The Louvre, Paris

In a pavement café nearby a man scribbles on a notepad, his cigarette jutting out precariously from his pursed lips as he breathes out smoke through his nostrils. With one arm dangling at the back of his chair, he holds his gaze on passersby as if prowling for inspiration. Not far away, a young couple canoodles on a park bench backdropped by the Eiffel Tower, oblivious of the street artist sketching away their fervid affection. I sip on a Bordeaux, wondering if I’ve just caught the ghosts of Hemingway and Picasso.

The Eiffel Tower, Paris

It is early July, and the buttery aroma of warm croissants rolls on the soft summer breeze. The bistro’s terrace buzzes with multilingual tete-a-tetes. I instinctively reach into my duffel bag to fish out my camera and snap photographs of the chicly dressed locals and tourists. I have nothing else planned for the day but to wander around and get lost in the romantic city. It is true, Paris induces a trance-like obedience in its visitors, making them slow down, listen to the street jazz musicians and appreciate the details of centuries-old monuments. And there’s nothing better than enjoying a leisurely walk all day without having to run back to the hotel every so often to grab a change of shoes, a pair of sunglasses or perhaps a book. My customized leather duffel bag from Cleora comfortably fits everything that I need for the day: cameras, maps, on-the-go cosmetics, water bottle and extra shirts and shoes for the Instagram poses by the Louvre. Throw in the fact that it is stylish, photogenic and easy to carry around, I might have just found the perfect travel partner.

Cleora is the latest local brand to specialize in high-quality and personalized cowhide leather bags, fashion leather items and corporate giveaways. Cleora is not exactly a newbie to the industry, as it is the sister company of Lordman Leather Craft, a Marikina-based supplier of top-notch leather gun holsters throughout the country for over 40 years. Check out their sample designs on Instagram (@cleaorafashionhouse) or you may reach them at 09055266765, 09423518027 and 09498675003.

Piaza Navona, Rome

Coloseo, Rome