Grabbing our bags from the baggage carousel at Kahului Airport took on a sense of adventure. All we had were two duffel bags and a KIALOA paddle bag. The duffels held our Naish ONE inflatable 12’6″ race boards and our clothes – all under 40 lbs. Within 15 minutes we had our rental care and off we headed to what is always our first stop in Maui – the Naish Maui Pro Center just minutes from the airport.
Whether you surf, SUP, Kiteboard or windsurf a visit to Naish Maui Pro Center is your best first stop. Walking in, there was Jay in deep conversation with a customer about local conditions and ability level. Behind the counter instead of simply ringing up a sale, Sam was searching online for webcam shots of the Kauhlui Harbor to share with an eager customer as he purchased his more advanced 2014 kite. “Coach” Jeff Hughes, manager of Naish Maui Pro Center, dropped what he was doing as we came in, welcoming us with the same enthusiasm he extends to all. The vibe of the entire store is “local,” and respectful of all seeking water fun whatever our ability.In spite of being pretty well-equipped for all the downwind fun we were planning (so cool to travel with our Naish ONEs), we needed the best SUP surfboards for the smallish wave fun we’d be having in the Kaanapali/Lahaina area. Coach pointed out the Hokua 9’5 and 9’10” all ready for us. Beautiful! As Jay helped us load the boards, being winter, we had to ask what was pending for Peahi (Jaws) this week.
As luck would have it, word of a big swell for the very next day was buzzing around. Within minutes we were at the computer by the checkout counter searching for news and webcam shots. There was no way any of the staff could mask both their enthusiasm for swells, surf and the ocean or their deep expertise. That alone provides a wonderful buying or rental experience, but the “local” vibe doesn’t stop there. No matter how busy the shop is – in the retail front or in the rental and repair back room, there always seems to be time to answer the most basic questions or to expound on the more technical topics.
When you are on Maui and you are looking for the best equipment and the feeling of a hometown shop, go no further than Naish Maui Pro Center. It’s easy to get all your equipment reserved and ready before you leave home. It’s just as easy to hone in on the best areas to enjoy that equipment once you arrive. The team will match your ability to local weather conditions, swells, and clue you in on tides.
To our great excitement – they will also get you in the local loop as far as unique conditions are concerned. YES! We made the long hike from the road all the way out to Peahi Bluff (way better than trying to get our rental car in and out!). We saw some incredible rides from the watermen and women who wait all year for this winter wonder to deliver its awesome-ness. And all that was the first 24 hours of our trip. Maui is wonderful.