Travel Well with a High-End Cigar Trunk
From the Print Edition:
Paul Giamatti, January/February 2011
If you could swim to the bottom of the ocean, explore the sunken ruins of the Titanic or Lusitania, and wade through the first-class cargo hold, you’d no doubt descend upon piles and piles of steamer trunks crafted by Louis Vuitton, Goyard and T.T.Trunks. Well, maybe not T.T.Trunks. While Louis Vuitton and Goyard have been outfitting high-society since the 1800s, T.T.Trunks has been doing it for less than 10 years, but you’d never know it judging by its classic construction. One can quibble over which house of design is the most exclusive, though all three produce customized cigar trunks dedicated to the well-being of your cigar collection and at the same time they make sure your smokes travel in higher style than you do.
In the case of Louis Vuitton, the company has resurrected a vintage 1926 design for their Malle Cigares trunk, which travels like any other steamer trunk, but stands vertically upright when open. Hinged doors reveal a removable humidor that sits atop a chest of drawers. Two of the drawers hold accessories, seven more are individually humidified, housing a total of 1,000 cigars. The drawer fronts are fashioned with lacquered rosewood and unlike many of Vuitton’s products, the cigar trunk is a made-to-order item produced at the company’s workshop in Asniéres, France. Lead time is about nine months and final cost can run up to $70,000, depending on specs.
Parisian company T.T.Trunks (shown) offers a very similar stand-up format replete with humidified okoumé hardwood drawers and a 50-count portable humidor. Six of the drawers are individually humidified by six separate Credo units and sealed with a glass top. The interior is available in suede or coated canvas, the exterior, coated canvas and leather. Four standard colors are available (black, dark brown, light brown and white) though customized options can expand the pallet to 300 different materials and colors. These trunks take around two to three months to build and cost approximately $25,000.
Competing with Louis Vuitton for over a hundred years, French trunk maker Goyard will also cater to the traveling cigar enthusiast, but you’d never know it. Discretion has always been the company’s trademark. The cigar trunks are simple and roomy with secure drawers, a humidifier and hygrometer. The exterior dons the same repeating chevron patterns found on most of their products, all of which can be monogrammed and color-coded to your liking. As for prices and turnaround time, Goyard won’t comment, but they are happy to make the trunk in any number of sizes to accommodate your next trip across the globe.
However if your luxury liner happens to get word of iceberg-strewn waters or hostile enemy gun fire, do yourself and your cigars a favor—book a flight.
Visit tttrunks.com, louisvuitton.com and goyard.com.
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