Born in Calgary, Canada in 1979
In 1979 Westbeach entered the snowboarding scene with a bang in Calgary, Canada. Snowboarding was a totally new concept at that time, it was an exciting feeling - everyone knew it was the beginning of something really cool. Riders were so few and far between that any snowboarder was a friend; they were such a rare breed that a sighting was reason enough for an impromptu traffic stop.
As interest in the new sport grew, riders were seeking out fellow riders in an effort to widen their network. Some even made their own boards at this point, following complex diagrams from boarding magazines. Soon enough, a brand new culture was born, catapulting into a close knit family of riders, spectators and everyone in between.
Westbeach moved their store to the West Coast and set up base in Vancouver. We quickly became a hub for this new movement and our store became an essential stop off point on the way up to the mountains of Whistler. Borne from a playful spirit of grassroots parties and a passion for boarding, our riders knew how to have fun, and left no one out. With an attitude of ‘bring everyone along - the more the merrier’ a sense of community grew like wildfire. and soon Riders were flocking to come and see what all the fuss was about.
So how does the Westbeach brand fit into all of this?
Well, to cut a long story short, we started off selling reversible board shorts in a Canadian shopping mall. When demand quickly grew, a store was opened, catering for surfers and skaters. As snowboarding really took off in the 80’s, a lot of the kids involved from the start were skaters looking for a way to still board in the Winter. Westbeach soon became a one stop shop for board riders of all kinds, from the city to the mountain...the original Canadian Snowboarding Brand was born!
Today, Westbeach still has its roots grounded in snowboarding but we've expanded our range to all types of active mountain wear with an emphasis on ethically sourced products and our eyes firmly on the future. The mountain is central to our ethos, we feel driven to care for our environment, to look after our playground and so we strive to avoid anything that may harm it. These days we sell mostly online, but the company culture remains the same.
We have grown up since our partying days, and despite our (at times) hedonistic past, we have to admit there are bigger, more serious fish to fry. We understand the responsibilities we have - environmental and social. We’re not interested in checking boxes or jumping on bandwagons, though. Authenticity is really important to us, which to us as a brand means no shortcuts, no overnight changes, no embellishing stories. We want to be the best version of ourselves, that is something that has never changed about Westbeach. We'll never claim to be something we're not and we know we're not perfect but we will always strive to improve and provide our customers with ethically sourced, sustainable products which perform when you need them the most.
With a heritage rooted in adventure seeking, our colourful history has always been about pushing our limits and enjoying every second. Now we’re honing in even more on our production, developing our products in such a way that they last a lifetime, have minimal environmental impact, and of course, look cool too.
These things take time, but we’re already making good progress. We have changed a lot of our suppliers in our quest towards a cleaner, greener supply chain. From Winter 2019 our entire snowboard range will be made from recycled fabrics, all our packaging will be environmentally friendly and from 2020 we will apply these same rules across our entire product range. We’re re-looking at fits, fabrics and overall quality to create a collection that echoes our heritage, with innovative twists and a responsible footprint.
It's very simple really. Quality is key, Westbeach products should last. After making some much needed changes we're so confident in our production process that we've increased our warranty offer from 12 months to five years.
The Westbeach 40 Years Collection will be available online from Winter 2019, join our mailing list to be the first to hear about product launches, discounts and new collections.