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Elegant Humidors

New and Innovative Handcrafted Humidors for the Holidays
From the Print Edition:
George Burns, Winter 94/95

Humidor designers Michel Perrenoud and Daniel Marshall are two pioneers transforming seemingly ordinary objects into extraordinary items. They have created a stir among cigar lovers by crafting some of the most unusual and interesting humidors on the market from two completely different approaches.

Perrenoud (pronounced: Pair-no), who designs all of the pieces in the Michel Perrenoud collection in Switzerland, has unveiled several new humidors. In September, as one of only two humidor designers (the other was David Linley, see Cigar Aficionado Fall 1994) invited to the "Les Objets d'Art Autour du Tabac," an exhibition in Paris devoted to showcasing tobacco products and accessories, Perrenoud showed the Macassar Pyramid humidor, part of the Pyramid line he originally launched in the fall of 1993.

The Pyramid humidor is crafted much like the architectural wonders in Egypt, albeit much smaller. With a total height of approximately 44 inches and a base of approximately 16 inches, this lacquered-mahogany marvel holds more than 100 cigars. The lid holds two humidity regulators and a drawer underneath accommodates a cigar cutter, lighter and matches.

Unlike traditional humidors, which are rectangular in shape, the pyramid is a geometry major's dream. According to Perrenoud, the Pyramid is not only a perfect geometric shape but an exceptional storage room if one refers to its function as an eternal resting place. Hence, as the pharaohs' bodies were preserved for centuries in their tombs, Perrenoud believes that your cigars will live long in their resting place: the Pyramid humidor.

Not content with the Pyramid, Perrenoud has introduced three new pieces. The Bald Eagle humidor is the first of a collection of humidors that will feature birds and other animals. This premier humidor is made of solid mahogany with handcrafted marquetry, featuring a lifelike image of a bald eagle and is an edition limited to 200 units only.

Moving to humidor design on a grander scale, Perrenoud has created a recliner with matching cart that puts cigars right at your fingertips and is innovative in its storage capabilities.

The recliners, called smoking chairs, are fashioned so that a cigar lover doesn't have to get out of his seat to get a cigar from his humidor. For example, on the left armrest of the chair is a built-in humidor compartment, which can adjust to accommodate a variety of cigar sizes. The humidification device is at the bottom of the compartment.

The right armrest neatly stores a cigar cutter or scissor, matches and an ashtray. The frame is solid mahogany cushioned with top-grain Italian leather. Perrenoud consulted an orthopedist to help craft the chair to support the back while reclining or sitting up straight. Adjust the small mahogany handle and you can go from a reclining position to an upright position in one smooth motion; in practice that is easier said than done, but it is not too difficult to get the hang of it.

The solid mahogany "rolling" cart, called the smoking bar, completes the set. Just under the cover are two trays for storing cigars, resting atop a humidity regulator. There are two racks at the open bottom of the unit designed to hold a collection of Cognacs, brandies and other spirits. Place it between two smoking chairs or roll it easily from room to room. Unlike other humidors, these three pieces have a form as well as a function.

All of the Perrenoud pieces described above are available in limited quantities for the 1994 holiday season. The 100-cigar "Deluxe" Pyramid Humidor retails for $11,800, the Bald Eagle Humidor retails for $5,200, the smoking bar retails for $8,200 and the smoking chair retails for $11,200.

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