Louis Vuitton has been employing efforts to up the ante and move away from the more affordable canvas-covered handbags that have saturated the market and made it hard for LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton's most valuable brand to report any significant source of revenue growth in recent years. You may recall that Louis Vuitton's pricey Capucines leather handbags, which were introduced 2013 and range in price from roughly $4,000 to $6,000, were one of the first steps in the Paris-based brand's attempts to regain its air of exclusivity with consumers after it became victim to the fatigue-induced side effects stemming from a flood of counterfeit monogram bags paired with an increase in production of its authentic logo-covered bags.
On the heels of the debut of the Capucines style, the bag started selling out in European fashion capitals and spawning waiting lists, signaling that the world's biggest luxury brand could be regaining some of its lost sparkle. The news implied that Louis Vuitton's efforts to strengthen its offering of expensive leather bags to reposition itself as more upmarket and exclusive - as Gucci also attempted to do – have yielded positive results.
Now add the City Steamer bag to the list, an updated version of one of its classic styles, constructed almost entirely of crocodile skin. Coming in at a cool $55,500 at retail, the bag is certainly a rather significant step up from the Capucines and has it rivaling some of Hermès’s Birkin bags. Check see the bag for yourself on Louis Vuitton's website, but to purchase, you will have to call Louis Vuitton, as online and in-store purchases are not available at this time. And for those who have a more limited budget (aka almost everyone), the brand is offering the City Steamer PM and the MM version, the leather alternatives, which come in at a relatively mere $3,550 and $3,850, respectively, and can be bought online and in LV stores.