The past couple of years modern designs have been in vogue. When I started working with my father, handrails were often made from 2” x 2” redwood pickets. These looked great when they were first installed but were a little difficult to maintain. Later, rails turned to vinyl products that often had expansion problems in the sun.
On our last project we blended a hybrid of two materials- aluminum and cable. Cable for the infill and aluminum for the posts. A beautiful outcome that should provide low maintenance.