One of my goals on this trip was to work on a few pieces of digital video journalism. It’s been a little bit more of a process than I anticipated but tonight I would like to debut the premiere Life Offtrack DJ interview! Lance Horsley, co-owner of Casa Cool Beans, graciously granted me my first interview on the road. (Full disclosure: Nellu and I stayed at Casa Cool Beans during our time in Rio de Janiero and loved every minute of it.)
Taking on the Cidade Maravilhosa
Just over five months ago, Lance, his partner David, and their dog Mousse set off for the Cidade Maravilhosa, or Marvelous City as Rio is often called. The plan: transform an existing pousada into the Casa Cool Beans. Already a successful business owner in the United States, the opening of this guesthouse was the realization of a 25-year old dream for Lance. While the timing of their move had little to do with the city’s move to the international stage (World Cup 2014, Olympics 2016), the booming Brazilian economy certainly encouraged them to take on Rio.
But enough from me, I’ll let Lance tell you his story:
It’s customary for journalists, at the end of an interview, to ask if the interviewee has anything to add, mostly to make sure you’re not missing a critical part of the story. When I asked Lance, he gave me a response that needed to stand on its own. (If you’re a budding entrepreneur, you might want to keep this video close at hand and listen to it every morning you need a pep talk.)
One unexpected advantage in the whole process: While Lance and David had originally planned to close the guesthouse to renovate, its previous owner encouraged them to buy out bookings already on the calendar. Five months in and Casa Cool Beans has been at full capacity the whole time. Lance says its been nice having income coming in, “But even more important is the ability we’ve had to meet people, which at the end of the day is the reason I got into this business and why we got the pousada. It’s been a fabulous blessing.”