Louis Vuitton City Guide 2008: New York and European Cities (Louis Vuitton) There are plenty of guidebooks for the thrifty backpacker but not many for the traveller who needs to know which Manhattan hotel has a direct bidding line to Sotheby's in every room. Luxury luggage brand Louis Vuitton has filled this gap in the market with the latest editions of its City Guide. Packaged in two boxes, New York is examined in a single tome while 30 European destinations, from Rome, Paris and London to more exotic places such as Reykjavik and Nicosia, are covered in a set of nine books. The New York version identifies the Carlyle Hotel, on the Upper East Side, as the place for those who need to bid for a Picasso while ordering room service. It also has informative essays about New York taxis and where to get a US$50 bagel with smoked salmon and beluga caviar. There are sections on nightlife, restaurants, high fashion, spas and - my favourite - one titled Good Things, which covers everything from cupcakes to cheese and pickles. The European cities receive a similar treatment, all in a slightly haughty French tone - the 23 contributors seem to have predominantly Gallic names. Consider how one describes a restaurant in St Petersburg: 'The clientele is resolutely New Russian, and, since it's the latest fashion, usually take along their bodyguard, in a suit of course.' For habitual LV shoppers, these guides will help keep their credit cards busy whether they are in Copenhagen or Berlin. For those with more modest means, they are a great source of dreams and fantasies. The European (HK$850) and the New York guide (HK$400) are available from all Louis Vuitton stores.