T Anthony, retailer of luxury luggage to stars, goes bankrupt

The brand was used by British royalty, Marilyn Monroe and Jackie Onassis in the past

High-end luggage brand T Anthony has filed for bankruptcy. Instagram / tanthonyltd
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T Anthony, the Manhattan luggage maker favoured by the likes of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, Marilyn Monroe and British royalty, filed for bankruptcy Thursday after the pandemic stifled demand for luxury travel goods.

Fallout from Covid-19 forced T Anthony to close and vacate its Park Avenue store, furlough all but one employee and dramatically cut back on orders for new merchandise, according to court papers.

Marilyn Monroe using T Anthony luggage. Courtesy T Anthony 
Marilyn Monroe using T Anthony luggage. Courtesy T Anthony 

A fixture in Manhattan since 1946, T Anthony's offerings range from $65 passport covers and $450 duffel bags to $11,000 ostrich trolleys. Big spenders can get a Louisiana alligator-hide version for $17,000. Its wares have been sported by the Duke and Duchess of Windsor and Sir Elton John, according to accounts posted on its website.

Of Monroe, the brand's website reads: "From her shimmering red lips to her iconic blonde hair, everything about Marilyn Monroe exuded glamour. Even her vibrant red luggage screamed siren. Maybe that's why we're still making the collection she requested in 1950 nearly 70 years later."

With businesses closed around the globe and personal travel curtailed, “demand for high-end, formal and professional luggage, travel accessories, and leather goods, comprising significantly all of the debtor’s business, has experienced a severe and lasting decline,” chief operating officer Steven M Cherniak said in a sworn court statement.

The company filed for bankruptcy to get fresh capital for its internet business and new store, steps away from its old location in Manhattan, according to court papers. T Anthony listed assets of about $1.2 million and liabilities of about $3.4 million.

T Anthony was bought in 2018 by Manhattan real estate mogul Charles S Cohen, who also owns British footwear maker Harrys of London. Lawyers handling T Anthony's bankruptcy declined to comment.