Bespoke Blog - Luxury Bespoke Products

When you travel a lot you always need to think carefully before packing about which essential things you’re going to need to have with you. The problem for most people, including me, is that space is at a premium especially if you want to travel light and carry your bag with you instead of checking it in at the airport.

I’ve learned the hard way that it’s often better to spend some money on really high quality products that last (almost) forever than on cheaper items that will often let you down. Poor quality accessories tend to break down and can look awful after minimal use whereas those that are truly luxurious can acquire a special patina with age.

Here are a few of my favourite things:

1. Elie Bleu Cigar Case

It’s increasingly difficult to find suitable (and lawful) places to smoke whilst travelling but when you do find the ideal place (as I did recently at the Bulgari Hotel in Milan) it’s essential to carry your precious Cubans in some style. Elie Bleu, based in Paris, is well known for their divine cigar humidors with heir elaborate marquetry but they also make superb traveling cigar cases in beautiful leathers including stingray.

Elie Bleu Cigar Case


2. Mophie iPhone Charger

Possibly the most frustrating thing when travelling is to run out of “juice” when your iPhone gives up the ghost as it inevitably will. Morphie’s Juice Pack Reserve for the iPhone 6 and 6s is just the job and is the most compact charger the firm has ever produced.

Mophie Juice Pack iPhone Charger

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Piaggio Group have partnered with fellow Italian giant Giorgio Armani to mark both companies’ respective anniversaries.

Vespa 946 Giorgio Armani

The two big-hitters are set to launch the Vespa 946 Giorgio Armani, which encompasses the two symbols of Italian style and creativity.

The luxury scooter is something of an anniversary model also, as this year Armani celebrates 40 years of excellence, while Piaggio is marking their landmark 130th anniversary.

The 946 badge stands for the year 1946, which was the year the world’s  first Vespa hit the market

The elegant Vespa scooter featured floorboards and front wings to protect riders in wet and cold conditions, something that that was revolutionary at the time.

In the many years that has followed, the Vespa scooter has firmly established itself as arguably the world’s best-known scooter name.

Vespa sells 11 different models in the US including LX 50 4V and S 50/4V that can reach 39 mph and return 85 mpg. There is also the speedier GTS 300 Super Sport SE that can hit 80 mph.

Vespas are available in three different displacements, including 50cc, 150cc and 300cc. In California all eight larger models are freeway legal.

The design on all of the models retains the chic, European style, and all include disc brakes and dual seats. Premium LXV and GTV models also feature a front luggage rack.

The Vespa 946 by Giorgio Armani doesn’t stray too far from what we have all come to expect from the iconic Vespa brand.

The luxury scooter comes with a grey-green livery and a green accent in the colour that are only revealed in a certain light. These are complemented by galvanizing satin metal parts.

Vespa 946 Giorgio Armani

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A luxury hotel in India has been voted as the World’s Best Hotel Brand by a leading industry magazine.

Yoga at The Oberoi Udaivilas

The Oberoi Udaivilas, Udaipur was awarded the accolade at the Travel and Leisure, World’s Best Awards, 2015.

Oberoi Hotels and Resorts, global hotel company, which is based in Delhi, was also voted the World’s Best Hotel Brand by the leading industry magazine.

The Oberoi Group was founded in 1934, and now owns or operates more than 20 luxury hotels and two river cruise ships in five countries.

The group also manages hotels under the Trident brand, and operates properties in India and Saudi Arabia.

Oberoi Hotels and Resorts have received numerous awards and accolades over the years. The Group’s luxury hotels have established a reputation for redefining luxury and excellence in service among their many hotels around the world.

The acre Oberoi Udaivilas in Rajasthan beat off a slew of luxury hotels from around the world to win the accolade for the second year running.

Guests arrive at the palace, which overlooks a stunning lake, by private boat. The 50-acre five-star hotel features nine Premier rooms with a semi-private pool and terrace. Each room has breathtaking views of wildlife such as deer and peacocks.

The Oberoi Udaivilas

The awards are among the most prestigious in the travel industry, due to the fact that they are voted for by its readers.

Readers rate their experiences and evaluate hotels across the world rating a number of factors. These are rooms and facilities, location, service, restaurants, food and value.

After receiving the awards, P.R.S. Oberoi, executive chairman of the Oberoi Group said that the group are honoured by being the best hotel brand in the world and also having the best hotel in the world.

The hotel chief said he dedicated the World’s Best Hotel Brand award to all of the guests and to all employees of The Oberoi Group. He gave special praise to the group’s staff, who he said worked passionately to ensure their guests receive warm, personalised and caring service.

Mr. Nathan Lump, editor at Travel and Leisure magazine, congratulated Oberoi Hotels and Resorts for being named both the top hotel brand and have the top-ranked hotel in the same year.

He said this was down to the fact its properties are of exceptional quality in picture-perfect locations.

The Oberoi Udaivilas Dinning

He also praised the group’s exceptional service standard that Travel and Leisure readers say go above and beyond.

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Spain’s El Celler de Can Roca has been named the world’s top restaurant.

El Celler de Can Roca

The prestigious honour was given at the World’s 50 Best Restaurants awards in London last month.

El Celler de Can Roca, which previously won the award in 2013, is run by brothers Joan, Jordi, and Josep Roca.

The awards, run by trade magazine Restaurant, said El Celler de Can Roca’s Curiosity and creativity propel the Rocas back to the top.

The magazine said the El Celler, located in Girona, has never forgotten its humble roots, its sense of familial warmth, or the need to serve remarkably delicious dishes and outstanding wines.

The Spanish restaurant pipped Italy’s Osteria Francescana to the top spot and pushed Danish four-time winner Noma down to third place, its lowest ranking since 2009.

The awards began in 2002 and have become a key point of reference for foodies around the world, even rivalling the longstanding Michelin guides.

Inclusion on the list can make or break a restaurants fortune and almost guarantee a restaurant’s financial success.

El Celler de Can Roca

The awards are judged by more than 1000 independent experts that include food writers, chefs, restaurant owners and gourmets.

As is normally the case there were some new entries on the list, including Blue Hill at Stone Barns, Ney York, which entered the list at 49.

Central in Lima, Peru, managed to crack the top ten for the first time.

The top 10 featured Mugaritz in San Sebastian, Spain, London’s Dinner by Heston Blumenthal, Narisawa in Tokyo, D.O.M in Sao Paulo and Gaggan in Bangkok.

Eleven Madison Park in New York kept its spot in the top 10.

Fellow American eateries Le Bernardin, Per Se, the French Laundry, Nomad, Saison and the Restaurant at Meadowood, also mainlined their standing in the list.

However the wider picture was not good for the American restaurants. It was the European eateries that fared best in this year’s list.

European restaurants dominated the top 50. Restaurants in Spain and France featured prominently on the list.

The White Rabbit, a new entry from Russia, also made the list.

Other notable winners on the night include Helene Darroze, who was named the World’s Best female chef. French chef Daniel Boulud, best known for the New York-based Daniel, picked up this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award.

El Celler de Can Roca

Next year’s awards will be held in New York City, the first time it will be staged outside of Britain.

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The Atelier Approach

23 February 2016

Paraffection S.A. is the subsidiary of Chanel that was established in 1997 to preserve the heritage, craft and manufacturing skills of a group of highly skilled fashion artisans working in specialist ateliers located mainly in the Paris region.

By 2015, Paraffection had acquired twelve “Atelier d’Art” or workshops capable of providing the parent company Chanel with the specialized skills required to decorate and embellish its haute couture creations.

Atelier Goods

“The driving force behind our decision to take over these companies was affection,” insists Paraffection director Dominique Barbiery. Cleverly, the Paraffection investments have been marketed as a labor of love.

‘Paraffection’ loosely translates to mean ‘for the love of”. Mr Barbiery states that Chanel’s relationship with its satellite firms is to “protect, advise and assist” the firms, not gobble them up, merge them or take over their work.

This year Chanel will celebrate its 13th Métiers d’Art show an annual event to honor the fine craftsmanship that its artisan partners in the Paraffection group bring to the house’s collections. With a runway show that takes place outside the traditional fashion schedule, each year, Chanel turns to a different location to pay tribute to the workshops that provide the house with everything from lace to silver buttons and fine embroidery work. After Salzburg last year, Dallas in 2013, Edinburgh in 2012 and previous shows in Mumbai and New York, Chanel headed to Rome for last season’s Métiers d’Art 2015, in the city’s Cinecittà film complex.

Chanel is not the only institution safeguarding French fashion. When, in 2012, the French lingerie manufacturer Lejaby announced plans to outsource production to Tunisia, then president Nicolas Sarkozy pledged to seek a solution. Lejaby was bought out by a French leather goods manufacturer that supplies Louis Vuitton, in a move overseen by Bernard Arnault, CEO of LVMH, and close friend of Sarkozy, who called the takeover part of “the battle for employment in France”.

Bespoke Leather

Within the leather goods industry companies such as Hermès continue the tradition of artisan production at their atelier in Pantin near Paris where the prevailing sentiment is that of everlasting love: each bag is affectionately crafted by a single artisan from start to finish, which would explain why they only turn out two pieces a week. No leather-worker is allowed to intervene in another colleague’s bag and each individual has their own set of tools, which they eventually take home with them when they retire.

Similarly Bianca Mosca, known for it’s ultra luxury exotic and precious leather bags, Alligator Wallets and accessories, is a close adherent of the atelier approach.

Visiting their fragrant workshops in Italy and France is a real sensory experience. Your eyes, your nose, you ears; they’re all part of a luxurious journey. First, it’s the tap-tap-tapping sound that rhythmically follows your every step, a sign of industrious hands at work. Then it’s the smell of the leather, from the simplest and supplest Taurillon leather to rare finds like Louisiana alligator in a rainbow of colors, all sourced by Bianca Mosca’s experienced leather-hunters.

What is clear is that making luxurious objects in the ancient traditions espoused by the true ateliers of France and Italy takes time-a lot of time.

“The end result is worth it” says Tim de Rosen of Bianca Mosca.