Stab Magazine | High Life! Two of surfing's most premium travel offerings
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High Life! Two of surfing’s most premium travel offerings

Money can’t buy happiness, but I’d rather be weeping into Egyptian cotton than polyester! Words by Ali Klinkenberg | Photography supplied by the Four Seasons Explorer Spending outside your means is many things; reckless, foolish, short-sighted, and, completely liberating! If you’ve got the ability to spend without guilt, then never look back. Cherish your talent (and it […]

news // Mar 8, 2016
Words by stab
Reading Time: 6 minutes

Money can’t buy happiness, but I’d rather be weeping into Egyptian cotton than polyester!

Words by Ali Klinkenberg | Photography supplied by the Four Seasons Explorer

Spending outside your means is many things; reckless, foolish, short-sighted, and, completely liberating! If you’ve got the ability to spend without guilt, then never look back. Cherish your talent (and it truly is a talent!), and splurge hard, in short bursts, infrequently, and don’t regret. There’s nothing more unattractive than a member of either sex complaining about money. Spend $5000 in three days. For those three days you’re Gatsby, you’re Cleopatra, you are… God. Face the sun and let it shine down upon you! Embrace the kind banking institution, they trust you. Credit was invented for this!

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The Maldives

Indonesia’s a dirty, overpopulated place. But, it’s a necessary destination for many surfers due to proximity, finance and time restrictions, and need for quality waves. But, if you could – and for now let’s assume that you can – wouldn’t you choose something more? There’s a place called the Maldives, which you’ve probably heard of. The waves are a little less serious than Indonesia, a little less crowded, and, infinitely more pleasurable. That’s what we’re concerned with here; absolute pleasure.

If you’re journeying to the Maldives, there’s a boat called the Four Seasons Explorer. As the names suggests, it’s a Four Seasons hotel, on the water. The advantage of boat trips is that you’re mobile, you can change destination depending on tides, winds and swells, thus maximising your chance of attaining optimal conditions. The downside to boat trips is that you’re housed in cramped quarters void of the luxuries of land. It’s not partner-friendly, and, in all honesty, you’re likely to be sharing a double bunked room with a group of uncouth men. Especially if you’re travelling solo and jump in a vacant slot on an otherwise full boat.

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The Four Seasons is the answer to all of these hinderances to bliss. Retiring to your suite after a day of surfing to shower, shave, and prepare for cocktail hour, is the definition of luxury. On the Four Seasons there’s no bunks, there’s only suites. Your meals aren’t prepared by the same guy who’s been scrubbing the decks all day. They’re prepared by trained chefs whose job it is to challenge and entertain your palette. You’ll even get to dine with the Captain. The vessel itself is a 39m catamaran and hosts up to 22 guests. It has two bars and even boasts a library for the literary among you. Whether you’re enjoying a well prepared meal or a well mixed drink, it’d be hard to argue that this is the future of surf travel.

It’ll cost you $1,600 US per night, but, you’ll also have a seaplane at your disposal. Flying from atoll to atoll searching for the most favourable surf conditions is truly a once-a-lifer. And, the surf that your likely to find is of the flat reefed, playful variety. There’s barrels, but without fear, and without the macho feels of Indonesia. If you’re into surfing as an indulgence of pure pleasure, then book your stay on the Four Seasons at Tropicsurf.net between the months of April and October. It’ll be something that you’ll never, ever regret.

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1. Garrett Leight — Mark McNairy #3 $455

GL’s one of few fledgling sunglasses brands that’s been able to break into a market that’s an old man’s game. The reason being that his product is divine. A pair of the Mark McNairy’s in orange tortoise shell are the perfect frame for a boating vacation. Light, fun, relaxing. You’re on vacation, after all.

2. Quiksilver — Mens Turbo Dog 18” B-Short $80

It’s quite the feat that Quiksilver can produce a product so premium that they can be paired with Sperry Topsiders for a game of shuffleboard. But the pristine cut, and just the right amount of fade makes them feel like they’ve been your trusty companions on a multitude of previous voyages. Instant favourites are hard to come by. Cherish them and don’t let go!

3. Sperry — Authentic 2-eye boat shoe $95

Sperry Topsiders have been around since 1935, and nautical footwear doesn’t get any more iconic. A favourite of toffs and seafarers alike, they’re also one of the most versatile shoes that you could hope to find. Shorts, trunks, chinos, denim, all are complemented perfectly by a pair of brown leather topsiders.

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Rapa Nui, Chile

Rapa Nui, or Easter Island as it’s otherwise known, lies off the coast of Chile and is one of the most isolated islands in the world – the nearest inhabited land being over 2,000 kms away. What more could you want from a ‘getaway.’ On the island lies a hotel called the Explora, and it’s one of the chicest eco resorts in the Southern Hemisphere. There’s only 30 rooms, giving the resort that exclusive feel that’s one of the true delights of hoteling. The decor contains an abundance of locally sourced wood to give the hotel that Mother Earth, Frank Kappe (Google!) feel. A stay at the Explora will set you back a cool $7500 US per week. But can you really put a price on frontier pleasure?

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Obviously, you haven’t come to Easter Island for the hiking or the flora and fauna, although both of these would be worthy reasons given the island’s extreme beauty, and that’s fine because there’s surf. Real surf. Surf that will challenge even the most experienced of watermen. Pack a myriad of lengthy volumed crafts, and get ready for heavy water. After a morning of riding raw open ocean swells, hold downs and crystal visions included, sitting around the lodge fire thumbing through something suitably rugged and mountain man-esque like Hemingway’s For Whom the Bell Tolls, is something that’s riddled with appeal. Oh, and did we mention the wine?

Chilean wine is all about the sauvignons and the merlots. They produce a decent chardonnay too, but reds are the go-to after a day in the cool Easter Island surf. Many of the wines are made in a distinctly French style, and some of the Cab Savs especially, have gone to France and stood their own against the most established of Chateaus in the annual wine festivals. The abundance of quality wine is but another feather in the hat of what promises to be a windswept and interesting holiday. Testing waves, breathtaking scenery, quality wine and a meticulously designed eco resort. Try returning from a holiday like that without feeling very much alive.

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1. Redwing — Roughneck $270

There’s a reason that brands like redwing live forever. It’s because their product is bulletproof, and it looks amazing. A pair of Redwings isn’t a purchase, it’s an investment. The beauty of longevity is that with every passing year, with every shared experience, your love for your boots grows stronger. Redwings are for life, not just for Christmas.

2. Whillas & Gunn — Nularbor rucksack $190

There’s a real skill to creating pieces that feel like they’ve got a story. This is the backpack of a man with an abundance of stories to tell. It’s got pockets galore for tinned food, knives, and other rugged, manly things. Combined with your Driza-Bone, Redwings and a newly sprouted beard, you’ll look like a man that been to the North Pole and back (even if it’s the first time you’ve left the office all year). Lesson: never let the truth get in the way of a good story!

3. Globe — Drizabone II jacket $300

The original Driza-Bone was created by British sailor Emilius Le Roy who set about making the ultimate wet weather jacket from recycled ships sails. The Globe collab is one of the finest to wash up on our shores in a long while. It’s a rare occurrence that a garment’s as handsome as it is practical, but this sure ticks both. You couldn’t ask for a better companion for a hike on Rapa Nui.

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