Industry Spotlight

In Case of Fire, Don’t Break Glass

by Robert Elmquist

Advances in technologyare responsible for improving many aspects of our lives. For example, the science behind ceramics has accelerated rapidly in recent years, with the material now being used in specialty applications for which its strength and heat-resistant properties are well suited. These include cooktops, cookware, and glass for microwave…


Marketing Maneuvers

Making the Best of Hard Times

by Robert Elmquist

Sacramento, the capital of california, is also the state’s seventh largest city, with a population of approximately 500,000,  and it serves as the economic and cultural hub for the surrounding four-county area. Sacramento is also less than 50 miles from the city of Stockton, referred to as ground zero for the housing-industry meltdown.


Marketing Maneuvers

Escea’s U.S. Launch Is a Major Success

by Robert Elmquist

Combining leading-edge technology with remarkable style, New Zealand-based Escea is now offering its innovative gas fireplaces to North American hearth retailers. Merging clean, contemporary, and visually appealing design with the latest advances in gas-fire technology, Escea products are sure to provide years of use and enjoyment.

Escea was…


Hearth Retailer Profile

Staying One Step Ahead of the Competition

by Robert Elmquist

One would think that chilly colorado would be the dream spot for owning a hearth business. According to Pete Dines, president and owner of Denver-based Home & Hearth Outfitters, the weather may be right, but the competition is fierce. He has to contend with over 30 competitors for his share of the Denver/Vail market, but Dines is not one to back…


Hearth Retailer Profile

New Business Model Appeals to Pellet-stove Owners

by Robert Elmquist

Don’t call PelletSales.com an Internet business. This growing start-up company may use the Internet to serve its customers, but it is all about personal service. After just three years in business, PelletSales.com has expanded to provide residential delivery service on the East Coast from Baltimore to Maine and in selected areas of the Midwest…


Barbecue/Grill Retailer Profile

Capitalizing on the Outdoor-kitchen Craze

by Robert Elmquist

Success in one type of business often serves as the foundation for achievement in another venture. This is the case for The Mad Hatter Showroom, a full-scale barbecue and hearth retailer located in Alpharetta, Ga., that traces its roots to a booming chimney-sweep and air-duct–cleaning business.

That precursor began 30 years ago, in Oklahoma…


Barbecue/Grill Retailer Profile

The Companion Group Experiences a Spike in Accessory Sales

by Robert Elmquist

When Doug Fielding and Chuck Adams (who were involved in urban planning and property management, respectively) began their sideline barbecue-accessory business in 1984, they started with a single product: the chimney-style charcoal starter. Ahead of their time, they offered a simple, easy-to-use product that gave consumers a nontoxic, environmentally…


Showroom Showcase

Targeting To-the-trade Customers

by Robert Elmquist

Designing and furnishing outdoor-living spaces is big business, and Logan Gardens in Atlanta is one of the most respected to-the-trade outdoor-living design showrooms in the Southeast. Its 8,500–square-foot design showroom, located in the heart of Atlanta, is merchandised with upscale furniture from premier outdoor manufacturers in North America…


Showroom Showcase

Kingsley-Bate: The Teak Experts

by Robert Elmquist

When one hears the name Kingsley-Bate, images of high-quality teak furniture come to mind. That’s because, for more than two decades, Kingsley-Bate has been the leading U.S. manufacturer of premium teak outdoor furniture. Each of its chairs, garden benches, dining sets, sofas, settees, and chaises is constructed of the highest-quality teak and…


As I See It

Capel’s Outdoor Rugs Catch on With Consumers

by Robert Elmquist

Outdoor rugs are not a novelty anymore. Advances in fabrics and designs, as well as more product visibility, are making them an increasingly popular way to pull together outdoor-living areas. Troy, N.C.-based Capel Rugs, the oldest and largest importer and manufacturer of indoor area rugs in the United States, has translated its 91 years of experience…


My Turn

Turning Challenges Into Opportunities

by Robert Elmquist

The recent successes of MHSC can be attributed to Dave Barrett, who has been at the helm of the company since 2007.

When Dave Barrett joined Monessen Hearth Systems Company as president and CEO in April 2007, he had no idea that his first 18 months as the company’s commander-in-chief would be some of the most challenging times of his career.…


Product Innovation

Keeping an Eye on the Future

by Robert Elmquist

Ever since Miles Industries Ltd. introduced the first gas fireplace insert in North America in 1981, the North Vancouver, British Columbia-based company has been committed to offering its dealers products that are both innovative and forward looking. Recognized as a pioneer in the gas fireplace industry, Miles Industries is the exclusive designer,…


Industry Spotlight

Signs of Cautious Optimism for Fireplace Sales

by Robert Elmquist

With natural-gas prices low and the economy showing some signs of turning around, manufacturers are predicting that 2010 will heat up fireplace sales. Paul Miles is director of sales, Miles Industries Ltd. (North Vancouver, British Columbia), manufacturer of Valor fireplaces. He says, “Sales already have picked up for the past four months, and…


Marketing Maneuvers

Fortunoff Teams Up With The Chair King

by Robert Elmquist

Through a strategic alliance with The Chair King, a casual retailer based in Houston, Texas, the Fortunoff name (a long-renowned retail icon in the Northeast) is emerging in a new, leaner version with the opening of six Fortunoff Backyard Stores in New York and New Jersey.

One of the largest outdoor-furniture retailers in the United States,…


Marketing Maneuvers

A Stronger, Better Homecrest

by Robert Elmquist

Homecrest Outdoor Living has a lot to look forward to as it enters the new decade. After almost closing its doors two years ago, the 53–year-old Wadena, Minnesota-based outdoor-furniture manufacturer has found its footing again and is making some strategic changes to regain its reputation in the industry.

A Fresh Start


Hearth Retailer Profile

Small Details Yield Big Results

by Robert Elmquist

For a Wisconsin hearth retailer, focusing on the nuts and bolts of his business has made it profitable even during hard times.

The freezing winters along the banks of Lake Michigan have brought many prosperous years for Ken Doubek, owner of The Alaskan Fireplace Company/Fireside Hearth & Home, but he is the first to admit that running…


Hearth Retailer Profile

Marth Helps Reduce Carbon Footprints

by Robert Elmquist

Since 1958, Marth Wood Shavings, based in Marathon, Wisconsin, has been in the business of recycling residual wood fiber for use in a wide variety of consumer-friendly items, including shavings for animal bedding, wood flour, and other products. The company first began producing wood pellets for clean-burning fuel about 20 years ago, and it has since…


Barbecue/Grill Retailer Profile

Backyard Bistros Catch on in Canada

by Carol Daus

There’s an old adage in business: Sell what you know. Rick and Joanne Bloye embraced this strategy over seven years ago when they opened Outdoor Luxury, the first company in Canada to specialize in building outdoor kitchens on a full-time basis.

By focusing on advising customers instead of pushing sales, they have watched their Aurora, Ontario-based…


Barbecue/Grill Retailer Profile

A New Kamado Draws Kudos

by Robert Elmquist

Before he started his company, Kamado Joe® (Flowery Branch, Georgia), Bobby Brennan estimates that he was probably responsible for selling up to 100 of his competitor’s products simply by hosting dinner parties at his house and grilling on a ceramic cooker. “I have cooked for people over the years, and they all say the taste is unbelievable,”…


Showroom Showcase

Fishels Changes With the Times

by Robert Elmquist

Fishels has been serving the people of Portland, Oregon, and its suburbs since 1921. Over the years, this family-owned business has carved out a comfortable niche for itself as the local contemporary indoor-furniture retailer with the widest selection ofoutdoor furniture available in the area. It’s also been recognized for excellence in the casual-furniture…


Showroom Showcase

Giving Customers What They Want

by Robert Elmquist

Paul Varshney, owner of Suncoast Furniture, is thrilled about his company’s new showroom in the Chicago Merchandise Mart. His son, Rajiv, and Rick Baker, national sales manager, are making frequent trips back and forth from Suncoast’s headquarters in Fort Myers, Florida, readying the showroom for its debut at ICFA Casual Pre-Market in July. Varshney…


As I See It

Warming Up the Look of Fireplaces

by Robert Elmquist

Any hearth dealer will tell you that even the finest fireplace isn’t complete without the perfect mantel. Omega Mantels of Stone, based near Toronto, Ontario, couldn’t agree more. It’s been outfitting some of the most beautiful homes in the United States with stunning stone mantels since 2006. Patio & Hearth Products Report sat down with…


My Turn

Holland Grill Company Uses Demos to Spark Sales

by Robert Elmquist

How does a business buck a recession? For the Holland Grill Company, it’s by listening to customers’ needs, offering innovative products and choices, and drawing in new business, often by showcasing the benefits and versatility of its grills through holding cooking demonstrations from New York, New York, to Fargo, North Dakota. All of these factors…


Product Innovation

The Next Big Thing

by Robert Elmquist

Since 1984, Baldwin Park, California-based Treasure Garden has made shade umbrellas its business. The company knows everything there is to know about umbrellas and the shade business—so much so that it manufactures for some of the finest brands in the world, including Shademakers of New Zealand, which it has worked for during the past several years.…



Last Word

Transforming Fireplaces Into Works of Art


Publisher's Viewpoint

Publisher’s Viewpoint - January 2009


Guest Editorial

Did the Economy Steal Your Enthusiasm?


Industry News

Industry News - January 2009


Last Word

The Outdoor-kitchen Craze Continues


Publisher's Viewpoint

Publisher’s Viewpoint - January 2010


Editor's Message

Editor’s Message - January 2010


Guest Editorial

Taking Your Business to the Next Level of Success


Industry News

Industry News - January 2010



Grand Floridian

Ashmost Firepit Chat Group

New Leakproof, One-piece Elbow Added to the Bio Vent Bernard


Beachcomber Hybrid Edition Hot Tubs

Top This

The Beauty of Wood With the Durability of Aluminium

The TurboQue

San Marco Bistro Group

The Tower

Enviro Ovation Face


V-shaped Gas-grill Smoker Box

Hatteras Hammocks Nantucket Summer Quick-dry Hammock

Enviro Town House Face

Sawgrass Mills Red Palmae Outdoor Rug

Chateau Chat Group

Finished Stacked-stone Enclosure

Traditional-looking Masonry at a Fraction of the Cost: The Rutherford

Traditional Arbor

Merit Louverless Contemporary 35 Gas Fireplace

Tiki Torch

Nesting Table


Valor Vogue With Four-sided Brushed-nickel TrimZen appeal:

Dog Beds

The Solana

Chadwick 5 Swing

Minden Master Natural-gas Grill in Classic Black


Valor Freestyle With Four-sided Nickel Trim Kit and Black Front

Island Kits

Elena Airplus

LHD50 Linear Direct-vent Gas Fireplace

The Sonoma Collection


Custom Log Sets

American Outdoor Grill Model 36PC

Masterbuilt Electric Smokehouse With Window

Just Grate

Smoke Cones

Apollo Series Solar Grill by Fire MagicFire

Selkirk Launches Direct-Temp Multifuel Venting System

Butterball Turkey Fryers

Stone Fire

Morsø 7600 Series: A Feminine Design in Solid and Robust Cast Iron


Professional Installation Extends Warranties

New Built-in Grill-top Covers From Two Dogs Designs

New Royal-blue Recliner From Faulkner

Ball O’ Fire Outdoor Fireplace

Castelle Storage Units

Turn Up the Heat With a Smart RAIS 60 Fireplace Insert

Chelsea II

Jøtul’s GF 370 DV Gas Stove

Kalamazoo Outdoor Gourmet’s 15-inch Refrigerated Drawers

WrapIt Up

Opal Lounge With Canopy



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