- airstream's tommy bahama relax edition merges two brands to bring the beach to the world of #vanlife.
- tommy bahama branding fills the coach with images of marlins and plant life and even has its own specially built alcohol holster.
- it's built using the mercedes sprinter, and those looking for airstream quality but not a life dedicated to margaritas and the beach can get a coach without the tommy bahama branding.
ahead of the covid-19 pandemic, the idea of vanlife was an amusing daydream for many. it's good to think that our nomadic tendencies and desire to "get away from it all" can be personified in a vehicle that doesn't have to involve the 14-point turn a full-size rv requires to park at the campsite. then shelter-in-place orders kick-started our desire to go somewhere, anywhere, in a safe manner, and spending time in a van with the family became less of a pipe dream and potentially the most logical choice for a summer vacation in 2020. with that in mind, we present the official camper van of relaxation, the airstream tommy bahama relax edition.
as its name implies, it’s a beach-themed high-end coach that begs for a nonstop soundtrack of jimmy buffett and reggae jams wafting out of the sliding side door. it's based on a mercedes-benz sprinter 2500 or 3500, depending on whether you want a van that sleeps four or up to nine. all models have a 3.0-liter turbo-diesel engine making 188 horsepower and 325 lb-ft of torque, with a towing capacity of 5000 pounds. the vans are prewired for satellite tv and have a microwave, a refrigerator, built-in shower and toilet, a two-burner stove, and touchscreen controls. that includes control over the electric awning that'll keep the harsh rays off you while you chill in your swanky tommy bahama–branded chair.
speaking of the tommy bahama brand, the exterior only hints at the tie-in via a badge and large marlin on the rear window. it's once you enter this altar to chillaxing that you feel you've gained access to a lifestyle doused in rum that likely ends each day with an on-the-beach fish fry or a shared towering plate of nachos topped with mango salsa.
inside, the first wood paneling visible is etched with the outline of tropical plants, offering a quick reminder that you're living the beach lifestyle even if you're not actually at the beach. it also helps that the galley comes with a bar/holster capable of holding various types and sizes of alcohol and mixers (you can't make a margarita without mixers). while you're building your cocktail the metal backing adjacent to the booze box reminds you to "live the island life."
the island-life branding continues with marlins sewn into the headrests of the driver and passenger seats. the pillows, towels, and bedding continue the plant theme. one pillow is even riddled with the words paradise, relax, weekend, retreat, and, of course, tommy bahama. specially made glasses, cooler, beach chair, and awning are all designed to remind you that taking it easy is brought to you by the tommy bahama brand.
the island vibe wraps itself around airstream quality and dedication to making traveling less of a headache than just tossing all your gear into a random van. the tommy bahama relax edition interstate nineteen model, with a floor plan to seat four, is the base model, starting at $166,196. airstream also offers larger interstate grand tour or interstate lounge models, with floor-plan seating scenarios for either seven or nine respectively, priced starting just over $190,000. all models sleep two—because when the beach party ends, you don’t have to go home, but you can’t stay here.
unsurprisingly, airstream says that the tommy bahama relax edition sells best in states with beaches, specifically california and florida.
if you're not a fan of beach-themed fun, there are also regular airstream coaches that have the same features without the tommy bahama branding. but where's the fun in that? none of those airstreams will make you hum margaritaville as you meander down the coast living the beach life.