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Suitcase Series

Suitcase Series: Lea Wieser Of arkitaip

London-based brand arkitaip was founded in 2019 by Austrian mother-daughter duo Michi and Lea Wieser, with the aim of creating forever wardrobe staples with conscious credentials.

Combining Michi’s handcrafting skills and jet-setting career as an air hostess for Austrian Airlines, and Lea’s creative background with a passion for sustainability, arkitaip has grown into the go-to destination for resortwear pieces cut from 100 per cent European-certified linen. Mirroring the easy-going, care-free way of life adopted on summer travels, the brand’s responsibly-crafted collections offer elegant escapism.

We speak to Lea about her most memorable trips, ask her how she would spend a perfect day in her hometown of Vienna, and find out what she’s packing for trips this summer.

What is the first trip you remember taking?

I grew up in Vienna, Austria, so we spent most of our holidays skiing with friends and family in the Alps. My grandparents used to own a cozy restaurant in the mountains, so every ski day would be followed by delicious Austrian food and hugs from grandma.

What’s been your most memorable trip and why?

As a child I accompanied my mum, who was a flight attendant, on many of her trips. One of my favorite destinations was Delhi, India. The busy streets, diverse flavours and vibrant colours were so different from anything I had ever experienced. I absolutely loved it! This trip sparked my passion for adventure and travel.


What’s the biggest lesson you’ve taken from your travels?

Arrive early at the airport. For long-haul flights, pre-book your in-flight meals; as a vegetarian, I always choose the Asian-veggie option.

How would you spend an ideal day in your home city?

Wandering through the streets of Vienna admiring its charming architecture, followed by an exhibition at Albertina and dinner with friends at COP.

Where or what is your escape?

Nature, in all its forms, is my sanctuary – whether that’s mountains or the ocean. Being surrounded by nature makes me feel at peace.



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What’s your idea of a luxury holiday?

A blend of adventure and relaxation. I enjoy being active and exploring new places – but I also need downtime, to relax with a good book and lots of sleep.

If you could go anywhere tomorrow you’d go to:




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How do you recover from jet lag?

I drink plenty of water, take a brief nap (no longer than an hour!) and then go for a long walk to explore my new destination.

What’s your in-flight beauty routine?

Hand sanitiser and moisturiser.

Your flight’s delayed an hour and your phone’s out of battery. How do you pass the time?

As I run my own business, I always carry my laptop with me. I’d take advantage of the extra time to catch up on emails and work. If I had neither, I’d listen to music and jot down some thoughts.

If you could sit next to anyone on a flight – dead or alive – who would it be?

My mum passed away a few months ago, and I would give anything to hug her and tell her how much I love her.



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Favourite hotel?

Casa Balandra – it’s not your traditional hotel but a super charming guest house, artist residency and collaborative space in Mallorca, hosted by my wonderful friend Clau. They’re currently closed for bookings as they’re developing a new space which I can’t wait to stay at.

Favourite airline?

Austrian Airlines – my mum used to be an air hostess with them, and their chic, red uniforms always remind me of her.

What’s on your travel playlist?

Sea, Sex and Sun by Serge Gainsbourg, Hold Me by The Teskey Brothers, and Seabird by Alessi Brothers.

What are your must-have travel picks?

I never leave without my analogue camera; there’s something thrilling about waiting to develop the film from your holiday. Our arkitaip Carolina Cargo Trousers are perfect for travelling, along with the Jane Ruffled Maxi Dress which I love to throw on over a bikini, or wear to dinner with some nice jewellery. A spacious bag to carry all my things. Eco-friendly sunscreen, our arkitaip x Laetitia Rouget-sarong, and a good read – I’m currently reading Klara and the Sun by Kazuo Ishiguro.



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Where next?

Sicily for a mini-festival organised by friends, followed by two days of exploring Palermo and the Sicilian coast.


Hand-luggage essential?

Headphones, a notebook and a scarf.

Packing: roll or fold?


Inflight book or inflight film?


Music or podcast?


Time killer on a long-haul flight?

Lots of sleep. Or a movie marathon if I have trouble sleeping.

Holiday tipple of choice?

A glass of white wine with ice and sparkling water – it’s a super Austrian thing that might raise some eyebrows elsewhere.

Bucket list top destination?


Best shopping gem found abroad?

During a recent trip to Sri Lanka with my boyfriend, we stumbled upon an incredible antiques store. We brought back some super unique wall hangings that we put up in our flat.

Beach or City?


Ultimate holiday treat?

Pistachio ice cream.

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