Review: Louis Vuitton Cruise 2018

©Collage / Oriane Baud

Louis Vuitton presented their Cruise Collection 2018 in Japan, showing an iconic futuristic selection with traditional Japanese influence

My first exotic trip to attend a single cruise collection show was so well organized and planned – three and a half days in Kyoto felt like an excitement and pleasure-filled week. If it were possible, I’d love to book my next holiday with the #lvcruise travel agent.

Arrival

I landed at Osaka airport in the early morning hours along with a handful of carefully selected editors. We were all picked up by beautiful black taxis with the Louis Vuitton logo on top and white-gloved drivers – apologies if I annoyed everybody with my many car snippets on Instagram Stories, but I was just too happy to have full speed Wi-Fi. Sometimes small things make all the difference.

My First Temple Visit

Straight from a light lunch, our tour began with a meditation at the Shunkoin Temple followed by a traditional tea ceremony. Aside from experiencing the calm beauty and serenity of the place, I loved the part where everybody had to take off their shoes – and reveal their choice of socks. Of course the LV travel agent had equipped us beforehand.

Dinner

A welcome dinner was held the night before the show in the amazing Tofukuji Temple, which was built in 1236 and embodies the medieval architectural style. I tried to match the occasion with some serious glam, but didn’t realize beforehand that this would mean “sock time” again.

Let the Show Begin

The Miho Museum, which was designed by I. M. Pei and opened in 1997, is located in the Japanese countryside amongst the Shigaraki Mountains. Once we arrived, we followed a path through an amazing tunnel. Of course this was where the models came out later on. The setting and scenery were truly unreal.

Special Guests

It was so exciting to see Kansai Yamamoto as the show’s special guest. Not only is he mostly known for creating many of David Bowie’s costumes, but he also paved the way for an entire generation of Japanese designers by doing his shows in Paris. His tribute to this Louis Vuitton cruise collection came in the form of the many amazing icons, symbols, and characters he created for the bags and accessories.

My Favorite Looks

Set to the sounds of The Blaze (Territory was my fave) models with windswept manes trotted out of the tunnel in a way that only Nicolas Ghesquière can make so cool: His iconic futuristic feel met the traditional Japanese – but instead of the usual geisha interpretation, he went for the samurai. To top it off, Nicolas Ghesquière’s favorite Asian actresses Rila Fukushima and Doona Bae opened and closed the show.

Details and Finale

Pat McGrath’s makeup was part 70s glam rock, part manga warrior, and in perfect harmony with the badass flamed cowboy boots and the amazing new bag shapes. They included a mini-bucket, a small hatbox, and a pochette with an eye motif designed by Yamamoto.

After-Show Glow

Nicolas Ghesquière giving his quotes right after the show and directly in front of the sunset was hard to beat – even by the amazing possibility of a private exhibition visit.

Dinner

The celebratory dinners were held in sixteen small restaurants in Gion, the historical heart of Kyoto which was built for travelers coming to discover the Yasaka Shrine. It’s also the most exclusive and best-known geisha district in all of Japan.

After lots of drinking games with geishas, we all walked to a nearby club called Surf Disco, where anyone who was still able to move after so many amazing impressions and delicious treats could dance amongst the models from the show, who were all looking dashing in the latest collection pieces.

I feel so happy and honored to have had the pleasure of witnessing not only an amazing show, but also the so well thought-through, one-of-a-kind, “indestructible” (how handy that this Robyn song was the last on the collection soundtrack) creative genius that is Nicolas Ghesquière and his team for Louis Vuitton.

Born and raised in Munich/Germany, Veronika’s professional career has developed from being a model to a fashion editor, to online luxury retailing and most recently style editor of Harpers Bazaar Germany. She currently lives in Berlin where in the beginning of 2015 she started a company with Julia Knolle, the ex-editor at large of Vogue Digital.
Oh, and she loves pugs!