The arrival of Indian Ocean on the furniture design scene in 1990 coincided with a shift in the way we design, use and view our outdoor living spaces. Design that links indoor with out, via a series of seamlessly flowing spaces, has become de rigueur for stylish, affluent owners, and Indian Ocean has played its part in this lifestyle change.
A privately owned British company, it designs and produces luxurious outdoor furniture and creates concepts for your balcony, country garden, outdoor kitchen or superyacht.Co-founder and managing director Jamie Hobbs gave up his job in the City aged 26 to import beautiful, oversized teak parasols from Madagascar, where his father was then the Honorary Consul. He followed this up with a complementary collection of teak garden furniture and named the business Indian Ocean in homage to its primary inspiration. Elegant, comfortable ‘heritage’ pieces remain part of the core collection. So does a commitment to the finest quality materials, detail and high-spec finishes. But – over 25 years on from its simple beginnings – the brand has gone higher-octane.
Numbering 30 staff in London, Indian Ocean is agile enough to be able to respond in a direct and personalised way to the special requests of its A-list client base
Edgy, contemporary designs to furnish a variety of outside spaces including kitchens, outdoor lighting, electric sunshades and other accoutrements for modern outdoor living, all now form part of the collection. ‘Our teak heritage pieces link to the traditions of the past, but we are constantly innovating for the future,’ says Hobbs. ‘We offer the most technically advanced fabrics, and designs which are inspiring and practical – able to withstand extremes of weather over a long period of time – as well as totally comfortable and relaxing, enhancing our enjoyment of the great outdoors.’
An initial concept can take up to two years to perfect from sketch to model, to sample to final testing. Collections are viewable at Indian Ocean’s two London stores (Balham and Hampstead) and at Harrods, and orders are fulfilled from a British-based warehouse, via a team that specialises in old-school customer service. Having grown its expertise in shipping overseas to clients’ second (or third) homes, Indian Ocean has established a network of international clients and made some high-profile exhibition appearances. As well as the must-do design show Maison & Objet, Indian Ocean was among elite exhibitors at the 2018 Monaco Yacht Show, mingling with the international yachting set and looking to develop its collections to meet the needs of the global yachting industry.
Elegant, comfortable ‘heritage’ pieces remain part of the core collection. So does a commitment to the finest quality materials, detail and high-spec finishes
The company also flew the flag at the British Design Showcase in Moscow – run by the Department for International Trade (DIT) to promote British design, manufacturing, technology and heritage to an audience of Russian professionals; and turned its attention to French and other international hotel professionals with an appearance at EquipHotel Paris. Numbering 30 staff in London, Indian Ocean is agile enough to be able to respond in a direct and personalised way to the special requests of its A-list client base. Someone from the design and planning service can be with you in a whisper, measuring up your garden and presenting innovative, bespoke design solutions. Just what the modern sophisticate needs, in other words, to be at the forefront of stylish outdoor living.
INDIAN OCEAN 155–163 BALHAM HILL, LONDON SW12 9DJ +44 (0)20 8675 4808