razil is unique, not just for its perfect wind and lagoons, but also because of the set up the riders have there. Since 2019, the crew has been renting a big house in Taiba and staying for two months. Some riders stay the whole time, others come and go, but the vibes are always high. This season was no different and I was lucky to be able to spend two stints at the house. It’s probably the most professional pousada around.
The house came about in the 2019 season when Nina Font decided to search for a better place for the crew to stay in Taiba. According to Noè Font, Nina’s brother, “We realized that we were such a big crew that instead of renting six apartments we could rent a big house that’s nicer for everyone, making our own little pousada. Now it’s at a point where maybe we should just buy a house and turn it into a real pousada.” Back in 2019, Nina was only 17 years old, but was fully acting as the pousada manager, organizing everything and making sure everybody was paying their share. Nina speaks a pretty good ‘portunhol’ – a mix of Spanish and Portuguese – which definitely helps in dealing with the Brazilian landlord and house staff.
This season, Noè was the acting manager. According to him, managing a house full of pro kiteboarders is basically just like managing a pousada. Not that any of us has ever tried to manage a pousada. But in this case you don’t get anything out of it other than a good time with your friends. The vibes are so good that the truth is we all wish we could do this everywhere else in the world. Unfortunately we can’t afford it. Renting a place like this in Hood River for example would cost a lot more than our kiting salaries can afford. This particular house has enough rooms for some of the crew to stay the entire season and other friends came and stayed for a week or two. Each group that came in brought a different vibe. For example we were doing barbecues nonstop when Rami was here. But once he left the rest of us didn’t even know how to turn on the grill. This year there were a few house rookies like Lauren Holman, Abby Vandenberg and Guy Bridge. But it also had some well-known kiteboarding legends like the now world champion Coccoluto and Ewan Jaspan.
My days at the pousada basically consisted of waking up, having breakfast with the crew, figuring out a plan for the day – which more often than not meant two sessions at the lagoon with a lunch break in the middle for the classic trip to the Açaí spot – and making sure I beat them all at ping pong whenever we had downtime. The morning session usually had stronger wind and the sunset session was the big kite weather that the crew loves. This season we got really lucky – the lagoon was huge. If you have never been to this area of Brazil, the lagoons shape up differently every season depending on the sand berm and the amount of rain during the rainy season. Besides the big freshwater lagoon, we also had a saltwater lagoon that stayed filled up the whole time we were there, thanks to the full moon coinciding with pretty big swells. It was knee to waist deep, but that was enough for the freestyle crew to have a little corner mostly to themselves. All in all it was an awesome season and I can’t wait to see what house we end up in next time.