Muskoka chairs are a variation on the famous Adirondack chairs, which received their namesake from tubercular patients in the early 1900s who spent time lounging in this style of chair while recovering in the Adirondack Mountains of New York.
Muskoka chairs get their name from the Muskoka region of Ontario, Canada, which is famous for its summer and winter cottage appeal, with outdoor activities for all seasons, including boating, water-skiing and winter skiing, camping and hiking.
Muskoka chairs and garden furniture grace the porches and decks of many homes and cottages not only in the Muskoka region, but also in gardens throughout the world.
Like Adirondack chairs, Muskoka chairs have large wooden slats, high backs, slanting seats and large armrests. Muskoka furniture also comes in a kit with assembly required, and a choice of finished or unfinished wood, although some manufacturers will ship them pre-assembled for an additional charge. Muskoka chairs made of cedar will cost as little as $65 Canadian.
Many manufacturers assure you that each piece of furniture has been assembled and then de-assembled prior to shipping to ensure proper fit and easy assembly, and they will include detailed instructions and diagrams. Many people enjoy this project, and the end result is a piece of beautiful garden, patio or porch furniture that is very comfortable and will last for years with minimal care.
Western red cedar is widely acclaimed as a leading wood for Muskoka chair and furniture construction. A natural oil preservative makes this wood highly resistant to rot, decay and insect infestations. It also ages very well to a silvery grey when left unfinished, and takes on a beautiful sheen and grain definition when a finish is applied. At a minimum, it's recommended that you apply a water sealant, especially before putting Muskoka chairs away in a garden shed or other outdoor structure for storage during the winter.
If you are conscientious about environmental issues around de-forestation as it pertains to the building of Muskoka chairs and chaise lounges, you will find manufacturers' assurances that the wood is harvested only from renewable, managed sources.