A woman carrying her white plastic chair to the beach in Nazaré

Latest obsession: the white plastic chair

The white plastic chair is a perfectly no-frills icon of the nostalgic Spanish lifestyle. Its low price, durability and simple design has made it the most popular chair in the world, costing as little as €3, and lasting a lifetime. It requires little to no cleaning, often being either left out in the rain, hosed down, or dipped in a swimming pool.


The most popular users of the white plastic chair are the elderly. Its light weight and comfort means that it can be easily picked up, brought outside and sat on for long periods of time. This is a favourite pass time of the Spanish as high-density living means lack of access to private outdoor space, which has also increased the incidence of guerrilla gardening in this city.

If you walk around the suburbs of Madrid, you will find entire families sitting on white plastic chairs outside their buildings, and when they’re not there, they will often leave the white plastic chair outside for later:

The white plastic chair on the beautiful tiled streets of Almería old town

Two white plastic chairs on a street in the Latin neighbourhood of Alicante

A White Plastic Chair in the Malvarrosa District of Valencia

There’s a permanent white plastic chair outside of no-frills bar El Treból, where Miss Beige – a no-frills woman after my own heart – decided to sit:

Spotted one Sunday: a white plastic chair outside an old book shop in El Rastro:

The white plastic chair spotted in El Rastro, Madrid

Here’s an elderly woman carrying her white plastic chair through the street to join her friends sitting by the roadside, just a block away:

A woman carrying her white plastic chair to the beach in Nazaré

A glimpse into the past, where we can see a predecessor of the white plastic chair:

A little perspective: The white plastic chair next to it's older generation, the brown wooden chair (Nazaré)

The white plastic chair hasn’t gone amiss in Don Justo’s beloved self-built cathedral:

A white plastic chair inside the chapel next to the nave

And even the most prestigious events in Spain bring out the white plastic chair. From political rallies to open-air concerts, the white plastic chair is simply unrivalled.

white plastic chair

Follow MNF on Instagram to see even more wonderful photos of the white plastic chair, among many more of my latest obsessions.

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