Image: Cristóbal Marambio

Image: Cristóbal Marambio

APEX Insight: Amenity kits are wearing the culture and heritage of their airline’s native city in prints – on and in the bag.

Art and Amenities

On the outside, there doesn’t seem to be anything exceptional about Cathay Pacific’s latest collection of premium economy amenity kits – rectangular canvas zip bags in earthy shades – but this is intentional. The pouch is simple, allowing it to be adopted post-flight for razors, makeup brushes, pens and pencils or a shoeshine kit, and the design is plain “to let the artwork speak for itself,” states travel amenities company Formia in a press release.

On the lower front of the pouch is a symbol from Asian culture: fish, a Chinese homonym for abundance; or bamboo, a sign of strength, growth and resilience. But it’s on the inside where the Asian brush-painting-inspired images come to life, creating a moment of delight as the passenger unzips the bag.

The design is plain “to let the artwork speak for itself.” – Formia

“They showcase Danny Yung’s illustrations. He’s a very well-known graphic artist from the same hometown as Cathay Pacific and the headquarters of Formia – Hong Kong,” says Roland Grohmann, managing director at Formia. The amenity kits are the first the company has created for the airline’s premium economy class, which launched with a customized seat in 2016. Over the next two years, Formia will release 16 different designs, introducing a new set of premium economy amenity kits every three months.

Dash of Dandy

“Liberty is the chosen resort of the artistic shopper,” said the 19th-century playwright Oscar Wilde. He wasn’t referring to liberty as freedom, but to the world-famous Regent Street department store known for its intricate prints that adorned silk scarves, housewares and objets d’art. These days, Liberty London prints are just as likely to be found in collaborations with Target, MAC Cosmetics, Uniqlo and now British Airways.

For British Airways’ first-class washbags, which are available in his or hers editions, Liberty London uncovered prints from its archives: an oriental floral pattern for women and a colorful paisley design for men.

“Liberty London is an iconic British brand, so it’s fantastic to work in partnership with them to offer our customers flying in [first class] the very best and most eye-catching washbags in the sky,” says Troy Warfield, the airline’s director of Customer Experience.

“Hidden Prints” was originally published in the 7.1 February/March issue of APEX Experience magazine. 

Caroline is managing editor at APEX Media.