How can you make a day at the beach an adventure that doesn’t compromise your personal style? If you’re a design maven, the average beach chair or umbrella may leave you feeling underwhelmed. Fear not, style maven. Our correspondent Julie Chang Murphy has curated a list of the best high design gear and toys perfect for a fashion lover’s stylish summer at the beach in 2021, including towels, chairs, coolers and umbrellas.
is there actually good beach gear and toys for those who love high design and style?
Beach season is here and we are in the mood to refresh all our gear. At the risk of sounding disheveled and unorganized, it’s always a mixed bag when we bring out all the stuff from last summer. Those chairs seem a little more rusty. The umbrellas won’t open. Our toys and bags seem permanently caked with sand and mildew. And don’t even ask where the towels are…somehow they got repurposed for the pets or some other household chaos over the past year.[white_box]
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This summer, we vow no more! We will update our gear AND take care of it.
We have long embraced our summer beach body as the one we have but improving the backdrop on which we lounge — that’s totally in our control (and way less triggering.) Also, we searched for the most stylish beach towels, chairs and umbrellas so that your beach pics look Insta-ready. And, we’ve got the best beach coolers and toys to make that beach day as enjoyable as you’ve anticipated in real life. Don’t forget to check out our beach read recommendations here and you’ll be good to go!
high design beach gear and toys for a chic day at the beach in summer 2021
best gear and toys 2021 with a strong design element: Beach Towels
The pleasure of a premium beach towel is an underrated pleasure. Here are our picks for the plushest and most beautiful textiles that will illicit all the ooh and aahs.
French label Eres has been making our favorite swimsuits for years so we were predisposed to love their towels too. This emerald green abstract print is an eye-catching alternative to all the typical pastel beach colors which makes finding your spot after a swim much easier.
BUY NOW – $398
Jet-setting isn’t all glitz and glamour. You need your siestas too. Who doesn’t love a two-in-one? This tote to towel even has a padded pillow.
BUY NOW – $750
This vibrant towel sets a sexy, rock and roll vibe for the beach. Just add a leopard print bikini and shades.
BUY NOW – $530
Inspired by carefree Australian summers, this luxe towel has a sunny, optimistic design with a soft velour backing, perfect for lying on.
BUY NOW – $62
5. serena & lily
Serena & Lily’s breezy Cali style is made for luxurious beach days. We love this round towel design with a vintage-inspired botanical print.
BUY NOW – $78[white_box]
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best gear and toys 2021 with a strong design element: Beach Chairs
A beach chair can make or break the day. These win points for style and comfort meaning you and your crew can keep hanging out for as long as possible.
1. sunday supply
Sunday Supply’s lightweight chairs are super stylish with modern, custom designed cushions. They also come with a convenient back storage pocket for your thriller and SPF.
BUY NOW – $149
There’s something so elevated about a teak lounge chair. This one has a hammock style seat so make sure you have your drink nearby because you’ll never want to get up.
BUY NOW – $248
3. cgi outdoor at rei
Two words: zero gravity. This minimal chair does a lot with its streamlined profile. In addition to reclining to hold your body in a weightless position, it also comes with a padded headrest, beverage and phone holder.
BUY NOW – $110
We love the simple, retro look of this chair but rest assured, it comes with modern updates. Think rust proof aluminum framing and UV, mold and mildew resistant webbing!
BUY NOW – $69
5. serena & lily
This classic teak beach chair comes with convenient backpack straps so you look as graceful and effortless schlepping to the beach as you do sunbathing.
BUY NOW – $298[white_box]
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best gear and toys 2021 with a strong design element: beach Umbrellas and Tents
Every group has a few people who want to avoid the sun. Welcome them under these stylish umbrellas and tents set a convivial and intimate mood.
1. business & pleasure co
We love the the 70s vibe of this gorgeous colorblocked umbrella from a team of Aussies and California girls. It opens up to provide 6 feet of shade and is made with marine grade materials to last many summers.
BUY NOW – $299
2. cool cabanas
I know I’m always jealous when I see people with one of these tents on the beach. I assumed it was too cumbersome but this one folds down into the size of a duffel bag and weighs under 13lbs.
BUY NOW – $199
3. cg gear at rei
Sand free? Sign us up! This low to the shore umbrella comes with patented sand-free technology sidewalls.
BUY NOW – $59.95
4. business & pleasure co
This tent was made for Instagram pics with its cheery yellow stripes, set against the ocean blue. Say cheese!
BUY NOW – $299
5. frankford umbrellas
Sometimes old-fashioned is best — Frankford has been making heavy duty commercial grade umbrellas for over 120 years. This version tilts where you need it and withstands all the elements.
BUY NOW – $125[white_box]
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best gear and toys 2021 with a strong design element: Beach Coolers
Never get stranded at the beach with hangry kids again! And as adults say, it’s always happy hour somewhere.
The be-all and end-all in coolers made a backpack version for easier transport. This design efficiently distributes the weight of your goods while promising superior cold-holding, a 100% leakproof zipper, and a tough DryHide™ Shell.
BUY NOW – $299.99
Designed in Colorado and made in the USA, Otterbox is a reliable and durable cooler that is built to keep ice up to 14 days. It can accommodate many accessories like cutting boards, side tables and separators to configure for your singular adventures.
BUY NOW – $299.99
3. igloo coolers
Flashback to summer camp! We’ve got a soft spot for these retro picnic basket coolers. They come in 5 fun, punchy color combos that instantly brighten up the party.
BUY NOW – $49.99
4. picnic time adventure wagon
You didn’t come to mess around. This folding utility wagon has heavy-duty wheels and a telescopic handle so you can roll in with the party. The inner liner is waterproof and can convert into a giant ice cooler.
BUY NOW – $215.95
The Tundra 65 is Yeti’s the most versatile model for storing food and beverages. Its extra-thick walls hold up to three inches of insulation for unmatched temperature retention.
BUY NOW – $349.99[white_box]
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best gear and toys 2021 with a strong design element: Beach Toys
Last, but not least, it’s always a good idea to have beach toys on hand to liven up the action (and make new friends.)
Say goodbye to cracked plastic toys. This classic bucket set is made of flexible silicone and has Scandi good looks to go with it.
BUY NOW – $44.99
2. serena & lily
This coastal themed bocce set is perfect long afternoons on the shore. It would also make a great hostess gift if you’ve scored a coveted invite to a friend’s beach house.
BUY NOW – $348
3. uncommon goods
Playing catch with a ball is so pedestrian. Try this soaring galleon instead. Each kite is handmade by Balinese artisans from nylon and locally sourced bamboo.
BUY NOW – $42
4. fun boy
This summer’s trendiest float is this pastel dream jet ski. Just in time for a photo opp!
BUY NOW -$99
5. pottery barn kids
Get ready to have a ball with the happiest, most magical beach ball on the market. Rainbows! Sequins! Who could ask for more?
BUY NOW – $29.50
The most stylish beach gear you need for the perfect Summer day.
That’s our take on the best high design and fashion beach gear and toys for summer 2021, including beach towels, chairs, coolers, and umbrellas. It’s just about everything you need for a perfect summer day, dear reader. Enjoy!