Review: The Hastens Excelsior II

A Year in Bed Project

Bed: Excelsior II with BJX Mattress Top
Manufacturer: Hastens
Retail Price: $13,350

I just received a new bed to test for October, so it's time to weigh in on the bed I tested for the whole month of September — the Hastens. My nutshell review: awesome bed, awesomely expensive. I LOVE this bed for two reasons: 1. I sink into it wonderfully and sleep really well and 2. it has zero smells or textures that are toxic or off-putting.

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Ten beds to go. Our bedroom last night with the beds piling up. Sara's amusement with the project is still intact.

I look forward to getting into bed each night, but we probably went too soft as Sara Kate, even now, finds it too squishy. While Sara had reservations at first, the bed has grown on her and she "really likes sleeping in it alone" (because the softness makes her feel as if she's falling towards me). After four weeks, she definitely wants it firmer (we tested a "soft"). You can check out what we thought at first here.

Sleep Experience

• Excellent

The sleep experience is the first thing you notice about these beds. It's deeper. When you lay down, you sink in farther in your heaviest parts, which means that your head feels lower than your feet. This is strange for anyone who has lived on firm mattresses for years, but very comfortable when you get used to it and - apparently - better for your circulation in that you are actually horizontal.

Hasten's are also proponents of "soft" beds, so you may also be talked into going softer than ever before. Be careful about this. While I liked this soft coaching, my wife did not and too much softness can be a shock. In addition, the "topper" that comes as an option on these beds offers a lot of softness, so I'm not sure you need the mattress to be as soft as well.

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The words "lumpy" and "cloudy" have been used to describe the experience of sleeping on these very thick, handmade mattresses and they are right. While there is plenty of support, the natural fibers break in natural ways and it feels like there is more pressure in some places than others. If you ever flopped down into a pile of warm laundry as a kid, you know what I'm talking about. It's marvelously comforting, but definitely not familiar.

Side sleeping and temperature regulation are both great here. The deepness of the sleep experience nicely supports you on your side while allowing your hips to sink way down and keep your body horizontal. The natural fibers are warm and cozy, but you never heat up. There's plenty of breathing.

Construction

• Top Notch

One of the chief selling points in my mind is the fact that Hastens are complete beds from top to bottom and made entirely of natural materials like cotton, wool, horsehair, flax, steel and wood. There's absolutely nothing bad in here. Even the fireproofing required in the USA is naturally based. It's like a big cake. Here's a pic:

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Hastens are really big, heavy beds as all those natural ingredients add up. While it may not be an issue for many, it's worth noting that flipping the mattress is nearly impossible for one person to do. In addition, due to their depth, there's no way to store anything underneath aside from a few thin magazines.

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Also, here's a cool video of burning a Hastens and a "regular" mattress. The Hasten's doesn't burn.

Price

• Aspirational!

Given that these beds are guaranteed for 25 years of use and are probably good for much more than that, the price tag might make sense to many who replace their beds at the national average of every seven years. Nevertheless, this is a different kind of purchase for Americans who rarely think about their beds this way. BTW Hastens recommends simply changing your topper every 3-5 years.

If you've got the money and you want to make a real investment in your bedroom that's really wholesome and eco friendly and NOT blingy or fancy in a tacky way, this is for you.

The bed we tested was over $10k, but you can get an entry level Hastens in the $8k range. Their top of the line Vividus will cost you nearly $80k and is for all intensive purposes a theoretical exercise in bed design when there are no limits. It's over the top.

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With the sheets drawn away you can see the topper, mattress and box spring which has its own feet. The feet and the color of the fabric are all changeable. The topper is also optional.

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Bed Rankings to Date - 9.26.11

(Best overall sleep experience according to both him and her - i.e. two thumbs up)

Tie For First

1. Danny Seo Natural Care Bed by Simmons
1. NaturaLatex Tranquil

Tie for Second

2. Hastens Excelsior II
2. Savoir No. 2 Bed - "The Savoy"

3. The Keetsa Pillow Plus
4. The Biltmore Bed by C.P. Rogers
5. Encased Coil Natural Mattress by Room & Board
6. TEMPUR-Cloud Supreme with Advanced Ergo Adjustable Base
7. Embody Memory Foam Stillness Plus Bed by Sealy
8. IKEA Erfjord

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Year In Bed Info

About The Year In Bed

• Follow daily progress on Twitter at #yearinbed

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All Year In Bed Posts

KEETSA PILLOW PLUS REVIEW
THE BILTMORE BY C.P. ROGERS REVIEW
SAVOIR No. 2 REVIEW
TEMPUR-PEDIC TEMPUR-CLOUD REVIEW
ROOM & BOARD ENCASED COIL NATURAL MATTRESS REVIEW
Beyond the Ides of March - Bed #6 from Room & Board
How To Get a Really Good Night's Sleep
DANNY SEO NATURAL CARE REVIEW
NATURA LATEX REVIEW
Preview: NaturaLatex Tranquil
More Things I've Learned So Far
SEALY REVIEW
Sealy Preview
IKEA REVIEW
Ikea Preview
HASTENS REVIEW
What is the Right Price for a Bed?
Some Things I've Learned So Far
Hastens Preview
Year in Bed: A Modest Proposal

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