This coastal classic gets rave reviews for its comfort, convenience, and clever storage pockets. And that’s precisely why you need it.

By Kimberly Holland
May 13, 2018
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If you could create the beach chair of your dreams, it might just be the Tommy Bahama Backpack Cooler Chair ($53,

This beach chair-meets-backpack (it has comfortable straps that allow you to wear it like a backpack, so you can be hands-free) boasts a variety of smart storage spots, including an insulated pouch for keeping drinks and snacks cool, a zip-up pocket that’s the perfect size for a beach read or tablet, a cell phone holster, and drink holder. It pretty much has a place for everything you need for a day at the beach in one easy-to-tote package.


If the backpack element feels a little too childish, just envision all of the other things you might get stuck hauling to the shore. You’ll be thrilled to have two free hands to carry coolers, umbrellas, and even kiddos. And with so many personal pockets on the chair itself, you may not even need a separate beach bag.

Once you’ve chosen the perfect spot in the sand, you can stash your phone in the handy armrest-adjacent pocket, which is also big enough to hold a book. Right next to it is a fabric drink holder that keeps sand from clinging to condensation-cloaked beverages. You can also keep your phone away from sand, sun, and splashes of water.

The aluminum frame is wide for comfortable lounging, and it has five adjustable positions so you can move from sitting up to fully reclining easily. Not all beach chairs will recline so far. A neck roll strapped to the top of the chair won’t slip or slides off, but you can flip it over if you prefer to go without. An upper leg provides back support when the chair is fully reclined, and it doubles as a towel bar when you’re sitting up.

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Ready to pack up and head home? The chair converts into a backpack with padded straps. Those come in handy for long walks to the shore. However, the chair isn’t weighty—it’s just under eight pounds—so even younger beach bums can lend a helping hand.

With 4.5 stars, the value and quality of this chair is clear from its more than 1,500 reviews: “I saw someone with this chair on the beach and was sold,” says Amazon reviewer Resa. “The material is sturdy, the quality of the arms is much better than those made of wood, and it's water resistant.”

Tommy Bahama has several colors and patterns for this popular beach chair backpack style. You’re sure to find one that meets your seaside aesthetic.