Preparing for a summer holiday is always an exciting time, with the expectation of sea, sun and sand waiting just around the corner.
To help you pack the very best in menswear for your next trip – be it to the Caribbean islands or beaches of Cornwall – we’re set to showcase the leading swimwear brands on the market, whose designs are sure to serve you well wherever you’re travelling to.
If you’ve ever noticed a lack of sophisticated options when it comes to men’s swimwear, it’s time you discovered Orlebar Brown.
Photographer Adam Brown founded the British label in 2007 after spotting a gap in the market for smarter designs that could take you from pool to bar, partly in response to the high street’s penchant for baggy, ill-fitting board shorts.
Since then, Orlebar Brown has gone on to become a market leader in the luxury resortwear market, continually turning out designs that look just as good in or out of the pool.
Collaborations with the likes of Emilio Pucci, Condé Nast Traveller and Gieves and Hawkes have turned its now iconic silhouettes, such as the Bulldog, into summer wardrobe staples for the style-conscious gent.
Available at Orlebar Brown.
French swimwear specialist Vilebrequin began its vibrant life back in 1971, after being dreamed up by photographer and automobile journalist Fred Prysquel in Saint Tropez. It was his passion for cars and all things quirky that lead him to give the brand its title, translating into English as ‘crankshaft’.
However, popular surfing styles of the time inspired him to venture into swimwear, setting out to produce more eye-catching, looser styles that would not only look the part, but perform at a high level too. The spinnaker cloth used to create the brand’s designs mean its shorts dry quickly in the sun, making them ideal for holidaymakers across France and beyond.
Today, this mix of fun and practical stands strong, with its technical swim shorts coming in a range of graphic colours and prints, all designed and produced in Europe.
Available at uk.vilebrequin.com.
It’s highly likely you’ve already heard of Speedo, whether it was the swimwear brand of choice for your school swimming lessons or you’ve ventured into a the swim shorts section of any high street sports store in recent years.
Its popularity is founded on a rich history dating back to 1928, when its Scottish founder emigrated to Australia and began manufacturing bathing suits through his knitting mill, originally reserved for underwear.
Quickly becoming the brand of choice for Olympic athletes and keen swimmers alike, Speedo’s popularity soared without ever really faltering. Now available in over 177 countries worldwide, the brand offers a comprehensive range of swimwear for men and women, from goggles and shorts to full suits and beach accessories.
Along with its classic skintight swim shorts, Speedo continues to produce stylish designs for everyone from the pool novice to seasoned expert.
Available at speedostore.co.uk.
In an effort to make the world around him as colourful as his artwork, businessman and art collector Jean ‘Johnny’ Pigozzi founded Limoland in 2007 – a brand that would reflect his free-spirited creativity and love for travel.
Since its birth, Limoland’s bold and brave aesthetic has cut through the noise of simple swimwear, all while focusing on comfort and practicality, alongside style. While other ready-to-wear pieces are now part of its collections, swimwear remains a tight focus for the brand, consistently preparing the quirkier fashion fan for a summer by the pool.
To this day, Pigozzi remains at the helm for the brand, allowing his artistic eye and worldly experiences to shine through as strong as ever.
While London may not have the best weather for poolside dwelling, it is the home city that bred young and hedonistic swimwear label Boardies. Capturing the essence of summer around the world – from Hollywood pool parties to club nights in Ibiza – the British brand has both partying and practicality at its heart.
Each pair of its swim shorts is made from innovative fabric designed to dry at super speed, while prints and patterns range from bold geometric graphics to updated florals. A considered range of lengths and fits add another level to its product selection, catering to men of all shapes and sizes.
It’s this continued commitment to high quality and great design that has landed it a range of high profile stockists across its relatively short life span, with Boardies now available at Topman, Selfridges, Present London and ASOS in the UK.
Available at boardiesapparel.com.
Starting out with just one artisanal beach bat in its inventory, British label Frescobol Carioca has bloomed into a fully-fledged resortwear brand since its launch in 2009, all the time embodying the spirit and style of Rio de Janeiro.
Keeping things effortlessly cool across the board, the label’s designs range from laid-back beach shorts to throw-on linen shirts, perfect for jumping out of the pool and making a beeline for the bar. Whether you prefer sporty styles or tailored shorts, this label offers both with a high level of sophistication and flair.
Prints come from the pavements of Brazil’s mosaic coastal boardwalks, while colours are taken from the vibrant energy of the seaside city’s world renowned carnivals, all adding to the authentic feel of the label. Add British tailoring expertise into the mix and you’ve got the best of both worlds.