When designer Philippe Starck puts his mind to travel problems, he inevitably lands on some brilliant marriage of form and function, from his NFC-enabled Paris metro cards to the ingeniously designed, yet affordable Mama Shelter hotels.
So it’s no surprise that his latest innovation, the Starktrip luggage collection for Delsey, comes with a distinctly utilitarian twist. Ranging from sleek little totes and rolling duffels to more traditional wheeled suitcases, the line is classic Starck: dark grey, angular, with accents of brushed silver. But the edge is in what you can't readily see: the scratch-proof nylon fabric that’s water-, stain-, and bacteria-resistant; the multidirectional wheels that make pivoting easy; the hidden pocket for extra security; and the composite frame that’s both flexible and extraordinarily light.
Our favorite piece is the Milanock four-wheeled suitcase ($550), which meets airlines’ stringent 22” x 14” x 9” luggage-compartment requirements without sacrificing interior space. With most soft-sided wheeled suitcases, the interior pockets and retractable handle whittle away the packable space. With the Milanock, almost every inch is yours to fill. So go ahead, pack that extra pair of going-out shoes. When your suitcase is supremely functional, you can be a little bit more frivolous.
Amy Farley is Travel + Lesiure's News Editor.