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MAY Schattello Parasol shading a London Cafe

5 considerations when deciding on a parasol

By: Oli Birch Category: External Solutions

Parasols are an excellent option for pubs, restaurants and bars looking to enhance their outside spaces. And with outdoor dining becoming a huge feature for many hospitality venues since the pandemic, having a functional and stylish outdoor space has become a necessity.

In a recent blog, we identified how canopies can improve outdoor spaces and the cost factors involved with installing one. This time around, we’re looking at parasols and five factors to consider when choosing a one for your pub, restaurant or bar.

Your site

This is one of the most important aspects to consider, as the location of your venue and the space available will determine the size and style of parasol, which ultimately has a big impact on the cost.

We’ve listed some of the main questions to think about below:

  1. Is the site sheltered or exposed?
  2. How are tables/the space laid out?
  3. What is the total square meterage you’re looking to cover?
  4. Will tables be arranged around the central support of a traditional style parasol, or would a cantilever version suit the layout better?
  5. What aesthetic are you looking to create? When fully extended, will the parasol block customer’s view of your external signage?

Furthermore, weather conditions must also be taken into account. If the area is vulnerable to the elements, this could have a big impact on the parasol you choose, as some are equipped to withstand the wind better than others. However, although our parasols go through rigorous wind testing and are designed to withstand standard wind conditions, we do not recommend usage where wind speeds reach and exceed 30mph.

MAY Schattello Parasol shading a Rooftop Bar in London on a sunny day


Once you’ve considered your site, the size of parasol is next on the list.

The key here is to ensure the parasol will provide sufficient protection from the weather conditions come rain or shine. Assess the area you wish to cover and then factor in whether your venue will be holding additional events throughout the year, as this is often overlooked.

We offer a free consultation service to discuss the measurement and placement of the parasol, which you can book here, and have included the size information for our range of parasols below:

Liberta Aluminium Side Pole Parasol Size Guide

Liberta Aluminium Telescopic Parasol Size Guide

Parasol base

Ensuring you have the correct base is another key aspect, and this will be impacted by the style and size of your parasol. For instance, our Liberta Aluminium Side Pole Parasol comes with a 360rotational base, whereas the Liberta Telescopic and Stainless Steel Heavy Duty Parasol’s come with the below options:

  • Liberta Telescopic Parasol:
    • 2m x 2m weighted cross base
    • Granite base
    • In-Ground base
  • MAY Rialto Cantilever Parasol:
    • In-Ground base
    • Deck Plate
    • Bamboo base box

In some cases, there is an opportunity to brace the parasol to an adjacent wall, or even bolt the base down, although this is only on specific sites that require or allow this option.

Two MAY Albatros Parasols on the decking of a lake restaurant

Again, the location of your venue will determine what base you need, especially if the area is exposed to wind.


In order to get the most out of your space, we would always recommend at least one accessory for your parasol.

Although it will add to the cost, it allows your venue to fully maximise the outside space. Adding a heater, for example, creates a warm space that can be used throughout the winter and additional seating if inside is fully booked.

LED Lighting can also be added to make the parasol both aesthetically pleasing and safe to use in the evenings, while customised printed fabrics for the parasol provide a personal touch to your venue.


Similar to canopies, each parasol project we work on is bespoke to the client, so the cost changes regularly. Some venues require telescopic parasols designed for one specific space outside, whereas others may venture for a more versatile side pole parasol, which can rotate and tilt.

However, to provide a rough cost based on a 4m telescopic parasol, we’d suggest an approximate figure of between £5000-£6000.


If you’d like to contact us regarding a parasol for your pub, restaurant or bar then please contact us here and our expert team will be on hand to assist you.

Alternatively, if a parasol doesn’t suit your venue, you could consider our range of canopies, pergolas and awnings.

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