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Our Story

The Puma family, Tom, Donna and daughter Stephanie became the 4th owners of this Sanibel Island landmark when they bought the store in June of 2007. ​ The Pumas put their own spin on the business including re-introducing gelato to the Pinocchio’s brand upon returning to the disciplines of the original owners, John and Arthur created who created the Sanibel shop in 1980 and mastered their own gelato techniques while living abroad in their Tuscan home in Arezzo, Italy. The Puma’s also spend time each year in Italy, France and Spain working with gelato artisans in the hopes of returning with flavor inspirations for the Pinocchio’s brand.

Time flew quickly as the Puma family operated the Sanibel store and grew the business  until they sold the store as a franchise on November 1, 2017.  That decision did not prove prudent for the business and the family. As a result, that Pinocchio's franchise location no longer exists and Pinocchio's no longer offers franchise opportunities. Instead, the Puma Family redirects their efforts to growing the brand with the return to Sanibel Island where it all began with an exciting new location in Periwinkle Place Shopping Center and with the addition of a new location in Ft. Myers, a short distance from the Sanibel causeway in the Village Shoppes at Health Park.


Finally, our loyal Customers will be able to enjoy our award winning signature frozen confections such as Sanibel Krunch ©, Dirty Sand Dollar ©, Wedding Bells ©, Gator Stew © and many other unique flavors that are part of the Pinocchio's brand as well as our signature named products such as the Beach Walk Sundae © , Sea Turtle ©, Tropical Temptation © and other Sundaes and distinct smoothies in addition to our very popular Cafe Captiva © frappuccino at both locations.

We ask our loyal Customers, fans and Pinocchio's ice cream aficionados to stay tuned for future announcements regarding the Pinocchio's brand. 


We cannot control the color of the brightly painted green interior walls in the other shops, but we can control our brand recognition which has been synonymous with Pinocchio's award winning unique flavors and products as well as out loyal Customer fan base.

The Puma’s continue to maintain a personal and vested interest in the continued success of Pinocchio's. They are the officers of Pinocchio’s Original Italian Ice Cream  and they are owners of other branded products such as the creations of the SANIBEL BLOSSOM ©, Croissants and CRODOLES ® (Croissant Donut Holes). 

It is also of personal importance to the Puma family that Pinocchio’s continues to produce quality unique handcrafted frozen convections while attaining continued customer loyalty and satisfaction. 

The   Puma  Family

Pinocchio's Life is Cool! Original Italian Ice Cream is a registered trademark owned by the Puma family. No other person or business has the right or authority, legal or otherwise to use the name, logo, trademark, branding or intellectual property including Pinocchio's recipes without permission by the owners. Failure to obtain permission will constitute trademark infringement. 

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