ALPS Mountaineering Rendezvous Review
Cons: Very low to ground, no head/neck support
Manufacturer: Alps Mountaineering
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Our Analysis and Test Results
The Rendezvous is a low profile chair that sits just off the ground. It simply folds into its carry case that can easily be slung over your shoulder. Aside from a mesh back and foam-wrapped arms, this chair is feature-free.
The Rendezvous is an incredibly supportive chair. Unlike some chairs that are all slouch and become uncomfortable after 20 minutes, the Rendezvous continues to provide structure and is quite breathable with a mesh back and seat to keep that airflow coming. The armrests are foam-coated to add comfort and not be shockingly cold or hot to the touch. With a wide base, you feel quite stable in this chair and don't sink into a sandy beach or muddy campground. This wide base also lets you spread out and enjoy your chair - and maybe even sit cross-legged!
The Rendezvous lacks any head or neck support, and its incredibly low profile might create a lack of upper back support for taller folks. Some of our testers struggled with their backs touching the crisscrossing back poles while they were lounging in this chair. Additionally, at a measly three inches from the ground, some folks may have a hard time getting in and out of this chair. To add to that challenge, the Rendezvous tends to fold into itself just a bit when you sit in it, and if you use the armrests to push yourself out of the chair, the whole frame changes shape just as you're trying to use it as support to get up! At the end of the day, we found this chair to be pretty comfortable - as long as you're not trying to nap in it.
The Rendezvous comes with a convenient carry case, like all the chairs in this review. The storage bag also has a wide, adjustable shoulder strap to help you carry this chair in as much comfort as possible for a 7.1 pound piece of furniture.
This chair pretty much falls in the middle of the pack for how much it weighs and its packed size. However, for this type of chair, falling in the middle of large, traditional folding camping chairs and packable chairs that can be justifiably carried a good distance, is a pretty good achievement.
The Rendezvous exhibits a very durable construction. Constructed of thick, canvas-feeling 600D polyester and a "sturdy powder-coated steel frame", we feel secure sitting in this chair. All the seams are double-stitched and reinforced at pressure points. Even the storage bag is made of the same durable polyester construction.
The only thing that gives us a moment's hesitation is that extra movement in the frame when pushing down on the armrests to stand up. Looking at the frame, you can see where the sides of the seat poles are meant to sit. Since they don't snap into place, it is then theoretically possible for you to sit down and cause those poles to put pressure on the plastic supports, which may fail over time. However, we had no such issues during testing and merely wanted to mention what we had noticed while expressing a lot of overall confidence in the longevity of the Rendezvous.
Ease of Setup
The Rendezvous is a simple fold/unfold camping chair. The only reason this chair didn't score quite as well as the other camping chairs of this same style of set up is a couple of minor hiccups we noticed along the way.
The back of the Rendezvous tends to slide up and off the poles when you fold it up, meaning you have to rethread them when you want to set up the chair again. This model is also weirdly hard to fold together. Unlike most other folding models, you can't choose any two opposing points on the frame to squeeze together to put this chair away. We found (through some trial and error) that the Rendezvous folds up only when you flip it over and push from the two front legs. Once we discovered that little trick, we had no issue fitting this chair back into its carry bag to be ready for the next adventure.
Aside from the foam-coated armrests, this chair has no other features, not even a cup holder. However, we found that sitting so close to the ground, we had no issues just setting our beverage down next to the chair.
The Rendezvous is a solid value. For that price, you can pick up two or three for the price you might pay for some of the other chairs in this review! And with this kind of support and utility, we think you'll find plenty of uses for this versatile little chair.
We find it hard to not find a hundred awesome uses for this little chair. With universal comfort, a low profile, relatively low weight, and a GREAT price, the ALPS Mountaineering Rendezvous is a durable, sturdy, and supportive solution to potentially all your seating dilemmas.
— Maggie Brandenburg