When Sarina Gomez and David Sodemann spent their vacation exploring Maui in a rented camper van, they returned to Arizona with more than fabulous photos and marvelous memories. They had an exciting new project—building their own camper van. They shared their plans with their friend, Brett Ellenson, who was all in.
Brett was an advocate for the van life and an expert in the properties of various metals and the use of metalworking equipment and optical measuring devices needed for precision in the finished product. David brought his highly developed problem-solving abilities and creativity in addition to his professional experience in design, branding, marketing, and in founding and operating a startup. Sarina had started and was operating her own successful business. And so the three, with their “diverse skillsets + a unified love of the road” founded Boho to build, rent and sell luxury camper vans.
They finished their first van in an impressive six weeks, and their first renter hit the road the next day. They made a second rental van. They likely would have continued that way, except a renter wanted his own van. Now Boho’s focus is on building and selling custom-designed, no-two-alike camper vans.
They start with a used one-ton commercial van in good condition, most often a Ford E-350 or Dodge Ram Van 3500. The metal ceiling and walls are covered with wood, knotty pine or cedar; the floor with wood-look vinyl. Standard features include:
- Full-size bed with storage underneath.
- Small kitchenette with bamboo counter top and sink.
- Outdoor shower.
- 25-gallon water tank that supplies both sink and shower.
- Propane camping stove and cooking supplies.
- 48-inch rear pullout bamboo table for cooking and eating.
- Privacy curtains.
- Linens and towels.
- LED lights that dim.
The whole system is powered by dual solar panels (100 watts each), two 12V batteries, and an inverter with USB and AC outlets.
As for upgrades, it seems like the sky is the limit. They have installed such things as swivel seats and tables, additional storage and roof vent to a sofa and propane fireplace to the uber-upgrade, a full-size, perfectly leveled slide-out foosball table with an umbrella for shade.
Amazingly, the Boho team can build a camper van in four weeks.
They found a niche between standard camper vans and extremely expensive custom conversions.
Boho produces affordable and functional vans which can be as personalized as the customer’s budget allows.
Boho still rents vans from their Phoenix headquarters near the airport. They like to add to the camper’s experience with information on the available campgrounds, sights to see and current activities for across the Southwest.
The Boho team have their own adventures planned for the future. Sarina and David are going to build a “schoolie,” a school bus converted to a traveling home, to drive from Alaska to Patagonia. Brett and his fiancee want to travel around the world in a sailboat. Regardless of the mode of transportation, it will have all the “creature comforts” due to the skills and ideas they developed designing and producing the camper vans.