Style and Substance

The shade industry is seeing an increase in hospitality demand for outdoor shelter solutions as the tourism sector recovers from disruptions in travel over the past two years.

“Clients are looking for a high quality long lasting shade option that also fits the aesthetic brief,” explains Carman, sales manager at Skyspan Shade.

With a wide selection of sizes, shapes and colours, the Skyspan Shade range is impressive. However more importantly it is the details that really allow the product to stand out.

Skyspan Umbrellas are architecture designed and engineered wind rated to withstand stated wind conditions/speeds.

“This is crucial for commercial umbrellas. With our engineered wind rating, we are confident that the umbrellas are suitable for their purpose”, Carman said.

Skyspan umbrellas internal tensioning system involves a services of steel cables that run the perimeter seams and arms of the canopy with anticreep fixings. This delivers a cleaner finished look, eliminating the need for visible support cables under the canopy.

“Our shade solutions provide protection from a hot summer day, or shelter against the wind or rain. While Skyspan umbrellas are a long lasting shade and shelter solution, they are easily reskinned if the look is to be updated” says Carman.

Solar & light properties of Skyspan umbrella canopies

Best in class canopy fabric is essential when selecting a commercial umbrella to provide both a shade and shelter solution.

Following years of testing fabrics in a multitude of commercial and industrial environments, the recommendation (of Skyspan Fabric Engineers) is to use an architectural grade PVC.

A high tensile PVC that is purposefully designed for umbrellas, and has been to be pretensioned in manufacture, so it is not compromised by the constant deploying and retraction of the canopy, will extend the life of the umbrella.

In addition, the architectural grade PVC range also offers both vibrant long lasting colour choice, with the additional benefit of waterproof, high heat reflection, UV Resistant, 50+ UV rated, fade resistance, anti-fungal and flame retardant qualities. This means the canopy is easy care and will last the distance.

For the very best in architectural grade shade canopy solutions we have partnered with Serge Ferrari. The unique satin finish of their specialist fabric offers a modern, high-end solution, in addition to the features referred to previously.

With confidence in the fabric quality, the decision of colour needs to be made. There are several key considerations when recommending the canopy colour for a project.

Colour choice offers the opportunity to further personalize the unit. There are 40 colours to select from, providing the opportunity to either align the colour pallet with that of the surrounding location, or to opt to make an impactful, contrasting statement.

Each colour option provides maximum UV protection, with 100% of UV rays (UPF 50+) blocked. In addition, the fabric technology resists UV damage due to high-quality pigment selection and thicker, more consistent protective coating than other traditional fabrics, ensuring a longer lasting consistent look.

However, what differs is the solar and light properties of the canopy based on the colour. Colour can be used to influence the shade properties and ambiance that the umbrella provides.

Each colour has a unique combination of Solar Transmission (ST); Solar Reflection (RS) and Solar Absorption (AS) properties.

For warmer climates, a colour that provides maximum Solar Reflection (RS) may be required – so for a cooler under canopy feel you may consider;

  • 8102C – White (80% RS)
  • 8341C – Champagne (72% RS)
  • 8861C – Vanilla (65%)

Where a bright, vibrant colour is required to lighten up the area beneath the canopy, a colour with a high Solar Transmission (ST) may be considered – so for a lighter under canopy feel you may consider;

  • 8255C – Poppy (18% ST)
  • 8204C – Orange (16% ST)
  • 2166C – Buttercup (15% ST)

The team at Skyspan looks forward to the opportunity of assisting you to make the right colour selection to achieve success in your project.

Skyspan Canopy Colour Charts
Serge Ferrari

Looking for shade and shelter for your new outdoor dining zone?

Reconnecting with our local communities provides exciting opportunities for local hospitality businesses. Bringing to life your current or new outdoor dining space involves planning how to best use the area you have. In addition to outdoor seating, many hospitality operators will be wanting to ensure the space can be well used day and night, sun and drizzle.

Including a shade and shelter solution allows so much more than keeping people protected from the sun. The impact of a stunning looking canopy can bring attention to your location. The seated area can take on a resort like feel, ensuring your customers feel relaxed and keen to stay on for another round.

If you decide to invest in a shade and shelter solution, take the time to ensure you are getting a product that not only does the job required now, but will last, look good and allow flexibility to make changes in the future.

Commercial grade umbrellas are designed for use in hospitality with a combination of quality, strength and unique features, that takes them beyond the specifications of a domestic model.

Skyspan Shade umbrellas come with the recommendation of many hospitality providers. There are several models worth investigating, in particular take a look at the Sunset range, providing shade for up to 17m2, or the smaller Alfresco portable Umbrella which can cover up to 12.2m2.

Skyspan Shade thanks business owners for supporting Australian Made products.

Tips to creating distinctive outdoor dining spaces

Changes to the planning rules enable pubs and small bars across NSW to implement outdoor dining.

This is great news for hospitality businesses. The question becomes how can you create an atmosphere that customers feel is a destination rather than a footpath?

When you are getting started on developing your alfresco dining space one of the first decisions needs to be creating an all-weather solution, providing shade and shelter to your guests.

With a fabulous long lasting and portable commercial umbrella, you’re able to create an outdoor dining area that clients love.

Consider whether the umbrella is placed within a tabletop or is supported by a freestanding portable base. How does that effect your table configuration options?

Choose colours that create a soft and inviting light for guests to relax under, as well as helping your business stand out in the street.

Ensure the umbrella you choose is suitable for the wind zone that you are located in. No-one needs the stress of having to take umbrellas down mid service.

Commercial grade umbrellas are designed for use in hospitality with a combination of quality, strength and unique features, that takes them beyond the specifications of a domestic model.

Skyspan Shade umbrellas come with the recommendation of many hospitality providers. There are several models worth investigating, in particular take a look at the Sunset range, providing shade for up to 17m2, or the smaller Alfresco portable Umbrella which can cover up to 12.2m2.

Skyspan Shade offer a stylish concrete Skyspan™ Cube that the umbrella can be fitted to. This is designed to enable you to re-position your Skyspan umbrella where you need, when you need it.

Don’t order an umbrella that blows away or you have to throw away – get a quality solution that will last.

What Makes a True Commercial Umbrella?

A true commercial umbrella is not just an outdoor umbrella in a commercial setting, it’s a unique shade structure built with
commercial applications in mind.

With over 20 years designing and manufacturing umbrellas for commercial use, we’ve identified some of the key things to look for to help you select a good product that’s worth the investment.

Skyspan Umbrella Accessories

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Integrated Electrical Wiring

Skyspan™ offers the option of including integrated electrical wiring to be supplied ex-factory for accessories including electrical heating units, lighting and speaker systems.


In addition to including electrical wiring, a lighting solution is available for some models of umbrellas (applies to Australian purchases only).

PVC Blind Systems

Skyspan Panorama umbrellas are compatible with outdoor blind systems, allowing you to create a more sheltered and protected environment.

Fabric & Frame Colour Options

Skyspan™ offer a complete range of powdercoating colours from the Interpon range for frames and a comprehensive set of canopy colours from the Ferrari 502 range.

Replacement Canopy

Refresh your existing Skyspan umbrella. Skyspan canopies are replaceable, allowing you to easily refresh your umbrellas, should the need arise.

Why Choose Skyspan?

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Australian Design, Manufacture & Support

When you buy a Skyspan™ Umbrella you are not only supporting Australian industry. Skyspan™ customers receive world class quality products specifically designed to suit Australian conditions in shorter time frames than competitors who import their product. Skyspan™ quality control process includes inspection of EACH unit prior to packaging, crating and shipping.

Industry leading Australian Warranty

Skyspan™ Umbrellas offer true peace of mind with lifetime anti rust warranty on Aluminium umbrellas and up to 10 years structural and 5 year canopy warranties on selected product lines.

Engineered & Wind Rated

Skyspan™ Architectural Umbrellas come with an Engineer Wind Rating Certification, be it our Portable Umbrellas (60Km/h), Vista & Sunset ranges (112Km/h open, 148Km/h retracted) or our cyclone rated Typhoon & Panorama ranges (148Km/h open).

Stylish Cast Base Plates

At Skyspan™ we pay attention to detail. Starting at the bottom our custom cast alloy base plates provide a clean look whilst adding durability and strength to the design.

Easy Wind Opening & Retracting

In the middle our “Easy Wind” retraction system utilises a unique “rack and pinion” gear system which along with our “Anti-Jam” crank lift allow for easy, fast and reliable opening/closing of canopies. A simple but unique lever allows the umbrella to be locked in the open position for safety when used in public spaces. The removable handle leaves a clean aesthetic appearance whilst preventing unauthorised operation.

Concealed Cables

At the canopy level, our concealed stainless perimeter cable gives the canopy it’s curved contemporary profile and overall chic quality. All hardware is manufactured from marine grade stainless steel for maximum strength and longevity.

Premium PVC Canopy

The architectural grade, waterproof PVC canopy is available in a multitude of colours. A protective PVDF coating has been applied to the canopy stabilising the colour pigment in the fabric for fade resistance to pro-longed sun exposure.

The flame retardant, anti-fungal and dirt repelling properties of the canopy make it easy to keep clean and ideal for commercial environments. A permanent UV surface treatment provides superior sun protection with an Ultraviolet Protection Factor of 50+, blocking harmful UVA and UVB rays.

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Skyspan Staff


Skyspan™ offer a comprehensive maintenance program to ensure correct operation of your Skyspan™ umbrella to fulfil your warranty. With a Skyspan™ professional service you will receive the following:

• Ensure canopy edge cable is seated correctly.

• Tighten and secure edge cable.

• Review positioning and condition of fabric.

• Ensure canopy is positioned correctly over top plate.

• Check and tighten all nuts and bolts.

• Apply grease to moving parts.

• Check jack and winding mechanism (if applicable).

• Check anti-creep lock is correctly positioned (if applicable),

• Check pivot locking bolt is correctly positioned (if applicable),

• Ensure sail track is tight on perimeter frame (if applicable).

• Free end caps and base plugs.