Resilience and Reinvention: A Female Entrepreneur’s Journey from London to Mexico

Post-graduation wasn’t looking too positive for the class of 2019 at Goldsmiths College, London. The city went into yet another winter lockdown, and the options in the job market were reduced to almost nothing. For journalism graduate Georgia Ridout, this was just a push to think outside the box.

“I was living in the apartment of my dreams with a dear friend of mine who, too, was in a position of limited job opportunities in the fields we had invested in a three-year degree for. Thankfully, we both had part-time jobs in the fitness industry prior to the pandemic hitting, which enabled us to stay busy teaching online classes, but it definitely didn’t pay the bills.”

Georgia spent her lockdown days trawling through the internet for any glimpse of hope in the communications market. But with aspirations to work in the music and events industries as a public relations and communications specialist, she was at a loss from day one. Prior to the lockdown, she had spent summers in Ibiza among friends in the music industry, writing biographies and descriptions for events wherever there was an opportunity, including Camilo Franco and Alex Wolfenden from Acid Mondays. They, too, were suffering from the lack of activity in the music scene and would fantasize about the great resurgence of the music industry daily on Facetime calls during hours of walking in the desolate streets of London.

“One of my friends from Belgium would run with me on Facetime, and we would plot grand escape plans to the first open country, hosting live streams of him DJing virtually with my 70-year-old father who took up DJing post-retirement in Cornwall.”

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Unsatisfied with the pace of change in the UK in regard to the lockdowns, Georgia couldn’t ignore the signs of freedom in countries like Mexico and Dubai, despite the stillness in the rest of the world. After extensive mental debate over which place made the most sense for her career, Georgia booked one of the last flights to Cancun from London Gatwick.

“Of course, I was nervous. The news was blasting that it was illegal to partake in any unnecessary travel, but I deemed this necessary. I was paying rent out of savings, losing

my mind slowly and literally going to the supermarket twice a day ‘for fun.'”

It was that flight which changed everything. Upon reaching Tulum, Georgia reconnected with friends from Ibiza, London, Italy, and even Australia who had the same idea about escaping the pandemic crisis in their home countries and starting again across shores.

“I didn’t know how long I was going to stay, but I knew that I wanted to build a career for myself wherever I was.”

Going with what she knew, Georgia began to socialize by teaching all-female classes at the local boxing gym ‘Tulum Fight Club.’ In it purely for the fun, Georgia cultivated a strong community in the Tulum scene. She connected with music artists, hotel owners, events organizers, as well as other expats enjoying the freedom of living in Tulum.

“We had everything. Gorgeous weather, a great network of like-minded people working remotely, building projects, and producing incredible music events while the rest of the world was at a standstill.”

When it became apparent that she needed to explore the career options in Mexico, Georgia successfully applied for a Working Visa and began by hosting events at Downtown Tulum Hotel. Her diverse community supported her in hosting regular sunset and brunch activations, with her friends in music DJ-ing at the previously unactivated venue. She went on to work with the likes of Camilo Franco, who brought his extremely successful BOHO Experience to the rooftop every Sunday evening during sunset.

“People started asking me to work with their hotels all over the beach road. Tulum is a place where hotels, restaurants, and beach clubs are known for throwing great events with really great music artists. My international connections became very attractive among the scene and propelled me into opportunities left, right, and center.”

Focused on her path, after a year working for the hotel, Georgia took the initiative to go freelance, starting her company: Story of George Studio. She knew that she couldn’t be an employee if she wanted to grow. She was scouted by Omar Rodriguez, the then-owner of Casa Pueblo, which became Hotel Panamera. Here she became the go-to girl for the hotel. From booking DJs to writing about events and hosting high-profile guests like Matt Robson-Scott of Gorgon City, George gathered quite the following in the music and events scene.

“The owners of venues and their artists needed an English speaker to write their publications to reach the crowds who would typically flock to Ibiza, St Tropez, and the US for music events. That’s where my writing really took off.”

Noticed for her written communications at the iconic Hotel Panamera, George began working with some of the most popular venues in Mexico, including Tulum Treehouse by Claus Sendlinger, Grupo GITANO, Nomade Tulum, Proyecto Publico PRIM and M.N.Roy in Mexico City. Realizing her potential, she built a network of other talented creatives experienced in the marketing industry who became contractors for bigger jobs requiring skills in graphic design and photography.

Her closest collaborator became Mario Botta, an internationally acclaimed photographer and videographer born in Naples, Italy. He had worked all over the world, knowing Georgia for six years prior to the move to Mexico, which enabled them to join forces seamlessly when the opportunity arose.

“We started with an art gallery event at Hotel Panamera, organizing a launch party at the roof with RoMo DJ-ing and Mario’s art showcased all over the venue.” After great success, Georgia and Mario went on to collaborate on a project called Tulum 101, by Real-Estate giant Inmobilia. Working with talented designer Kerynn Teutsch-Eupure, they produced the written and visual content for the entire project, including their printed brand book as well as all of their social media materials.

With Tulum 101 and hospitality icon Grupo GITANO under her belt, Georgia has her sights set high on where she is going with her career. “I want to communicate the stories of everybody I work with. This is my purpose, and it’s what makes me different from other communications specialists in the industry. From Ibiza to London to Canada, I’ve worked with incredible people doing incredible things; they just don’t know how to communicate it to their audiences in such a noisy digital world. That’s where I come in.”

Georgia has begun consulting a few of her clients remotely, sharing her knowledge and expertise in the industry as well as using her written communication skills. She intends to share her knowledge with clients so that they can learn how to do it themselves, instead of relying on an employee who may leave them high and dry later down the road when new opportunities arise.

“Consulting makes the most sense for progression right now. Then I’m able to really pick and choose which projects to dive into. My next steps are to work with the wellness industry somehow; I know so much about it from my years as a personal trainer and would love to translate that into events and communications on a really big scale.”

Bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, at 25 Georgia is only just getting started. Having moved to Mexico City for the increased pace of life compared to her Tulum oasis, she’s ready to

take the world by storm, one story at a time. May the Story of George unfold.

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