There’s no piece of furniture that evokes summer relaxation more than the outdoor chaise longue.
On a warm summer day, “they’re something that people gravitate toward,” said Tommy Zung, the principal of New York-based Studio Zung — whether that’s by the side of a large pool in the Hamptons or sitting under an umbrella in a tiny backyard.
To choose the right model for your outdoor space, consider how much you’ll lounge wet and dry, advised Mr. Zung, whose firm has designed not only beach houses on the East End of Long Island but also its own line of surfboards.
On a deck or terrace, cushy upholstery might be desirable, but by a pool, “you want it to be permeable, to dry off and enjoy the feeling of the warm sun on your skin,” he said, in which case wood slats or an airy fabric sling might be better.
Is it worth the investment to buy a high-quality chaise made of teak, ipe or powder-coated steel? Only if you don’t want to buy a replacement next year.
As Mr. Zung put it: “You buy it once and buy it right.”
Should it have wheels? In any space where people might want to reposition a chaise, wheels add convenience. “If it doesn’t have wheels, people scrape the deck,” Mr. Zung said. Exceptions include rooftops and terraces where you want furniture to remain in place.
What kind of fabric is best for cushions? For long-term durability, Mr. Zung recommended looking for UV-resistant fabrics, like those from Sunbrella.
Does it need an adjustable backrest? It’s not essential, but if you want to be able to lie flat for a nap after reading a book, it’s a good idea.
Kinney Teak Chaise
Teak chaise with powder-coated steel legs and cushion
$1,300 at Crate and Barrel: 800-967-6696 or crateandbarrel.com
Cape Outdoor Chaise
Aluminum chaise with fabric sling and wheels
$549 at EQ3: 888-988-2014 or eq3.com
Hefty teak chaise by Gommaire Cleybergh
From $2,995 at Restoration Hardware: 800-762-1005 or rh.com
Powder-coated steel-mesh chaise
$699 at Room & Board: 800-301-9720 or roomandboard.com