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Matt Tanti’s world of lines and curves

Surfer surfing waves in Riviera Malta
Matt Tanti shows us the conflicts between his two worlds: His work and his hobby

On this particular Saturday, Matt and I met amongst a chorus of different languages in the line-up. We were 24 surfers and counting, which was a new record in my eyes. That’s a lot of surfers, and the bay kept getting busier and busier. Maltese, Germans, Italians, Spanish… it was packed!

How times have changed since Matt himself started surfing. We joked that we were now the oldies here, with the new generation being fresher-faced, and probably fitter too!

He started surfing six years ago “and the idea came to me while living in Holland” he joked. “I missed the sea so much, and I thought, if they can surf in Holland, why not in Malta.” “I got interested in the sea much more while living there because I missed it so much.”

“As soon as I came back I wanted to do many things related to the sea and during the Bubble festival (sidenote: an incredible local festival right between Golden Bay and Ghajn Tuffiehal) and I saw this one guy with his board, a German guy.”

That’s when it clicked and fell into place. “I felt the power of the waves and knew I was gonna get hooked”. I then learned the hard way, learning alone, but Valerio always gives me tips. He helped me a lot and I did some surf skate lessons too, which really pushed me to improve… I need to do some more of them actually.” A message that resonated with me too as I have been keen to try Surf Skate lessons! 

Of all the places to start surfing, Matt went to Gnejna Bay, “on these tiny waves” but after that he finally tried Ghanjn Tuffieha, “amongst the veterans, Gamblu, Peppi and some more”. Back in those days, line ups would be crowded if they had three surfers present. A far cry from today’s keen crowd.

Matt Tanti is an architect. He works alone amongst the world of lines and constraints. Surfing represents the element of freedom and play to him. The stark contrast between his work and his hobby is clear. 

“I am lucky as sometimes I can postpone meetings and come to surf, if my client allows it”… the beauty of freelance work, eh Matt?

“I surf as much as I can, I have three boards. Today I’m on a 7ft Minimal soft top, my first board, a good all-rounder but I also have a 6ft 35lt too.”

“Fajtata was my biggest wave, the left” but Matt will now head to Mexico, so let’s see hear if he’s managed to top his Fajtata best while away!

Photography by Joseph Camilleri and Bahaa Khalifa


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Matt Tanti shows us the conflicts between his two worlds: His work and his hobby