Five stylish Christmas gifts for jetsetters

Thoughtful travel-friendly presents that’ll take them anywhere…

Clockwise from top: Pliqo bag, £150. Febronie beach fouta, £35. Wolf leather jewellery pouch, £75
Clockwise from top: Pliqo bag, £150. Febronie beach fouta, £35. Wolf leather jewellery pouch, £75

A devilishly clever suit carrier

Pliqo (£150) is a devilishly clever way of condensing a suit down to ludicrously small proportions. Even when it’s fully loaded, it is not much bigger than a laptop bag. It can then be shoulder-worn or stuffed inside a bigger vessel – such as a backpack. The British-designed product’s secret sauce is a specially made hanger that, once a jacket or shirt is on it, folds horizontally from tip to tip with some help from mini-magnets. Packing a Pliqo is not for ingénues, but there’s a good video guide to get you through. It’s possible to pull off the trick of boarding a midsummer flight from Mykonos in flip-flops, shorts and a T-shirt and getting off at London City in a pretty immaculately suited state. pliqobag.com. JONATHAN MARGOLIS

From left: Pilot translating earpiece, $299. The Mark silk sleeping mask, $25
From left: Pilot translating earpiece, $299. The Mark silk sleeping mask, $25

A chic travel jewellery box

Where to find a suitable travelling jewellery holder, one in which chains will not tangle nor items scratch each other? Most jewellery rolls are too large; structured boxes too heavy. The answer comes from mechanical watch winder maker Wolf. Many of its watch or jewellery boxes are grand and structured, and built for proud display rather than travel – but there’s also a seductive little quilted leather number (£75), available in five colours, with rounded corners, a tasselled zip and a remarkably well-designed, anti-tarnish fabric interior. One side has four compartments for slightly larger items and a central strip of padded rolls for rings and small earrings. Behind a firm divide, the other side has three hooks for chains or small necklaces, their pendants protected in a gathered pocket below, and there is even enough depth to squeeze in a delicate evening watch. Better still, the divide has a mirror for changing jewellery on the go. The box sides are structured enough to be protective and, although it is heavier than a pouch, it is small enough (11.4cm long) to fit into a weekend bag and easily holds enough jewellery pieces for a longer trip. The quilted leather is smooth and tactile, the interior well crafted, the whole aesthetically satisfying as well as practical. wolf1834.co.uk. AVRIL GROOM

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A lively, lightweight Tunisian towel

Made in Tunisia on traditional looms, a “beach fouta” (£35) has the crisp coolness of a raw-cotton sheet and the soft absorbency of a luxurious towel. Even at the standard size of 1m x 2m, it has the advantage of occupying virtually no space in your luggage in its rather chic little fabric bag. These designs are, of course, available all over north Africa, but Febronie in the UK has a wide selection in everything from emerald green to a restrained eau de nil. They are nothing if not adaptable, making the perfect beach blanket or an elegant cloth for a picnic table. febronie.com. PAUL RICHARDSON

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A pioneering language-translating earpiece

If you love gadgetry, imperfect first iterations are huge fun. They can also be, as precursors of whole new genres of tech, hugely important. Enabling face-to-face conversation in 15 different languages, the Pilot translating earpiece turns sci-fi gadgetry into a – slightly glitchy – reality. This was regarded by many to be a hoax when it was announced two years ago. A gadget you could place in one ear and use to converse face-to-face with someone speaking a different language (also wearing a device) sounded too science fiction even then. Pilot is by no means the finished article, but it can be useful. The translation bubble you set up with another Pilot-attired user is mobile phone dependent, and the language software is in the cloud. You can do something like this with Google Translate, but I’ve found the Pilot software faster and more accurate. I got into a tangle using Pilot in French and German, because I could understand the gist before the precise translation came through my ear, and instinctively responded. Result: a mess. But if I were in a quiet room with someone who speaks only, say, Japanese or Hindi or Arabic, I could have a meaningful, even reasonably nuanced, conversation. I tried Pilot with a Mandarin-speaking friend in a noisy café and it worked better than even tech-enthusiast me expected. A must-have for hardcore gadget lovers. waverlylabs.com. JONATHAN MARGOLIS

Fun fripperies from an iconic New York hotel

The distinctive black and white stripes of its Jacques Grange art deco-inspired interior and the Jean-Georges Vongerichten restaurant have made The Mark hotel an Upper East Side Manhattan destination like no other, with a loyal following. And the brand continues to expand to become more than simply a hotel: guests can now check out with The Mark bathrobes (from $125). Le Shop is an e-store selling objects subtly linked to The Mark’s style. Essentially, this is a high-end, 21st-century hotel gift shop; the stock is chic and simple, often sporting the hotel’s discreet “M” monogram. “The online shop will feature exclusive fashion collaborations and signature accessories, as well as small luxuries currently only available in our rooms and suites,” explains Izak Senbahar, the hotel’s owner. The edit is functional, witty and a little frivolous. There are petite jars of cucumber eye pads ($10), “24-hour” weekend bags ($450), Frédéric Malle candles ($85) and cute black silk sleeping masks with white eyelash graphics ($25). And Paris-based fashion illustrator Jean-Philippe Delhomme – whose figurative flair is visible throughout much of the hotel’s branding – has adorned ceramics (from $28 for a mug) with artwork depicting the kind of clientele that flocks to the original location at East 77th Street. leshop/themarkhotel.com. MARK C O’FLAHERTY

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