Apr 13

Endless Summer Originals


Smoothie and Summit X collections.


Every now and then, a line grabs my eye. The form, the technology and the materials all come together in such a memorable way that I just stop and stare. That has been my experience with Summit and Santa Barbara Designs. These two separate companies share many of the same elevated ideals. The beauty and the technology contained in both lines are amazing. Apparently, great minds think alike, or at least hang out on the same beach!


Sundeck collection.


Summit teak is harvested from tropical forests native to Southeast Asia. The quality of this deciduous tree that is immediately apparent is the beauty of the wood itself. It is also extremely durable and almost completely immune to decay. It seems that teak is naturally insect repellant, so bugs are not likely to make a home anywhere near the new furniture on your deck! You can thank the oil content of the wood for these happy side effects.

I recently had the opportunity to visit with Jane Sieberts, President of Summit. Bill Sieberts, her late husband, was the founder and owner of the company. As we talked about her years of experience and work within the design field it quickly became apparent that Mrs. Sieberts' education and background were the perfect launch pad for her career with the company. The topics during our talk ranged from the search for the perfect raw material to the need for designers most suited to contribute to the company’s iconic collections.


Rendering of Museum Tower Dallas

MTD used the Sundeck Chaise from Summit as inspiration for their pool area.


The Raw Material: Indonesia is arguably where the best teak wood is found. The trees that grow there are hybrids that have been adapted from other areas of the world. Perfect color, texture and grain symmetry are the result of years of cultivation and careful reforestation. "Our teak is the best because of the oil content, which gives the wood a rich, honey color; it is wonderfully suited for our designs," Mrs. Sieberts told me.

Picket Collection with stainless steel base.


The designers: "We are very clear that our furniture designers are the stars of the show," Mrs Sieberts remarked. The list of Summit designers is notable. Mark Anders, Kipp Stewart, Charles Verey as well as Glyn Peter Machin, Alwy Visschedyk and John Munford have all contributed their talent to the line. All have designed collections that are timeless, relevant and comfortable. Jane also noted, "We are as proud of their expertise as we are of their successes!"

Every time I see another piece of Summit, I have yet another piece to add to my fantasy deck in my fictional beach house... If I'm going to dream, I might as well dream big.


Multiple covers and base options make decision making difficult.

The new "Flamenco" is shown in brilliant blue (2nd from bottom).


James Sheftel, the National Sales Manager of Summit Furniture, is also the co-owner and CEO of Santa Barbara Designs. His partner's name is Chris Putriman who functions as CFO & COO. My talk with James centered on the technology behind the Santa Barbara umbrella. First of all, Californians know what a beach umbrella is all about. Multiple types of materials (teak, mahogany, fir, maple, oak, aluminum and stainless steel) come together to create the umbrellas in the SBD colletion.

 The new "Lilypond" cover radiates fun while it keeps you cool.


Four Harken pulleys (developed for racing yachts) are used in the Paseo aluminum and stainless umbrellas. "We like to say that Santa Barbara umbrellas are the real deal," James comments during our conversation. The repertoire that this company commands is impressive. Literally hundreds of combinations are possible with an umbrella from Santa Barbara Designs.


Under the umbrella or in the pool... You decide!


"Made for Presidents and Kings" is a motto that is attached to every canopy with the Santa Barbara logo. Additionally, there is a plaque on the center mast with a unique number. The item number on the plaque is on file so that any adjustments that need to be made can be accomplished with the greatest of ease. That plaque is the most visible evidence of quality. The years of dutiful service are the least obvious but most admirable attribute. 

 The Paseo with polished stainless steel and white cover is

James Sheftel's favorite piece in the collection.



It is impossible to make outdoor furniture last forever, but these two lines shake their fists at the elements and are determined to remain beautiful and unchanged.


This is a trick we would all like to learn!



For more from Summit Furniture or Santa Barbara Designs, please visit: 





Images courtesy of Summit Furniture and Santa Barbara Design.

Rendering courtesy of Museum Tower Dallas.
Allan Knight and Associates / Allan Knight Luxury Blog ~live beautifully

"live beautifully" is a registered and protected trade tag-line of Allan Knight and Associates. All rights reserved.

article by: Cearan Henley

1 Comment(s)
  • Lynda Carroll said:

    Dear Cearan, What a wonderful article! So well-said....I will incorporate some of the verbiage in my little talk....I liked it so much! Much success to you! Lynda