TRAVELER SURF + SWIM CLUB
An interview with Julie Cox by Glenn Sakamoto
Julie Cox is the founder/owner of Traveler Surf and Swim Club located in Northern California in the Linda Mar section of Pacifica. When we started Liquid Salt eight years ago, Julie was one of our first interviews and we have followed her journey ever since. From her involvement with the California Surf Museum in Oceanside to the Mollusk Surf Shop where she was store manager, we were excited to learn of her most recent venture, Traveler Surf and Swim Club. We caught up with her to learn more.
What inspired you to create Traveler Surf and Swim Club?
I was inspired to create the Traveler Surf & Swim Club because I was freezing surfing here in Northern California! I thought it would be great to have hot showers, surfboard storage at the beach along with a warm and inviting place to hang out after surfing. With that vision in mind, I initially opened the retail store “Traveler” and a few months later, opened the “Surf & Swim Club”
What is like surfing in Northern California versus Southern California?
The water is cold, powerful, it’s rocky and it’s wild. Surfers up here are very dedicated. Linda Mar in Pacifica, is one of the most consistent breaks in the Bay Area, so for me it is my go-to-spot (along with hundreds of others, too). The store and the Surf & Swim Club is located at the south end of the beach – just a stone’s throw from the water.
Who is your customer?
Customers for the shop have been a range of outdoorsy locals, visitors, and Bay Area folks. For the Surf & Swim Club, members range from business owners, creatives, artists and folks stopping in for the day. Some days it’s mellow and you can be alone in the garden relaxing in the sun with a tea after surfing. And on other days, there are a handfuls of surfers of different abilities and levels all having beers talking story.
Sounds amazing. What do you offer in terms of facilities (showers, lockers, etc.)
The Club amenities include hot outdoor showers, long-term surfboard storage, changing rooms, restrooms, clothing/day use lockers to stash your belongings while you surf, hot coffee and tea, heated outdoor furniture and sunny garden to hang out afterward. Monthly members also receive 10% off in-store, so if they need to pick up a leash or gift they really have everything right there.
Why is it important to create a community around surfing and the ocean?
I feel it is important because this community becomes your second family. Surfing has given me so many incredible friendships and such a wonderful network, I never want that connecting to stop. Hanging out at the beach in Malibu, Leo Carrillo, in Encinitas, Oceanside, Santa Cruz and during all the contests I used to do internationally – really enriched my life. In this day and age of social media and our crazy political climate, people need to keep connecting and building strong communities.
What’s next for Julie Cox and Traveler Surf and Swim Club?
In the short term, we have a ton of amazing events coming up along with our first summer season! Long term, build the business, keep surfing, and keep having fun.
To learn more about Traveler Surf and Swim Club, check out their website here or follow them on Instagram.