Fabulous bags for the corporate road warrior

Get a leg up on the competition with a little help from classy travel bags

Issue: Nov 2009

The Porsche Design French Classic briefcase line in all its full splendour
The Porsche Design French Classic briefcase line in all its full splendour

Gone are the days when going for a meeting meant dressing up in an off-the-rack ensemble consisting of a pinstripe suit and leather shoes, and a standard-issue, clunky rectangle box which would be the sad excuse for a briefcase.

Fast-forward to today and the corporate crowd has plenty of options to suit individual tastes. Colours and designs abound, along with zips, flaps and buckles. With stiff collars loosening up and dress codes becoming more liberal, there are plenty of ways to project your own personal style into that small little portmanteau of yours.

If sleek and sharp is the look that you are going for, then the people from Porsche Design Group are the ones to go to. Set up in 2003 as the accessories, clothing and sports equipment arm of the iconic Porsche brand, they recently opened their first full-fledged standalone store in Singapore.

The 113 sq m store is located in Singapore's latest shopping hub, ION Orchard. It offers the full range of Porsche Design products, including their beautiful French Classic briefcase line worked in the finest cowhide leather with an accentuated texture. Available in six colours, the line features solid, hand-brushed hardware. Prices range from US$ 1,106 (S$1,540) for the smaller versions, to US$1,401 (S$1,950) for the slightly bigger ones.

Ermenegildo Zegna's Winter Bielmonte is a roomy leather tote for the discerning business traveller

Alternatively, if you're after something with a little less German precision, there's always Ermenegildo Zegna. Founded in 1910, this Italian fashion house has been a world leader in fine threads for men for close to a century. Besides producing their own range of suits, they also manufacture suits for other major labels such as Gucci, Yves Saint Laurent, and Tom Ford.

Having recently expanded into the field of accessories and leather goods, their Winter Bielmonte working bag has been a huge hit with the style-conscious working professional crowd with a bigger fashion budget. The US$1,868 (S$2,600) will be well spent, as the luxurious calf leather rectangular tote is roomy enough for all daily necessities, laptop and files as well.

Zegna's Trofeo Light is the weapon of choice for the busy road warrior

For a short business trip, their Trofeo Light trolley bag (SGD$2,200) is a godsend. Ultra light with a big front pocket, the functional internal pockets are very useful for storing small trinkets, as well as separating your lotions and potions from your clothes. It is small, compact, and modern. If MacGyver or Jack Bauer carried a suitcase, this would be it.

And no, we haven't forgotten about the fairer sex. More and more powerful female executives are making inroads into what used to be a predominately male environment. That's where Longchamp comes into the picture, to satisfy the demand for exquisitely designed and functional bags, made to the highest benchmark of quality.

English model and singer Agyness Deyn showing her love for Longchamp
English top model Agyness Deyn was recently spotted in Soho with the Exotic Gray GATSBY bag by Longchamp (US$1,387 or S$1,930) on her arm. Oozing French luxury, this printed snakeskin leather piece is chic enough for work and play. Which is pretty much the whole point of carrying one, non? Today, bags are less and less about conforming to standards and all about fulfilling whatever your heart desires!

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