the swami family
We work with a trusted network of like-minded individuals and organisations ranging from leading international surfboard and hardware manufacturers to the best local suppliers of tea and coffee. Having shared waves, beers, laughs and good times over the years, we view them not only as collaborators but also part of our extended family and an integral component of the Salty Swamis lifestyle.
Pak Ross is a common feature during our East coast seasons, hopping over from Canguu armed with his psycho fishes, tropical keels and blissed-out logs. The sessions are every surfer's dream - switching boards on runarounds across all of Arugam Bay’s breaks - taking off on twin fins out the back or catching dreamy runners on the inside with mid-lengths under our feet. Drawing on his experience from Brazil, Ross has developed a love for shaping boards and tweaking shapes based on style and experience. He makes an effort to guide those who don’t know what they want - helping them pick the perfect board for their ability and home waves. His boards suit our island’s waves perfectly - log, mid-length, fish and you’re good to go on any day. Recently, we developed a ‘Swami’ colour palette that seamlessly blends into the surf shop/cafe space as well as the raw surroundings of the Sri Lankan coastlines. We are stoked to have him on board and always look forward to his trips to our little island so we can vibe out and surf the blue sapphire express together.
Terry, ‘The Sultan of Speed’ has been shaping, designing and surfing his own boards since 1969. He visited us on the East coast in 2014 where we surfed, adventured and chatted boards with like-minded friends from all over the world. Terry provides us with our Torq range of boards for intermediate surfers and has also developed a ‘Salty Swamis’ soft top range which now ships globally. Torq surfboards, launched in 2012, offer an unmatched combination of strength and performance in the epoxy surfboard market.
We have recently started stocking a select few iconic Hot Buttered Rainbow Models shaped by the man himself. Each board is hand-shaped and uniquely airbrushed by Martyn Worthington before being fully glossed and polished to ensure strength and the highest quality finish.
We were lucky enough to share perfect right-hand point breaks and iced cold lion lagers with Gary a few years ago on the East coast of Sri Lanka. Still riding our thrusters, Gary educated us on the capabilities of the twin fin and how well it would complement our home breaks. Years later, we have stuck to Gary’s advice and are stoked by his cosmic space crafts - riding them around the island with friends who have also fallen for his magic. While Gary’s boards catch the eye with their unique artwork and design, it is performance in the water that really sets these boards apart. Their perfect combination of fish-like feel and high performance, tweaked by Gary and his man in the water, Dave Rastovich, make for a truly unique experience. Salty Swamis stocks a range of boards suitable for the waters around the island.
Every year, the Gentem family break from the snow-capped mountains of Hokkaido, trading their retro-esque snowboards for similarly crafted surfboards to be able to surf the warm waters of the Indian Ocean with us. A truly special family that we are blessed to have shared many oceanic and jungle adventures with.
Soren Molineux, founder of Smile clothing has been coming to Sri Lanka since 2011. Keeping quiet and scoring the best solo sessions up and down the east coast, you couldn’t get more surfs into a two-week trip no matter how hard you tried. You also wouldn’t be able to clock that many miles in a tuk-tuk with a full quiver of surfboards on top. Cobras by day and Lions by night - he does Sri Lanka the right way.
Soren’s company, Smile, has a very simple premise - for every item of clothing sold, a school uniform or T-shirt is donated to a child in need. One for one. A truly conscious business model that all of us at Saltys have been inspired by.
The Drifter family - the Mackenzies and the Russos - were some of the first people we really experienced stoked-out, eye-bleed surf sessions with. Hopping over from Bali, this crew has been a yearly staple for us, getting in at the end of each season to glide along the Indian Ocean for hours on end where party waves are always on the cards. Mornings with them are pure bliss - happy smiling faces of all ages stoked to see their friends and family catching wave after wave at magical empty lineups where the jungles meet the ocean. To say that they were instrumental in all things Salty Swamis (including the name) would be an understatement. We have been guided by them on our journey from the very start and are stoked to be able to call them, as well as their Drifter crew, our extended family. Look out for them any time you are in Uluwatu, Seminyak or Barawa for all your surf needs and desires. These guys are the original good vibes crew. Big ups and thanks all day.
Parrotfish Collective is a volunteer-based group of wildlife enthusiasts turned conservation communicators. They focus on developing engaging educational content that bridges the gap between conservation professionals on the frontlines and the public. Through their work, they aim to re-communicate science in visual and creative ways. Their mission is to inspire and empower communities with knowledge, thereby providing the impetus to achieve lasting change. Through their work, they hope to create an informed community that can be mobilized towards environmental protection. Salty Swamis supports the collective in all its works and supports their various projects. Parrotfish merchandise is available at our store as well as online.
Prima is owned and shaped by our good friend Kfir Prima, a consistent visitor over the last 7 or 8 years in Sri Lanka. His love for surf and surf equipment was apparent from the beginning - one of those guys who geeks out on any board he sees whilst getting semi aroused. It was no surprise to us that years down the line he started his own small scale fin brand. Prima Wood Fins is a sustainably-minded fin brand. Each Fin is carefully designed and handcrafted to ensure premium quality. Thin layers of wood are pressed with carbon fiber (and some fiberglass in their twin fins), resulting in a material that balances the flexibility of natural timber with rigidity from the carbon fibre core. Each variety of wood has a different kind of natural flex, allowing surfers to explore new possibilities and sensations in the water.
Founded by two close friends, Peekoh provides us with high quality, natural, fresh, responsibly sourced loose leaf tea. From the best black and green teas available on the island to beautiful floral botanic mixes to relaxing herbal brews - they cover all the bases. A versatile product that our baristas have huge amounts of fun playing around with to bring you carefully balanced flavours for any mood.
Our friend Geve has been brewing kombucha from his home since 2018. He uses primarily locally-sourced, organic botanicals and gives you a taste of Sri Lanka with his carefully chosen ingredients. His brews go down like a treat post-surf and have, in our opinion, become the best tasting kombucha on the island. Always great heading out on surf missions with him as you almost always score an icy cold concoction from his cooler bag.
Jon Pyzel Surfboards began in a backyard shaping room on the North Shore around 1995 or so, and has evolved to become one of the leading surfboard companies in the world today. The company has grown exponentially since the early days and now boasts John John Florence - possibly one of the world’s best surfers - in their corner, giving them constant feedback about their various models.
Pyzel covers our range of high performance/all round boards and as is with all of our other boards, they are selected with the island’s waves in mind.
Zev Landes is family. An OG Swami who has been with us from before the beginning - an integral part in all things Salty Swamis. A self taught cartoonist, Zev is responsible for all the quirky art pieces you see on tshirts, walls, stickers and even surfboards around the cafe. He perfectly encapsulates the Salty Swami in all of us and in our various forms - surfing, riding, driving, meditating and re generating, whilst always with a little humour peppered over the top for good measure. His work is one of a kind and strikes a cord with all.
His artistry and comedic nature translates to steez and natty style in the water where he glides with ease in his straw hat and denim shorts, soaking up the salt water sunshine from his second home. A surf with Zev is a guaranteed good time. Zev’s character stretches far beyond his artwork, a truly kind and gentle soul, with just the right amount of weird. His influence, guidance and positive outlook on life has shaped what the brand is today.