Editor’s picks: our luxury Father’s Day gift guide 2021

June 16, 2021
Guest Contribution by Brendan Ross, Ryan Stephenson Price and Farley Chatto

Another important date on the calendar is just around the corner and this season I have, once again, compiled a list of the most coveted gift ideas.

Since the event in question is Father’s Day, I also sought help from some cool men I know – my husband Brendan, colleague Ryan and friend Farley. The four of us personally reviewed each item below. Here is the list of products we came up with!

1) Fitbit Versa 3

You can’t go wrong with a gadget, especially when it’s as cool and popular as Fitbit. During the pandemic, there has been a rise in the number of people going outdoors and working out in general. This is an excellent gift for any Father, or anyone in general!

Fitbit Versa 3 is the latest evolution in Fitbit’s most popular family of smartwatches. It has even more advanced fitness, health and convenience functionalities. Built-in GPS, in-app workout intensity map, enhanced PurePulse 2.0 technology and Active Zone Minutes make it very easy to track and stay on top of your fitness goals.

Some other key features include a built-in speaker and microphone, which help you take calls, send calls to voicemail or adjust call volume. And you can do it all directly from your wrist! The voice recognition functionality features Google Assistant alongside Amazon Alexa Built-in, so you can set reminders for your workout, mindfulness practice or bedtime, check the weather, items to your shopping list or control your smart home devices just by speaking to your watch. If you want to run an errand or two, while you are out for a run, you can also use Fitbit Pay to make quick payments. Although this version doesn’t let you download your own music list, you can stream or curate your own list via Fitbit’s music partners Deezer, Pandora or Spotify. Versa 3 also includes a free 90-day trial for Fitbit Premium, so you could get better analysis of your health data.

One of the other features I liked was the ability to change bands – if you are looking for a gift for someone who likes stylish accessories, then this is a great option.

Retailing for $299.95

-reviewed by Hannah

2) Unbound Merino T-shirt

If you thought Merino wool was just for sweaters or activewear base layers, you’ve been missing out on one of the most comfortable and functional fabrics around. This tee from Unbound Merino will quickly become a go-to, for several reasons. Perhaps paramount this hot and humid summer: it breathes well and keeps you cool, and naturally wicks moisture and resists odour. This means it can be worn longer without needing to be washed, making it perfect for travel and as a throw-it-on-and-go closet staple. It also dries fast, so when you do need to wash it, you don’t have to worry about being without it for long.

That’s all well and good, but those features on their own wouldn’t matter much if this wasn’t a shirt you actually want to wear. I’ve been on the hunt for the perfect T-shirt for years now, and this crewneck comes pretty damn close. It’s soft and lightweight, with none of the itch you might associate with a wool sweater. It’s cut slim and drapes beautifully, especially compared to a typical cotton T-shirt. And not to go on and on about the miraculous qualities of Merino wool, but it is naturally wrinkle resistant, so looks great even if it’s spent a long time folded … or, you know, crumpled up on the floor. A perfect gift for a guy who knows (or is about to find out) that basics don’t actually have to be basic.

Retailing for $94

-reviewed by Brendan

3) LEGO® NASA Space Shuttle Discovery

Houston, we have lift-off! As a Lego fan and collector, I found this new Lego Creator set to be lovely. The NASA Space Shuttle Discovery is one of Lego’s newest and most complex sets and an excellent addition for any collector! For those fathers who love space or those adult Lego fans – it’s a must-have.

As a child, Lego designer, Milan Madge, spent hours building a version of the Lunar Lander and Discovery Orbiter out of Lego. Being a part of this project was a dream come true for him. Thanks to him and the design team, you can be a part of it too! I’m a Lego enthusiast, and I love the challenge of building different sets. As a child, my go-to were mainly the classic space sets. As I grew older, my love for space moved to the Star Wars series. The Creator series fulfills my love for Lego and the challenging building bug. The second in the NASA Series, the Lego NASA Space Shuttle Discovery set shares a bit of the history of the “space race” at your fingertips. An impressive and challenging build, it has 2,354 pieces and measures 22″ L x 14″ W x 9″ H. It will allow fathers to have those moments to relive their astronaut dreams or enjoy some quality family-building time. Along with the fun of building the shuttle with a functional cargo bay hatch, retractable landing gear and the Hubble Space Telescope, it also includes a bit of Canadian history – the Canadarm.

The Lego Discovery makes the perfect Father’s Day gift for those astronaut dads and soon-to-be space travelling kids. A new and exclusive set in the Creator series, it won’t last long and will set out fast. And at higher gifting giving end at $269.99, it’s an investment of fun, history and great me or family time!

Retailing for $269.99

-reviewed by Farley

4) Columbia Sportswear OutDry™ Ex NanoLite™ Shell

Even the most urban among us have likely spent time getting reacquainted (or acquainted—no judgment here!) with nature over the past year. You are in fresh air, away from crowds and the stress of the news … the one drawback is, if it rains, you are getting soaked. That’s why I’ve come to love the OutDry Ex NanoLite Shell from Columbia Sportswear.

The lightweight and breathable material is perfect for warmer weather, to keep you from getting as damp under the jacket as it is outside. When the temperature drops, you could easily throw it on top of a warmer mid-layer. As a recent convert to trail running, I especially love that I can cinch the hood, cuffs and hem to keep things tight when I’m flying down the trail, and that I can pack the whole thing up and store it in my vest for easy deployment if the skies open.

With its waterproof material and bonded seams, this shell will keep you dry, without feeling like you’re wearing a plastic cocoon—the main function of any good rain jacket. Now, you may not care about aesthetics on the trail (especially when it’s pouring), but I do. This jacket comes in two colours: black, for people like me, and bright green, for those looking for something a little more bold. Either way, the sleek, minimalist design, with contrasting colours on the seams, makes the OutDry Ex NanoLite Shell perfect for navigating urban terrain as well as the woods, without looking like your pockets are full of gorp.

Retailing for $399.99

-reviewed by Brendan

5) Reebok Nano X1 Vegan Men’s Training Shoes

I have wide feet, so shoe shopping and I are traditionally not the best of friends, but Reebok has put some notable detail into the Nano X1 Vegan – the 11th iteration of their Nano line. Not only are they vegan-friendly and made with 100% animal-free materials and products (cotton and wood spun yarn upper, castor bean oil and EVA foam midsole and natural rubber outsole), but they even forgo the standard plastic product tag fastener, opting for twine as an artisanal touch.

Coming in a variety of colour combinations, the outer Flexweave Knit material is flexible and soft-to-touch, and is accented by a hard plastic-like polycomposite frame (paired with an internal heel counter) around the back for extra support. The flat weave laces have a solid 1.5″ aglet and they are long enough for a good double-knot. Reebok’s “Floatride Energy” tread is broken into bisected peanut-shaped rows amongst shallow troughs – seemingly to allow for ample grip, while also allowing water to slip between. So, you can float while you ride; was Xzibit a consultant on this?

The heel cushion is a notable 7 mm deep, sloping down from the midpoint towards the toes, seemingly to help propel you forward as you run. This provides ample padding when your foot strikes the ground, but the internal forward slope makes it clear: this shoe wants to run. One of the biggest things you will notice is that these are light: so light that you’ll barely know you’re wearing them, which is great for that 10K you may or may not have signed up for.

Ultimately though, you could work out in them, but you don’t need to. That’s probably the best thing about Reebok’s new Nano X1: it’s functional and stylish, but above all else, it’s also one of the comfiest things I’ve ever put on my foot. So much so, you might forget you are wearing them.

Retailing for $160

-reviewed by Ryan

6) Galaxy Buds Live

In the era of Zoom calls, Microsoft team get-togethers and Google hangout cocktail parties, the importance of sound quality has never been more important. In this digital world, gifting someone a great (and stylish!) pair of earbuds is not only appreciated but needed.

Enter Galaxy Buds Live: an iconic new minimalist gadget that makes a bold statement. Available in 3 colours (Mystic Bronze, Mystic Black and Mystic White), the buds are ergonomically designed for better fit and richer sound. The active noise cancellation will help you hear things clearly even if you are doing a call on your balcony. The battery life of this wireless set can be up to 21 hours, and the buds feature Samsung’s biggest ever speakers and an open ear design. This is how music was meant to be heard.

What I also like about this wonderful addition to my meeting arsenal is that the buds are compatible with both Android and iPhones. I have several phones and this is very handy and practical.

And if you want to use the Galaxy Buds for music, the Spotify integration will let you assign a shortcut on your phone. Touch and hold for one second to instantly connect to all of your favourite playlists. You can choose from half a million podcasts and 50 million songs – all available at your fingertips.

Retailing for $199.99

-reviewed by Hannah

7) Philips One by Sonicare toothbrush

All I can say is that I love this toothbrush and you will too! The variety of colours to choose from make it easy to pick the right sleek design for a Father in your life. The bristles on the brush are very soft and comfortable, and also on the smaller end, ensuring you get a thorough and immaculate brushing experience.

The Philips One by Sonicare toothbrush is available in a rechargeable or battery-operated model featuring a new, bold design and travel case that will add a fun pop of colour to your oral healthcare routine. With summer around the corner and travel restrictions slowly lifting, it’s a great option for a trip to the cottage or that long-awaited-hopefully-upcoming trip abroad.

Reviews say this is the #1 dental professional-recommended sonic toothbrush brand worldwide. Some of the key features include micro vibrations, SmarTimer™ that monitors brushing time to help you brush longer by automatically turning Philips One by Sonicare off at the dental professional-recommended duration of two minutes, and QuadPacer™ that provides 30 second notifications to prompt you to move to the next section of your mouth as you brush.

Charging is easy thanks to the USB-C cable and light indicator on the brush itself. It’s amazing that with a single charge you can brush for an entire month!

Retailing for $54.99

-reviewed by Hannah

Feature image credit: Photo by Suzy Hazelwood from Pexels. Created with Canva.

All product images provided by each respective brand.


Story by Hannah Yakobi

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