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Is this the last authentic mid century modern patio umbrella still made today? The Sundrella 701

mid century modern patio umbrella sundrella 701
Fall 2020 update: I have heard from readers that these are no longer available. It’s on my list to check into the situation and report back. Meanwhile, I will leave this story up for historical reference — and for readers who want to try and pursue this on their own the opportunity to do so.

Original story:

A few years after I first wrote about Sundrella 701 aluminum patio umbrellas — sold out of Arizona, in production since 1956! — I started hearing from readers that they were no longer available for retail sale. Fast forward to last week, though, and in doing some related research, I discovered the classic Sundrella 701 aluminum umbrella for sale — from a Florida company, Sundrella Outdoor Furnishings. What?! So I called, and immediately connected with National Sales Manager Diane Jacobs. She confirmed that company ownership had changed hands. The Sundrella 701 today is mostly sold to commercial outfits like restaurants, hotel, apartment and HOAs. But, yes, they do do occasional sales to residential customers.  mid century modern patio umbrella

Above: Both photos are from the company’s website. The Sundrella 701 is 7′ wide.

mid century modern patio umbrella
Spotted in the wild in Lake George, New York — which led me to research my original story.

It’s great to know these are still out there and available!

mid century patio umbrella sundrella
Glamour shot from Sundrella in 2009.

She said the umbrellas are still being made by the former owner of the company. Drats! If I had known about this earlier, I would have visited him in Phoenix when I was there last month for Arizona Tiki Oasis. I would love to see how these circa-1956 beauties are made! For sure I’ll plan a visit next year during AZTO.

sundrella aluminum umbrella
My original retro recon in Lake George. Lots o’ Sundrellas!

History of the Sundrella 701 aluminum umbrella, from my original story in 2009:

The company that manufactures and sells them is named Sundrella (yes, with a “d”), and it’s been based in Phoenix since 1956 — when it got started building this very same 701 aluminum umbrella. In fact, according to Kaycie, a most wonderful manager in the retail area at Sundrella, the company built only 701 umbrellas for the next 22 years, until 1978, when the current owners bought the company.

How to buy a Sundrella 701 aluminum umbrella:

Categoriespatio
  1. Ms. Vel-Vida says:

    It’s great to know these are still being made. I always thought they were so cool when I’d see them around motel pools (along with brightly colored plastic papasan chairs) in the Lake George area and other Adirondack establishments like ice cream stands and convenience stores. I think one of the Stewart’s in Colonie even has a couple at their picnic tables.

  2. CarolK says:

    These Sundrellas make me remember the Tastee Freeze in my dad’s hometown. It was a frequent summer evening destination when we’d visit my grandparents 50 years ago.

    1. Pam Kueber says:

      Hi Primrose, I’ve asked the company … meanwhile if you’re interested, reach out to them directly.

  3. Craig says:

    Pam,

    As a lifetime Arizona resident, these were all over the place for quite a while and can still be seen around town. In fact,there is one about 100 ft from my office window. I could walk over and take a few snaps if you like. I frequently contemplate finding one for my 1955 ranch house.

  4. june cahill says:

    I live in Tucson – and have found 2 ‘in the wild’ – one at Gerson’s – a local architectural salvage place, the other while driving by a Sal Army – both were $25 —- the most daunting was trying to get them home – I had to borrow my friend’s truck and was terrified it’d would fly out above and then onto the road like a flying saucer! They’re both on opposite sides of our backyard (I think our backyard landscape layout was designed by an ‘OCD engineer’ as each side mirrors the other with a huge rectangular pool right in the middle! My umbrellas are different colors – one is brown/tan; the other is blue/tan, but since they’re not right next to eachother – who cares? They make me smile! 🙂

  5. DJ Sparkles says:

    I could get a turquoise one for by the pond!

    Depending on price. I’d take any color if I could score one for $25 like the lucky June!

  6. Ryan F says:

    I recently purchased two of these through Diane. $800+ each. There was a lead time of over 3 months after I finally was able to place the order. Required quite a bit of follow-up (phone calls and emails) to keep the process moving forward. There are only a handful of colors for the alternating stripes. I purchased mine completely white, removed every other slat, spray painted both sides orange and reinstalled. They look awesome. I recommend installing the pole in a cored hole in concrete paving/patio/pool deck as opposed to a regular umbrella base. You’ll need a really heavy expensive umbrella base to support the umbrella adequately.

    1. Pam Kueber says:

      Thanks for sharing your experience, Ryan. I recommend that readers ask the company for its mounting recommendations / specifications, but will leave your thoughts up here to raise awareness about ensuring the umbrellas are properly secured.

  7. Chicago Char says:

    Loved the red stripe. Contacted the representative in a Illinois and it would cost $1,191 for a 7 ft Sundrella red stripe! Gasp! Boo hoo, not a possibility for me but so pretty. Shipping was nearly $400!

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