The Soft Panama Boater from Orvis is an elegant throwback to the 1920s, from the Ivy League to riverboats on the Mississippi.
In full disclosure, I am a part-timer at the Orvis store in Houston, so my take on Orvis apparel comes not without bias. That said, this particular straw hat stacks up well with Makins and Stetson.
The Orvis straw boater hat, woven in Ecuador and made in the USA, is very much an American classic. I would see this hat being worn by older alumni at Harvard when I was a student setting up tables at tents for class reunions. The flat crown and red-and-blue band are distinctive features. Wearing the hat reveals a man's posture and magnifies his confidence. There's no shame in tipping or removing the hat, of course, when a woman is present.
The simplicity of the straw boater is its most striking quality. The brim is firm and does not droop. A cotton band lines the inside and absorbs sweat. Wearing the hat with a navy blazer and khakis, or with seersucker, yields best results.