The Jacuzzi: How a Family’s Quest for Healing Led to a Global Brand
Candido Jacuzzi never imagined that his last name would become a renowned global brand. What initially started as an attempt to alleviate his son’s physical pain eventually turned into a business that brought both fortune and turmoil to the family. The iconic Jacuzzi, beloved by people worldwide, began as a way to help Kenneth Jacuzzi, a young boy suffering from juvenile rheumatoid arthritis. This is the story of a family empire built on the foundation of love and dedication.
A Family United
The Jacuzzi family, consisting of seven brothers, played a central role in the creation and growth of the brand. Growing up in Casarsa, a farming commune in Northern Italy, the Jacuzzis were hardworking individuals. Money was scarce, but their devoutly religious parents, Teresa and Giovanni, instilled strong values in their thirteen children. The boys pursued engineering while the girls trained as seamstresses. As war threatened Europe, Giovanni devised a plan to bring his sons to the United States. They scattered across the country, working hard to earn money and bring the rest of the family over.
Building a Foundation
Establishing a machine shop in Berkeley in 1915, the brothers utilized their engineering backgrounds to work on irrigation systems and deep-well injector pumps. They eventually entered the swimming pool supplies industry. However, their breakthrough came when Candido’s son fell ill in 1943. Doctors gave a grim prognosis, and the family tried various treatments. Hydrotherapy at a hospital in Berkeley showed promise, but the commute was challenging for the young boy. Inez, Candido’s wife, suggested creating a similar therapy at home. This led to the development of the J-300, a pump that provided a whirl of warm water, offering relief to Kenneth. Recognizing its health potential, the brothers refined the design, paving the way for the birth of the Jacuzzi.
A Leisure Activity’s Rise and Fall
The Jacuzzi quickly gained popularity through ad campaigns promoting it as a portable hydromassage unit for relaxation and therapeutic purposes. The Jacuzzi brothers addressed concerns about combining water and electricity by creating bath units with the technology built-in. Fiberglass panels allowed for customization, resulting in the Luxury Line Hydro-Therapy Pool in 1966. The brand’s recognition grew throughout the 80s, with factories established worldwide. However, as similar designs emerged and the market became saturated, the Jacuzzi’s allure waned. Concerns about hygiene and a shift in cultural trends contributed to its declining popularity.
The Jacuzzi’s journey from a simple solution for a boy’s pain to a global brand reflects the power of family unity and the pursuit of healing. While its popularity may have faded, the Jacuzzi will forever be remembered as an iconic symbol of relaxation and luxury. As times change and new innovations emerge, the Jacuzzi’s legacy as a pioneer in hydrotherapy remains a testament to the Jacuzzi family’s unwavering determination and commitment to improving lives.