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(2019 - Winter/Spring Issue)


Cary Mullen, two-time Olympian, World Cup downhill champion, and former member of Canada’s national ski team, carved out many successful tracks over his ski career including his 1994 FIS World Cup downhill win in Aspen, Colorado. He also holds the World Downhill Speed Record at 151 km/h in Kitzbuhel, Austria, considered the most dangerous course on the World Cup circuit. 

Like a ski hill, bumps and obstacles appear out of nowhere and can set you off course. Mullen had his share of falls, some of which led to debilitating memory loss and months in hospital over his professional skiing career in the late 1980s to ’90s.

Born and raised in Calgary, Mullen developed a passion for skiing at three and became a member of a ski club by age six. Even then his goal was to be a World Cup champion. During his childhood and teen years, he was also an accomplished gymnast and eventually had to make a choice.

Living on the edge in a competitive environment has given Cary the tools to succeed in other areas of his life. Having travelled to snow destinations around the world, Mullen, 49, now sets his sights on sun destinations, his business, motivational speaking and real estate development. He bought his first property at 21 and now owns a 30-hectare resort and lifestyle development called Vivo Resorts on the Pacific Coast in Puerto Escondido, Mexico. As a successful entrepreneur, he gives speeches to organizations and corporations about winning and achieving better results. In 2009, he penned the book, How to Win: Achieving Your Goals in Extreme Conditions.

Married and father of three, Mullen juggles his time in between speaking engagements, his home in Calgary and time in Puerto Escondido. He still lives life on the edge but now it comes with ocean, sun, surf and sand.  


Where did you get your motivation to succeed?

I’m engaged in learning, growing and figuring out how we can refine ourselves and get better. That activates my inspiration and motivation.

 A favourite cold-weather holiday destination?

I love to go to Mike Wiegele’s home (and ski lodge) in Blue River, B.C., and check out his helicopter skiing. It’s a special spot. 

 A favourite warm-weather destination?

Vivo Resorts, but we also have a residence down there so, sometimes, we’ll vacation at our home in Puerto Escondido.

 Your cherished World Cup trophy shattered just after winning it? Did you manage to save it?

I did! I brought the trophy pieces home and my mom glued it back together. A few years later, it fell apart again and my daughter glued it back together so it’s still on the shelf. If you inspect it, you can see the flaws. I worked too hard for it and I was going to salvage it any way I could.

What factors made you choose Puerto Escondido for your resort development?

There were a few. Weather was the No. 1 factor and that 18-kilometre-long beach was another. The locals are such friendly, welcoming, authentic people and it’s a safe area. The Oaxacan cuisine—farm-to-table and sea-to-table—is all organic.

What do you love about Puerto Escondido?

It has this nice blend of surfers and artisans, which creates a cool vibe. I’m not a surfer but it feels like a ski town to me and it exudes a youthful, creative energy.

Have your children inherited your “fire in the belly”?

They’re all great. I don’t want to be that parent who tried to have his kids fulfill his unlived dreams. I tell them “three As or a B.” I want them to find their own passion and enthusiastically pursue excellence. The three As stand for academics, athletics or the arts and the B is for business.

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