The Vintage Luggage Company: Safari Classique

Whether the British explorer David Livingstone relied on made-to-measure suitcases from Louis Vuitton, Hermés, Goyard or Moynat is not known. The antique luggage from the Vintage Luggage Company, however, looks very much ‘out of Africa’.

As the name suggests, the company specialises in deluxe suitcases, bags and trunks from the golden age of travel. Besides the well-known names mentioned above, the Vintage Luggage Company has found just as desirable items from less familiar ateliers.

No self-respecting African explorer should travel with anything less than the full canteen set from Moynat. This was manufactured in 1925, specially commissioned from the famous Place Vendôme luggage-maker. It comprises a full set of plates, cutlery and cooking equipment – all with their own, bespoke leather cases for security in transit.

Another indispensable item for the explorer, botanist or writer is what today would be called a ‘mobile office’. Instead of a laptop and Tanner Krolle briefcase, the 90-year-old Louis Vuitton Malle Secretaire is a six-drawer trunk that can both store specimens and convert to a writing table. The notes of the day’s activities can be recorded on the Smith Premier Typewriter No. 4 – the MacBook Pro of the times.

So, for those looking to carry out their own expedition and already have an atlas on their knees, do equip yourself with the correct luggage. Or, if the thought of transporting something ever-so-slightly heavier than a Rimowa polycarbonate case doesn’t appeal, you can always show off these stylish trunks in a sitting room or office.

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Text: J. Philip Rathgen
Photos: Vintage Lugguage Company / René Staud

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