to teen heartthrob Jackson Dorian and former world number four is offering surfers “four days of wellness” at the wildly luxurious Casa Chameleon resort in Costa Rica.

For $48,000, or $12,000 per day, although the package only includes three days of surf lessons, you’ll receive “personal instruction from world-champion surfer and head coach of the US Olympic surf team”, you’ll “learn the lessons of longevity in the Blue Zone”, some spa treatments are included and if surfing under Shane Dorian’s tutelage starts to get old other activities include jungle zip lines, hikes and horseback riding on the beach. 

The spiel is compelling, although what world title Doz won is unclear.

If you’re a surfer of any caliber, you know Shane Dorian. The Hawaii-based world champion and head coach of the 2024 U.S. Olympic surf team is one of the world’s best big-wave riders—that’s a swell reaching 20 feet high or greater. For four nights and three days, he’ll be your personal instructor, teaching you his techniques via hands-on lessons in the waters off the coast of Costa Rica’s Nicoya Peninsula.  

This region is one of the world’s Blue Zones, renowned for the longevity of its locals thanks to their active, healthy lifestyles; in Costa Rica, it’s as much about mind as body, keeping positive and relaxed in a permanent state of pura vida.  That’s all part of the experience at the Casa Chameleon at Las Catalinas resort, a 21-villa property that will be your base for this adventure; the modern rooms, each at least 720 square feet in size, all have their own private infinity-edge plunge pool. You can unwind there in between surf sessions or opt to explore on land: The resort has a 2,250-foot zip line through the jungle, as well as a herd of horses to go riding on the beach. Even better, consider a hike through the rainforests of the nearby Tenorio volcano via its three hanging bridges.  

When you need a break from such exertions, there’s an on-site spa, or you can practice elasticity yoga and meditation alfresco amid the tropical breeze. 

Airfares and transport not included.

Book here! Mention BeachGrit for discount. 


Kanye West sells "disembowelled" Tadao Ando Malibu house.

Kanye West to take $18 million hit after failed renovation “disembowels” iconic Tadao Ando Malibu house!

“Kanye West bought an architectural treasure – then gave it a violent remix.”

The Chicago-born chanteur and fiddler of studio knobs, Kanye West, latterly known as Ye, is set to piss away roughly twenty mill after his troubled three-year renovation of an iconic Tadao Ando house in Malibu was stopped by city authorities and Ye figured maybe easier just to sell the joint.

Ye, who is forty-seven, was once married to the billionairess Kim Kardashian but now prefers the company of Melbourne architect Bianca Censori, famous for crotch-revving curves that surpass even his ex-wife.

The Tadao Ando Malibu House, which he bought for fifty-seven mill in 2021, became, for a time at least, an experiment where Ye indulged his fascination for architecture alongside his new gal’s university-honed skills.

In a just published story in the New Yorker, Ian Parker tells the compelling saga of Ye buying the joint from financier Richard Sachs, who originally wanted seventy-five mill for the house – and employing a cowboy tradesman called Tony Saxon to sleep in the place while simultaneously destroying it, eventually re-listing it for sale at $39 mill.

 

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According to Saxon, Ye told him, “I’ve heard a lot about you. You’re like a hurricane! I like you. I like your style.” As they walked through the stripped rooms, Ye kept asking, “You got this out? You did this?”

He began to describe his plans for the house. Saxon asked, “Are you telling me this hypothetically, or do you want me to do it?” Ye wanted him to do it. As Saxon saw it, “He was so sick of everyone around him.” Saxon demurred; he didn’t have a company or a license. He was just a dude with a minivan and some stamina. “But he goes, ‘You can do it! Don’t give me that. You can do this! Don’t say no!’ ” Recalling this, Saxon laughed. “Some inspiring shit!”

Saxon warmed to Ye, and not just because of the flattery. “I’m not in any way familiar with his music,” he told me. “But I kind of got him. We are very similar in a lot of ways.” Saxon had been given his own bipolar diagnosis and detected in Ye some similar behaviors. Later, after they got to know each other a little, Saxon brought this up. “I’m, like, ‘Are you on medication for it? I just started taking it a couple of months ago, and it fucking helped me.’ ”

Ye suggested that Saxon wear black and told him to be discreet: there were no permits for work on the house. Saxon’s storytelling, like Ye’s, can digress, and his experience on Malibu Road, which lasted about six weeks, is now the subject of his lawsuit, which centers on alleged underpayment and a back injury. But the outline of events is clear, and many of the details are confirmed by photographs and messages archived on Saxon’s phone. Within a few days of that first meeting, Saxon had become something much closer to a project leader than to a day laborer.

He helped assemble a small crew by enlisting people he knew and a few outside contractors who’d been working at the house when he showed up. Starting on the day he met Ye, Saxon didn’t go home for several weeks. He found a mattress at the house; a friend later brought him some clothing in a trash bag, and his guitar. Saxon began taking the house apart.
Saxon’s videos include one in which he’s helping topple one of the chimneys. Another shows someone swinging a hammer at a bathroom’s black-and-white marble walls. A third demonstrates how a handsome glass balustrade, the kind you’re almost bound to find in a modern museum, shatters into windshield fragments when you tap its corner with a sledgehammer. In a fourth, Saxon and another man are demolishing the hot tub with two jackhammers. 

Check out the house before. 

And after.

Kanye West sells Tadao Ando house Malibu.
What’s left of the iconic Tadao Ando house after Ye’s three-year reno.

24844 Malibu Road is currently listed with the Netflix-famous Oppenheim group in Malibu.

Click here to buy. 


Bethany Hamilton (pictured) in Sharkbanz anklet.
Bethany Hamilton (pictured) in Sharkbanz anklet.

Barstool Sports continues Bethany Hamilton pile on, declaring: “If you buy shark repellent from one-armed surfer, you deserve to be bitten”

"Fingers crossed Bethany Hamilton doesn't lose any more limbs while wearing your ankle magnet."

Iconic surfer Bethany Hamilton came under heavy fire, days ago, for promoting shark repellent bracelet system Sharkbanz following a horrific attack in Florida that left a teenage girl without a leg or hand. What should have been an innocuous post reading “Sharkbanz are designed to help you overcome your fear of sharks 🦈 and to minimize the risk!” was, instead, delivered to the mob who readied the rail that would carry the mother of four, and shark attack survivor herself, out of town.

Commenters denounced her for “capitalizing on fear. Others slammed her for “those scam bracelets that supposedly give some good vibes in your life.” An underwater photographer sneered that Sharkbanz are “great for a false sense of security,” adding that an underwater photographer friend hand fed sharks while wearing one.

Now, snarky sport network Barstool Sports has weighed in, declaring, “If You Purchase A “Shark Repellent” Band From One-Armed Surfer Bethany Hamilton, You Kind of Deserve To Be Bitten By A Shark.

The piece begins with an introduction to Hamilton’s story before pivoting to Sharkbanz, ridiculing both, and then ending:

But again.. if you’re a surfer who bought this product. If you saw that of all people Bethany Hamilton had one, and you thought to yourself, “Well if she says it works I’m sure it’s safe!”… you can’t be surprised when you’re instantly flanked by a family of Great Whites.

The people at Sharkbanz must wake up laughing. They’re selling $128 magnets. When they founded Sharkbanz back in 2014 they probably didn’t expect it to last more than 6 months. But then people just kept buying their fucking magnets.

“And then, we hired Bethany Fucking Hamilton as are spokesperson. The literal face of being attacked by a shark. And they’re STILL buying them!”

Fingers crossed Bethany Hamilton doesn’t lose any more limbs while wearing your ankle magnet. I’m not sure if your business would be able to survive that one.

Rude.

No?


Darren Criss (left) and his onscreen love interest ponder Brother (insert).
Darren Criss (left) and his onscreen love interest ponder Brother (insert).

Former television star comes under fire for naming son after famous professional surfer

"You know he's never going to win a World Surf League Championship Tour event now, don't you?"

There was once a musical comedy on Fox television called Glee. In it, actors, playing high school students, used the songs of Journey and Bonnie Tyler to help them through their struggles with their sexuality. There were many stars including Lea Michele, Mark Salling and Darren Criss who brought Blaine Anderson to life. First appearing in season two, Criss performed “Teenage Dream” by Katy Perry and was so popular that show creators paired him with the much-loved bullied gay character Kurt.

The two were later married.

Offscreen, the classically handsome 37-year-old is married to a woman named Mia, the two just welcoming their second child, a son.

And this is where our trouble begins. Criss and wife introduced the boy on Instagram, as couples do, declaring that he had named his son after famous professional surfer Kolohe Andino.

“M & D (Mia and Darren) just delivered their follow-up single. Brother László Criss. 6/3/24. And yes his first name is Brother 💛.”

Ridicule was swift.

“Darren… I adore you… But you just doomed your kid to mockery for the rest of his life,” one fan penned.

“If you need to say ‘yes his name really is…’ chances are you picked a bad name. The future girlfriend/boyfriend is gonna be calling him Brother,” another added.

Twisting the knife, a third declared, “You know he’s never going to win a World Surf League Championship Tour event now, don’t you?”

Criss, thus far, has maintained his silence but I think Brother is as fine a name as any and should be considered by our own Surf ads as he embarks upon his own journey.

Don’t stop believin’.


Surf fight
Kung fu fights, a regular occurrence on beaches during the nineteen-eighties as alpha males fought over the ownership of waves.

How a beautiful form of surfing localism emerged from its dark roots of violence, misogyny and child abuse

Anybody still pushing toxic localism needs to get their head checked. It's gone the way of landlines and affordable housing.

It’s the year 2000. A camping ground near a quiet back beach on the mid north coast of NSW, Australia. Sometime around midnight. A 15 year old surfads huddles silently in a cheap two-man tent with four or five other grommets, while anarchy descends outside.

“WHAT THE FUCK DID YOU JUST CALL ME, CUNT?: comes the scream from some tortured, torched demon, only metres away.

“I’LL FUCKEN RIP YA HEAD OFF.”

“FUCKEN DO IT THEN, CUNT,” is the twisted response.

We’re on a boardriders club weekend trip. For a few of us it’s the first time we’ve been away without our parents. Our first-ever real surf mission.

Excitement levels are high. After somehow getting the ok from my parents, a towel and a wetty were thrown into an old school bag along with a change of shirt and my favourite SMP hoody. A new wax job on the 5’7″ and I was set to go. Dropped at the pick-up spot five Saturday morning with a crew of about 30 of the core local crew, and our meagre junior contingent. The only groms in the club.

It started out well. We arrived mid-morning Saturday on the tail end of an east coast low to find a premium A-frame beachie doing its thing with not another soul around. Memorable sessions were had.

After a day of pumping surf the older crew had hit the cans. Hard. It was all laughter and good times to begin with. But when the grommy contingent went to bed around nine, things quickly devolved.

It wasn’t like we’d gone away with a group of strangers. We had all spent time with all the older heads in the water. At comps. On the beach.

But it was their alter-egos out that night. The crazy ones. Characters we had only heard about in whispers and hushed tones were now roaming around the campsite, juiced up and seemingly ready to kill.

What the fuck was going on? Were they gonna come for us next?

In the tent, one curious grom switches a torch on to try and get a look at what’s going on out there. We quickly pull him back in. It’s like we’re stuck in Jurassic Park.

Someone’s laughing now. Or are they crying? There’s an eerie quiet. More shouting. Unintelligible words.

A blood-curling scream. Like a pig being gutted. Broken bottles. The thud of heavy feet running on the ground. Somebody being crash tackled.

Then right out the front of our tent.

“COME HERE YA FUCKEN CUNT I’LL KILL YA.”

We cower in the dark, waiting for one of them to tear the zipper open. To rip us apart like a velociraptor or the Yowie we’d heard so many stories about on the drive up. An evil spirit that carries wayward grommies off into the sand dunes, never to be seen again.

I switch off the torch, sit dead still. I pull my hoody up over my face and try to disappear completely.

But the attack never eventuates. The evil spirits spare us. They wouldn’t touch the grommies. At least we hoped they wouldn’t.

Finally there’s an unbroken silence. Safety in the quiet.

“Fucken hell,” one of the other groms whispers from the dark. “This is sick.”

****************

It’s been said many times that localism is a disease. If it was still 2000, and I was still that grommy cowering in the tent, I’d agree. Fuck, even 2010 was pretty backwards.The surfing community in general has always systemic issues with violence, misogyny, substance abuse etc etc. Many of them are still there today.

I cut my teeth surfing in a working class town. Most of us kids were from middle to low socio-economic status, like the generations before us. You either grew up in the housing commission flats on the beach or caught the bus in from out west. Lots of single parent families. Absent role models. A reputation for hard hitters and enforcers who weren’t scared to throw down at the slightest perceived transgression. And that was before they hit the piss.

We looked up to the best and the strongest and the scariest.

But that’s all changed. Rock up at my local – or any regulation beachie outside the skitzo Superbank/Pass/Bondi zone – and you’ll find a completely different scene.

Crowds are still worse than they ever were. Tempers still flare. But fist fights are a thing of the pansubsst. There’s still a few heated words and splashes on busy days, sure. But I could count on one manicured hand the amount of fights I’ve seen in the surf in the last ten years. They’re now the last resort, instead of the first. And more often than not it’s between local crew as opposed to being inflicted on outsiders.

Localism is moving with the times. It’s less a rigid set of teachings than an ideology. Creating a community through surfing.

The way it was taught back in the day was, with the benefit of hindsight, wrong. Especially by today’s standards. But the fundamentals are still there. Respect. Support. Community. The ideology is sound.

It’s just the tactics that have changed.

I’m still a part of that same boardrider’s club. It’s developed from being an excuse for a monthly piss up to an active and engaged member of the local community. It supports junior development with specialised training. The women’s division is going from strength to strength and was an early adopter for awarding equal prize money.

It donates to local charities and progressive causes. Builds what the corporates would call social licence to operate. It also enforces good behaviour amongst its members. It’s a family club first and foremost. You fuck up at the beach or out on the piss in front of the rest of the community and you’ll be sanctioned for it.

It’s stayed in touch with its roots. A lot of the crew who were around back in the wild old days are still there now. But they’ve mellowed with time. And the culture of the younger crew is different.

This is par for the course at most urban and regional beaches.

But one thing that hasn’t changed is line up meritocracy. Talent plus time in the water at certain spots still dictates the hierarchy, especially at some of the more guarded spots.

It’s not just where to sit, where to jump off. There’s line up etiquette. Who you can jostle with. Who you should avoid. The sort of things you take with you when you visit other breaks.

The ocean belongs to everyone, sure. But like with any pursuit in life there’s rules and law you’ve gotta abide by. Dues to pay. Time. Repetition. Commitment. Good will. Selflessness. Practise those and you will be rewarded.

There’s always going to be arseholes around. But anybody still pushing that ‘80s brand of toxic localism needs to get their head checked. It’s gone the way of landlines and affordable housing.

But that’s just like, my opinion, man.

How’s the localism scene play out in your neck of the woods? Still as potent as ever?

Or perhaps it’s now only channelled into the online space? Angry, anonymous, anachronous voices flailing against the progressive tides of time?