Domingo Mariani arrived in Puerto Rico, from Corsica Island, in 1846. He settled in the mountains of Yauco, where he founded the Hacienda Santa Clara. The coffee he processed and exported helped Puerto Rico acquire world-wide renown.
Growing coffee in the shade was a common practice back then. Although various tree species were used to provide shade to the crops in Santa Clara, the most common were the pacay, guamá, guaraguao, palo de pollo, and guaba.
Halfway through last century, Santa Clara had to shut down, like many other Puerto Rican coffee haciendas. Sixty years later, Pablo Muñoz, a young descendant of Don Domingo, and his wife Mariana Suarez began to replant the Hacienda, and they created the coffee brand Cuatro Sombras ("four shades"), which they named after the trees that had protected the original harvests.
In February of 2011, they opened their first Micro-Roaster and Coffeehouse in Old San Juan, where they roast, grind, pack and serve their specialty coffees every day.