Hawaiian Tropic is a brand of suntan lotion sold worldwide, but more widely available in the United States.The Company was founded by Ron Rice in 1969. With a $500.00 loan from his Father, he mixed the first batch of Natural Suncare Product in a metal trash can and bottled it from his home garage. After rapid success, he became the largest private manufacturer of sun care products in the United States until being acquired in May 2007 by Playtex Products, Inc. which when combined with Playtex"s other brand of sun care, Banana Boat, made Playtex the largest manufacturer of sun care products in the Western Hemisphere. Shortly thereafter, Playtex Products was purchased by Energizer Holdings Inc. in a deal valued at $1.9 billion.
The company sponsored bikini ikini competitions to seek women to serve as spokesmodels for their products. Many winners appeared later in advertising campaigns, swimwear, erotic magazines, and lingerie catalogs. In late 2006, a company opened a theme restaurant called Hawaiian Tropic Zone in New York City near Times Square, advertised as the "Hottest Place on Earth" and using the Hawaiian Tropic Zone name under license. The restaurant featured waitresses in bikinis designed by Nicole Miller and a menu by chef David Burke. Later that year, four former employees sued the restaurant, alleging chronic groping by managers and a rape.Restaurateur Dennis Riese and nightclub owner Adam Hock have ownership interests in the restaurant. The restaurant closed in mid-2010. In May 2008, the Hawaiian Tropic(R) Brand celebrated the 25th Annual Miss Hawaiian Tropic International(R) Model Search Finals at The Golden Nugget Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.