Since no one wants to sit in the scorching sun with their coffee, many hospitality businesses these days add one of the many shade sails available to their outdoor area in order to provide a cool, shady place for customers. Of course, it’s not just the hospitality trade that can benefit from additional shade. Sails are increasingly being used in schools, child care places, parks, public swimming pools and anywhere people may gather out of doors.
It’s important for any business to only purchase top quality products, otherwise it reflects badly on them as a business. Just as you don’t want your shop front or interior to look shabby, so the outdoor area should always be kept spick and span with quality benches, steps and whatever else you need to put there, including sails.
Here are some tips for purchasing the kind of sail that will draw people into your hospitality business and help establish a good reputation.
- Find out what the material of the sail is. Not all materials have good UV ray blocking abilities. Some are much better than others, so will do a better job. If customers sit under your sail and still get sunburned, they are not likely to come back. Surprisingly, it’s not always the most expensive material that gives the best protection.
- You also need to examine the edges of the sail to ensure they are strong and that no fibres are broken or loose. If they are, the sail will wear out quickly and you’ll have to replace it.
- Find out if the sail is also showerproof. Not all are and you may not even need that feature, but if your clients would like to linger over coffee even when it starts to rain, then showerproof is the way to go.
- You should also examine the fittings for the sail. Strong fittings will withstand wind and last a long time. Poor quality attachments will be likely to break easily.
Before you have the sail installed make sure an experienced installer is on the job. Not all installers have enough experience to know exactly where to put those posts or attachment points so that the sail throws shade where you want it. You’ll find all those outdoor tables and chairs unoccupied on a hot day if there is no shade over them.
Another important point is to have the sail tight enough to prevent it flapping. Flapping will help wear the fabric and puts great strain on the ropes and fittings. The fabric could tear and the whole thing become dangerous in a storm or high wind as it flaps around.
Once you know for sure that the structure will give the shade you need, look good and be safe, you’ll have peace of mind that the investment was worthwhile for your business.