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More Tech Companies Choosing Tahoe, Incline Village Over Reno

Elevate Blue

Some tech companies are opting to open offices in Tahoe rather than Reno these days. Our reporter Amy Westervelt talked to a few to find out why.

Tahoe is full of Bay Area folks every weekend, looking to get away from the rat race and relax.

“There were a bunch of people who said, ‘You know, I’m here. So if there was an office, I would actually work here even though I might be in San Francisco four days a week.’”

That’s Ashwin Navin, CEO of Samba TV. The San Francisco startup opened an office in Incline Village this month. It plans to hire locals and offer a Tahoe Friday benefit to Bay Area employees as well.

“There’s a huge push in the Bay Area to go beyond salary as a tool to recruit, to offer things that really make a difference to people’s lifestyle,” he says.

Tim Olesnavage and Jameson Stafford, co-founders of Incline Village-based accelerator Elevate Blue, launched in Tahoe last year for similar reasons.

Olesnavage says he was a block off the beach in L.A. before moving here, but never took advantage of it.

“Here, I’ll run into the water," he says. "I’ll just be like, ‘You know what? I’m going to jump in the lake. I’ll be back in ten minutes.’”

Stafford agrees that there’s just something about Tahoe that makes nature feel more accessible.

“You know, in L.A. they’re like, ‘You can ski and surf in the same day.’ I’ve known nobody to ever do that,” he says.

Here though…

“Diamond Peak, I can be at in three minutes and Mount Rose, I can be at in 12 minutes. That’s pretty nice," he says. "You can literally go at lunchtime and come back.”

Samba TV’s Navin says it’s only a matter of time before more Bay Area startups catch on and head to the lake. 

Amy Westervelt is a former contributor at KUNR Public Radio.
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