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Nautica Eyewear
Aboard the Ventura, an authentic 1921 sailing yacht, David Chu is a man in his element. He poses graciously on the vessel for 20/20?s photo shoot along New York?s Hudson River, his youthful grin belying his 44 years.

In a navy V-neck sweater and blazer, tan chinos, sockless loafers and fashionable tortoise eyeglasses, he exemplifies the look he has created for active men the world over. He is founder, CEO and designer of Nautica, the global sportswear and casualwear giant.

Chu?s debut collection was a literal take on the sailing theme. "The first group of clothing was nautical-inspired," he notes. "It was simple and rugged with a palette redolent of nautical flags. I used royal blues, reds, whites and deep grays."

The company launched with flying colors in the States. International recognition soon followed. With distribution in almost 50 countries, Nautica has become an international brand. "Nautica was started in the U.S. and it has a casual American lifestyle attitude," says Chu. "But if you travel internationally, and I do, you find a love of the nautical concept everywhere. It?s a universal idea."


"The consumer is much more sophisticated and choosy today, so you have to stay on top of everything, be open-minded and absorb what?s out there." -David Chu

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Marchon?s president, Al Berg, approached Chu about an eyewear partnership after seeing a range of Nautica products. "When I first met with Al I was excited," says Chu. "He believed in the Nautica concept and he put his team and resources behind it, making it an international reality. That?s how I run my business, so it was a great fit."

In addition to Marchon?s global presence, the eyewear company brought technical expertise and optical industry experience to the partnership. "You can have the best of everything?materials, lenses, shapes and colors?but if you don?t have the right fit the eyewear won?t work. Marchon knows fit and that is one of the reasons the Nautica eyewear license went to them." says Chu.

See more Nautica sunglasses from FramesDirect.com "I design each Nautica sunglass and eyeglass for technical function and style. Marchon?s team enhances these features by making sure each frame is comfortable," he notes.

Chu plays an active role in the development of the ophthalmic and sun frames in the Nautica collection. "I?m involved in every aspect of the evolution of the eyewear from day one," he says. "I work closely with Marchon. We talk about what we want to achieve each season. They show me lots of raw materials and I comb through them, choosing the shape, hinges and frame materials."

Nautica Eyewear design details include "invisible" spring hinges (enclosed within the structure of the temple), hinges inspired by a sailing vessel?s winch and sculpted temples crafted to resemble ocean waves. Frame materials include a thin metal-alloy more malleable than stainless steel. Each sunglass features polarized, conventional plastic lenses that are A-R coated on the back. The lenses also offer 100 percent UVA and UVB protection.

Like Chu himself, Nautica strikes a balance of classic and modern. "Nautica?s position is classic, functional and modern," says Chu. "We don?t try to be all things to all people. We cater to someone who enjoys classic styling, but is a little bit on the edge. It?s important for me to have a signature feel?for each product to convey what Nautica stands for."

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Reprinted Courtesy 20/20 magazine
Popular Nautica Eyeglass Models
N7092 | N2002 | N7900 | N7091 | N9505 | N2004 | N7815 | N9006 | N3003/1 | N7116 |
 
Popular Nautica Sunglass Models
Ralik Pol  | Buoy Polarized  | Serenity  | Escapade Polarized  | N6105S Pol | Tranquility  | N5502S | N6102S | Schooner  | N5035S POL |
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