Anya Meyerowitz

Guest Luxury Lifestyle & Travel Writer



What to Pack for a Beach Escape

‘When one is tired of the city, one is tired of life,’ this is a statement long-mused over by weary urban dwellers toying with the idea of migrating away from their concrete-clad metropolis. But, we disagree. Allowing yourself to be seduced by far-flung heat and the exotic tropics is not a symptom of apathy toward your day-to-day, but rather an innate understanding of your worth - and the importance of balance.

A beach escape - with its great long stretches of golden sand, secret coves, feisty waves that sooth our soul and the harbours clinking with sailing boats and wine glasses - is a sojourn entirely the opposite of feeling ‘tired of life’, it signifies a thirst for it, and we intend to revel in it guilt-free.

So, well-heeled sunseekers, now that’s sorted, there’s more important matters to consider: like, what to pack for a beach escape? Putting together a warm weather wardrobe list might sound tiresome, but for a stress-free stopover, following a tried-and-tested formula of interchangeable pieces is a must. Below, we’ve curated a beach escape wardrobe that is as versatile as it is en-vogue, with interchangeable pieces alongside timeless classics and a smattering of current catwalk flair.

We won’t bore you with all the holiday must-haves (phone chargers and the like), these are sartorial essentials only…

Here’s to honey-hued sands, sapphire seas, and la dolce vita.

The swimwear

Let’s get our priorities straight, when basking on a beach break, you want your swimwear to make a splash. But in fact, the search for the best bathing suit can leave you feeling as though you’re drowning. It pays to remember that a versatile, wear-anywhere one-piece will tick all the boxes – if you shop for a style with timeless appeal, it’ll last you for seasons to come.

Karen Millen White Swimsuit

For a simple, flattering silhouette, this full coverage swimsuit couples a sweeping wrap-over front offset with a buckled belt at the waist for added visual interest, and drawing on the designs coming out of the world’s haute couture fashion houses.

Karen Millen Yellow Bikini

Some swimwear pieces are born to be dripping off a yacht skipping across the azure waters somewhere, and this statement two-piece is a perfect example. The bold yellow hue is both reigned in and offset by the colour-block black trim, which helps to give the halter neck top and tie back more of a platform too.

Karen Millen Black Bikini

As far as summer wardrobe staples go, when it comes to beachwear, a black swimsuit is an essential. Similar to a white t-shirt, flat sandal, or day dress, a one or two-piece suit in classic black is timeless in design, always a good investment, and a smart sartorial choice. Our personal black swimwear piece of choice this year is this adjustable strap bikini, crafted from partially recycled polyester, featuring a gleaming gold bar closure and a full-coverage fit for relaxed sand-surrounded lounging year-after-year.

The coverup

Putting together the perfect beach or poolside outfit means much more than selecting a bikini or a one-piece. A thoughtfully styled swimsuit cover-up helps to bring the entire look together and makes for an easy transition from the water to pool, from paddling to lunch or from sunlounger to the bar. Ensure yours is equal parts comfortable, stylish and versatile, and in return, it will – quite literally – have you covered during your beach escape.

Karen Millen Logo Belted Kimono

The dresses

What to pack for a beach escape will differ depending on destination and climate, but a staple across any summer - or sunshine-filled - wardrobe is the dress. Not only are easy, stylish, single-item outfits an essential (we don’t wait to waste precious sunbathing time), they’re also a demure way to show some skin, showcase the season’s biggest trends and have a bit of fun with accessories.

Karen Millen Linen Midi Dress

Breathable, lightweight fabrics are key to surviving the dog days of summer, thus a linen dress provides perfect wardrobe relief. The material has been a bit of a slow burn for fashion insiders, the breakout trend of the season is finally getting the love it deserves. Which is why this linen midi dress, with its simple, feminine design, is a beach break triumph. Falling elegantly to mid-calf length, this piece shows off a neat row of glossy buttons, waist-cinching belt and V-neckline to tease a touch of skin.

Karen Millen Green Kimono Dress

Just like time, we know that space is of the essence when heading on a beach escape - and even a Business Class boost doesn’t always mean you can pack haphazardly. However, you’ll never regret giving extra room to more dresses, and so we’re adding this dramatic woven maxi to our sartorial vitals. Featuring fluttering flared sleeves and a swishy silhouette, it’s perfect for the warmer days of spring and comes intricately embellished with hundreds of light-catching beads.

The top

Whether you're a minimalist looking for an exciting take on the tank top or a maximalist who is a firm believer in more being more, a feel-good, statement top can crown a warm weather wardrobe.

Karen Millen Geo Knit Halter Neck Top

Exuding Riviera glamour (les grandes vacances, anyone?), this slinky metallic-flecked jersey halter top is a dawn ‘til dusk piece, ensuring that you’ll take golden hour with you wherever you travel. Trimmed with a gleaming gold chain strap, meaning you can save space on chunky gold necklaces or earrings – simply tuck it into high-waisted white culottes or a floaty colourblock skirt and you’re ready to dance through the day (and into the night, no doubt).

The shorts

When it comes to what to pack for a beach escape, you can certainly get by without bringing a pair of shorts, but they’re a handy throw-on should you find a pair that doesn’t shout ‘all-inclusive’.

Karen Millen Green Linen Shorts

Back to linen with these versatile shorts, and, given our al fresco intentions this summer, it’s perhaps unsurprising that we’re taking inspiration from the shade range of Mother Nature’s own wardrobe this season. Crafted in a breezy linen-blend fabric, these shorts are tailored with a flared leg and ribbed waist for optimal comfort. And the piece de resistance? Pockets.

The shoes

Any fashion-lover worth their salt knows that a beach escape is not an excuse to don flipflops day-in, day-out. Your shoes, even by the sea, are still the life and soul of your sandy summer wardrobe, and the final flourish to lace a look together. Platforms are certainly enjoying a resurgence on the catwalk, offering effortless height and style, and can be repurposed throughout the al fresco entertainment season, at countryside weddings, upscale picnics, Ladies Day at the races.

Espadrille platform sandals

Elegant, striking and sweeping up several of the summer’s biggest trends into one standout shoe, these espadrille platforms are leg-elongating and flattering, as well as pillowy-soft to wear throughout the day. Featuring a heel height of 11.5cm, the upper is crafted in buttery-soft leather, while the rattan detailing brings a beachy-twist to the overall feel. Pop them on with long, tailored trousers for a peep of glamour or pair with a midi dress for a more glamorous evening look.

Taking inspiration from the biscuit-hued sands, the espadrilles are also available in a metallic gold, simultaneously blending in with your beachy-surrounds while elevating that glowy golden tan.

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