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The best portable beach chair.Posted Tuesday, July 3, 2007, at 7:21 AM ET
Nature is, among other things, uncomfortable. This is a fact often overlooked by chroniclers of the outdoors.
They are too busy remarking on its alleged beauty and so-called charm to notice that there's nowhere to sit.
And so God, in His infinite wisdom, gave us lawn chairs. But old-fashioned lawn chairs,
with their flimsy aluminum frames and fraying, crisscross mesh, leave much to be desired.
Fortunately, these days there are innumerable options when it comes to alfresco seating—so many choices, in fact,
that you might feel overwhelmed.
Take heart, however:Slate, in the form of me, has invested considerable time and significant effort evaluating portable outdoor chairs
in order to find you the best one.
This has meant hour upon hour, day after day, of sophisticated, scientific testing that would be, even if I had room to explain it here,
incomprehensible to the layman.
OK, mostly I sat in them. But I did enlist the assistance of several family members, including my mom, dad, and sister.
They sat in them, too. We Bartletts have long been known as judicious sitters. It's a point of family pride: We don't put our butts in just any old place.
Portability (10 possible points): An outdoor chair must be portable. If portability weren't a factor, you'd take your Barcalounger to the beach.
It should be relatively light and not cumbersome. A carrying strap is nice, too.
Ease of setup (10 possible points): If a chair takes more than, say, eight seconds to set up, I want no part of it.
Also, it shouldn't require instructions. Why? It's a chair, that's why.
Comfort (10 possible points): No bar should hit me in the back of the neck or knee. While I don't expect it to be as comfy as my couch,
I don't want to feel like I'm being tortured, either.
Design (10 possible points): A catch-all for attractiveness and features, with an emphasis on simplicity.
I like a nifty cup holder as much as the next guy, but let's not get too fancy.
The results, from crappy to cushy:
Renetto Canopy Chair, $49.99*
I'm writing this sentence while sitting outside in my Renetto. A guy just drove by and yelled something incomprehensible in my direction.
Same to you, buddy. He's probably just jealous of my chair. And why wouldn't he be? I like the Renetto so much I'm at a loss for words.
It's awesome. It's spiffy. It's the most portable chair I tested, folding up niftily into a non-goofy-looking backpack
(go to the Renetto Web site to see a movie of the chair folding in action). It's solid, stable, and comfortable.
And the retractable, ingenious sun canopy turns into the chair's carrying case. How about that?
Ease of Use: 9
Total: 35 HIGHEST RATING OF ALL CHAIRS REVIEWED!!!!
As its name suggests, the Renetto Beach Canopy caters to ocean-side use, partly because it features an attached sun-blocking canopy.
The chair reclines in three positions, as does the canopy. A 16-millimeter powder coated steel frame supports people up to six-foot-five and 250 pounds.
Color choices are blue, orange, maroon and hunter green.
The canopy also takes the form of a backpack, which lets users transport the chair.
The Renetto Beach Canopy has received awards and positive reviews from the Gizmondo website as well as "Slate," an online magazine.
Read more: Top Portable Chairs | eHow.com http://www.ehow.com/list_6770732_top-portable-chairs.html#ixzz1UCeTV3B1
The BEST Portable Chair
About five years ago, the foldout chair market exploded. And an arms race broke into full stride: Netted beer-holding technologies were developed, footrests sprung from nowhere and some...even learned to recline. Luckily, Slate reviewed a ton of fold-out beach chairs so you can own the BEST model at your next BBQ. And they were happy to report that the winner will only run you $49.99.
The Renetto Canopy Chair is reported as extremely portable, very comfortable and "spiffy," scoring 35/40 in their butts-on testing. The 16MM steel frame supports people up to 6'5" and 250lbs, and the chair features a canopy to block sun/rain/bird poopies. There you have it, scientific analysis at its best.