The Secrets to Shipping

These ten experts can ensure the safe transport of any travel treasure, no matter how far it needs to go.

Orient-Express Hotels Ltd.
OF 11

Murano Glass Chandeliers

Staff at the Hotel Cipriani in Venice (Rooms, from $795; Giudecca 10; 39-41/240-801; has shipped some very unusual items. “One guest bought some mosaics from an antique villa,” recalls concierge Roberto Senigallia. “We arranged to carefully remove and pack them in a container. Then we sent them to New York and had them installed in the guest’s [bathroom].” And while the hotel has certainly shipped its fair share of chandeliers (one weighed 165 pounds and had more than 70 branches), Senigallia suggests leaving it to the glassmakers themselves. “The shipping prices are the same, and the staff in the Murano stores are experts at packing glass,” he says. “They also insure each package.” The cost for delivery varies enormously depending on the piece and the destination, but Senigallia estimates that a $20,000 chandelier split among five different boxes would cost about $530 (plus 12 percent tax) and take roughly a week to reach the United States. “Remember to have an electrician unpack the chandelier at the other end,” he adds, noting that only an expert should attempt a jigsaw puzzle of that variety.