Interview with Alexandre Soleyman

The Well Traveled Trunk is the passion project and NYC based company founded by Alexandre Soleyman. It follows Soleyman as he transforms the iconic Louis Vuitton luggage trunks into timeless, handmade works of art. Signaling class and wealth for over a century, these functional pieces of history are finding a renewed appreciation from boutique hotel patrons thanks to Soleyman and his impassioned efforts

What is your story?
Born and raised in Geneva, Switzerland I studied hotel & business management in Lausanne. Living in a very sheltered environment, I was determined to experience something different, more dynamic and decided to pack my bags and try New York, pretty much right after graduating from College. I did then work in Corporate for several years until I decided to take a chance and solely focus on a hobby that truly became a passion over the year, vintage traveling trunks.

Where does your passion for vintage Louis Vuitton trunks come from? 
I remember entering an antique boutique in south of France as a young kid and recall immediately being drowned by a vintage Louis Vuitton trunk and by everything that such object could evoque to a 10 years old mind… being secrets, treasures, royalties, adventures and of course travels. Almost two decades later I finally had the opportunity to acquire one and never stopped collecting ever since.

Where do you envision your trunks living?
For over 150 years those trunks have accompanied royalties, great explorers and prominent figures to the most prestigious Hotels and Palaces around the globe. Much more than just a large a piece of luggage, trunks seem to have naturally overturned their functionality and are now to be seen in sophisticated living space adding a distinctive and mystical touch to any room. Undeniably linked to the hotel industry and history, their wears and numerous traveling labels tell as much of a story as the photographs that one would take on a journey. Today it’s no surprise to see traveling trunks making a “comeback” in sophisticated boutique hotels but this time to be displayed as a unique and iconic conversation piece, celebrating what was once known as the glamorous and golden age of travel.

Read the full Story on Stay Boutique Media
or Read the Magazine (the article start on page 71!)

Louis Vuitton Trunk – Investment Grade

Connoisseurs have long appreciated the quality of these leather,brass,and popular trunks,but in the past decade, the trunks themselves have appre-
dated spectacularly. A 1940s Vuitton that sold for $2,000 ten years ago now fetches up to $8,000 at online dealer Ron Cook & Co. […]

The LV is key : Interest falls off for Vuittons without lettering and for lesslogoed Goyards. “People want to show what they own,” says Cook. Dealers have trouble keeping up with demand because relatively few were produced.(Vuitton declined to disclose how many it makes each year.) “They’re definitely investment pieces,” says Debra Manning, vice president of Hermitage Antiques Ltd. in Dallas, where a 1910 Vuitton steamer that retailed for $12,000 in 2003 is available now for $23,000. The quest is transatlantic: Milan dealer Max Bernardini has seen the trunks’value double in the past four years,with those made between 1880 and 1950 the most prized. Clients have paid €30,000 (about $42,000) for the best of them. Today‘s trunks (like the wardrobe abobe),which take six to nine months to be delivered,remain a sound investment,as they’re still handmade and limited in number. —JIM BROSSEAU

Ask an Expert: Decorating with Trunks

As interior designer Sasha alkali tells us the Louis Vuitton trunks adds elements of style, history, and mystique to any space it inhabits. As collectors and interior decorators know, a Louis Vuitton travel trunk is much more than juste a large piece of luggage. It is foremost a thing of lasting beauty. In an era of wheeled valises and long security lines, Louis Vuitton trunks hearken to an older, more glamorous time of travel, and today are more likely to be found gracing a richly appointed living room that a steamer cabin or private rail car.

New York-based interior designer Sasha Bikoff has made her mark by seamlessly fusing her love for international vintage styles with the boldness of contemporary art and fashion, bringing a background in fine arts to her unique aesthetic sensibility. Ahead of Trunks & Travel Sale in Christie’s Handbag Ship, Handbags Specialist Caitlin Donovan spoke with Bikoff about her love of Vuitton trunks, the most stylish ways to furnish with them, and a few of her favorites from the sale.