May 4, 2020
Reinventing the Umbrella
With elegant design and intelligent engineering, TUUCI makes umbrellas that will stand up to heavy use and look good doing it.
The umbrella is everywhere: whether you’re trying to escape the glaring sun of south Florida or the constant mist of the Pacific Northwest, you’ve encountered one. And although the umbrella is commonplace, finding one that doesn’t wobble, close on you unexpectedly, or even has some artistic flare is not. That is, unless you’re lucky enough to encounter a TUUCI parasol.
TUUCI, founded in 1998, by Dougan Clarke, TUUCI founder & product architect, has changed the umbrella game for the better. A Miami-native, Clarke spent most of his youth working at a boat yard in Miami—rigging boats for the racing and yachting world, giving him an appreciation for strong materials and sleek engineering. And having grown up in South Florida, Clarke realized the importance of shade, and how most umbrellas were not just primitive, but poorly constructed and unreliable.
After a brief stint working in the furniture world after college, Clarke realized there was a market for beautiful, reliable umbrellas—and so began TUUCI. Started in a Miami boat yard, TUUCI is now an international player, selling to thousands of resorts, restaurants, and anyone who needs a shade product that is going to last a long time and look beautiful.
None of their products exemplify the grace and durability that have become synonymous with the TUUCI name quite like the Ocean Master MAX Cantilever and Equinox Cabana. In addition to their sculptural appearance, these shade-makers benefit from TUUCI’s patented engineering and have been through the rigors of their product testing process. have been through the rigors of TUUCI’s design and engineering process. “We have a massive wind machine, testing our products at the highest speeds Florida and other coastal cities face,” says Patrick Troy, executive vice president of sales at the Miami-based company.
Both the Ocean Master MAX Cantilever and Equinox Cabana are constructed using marine-grade aluminum, with a powdered finish to resemble wood. The wood-like finish gives the material a touch of warmth, while the high-quality aluminum ensures that the products will last and operate smoothly for years to come, even when exposed to wind, rain, sun, and saltwater. “We wanted the product to have a really elegant, warm feeling to it while also having the strength of metal,” says Troy.
The sleek, yet sturdy components don’t stop at the frame either, each model offers a customizable canvas—clients can request variations of colors, pattern, and thickness, depending on their needs. Their attention to detail has won the brand countless accolades for product design and engineering over the years. “We are a design house at heart, and we want to make products that complement the aesthetic choices of the client,” says Troy. Each and every choice, test, and material choice is suited to guarantee quality and aesthetic perfection.
“We have specialized in parasols and shade for 22 years,” says Troy. “We sell to all over the world—this means we have a lot of historical data to make sure we are always improving, and always striving to make the best product possible.”