It’s hard to imagine that we’ve only been involved in this whole “LOGE” thing for the past two years. With so much going on, we often joke that we’ve entered some sort of time vortex, which we collectively refer to as “LOGE time” where a few weeks may as well be a few months and two years seems like five. It’s been an incredible journey so far, all of which we owe to the support of our amazing employees and community.
As we look ahead at bringing on new properties in Breckenridge, CO and Mt. Shasta, CA this summer, it’s important to also look back at our scrappy beginnings, which I recently did while sitting down to interview my good friend and ski buddy - our founder and CEO Johannes Ariens, to chat about the creation of our original location, LOGE Westport, and how our community has made this all possible.
“We’d been cold water surfing out in Westport for about 15 years, and saw a lot of people going out there and having a good time, but aching for a sense of community. Without that, they weren’t really engaged in the place or connected to the culture.” - JA
People would come out to Westport for the day to surf and head home, only ever seeing the parking lot of the beach. We loved the place and felt like it was our duty to create something more, a place where people could share stories, sit around the campfire, hang out with each other, and have a good time. So we started a Kickstarter. I remember Johann telling me that he had found an old beat up hotel, and that we were going to renovate it...create a place where all were welcome, and that had options for everyone in the form of Camping, a Hostel, and also nice Hotel rooms. Outdoor spaces to grill at and a stage for live music. Surf rentals. A wetsuit drying room. We would give to the Surfrider Foundation to support clean oceans and foster responsible outdoor use through giving. All the things we could dream up to create a spot that our friends would love to hang out at.
We made a video for Kickstarter, and after raising $30,000 were off and running. Of course, 30k wasn’t nearly enough to create our dream adventure outpost, so we got scrappy and reached out to the people of Kickstarter that had originally supported us to help out.
“I think some of the greatest stories were really how we did it. With the Kickstarter, we would tell people, “Hey, we’re working at the property this weekend, if anyone wants to come down and help us, we’ll have a BBQ and supply all the food,” and we’d kick this out to our whole supporter group, and by some miracle, they’d SHOW UP. They saw it as a way to get involved and give back to that community, and really support a different way of looking at lodging and how you build a community around that, with a passion for that shared sport (surfing), that everyone goes out there for. So for them, it was a way to get involved and support what we were up to.”
THE ORIGINAL KICKSTARTER VIDEO :)
“We weren’t hotel developers, we were surfers and skiers that had fortunately built some stuff in our past so at least we had an idea for it. Some of the coolest times were those weekends that the whole group of Kickstarter folks would come out and just TEAR into the cafe, which was a garden shed that was falling over before we got to it. We had to jack it up a foot and a half and put 16 footings underneath it to make it stable (laughter).”
“It was the idea that, “holy crap, you guys are in wayyy over your heads...are you sure? This place is really gnarly... we’re going to help you because we believe in what you’re working on.” - JA
And so, through the power of teamwork, LOGE Westport opened on Memorial Day of 2017. I remember the conversations: “If people are into this and start coming to hang out, maybe in three years we’ll open another LOGE.” But that Summer, to our surprise our little concept really took off. We hosted bands at our stage on Saturday nights, and people actually came! Better yet, they seemed genuinely interested in meeting and hanging out with each other. Our dream of a community was materializing in front of our eyes.
Soon, at the end of Summer or maybe early Fall, another call from Johann - “Guys, I found another property, it’s amazing. We’re going to Leavenworth.” And then a few months later “Guys, I just spent the past three days harassing the owner of an incredible forest hideout in Bend, it’s perfect, the mountain bike trails literally start at the property!” As they say, the rest is history (but I assure you that a tremendous amount of hard work has filled the space between then and now!)
“As we continue to scale and find more places, the baseline premise around that philosophy hasn’t changed a lot, we continue to find really cool people that support what we’re doing, and believe that the impacts we can have within the communities we enter, the giving to outdoor-centric foundations, and also in creating a sustainable business, make a lot of sense.” - JA
So here we are, two years into this crazy adventure, announcing the opening of LOGE Breckenridge and LOGE Mt. Shasta! It sure does feel surreal. Our dream now is to create a ring of properties that are welcoming and inclusive, ready to be the jumping off point for all your outdoor missions, with Apres vibes at the end of the day to hang with awesome folks and good music! We believe wholeheartedly in our mission - that getting people outdoors creates engaged users that will fight for the wild places, and back that up by donating 2% of revenue to non-profits that foster responsible use such as avalanche forecasting centers, trail building associations, and environmental organizations.
The new locations will have everything that you’ve come to know and love from LOGE Camps
Cafe & bar
On-site gear demo and rental centers
Live music with bands performing every Saturday night and outdoor movies every Friday
Covered outdoor hangout spaces, complete with Traeger Grills
Awesome renovated hotel rooms and Hostels
LOGE Mt. Shasta will have covered camping
Incredible locations with access to every type of outdoor recreation you can imagine
We’re beyond fired up about LOGE Breckenridge and LOGE Mt. Shasta, and can’t wait for you to join our journey and come stay with us! Renovation at both locations is well underway, and the grand opening for both will be opening THIS MEMORIAL DAY WEEKEND 5/25/19!
We’re now accepting Bookings (stays 5/24/19 on) for this Summer, so come hang out and see what we’re up to!
GROUPS + CORPORATE RETREATS:
When it comes to group retreats, take the road less traveled! LOGE is the perfect outpost for company retreats, employee incentive trips, photoshoots, product testing, gear demos, athlete retreats...we could keep going, but you get it. Our group space at LOGE Breckenridge, CO has meeting space for 48, and at LOGE Mt. Shasta we have meeting space for 25!