19 cool speakers to get the party started

Now that we're allowed to have people over again, get prepared with one of these unique and decorative Bluetooth and smart speakers

Bang & Olufsen Beosound Balance
(Image credit: Bang & Olufsen)

People are getting together again, and that means plenty of small dinner parties, outdoor cookouts, and gatherings for friends on family on important occasions. The perfect accompaniment to these kinds of events is music, and the perfect way to power up the tunes is with a unique, well-designed speaker.

Cool speakers are everywhere these days, with brands going out of their way to incorporate style as well as smarts into their tech. Whether it's high-end options from the likes of Bang & Olufsen or Bowers & Wilkins, or more affordable speakers from Sony or Audio Pro, there's an abundance of choice.

Below we've collected some of the most beautiful and unique Bluetooth and smart speakers, whether you want something that makes a serious statement or tech that blends into your carefully chosen décor.

And if you want more like this, take a look at our guide to the best Bluetooth speakers.

Bluetooth speakers to keep your connected

1. Ruark MRx Connected Wireless Speaker

Ruark MRx Connected Wireless Speaker

(Image credit: Ruark)

The MRx is the first connected wireless speaker from Ruark, a family-owned British company. Blending elegant looks with the latest technology, the MRx is a stylish speaker with powerful sound abilities. In short, it packs a punch for its size. It can easily be linked with the company's R2 and R7 models, for a multi-room synchronized sound system and streams music via Bluetooth or, with a broadband connection, can access Spotify, Deezer, Tidal, and other online music services.

2. Bowers & Wilkins Formation Flex

Bowers & Wilkins Formation Flex

(Image credit: Bowers & Wilkins)

With its minimalist design, textured body, and gold base, the Bowers & Wilkins Formation Flex is a Bluetooth speaker with some serious style. You can use the speaker on its own or hook it up to others for a stereo sound system, and use the B&W app to control everything in one place.

3. Bang & Olufsen Beosound Balance

Bang & Olufsen Beosound Balance

(Image credit: Bang & Olufsen)

With its base ensuring the speaker's body appears to be defying gravity, the Beosound Balance from Bang & Olufsen is a beautiful bit of tech available in natural oak, black oak (pictured), gold-tone, and a limited Berluti Edition. Benjamin Hubert of Layer Design collaborated on the initial design, which also includes a smooth aluminum top and tubular knitted fabric body. 

4. Sony SRS-RA3000 Home Speaker

Sony SRS-RA3000 Home Speaker

(Image credit: Sony)

A higher-end (though relatively affordable) option from Sony, the Sony SRS-RA3000 Home Speaker is completely wireless to give you the freedom to move around your home. The bronze or gold panels perfectly offset the fabric body of the speaker, which also benefits from compatibility with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa.

Make a statement with these unique speakers

5. Bang & Olufsen Beosound Edge

Bang & Olufsen Beosound Edge

(Image credit: Bang & Oufsen)

If you have the space and you really want to make a statement with your sound system, then the Bang & Olufsen Beosound Edge could be the speaker for you. Designed in collaboration with illustrious lighting designer, Michael Anastassiades, the all-in-one wireless speaker has a minimal design aesthetic with maximum output. Much like the beautifully refined lights, Anastassiades is renowned for, the multi-room system speaker has been stripped of superfluous elements (including visible controls), giving it a sleek and sophisticated appearance and revolutionary controls.

6. Bowers & Wilkins Formation Wedge

Bowers & Wilkins Formation Wedge

(Image credit: Bowers & Wilkins)

Another device from Bowers and Wilkins that doubles as a piece of art, the Formation Wedge looks so fantastic on the mantelpiece that people will be surprised that it's also a brilliant speaker. Like with the Formation Flex, you can use the Wedge as just one of a whole network of speakers placed around the home.

7. Louis Vuitton Horizon Light Up

Louis Vuitton Horizon Light Up

(Image credit: Louis Vuitton)

A newer entry on this list, French luxury label Louis Vuitton has dipped its toe further into the audio world with the Louis Vuitton Horizon Light Up - which has a design inspired by its iconic Toupie handbag by Nicolas Ghesquière. It won't be for everyone, but looking like a very chic spaceship is sure to catch some eyes.

8. Bang & Olufsen Beoplay A9

Bang & Olufsen Beoplay A9

(Image credit: Bang & Olufsen)

One of the least diminutive speakers on our list, the B&O Beoplay A9 with Google Assistant combines excellent audio performance and smart features with contemporary style. The disc was designed by Øivind Alexander Slaatto who wanted to shape the speaker to reflect the circular travels of sound. Available in six different color combos, the wool-blend cover is made in collaboration with Danish textile brand Kvadrat.

Fun and colorful speakers

9. Roberts Beacon 320 Bluetooth Speaker

Roberts Beacon 320 Bluetooth Speaker

(Image credit: Roberts)

If you want something with a bit more color, but no less personality, then consider the Robert Beacon 320. Available in vibrant sunburst yellow, charcoal, midnight blue, dust pink, and teal, the speaker invokes retro radios while updating the tech underneath to be cutting edge. We personally love the pink option (pictured).

10. Audio Pro Addon T3+

Audio Pro Addon T3+

(Image credit: Audio Pro)

Another retro-looking speaker, this Bluetooth portable offering from Audio Pro is now available in limited edition yellow - and is one of the best outdoor speakers for adding some spice to your next gathering. The speaker is also available in white, black, and matte grey with rose gold aspects, which are all equally stunning!

11. Sony SRS-XB23 Portable Bluetooth Speaker

Sony SRS-XB23 Portable Bluetooth Speaker

(Image credit: Sony)

The most affordable speaker on this list, the colorful Sony XB23 speaker is intended to be taken out and about with you on trips, but somehow hasn't compromised on appearance. Dubbed a 'party speaker', it's small enough to fit in a cup holder and is available in colors like 'coral red', 'olive green', and the light blue pictured above.

Blending in: speakers designed to be invisible

12. Tabblue Bluetooth Table Speaker

Tabblue Bluetooth Table Speaker

(Image credit: Tabblue)

Whether you're short on space or just aren't a fan of keeping your technology out on display, furniture with in-built audio is a genius idea. This one from Not on the High Street is so chic that you'll barely notice it's there - that is until you fire up the tunes. We also love this Ralph Smart Bedside Table, which adds bonus storage to the bargain.

13. SYMFONISK Picture Frame with Wi-Fi Speaker

SYMFONISK Picture Frame with speaker

(Image credit: IKEA, Sonos)

The child of a collaboration between Swedish home décor royalty IKEA and music experts at Sonos, the SYMFONISK Picture Frame Wi-Fi speaker blends into its surroundings beautifully - looking more like a piece of art on the wall. And this is just the latest product produced by the team, with the SYMFONISK Table Lamp and Bookshelf Speaker arriving in 2019.

14. Bang & Olufsen Beosound Emerge

Bang & Olufsen Beosound Emerge

(Image credit: Bang & Olufsen)

Another ingenious spin on the hidden speaker, this Beosound Emerge bookshelf speaker from Bang & Olufsen looks almost indistinguishable from an ordinary book while offering brilliant sound and built-in Google Assistant smarts. It's a great way to maximize space while adding some seriously stylish tech to your set-up, and comes in either gold/light oak or 'black anthracite'. 

Smart speakers

15. Marshall Uxbridge Smart Speaker

Marshall Uxbridge Smart Speaker

(Image credit: Marshall)

Marshall has been making its presence known in the smart speaker world for a while now, adding some classic rock and roll vibes to the mix with its retro-looking products. The Marshal Uxbridge Voice also boasts built-in Amazon Alexa so you don't have to use anything other than your voice to fire up your favorite playlists. Get it in black (our favorite) or white.

16. Bang & Olufsen Beosound 2

Bang & Olufsen Beosound 2

(Image credit: Bang & Olufsen)

We admit that there are a lot of Bang & Olufsen speakers on this list, but that's because their speakers really do lead the way on style. The Beosound 2 is no different, except that you can get the smaller speaker with Google Assistant included. Of course, it's pricey, but B&O promises that its high-grade aluminum construction improves its acoustic performance.

17. Harman Kardon Citation One MKII

Harman Kardon Citation One MKII

(Image credit: Harman Kardon)

The Citation Series from Harman Kardon delivers on aesthetics and audio quality, with options to use the wireless speakers individually or build a powerful 5.1-channel surround-sound system. The speakers have Chromecast built-in, allowing over 300 streaming services and features Google Assistant, so you'll never get bored of your playlists. With a nod to Scandinavian style, the shapely speakers are clad in Winter Grey or Classic Black wool fabric, from Kvadrat, the European leader in acoustic textiles – and they have a sleek and subtle look that’s a welcome addition in any home.

Portable speakers

18. Bang & Olufsen Beosound A1

Bang & Olufsen Beosound A1

(Image credit: Bang & Olufsen)

Proving that not all portable speakers need to be ugly to be considered 'rugged', the B&O Beosound A1's pretty exterior hides the fact that this speaker can withstand pretty much anything. With Alexa built-in, 18 hours of battery life, and full water and dust proofing, it means you can take it with you anywhere - it's so robust we included it in our ranking of the best bathroom speakers. All the color options are gorgeous, but we particularly love the gold.

19. Marshall Emberton Portable Bluetooth Speaker

Marshall Emberton Portable Bluetooth Speaker

(Image credit: Marshall)

A second offering from Marshall, the Emberton is smaller and without a smart speaker built-in, but makes up for this with how portable it is. Completely water-resistant and with 20 hours of battery life, it looks as good on a side table or on your desk (or beside the bath) as it does outside, and comes in four different color variations. 

Caroline Preece
Smart Homes Ecommerce Editor

Caroline is the smart home ecommerce editor for Livingetc, covering everything tech for the home, from smart speakers to air purifiers and everything in between. She is passionate about the role that technology and smart devices can play in daily life, enhancing the home without sacrificing personal style and carefully chosen interiors. In her spare time, she can be found tinkering with bulbs, soundbars, and video doorbells in an effort to automate every part of her small home. Previously, she lent her expertise to the likes of Expert Reviews, IT Pro, Coach, The Week, and more.

With contributions from