When the clock strikes 9 the train will pull into the station. Everything is exactly as it seems, apart from when it isn’t…..The passengers on the train have a chequered past. They arrive with a vast amount of baggage, from a journey began somewhere in the countryside traveling to this grand edifice in the city. Some of them come from here, some of them don’t…..”
Such went the introduction of the Louis Vuitton Women’s Fall-Winter Collection 2012-2013 that was shown last Thursday night in Shanghai. An exact replica of the collection shown in Paris last March, the Louis Vuitton Express arrived in Shanghai with great fanfare to put on a spectacular show and party for over 1000 guests.
Upon arrival, guests made their way up a set of stairs, through a dimly lit hall and finally down a corridor that acted as the time machine, transporting guests to a bygone era where high-class travel was truly a privilege and adventure with luxurious services that came second-to-none.
Louis Vuitton’s idea of a departure lounge was a far cry from modern airports and train stations. They replaced security checks and pat-downs with a serenade and porter service. Instead of baton wielding guards were bow tie bearing butlers, ready to show ladies and gentlemen how to pack the travel necessities neatly into an LV case for a long voyage. This all set amongst art-deco chandeliers, staircases and latticework sculpted with LV’s quatrefoil logos, a map with the train route from Paris to Shanghai and waiters providing pre-departure champagne and canapés. The list goes on!
As the minutes ticked down, guests made their way onto the station platform to welcome the arrival of the weary travelers all the way from Paris. When the clock struck 9pm, billowing steam announced the arrival of the Louis Vuitton Express as the train nudged its way into the platform.
One by one the passengers disembarked the carriage wearing the fall winter fashion collection designed by Louis Vuitton Artistic Director Marc Jacobs with exquisite embroidery, tinsel textures, phenomenal furs and luxurious leathers that embellished the already extravagant elements to create an entirely new meaning to the words ‘fashion show’.
The accessories too appeared ready to “pet and pack” (as LV themselves stated), being constructed of such exotic materials as goat, kangaroo, pony, ostrich, and crocodile.
After the show Louis Vuitton owner Bernard Arnault, artistic director Marc Jacobs, Store designer Peter Marino, Chinese celebrities Gong Li and Fan Bing Bing all boarded the train themselves to experience a ride back in time on the Louis Vuitton Express. It was then onto the party where recent sensation Lana Del Rey and a DJs took the celebration well I into the night.