THE SPIRIT OF HAWAII
Global Marketing Director, OluKai
OluKai global marketing director KERRY KONRADY spreads his love for the ocean lifestyle.
TELL US ABOUT HAWAII.
Hawaii's a great place to visit and each island is very unique but the people are what really keep you inspired. We learn a lot from the locals about their culture and history. Talking with the elders gives us the framework to get inspired to create new stories for our products.
WHAT PLACES DO YOU RECOMMEND TO FIRST-TIME VISITORS?
Honolulu has a sense of newfound explorations but it also has a compelling urban environment. They have incredible waves in the north shore of Oahu and in Maui. There's also an overall culture about being active and getting in the water one way or another. You know, if there's no surf then you go standup paddling or kite surfing. If there's surf, you're surfing. Or if you want to be a part of the team, you get on a sailing canoe or join a paddling crew. It's a multitasked lifestyle that's very accessible at any given day.
WHAT DREW YOU TO HAWAIIAN CULTURE?
The sense of a tightknit community is very visible. When you talk to the locals and you have a conversation, they take you into their home and you become part of the family. That's a very strong influence in the Hawaiian and Polynesian cultures. I love hanging out with the locals and having them show me different parts of the islands, and tell stories about the different historical places and customs that are worth preserving.
OF COURSE, IT WOULDN'T BE HAWAII WITHOUT TALKING ABOUT THE FINE BEACHES.
Waikiki is phenomenal. It's an over-all surf tourism beach. There's also a beach called Maloha in Kauai which is the epitome of hidden, off-the-beaten track beach. It has a cove and beautiful landscapes. You can walk out on to the reef and you just have these majestic cliffs.
YOU CERTAINLY HAVE THE PASSION FOR WATER.
I grew up in the water and about three years ago, I picked up surfing. I love being in the water. The ocean and our company is full of "watermen" and "waterwomen." We have some incredible surfers at OluKai, people who really grew up around that lifestyle, mostly in Southern California. Whenever we get the chance to get out to Hawaii and take off the wetsuit and just go with the board, it's just really a great feeling to be in that warm water.