In a town like Westport, bougie isn't necessarily bad. Though the jetty at Westhaven State Park has long been the most accessible surf break for most Washingtonians, very little of the money pouring into Seattle has traveled the 130 or so miles out to the unglamorous fishing town located across Grays Harbor from Aberdeen. That's all about to change with the Loge at the Sands, which celebrated its grand opening Memorial Day weekend.
In November, Loge co-owners Johannes Ariens and Cale Genenbacher took over a claptrap hotel formerly known as the Sands, which Ariens says was "on the brink of being condemned." In its place, the Loge (pronounced "lodge") has created a spot that's equal parts surfer sleep-away camp and Etsy-chic motor inn, made with accents of cedar, corrugated steel, and several coats of dark turquoise paint a Vans catalog would describe as "Deep Chill." It's not hard to imagine the late Socality Barbie with a Westfalia-driving surfer boyfriend who'd feel right at home at the Loge.
Accommodations are scalable to appeal to a variety of budgets, including bare-bones "rustic" campsites ($35 a night), covered "hookup" campsites ($40 a night), and motel rooms with double queen-sized beds ($145 a night). The old main office was being converted to a youth hostel on our recent visit, which will offer twin-sized bunk beds for $40 a night. RV sites with hookups are available for $40 a night, but I wouldn't try to park anything larger than a small Airstream in one of the six spots adjacent to the grassy area surrounding the stage.
With a full surf-rental service operating out of the garage, one could feasibly show up empty-handed and snag a beginner-friendly soft-top Wave Riders longboard ($25 a day), an Xcel wetsuit and booties courtesy of Evo ($18 a day) and be ready to roll within minutes. A rinsing station is available at the rear of the south hotel rooms, and a particular point of pride is the Loge's drying room, which offers a secure, climate-controlled space that's free for guests and $10 a day for anyone else who might stumble by.
The Loge is a hotel at heart, and has been built with modernity, Instagrammability and automation in mind—even check-in is done with coded room entry. But Ariens is equally excited about the communal aspects of the property, including a cafe slated to open to the public in time for the Cold Water Classic in mid-August, at which point Ariens will have realized his dreams of giving surfers a stylish place to hang, rinse off their gear and deposit some much-needed cash into a local economy, which Ariens believes is underperforming at keeping visiting surfers around. A raft of regional bands are scheduled to perform every weekend for the foreseeable future, and a deal with 10 Barrel Brewing was just inked to keep the suds flowing once the cafe is finished.
For those few hardy Pacific Northwest surfers who've had Washington's waves to themselves forever, the Loge is a likely sign of something new and not necessarily welcome. But as high-end lifestyle shops like Cosube, Up North Surf Club and Leeward Northwest open around Portland, it's obvious the wave of high-end surf culture is coming.
The Loge at the Sands, 1416 Montesano St. S, Westport, Wash., 360-268-0091, logecamps.com.