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The MVP of every summer wardrobe may very well be the caftan. Or cover-up. Call it what you like, these glamorous, chic, flowing and comfortable robes will take you from the beach to the bar effortlessly. Our Fashion Editor has an edit of the best luxury designer caftans and beach cover-ups for wearing day to night from top brands, including Johanna Ortiz, Oscar de la Renta, lemlem and more.

In the height of summer, if it’s not breezy and nonchalant then we don’t want to wear it. Thankfully there’s a garment that’s been around since the 16th century the satisfies those requirements on the most steamy days.

Caftans (or Kaftans) originated in Persia and eventually became popular throughout the Arab world. Worn by both men and women, these loose-fitting robes, often made of the finest materials and displayed beautiful embellishments, were favored by scholars and high-ranking officials who were part of the urban elite. Today, they’re associated with a glamorous, barefoot luxury lifestyle that’s not only well-suited for lounging post-beach, but even as evening wear.

Ahead we’ve curated the ultimate edit of caftans – long, short, casual, fancy— all fabulous and most of all, comfy and lightweight. From resort brands like Johanna Ortiz and Pippa Holt to designers like Oscar de la Renta and Mary Katrantzou, here are twelve of our favorite luxury designer caftans and beach cover-ups of the summer 2023 season.

12 best designer caftans and cover-ups of Summer 2023

1. Oscar de la Renta

Crafted from luminous silk, this abstract painterly print captures the gorgeous tones of sun, waves, and sand. We love the handkerchief hem that adds to its flowing, bohemian mood.

best stylish caftans for Summer

BUY NOW – $3,190.00.

2. La Vie Style House

We love the retro styling of this mini caftan that’s just begging to be styled with a high ponytail and giant, black sunglasses. With whimsical, three-dimensional floral lace, it’s perfect for being the life of the party on a yacht or a wedding.

best stylish caftans for Summer

BUY NOW – $750.00.

3. Pippa Holt

If you’re looking for a more traditional handcrafted kaftan, look no further than former British Vogue stylist Pippa Holt’s eponymous line. Each piece takes over four weeks to complete by one of 400 artisans in the village of San Colorado in the Mexican state of Oaxaca.

best stylish caftans for Summer

BUY NOW – $594.00.

4. Charo Ruiz Kayla

Straight from Ibiza, this broderie anglaise caftan is as effortless as it is sultry. Throw on over your swimwear or pair with shorts and lounge the day away.

best stylish caftans for Summer

BUY NOW – $185.00.

5. lemlem

Supermodel Liya Kebede’s collection of resort wear is made entirely and responsibly in Africa, with a core mission of preserving the local art of weaving in Ethiopia. This long caftan dress is rendered in soft hand-spun cotton and embellished with textured white dots, playfully placed to fade-in and out on the deep ocean blue silhouette.

best stylish caftans for Summer

BUY NOW – $365.00.

6. Kilometre Paris

This vibrant, airy cotton dress brings Jalouse magazine founder Alexandra Senes’ magical illustrations to life. We’re packing this one for all of our upcoming getaways.

BUY NOW – $813.00.

7. Johanna Ortiz

When you want to channel your inner summer goddess, something like this dramatic and glamorous caftan may come to mind. It’s leafy, it’s serpentine, and it’s just perfect.

BUY NOW – $1,995.00.

8. Farm Rio

No list of must-have caftans is complete without an option from this Brazilian cult label. This tropical statement piece exudes all the pretty and playful vibes.

BUY NOW – $232.00.

9. Mary Katrantzou

Crafted from an elegant silk crepe de Chine, this fluidly draped kaftan stands out from the crowd with its gorgeous pattern mixing. Pair with gold hoops and get ready to turn some heads.

BUY NOW – $1,750.00.

10. Frances Valentine

We love the vintage charm of this embroidered caftan. Part preppy with a bit of 70s flower child thrown in, it’s a one and done look for any summer gathering.

BUY NOW – $398.00.

11. 9seed

You can’t go wrong with a simple white kaftan for that Grecian island elegance. Rendered in crinkled cotton gauze, the ideal fabric for the hottest days, it’s also easy to dress up or down with a change of footwear.

BUY NOW  – $240.00.

12. Lisa Marie Fernandez

Part kaftan, part poncho, this sporty kaftan gets an elevated look with textured linen and an asymmetric hem. With a generous hood and kangaroo pockets, it’s the kind of cozy piece that makes us want to cuddle up on a hammock with a good book.

BUY NOW – $695.00.

best caftans and cover-ups of the Summer

There you have it — a dozen caftans to make this your most effortless and glamorous summer yet! Our picks for the luxury designer caftans and beach cover-ups best for wearing day to night this summer 2023 from brands including Johanna Ortiz, Oscar de la Renta, lemlem and more.

Julie Murphy

Julie began her career in fashion as a design intern at 3.1 Phillip Lim after graduating from Parsons School of Design. As the fashion editor at Dandelion Chandelier, she brings over a decade of experience as a designer and marketing creative to cover trends and styling.