Let's go back to Stanley Marcus's definition of luxury -- ''the best that the mind of man can imagine and the most sophisticated hand of the virtuoso craftsman can achieve." I challenge anyone to provide another better one.
"Luxury" in Mr. Marcus's sense will never go away. There will always be an audience of the most educated, affluent and appreciative for products or services that fall into this still much-envied niche. The best luxury brands shouldn't be and, truth be told, won't be and aren't being brow beaten by this temporary tidal-wave of no-confidence.
Because those brands that remain grounded in their heritage of value, craft and highly personal, intelligent service, will continue to offer true luxury products and services and experiences and will never go out of style. Those brands have seen it all before -- depressions, recessions, wars and every twist and turn the market produces. They "feel the pinch" later and the rebound earlier.
It's not the word that's the villain. It's the faux luxury brands overusing it. I suggest it won't be too long before the pendulum swings back again.
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