“We picked Puerto Vallarta for vacation because we had heard good things about the destination."
It’s difficult to imagine that when seasoned boaters and full-time local residents Janet and Jess Coburn first visited Banderas Bay some four years ago they didn’t have an inkling of the huge amount of nautical and boating-related activity that takes place locally year round. “We picked Puerto Vallarta
for vacation because we had heard good things about the destination. But, admittedly, we did not know much about the bay,” comments Jess. Needless to say, it was love at first sight when they learned of the myriad options, and the idea of possibly relocating to Banderas Bay
became a powerful intention before their initial vacation was over.
Having sailed together since their early 20s, the Coburns quickly began comparing local costs of living with those in Summit County, Colorado, where Lake Dillon had been their sailing playground for years. Getting away from Colorado winters was also a factor, but the turning point came a few months later when Jess was asked to be a race officer for the 2010 WesMex International Regatta. Since then, he has lent his expertise to the Mexican Sailing Federation (Federación Mexicana de Vela) in establishing race management training and certification programs for enthusiasts throughout Mexico. Currently certified as a race officer in Mexico and the USA, his International Sailing Federation certification is in the works.
Once established in Banderas Bay as fulltime residents, it was only a matter of time before they found the best way to contribute to the nautical community —in addition to Jess’s involvement in certification programs— by way of Todo Vela México, their sailing specialty shop. Open since December 2011 and recently relocated to Marina Riviera Nayarit, the business focuses on race-specific equipment and accessories. “A sailing store has always been a dream for us,” comments Janet, who also recognizes that the learning curve —everything from importation challenges to setting up a formal business in Mexico— has been intense but also very rewarding, thanks to the enormous community support they’ve received.
Aware of the many folk who, just like them, discover the bounty of boating opportunities in the bay, Janet and Jess are eager to provide encouragement and advice to anyone who steps into their shop. “From attorneys to accountants to real estate specialists, the local support system from national and international residents is amazing,” adds Janet. “You will definitely have to learn a few things, but you will be completely supported in the process.”