Kalon Surf School, on the unspoiled Osa Peninsula in Costa Rica is THE destination for the discerning surfer. Its boutique, Bali-style mansion has six luxury suites; with panoramic views of either the ocean or the jungle (depending which way they face), sumptuous linens and decent wifi. Guests can devour wagyu beef or fresh tuna after a day on the waves.
Costa Rica with Andres Martinez Delgado
But surfers don’t simply come for the decadence. They come to improve their game. Whether a rookie (‘Boardrider’) level or more advanced (‘Cruiser’ thru ‘Charger’); a week in the warm, shark free waves builds confidence and ability.
When Forbes tipped Kalon as a great alternative to a golfing trip, it became a place for corporate team building. It has also won the hearts of wanderlust couples, looking for an activity honeymoon.
Rogue Magazine chatted to Andres Martinez Delgado, Head Surf Coach at Kalon, about its appeal.
How did you get into surfing?
All my life I had skated, when I moved to San José to work in Kalon I started doing photography work and in my free time I was going to surf with friends and so I was learning. Once I learned to surf, the opportunity to be an instructor opened up and that’s when I started learning the theory. My skating background helped tremendously, and with applying theory on surfing – I made very quick progress.
Can you describe the Kalon method of teaching?
The method we use in Kalon is easy to learn and fun. We teach one-on-one. We utilise many learning tools such as pool sessions, video analysis and practice of technique outside the water. We also accompany the lessons with Pilates and massage.
What are your top 3 tips for a complete beginner who has never surfed before?
Have a good time
What about an intermediate or advanced level surfer?
Most intermediate levels benefit from properly using the turns: carving and trimming turns, so we focus on helping them understand the techniques and when to apply them, whilst mastering white water and then moving to green.
Tell us about the beaches…
The biggest waves have been in Dominical, which is my backyard. They can be between 8 to 12 feet. When I manage to catch a good wave it’s like time stops; it’s a unique feeling, it’s a disconnection of thoughts and just enjoying the moment.
Dominical’s rocky sister, Dominicalito is the spot for intermediate surfers looking for smaller waves and beach lovers looking for a romantic sunset.It is a beautiful beach, just over 1 km long, with grey sands and calm blue waters surrounded by lush vegetation – it is unspoiled and there are no shops or bars.
Dominicalito is, unlike its neighboring beaches, is a curvaceous type, so it has gentle surf and no rip tides. As well as practicing surfing, it is ideal for swimming, diving, SUP paddling, boat trips and fishing.
What’s your choice of board?
I prefer a shortboard like the Firewire Banana 6.2 with a set of Truster fins.
A 7-night Luxury Kalon Surf package includes; 7 nights’ accommodation; return airport transfers; all meals, snacks and drinks including wine and beer; 5 days of surf coaching (3-5 hours a day); video feedback sessions; 7-day surfboard hire; Kalon rash vest; Pilates for surfing sessions, 1 hour massage.
Prices start from $2490 per person (based on sharing a twin room) Solo travel, family and exclusive use prices on request.