When it comes to style and luxury, there are few case manufactures that compare to French couture designer Noreve. Based in Saint Tropez along the Mediterranean Sea, Noreve has long stood for their craftsmanship, quality of leathers, and cases that fit your devices like a glove. I’ve had the fortune of reviewing nearly a dozen different Noreve cases for GearDiary, ClintonFitch.com, and here at Average Apple Guy. Like always, the latest item they sent to me to review does not disappoint.
For this review, however, it is a first. It is the first time that I’ve had the opportunity to review a case in Noreve’s Tentation Tropezienne finish. A premium leather that is far more scratch and wear-and-tear resistant (which is saying something given the durability of their entry level Perpetuelle range), the Tentation Tropezienne range is handcrafted and features an outline print of the Saint Tropez bell tower on the inside flap. It also has the motto of Saint Tropez on the inside case where your phone fits, ad usque fidelis which translates to faithful to the end. When the Tentation Tropezienne cases were introduced back in 2012 for the iPhone 4, it was the first front flap case to carry the “Made in France” distinction as it is crafted in the country with leathers from the country.
Yes, this is a special case and one I’ve been eager to review.
Before I start the review, a couple of important highlights. First, the case I am reviewing here is for my iPhone 8. However, Noreve produces these cases for all iPhone models back to the iPhone 4. Feature wise, the cases for any iPhone will be the same as discussed in this review. Second, my case is in Negre poudro which is a black leather. There are a wide range of other colors available which I will cover at the end of the review. Finally, I am reviewing what Noreve generally refers to as the Tradition B model of case. That is, it has a front, book style cover, which has a snap closure. Noreve makes several different styles of cases, all of which are available in Tentation Tropezienne.
Unboxing and Presentation
If you have never purchased a Noreve case for any of your devices, you are in for a treat when your package arrives. It is also the first indicator that you have made a lasting purchase that is properly stylish and truly a luxury product. Every Noreve case, big or small, comes in a black box with a red top. The box itself is constructed of heavy cardboard and is a bit of a work of art itself. Open the box and you will find the Noreve red dust bag which has your case inside. Almost inevitably, everyone will smell the rich aroma of the leathers used for the case when you open that dust bag.
This is all before you actually get your hands on the case itself and sets you up for the experience of holding a Noreve case for the first time. As one who has been a long time fan and carrier of Louis Vuitton products, I get the same visceral experience when I open a Noreve box as I do a LV one.
Design and Construction
When you hold the Noreve case in Tentation Tropezienne, you are immediately struck by the quality of the construction of the case. The leathers, which have been specially treated to resist scratches and UV so they don’t fade, feels soft and supple in your hand. The second thing you will likely notice is the uniform, tight stitching of the case. Bare in mind that every Noreve case is hand crafted and the attention to detail is not lost. Every seam, every stitch is perfectly straight.
The outside of the front flap is smartly designed with three small holes in the top center for you to hear a phone call from your iPhone with the case closed. In the middle, on the right edge of the front, is the magnetic closure for this Tradition B style case, while in the right bottom edge you will find the Noreve logo, in stainless steel, embedded into the leather.
When you open the case, you will note that the leather that makes the outer shell of the case is all one piece. This not only adds to the overall luxurious look and feel of the case, but also adds an element of durability. There is one less seam which can add years of life to the case. Finally, on the back of the case, you will find it is uninterrupted save the precision cut hole for your iPhone’s camera and flash. This, of course, will vary in shape and size depending on which iPhone model you have for the case.
Finally, the small flap of the Tradition B style case that closes the case, is an extension of the single piece of leather that makes up the outside of the case. On the inside of this flap is where you will find the magnetic button for the closer of the case around your iPhone.
Opening up the Noreve case, the first thing you will notice is the stamped outline of the Saint Tropez bell tower in the front flap of the case. For my case, the is in white, which is a nice contrast to the black leathers of the case. Across from it, in the holder for your iPhone, you will find the stamped motto of Saint Tropez, ad usque fidelis in the center of the case. You will also find the Noreve brand name stamped into the top of the holder area while the “made in France” notice is stamped into the bottom of the holder.
Turning back to the inside front flap, you will find a tightly stitched pocket that makes up the entirety of the inside of the flap. This pocket has two card slots at the top for you to carry identification and a credit card, while the pocket itself can hold a few bills of cash too. This gives this particular style of case from Noreve the opportunity to be your wallet while you are out instead of having to carry a traditional wallet or handbag.
The inside back of the case is where your iPhone is slotted into the case. The hard plastic holder, which is covered in the same Tentation Tropezienne leather, is designed specifically for each iPhone model. With my case designed for my iPhone 8, the case holds my iPhone perfectly, with shallow cutouts for easy access to the volume rocker and mute switch on the inside and the power button on the outside. The holder is also cut away at the bottom for easy access to the Lightning connector and for unobstructed listening from the speakers of my iPhone.
Inserting your iPhone into the case is simple. Line up the right edge of your iPhone on the outside edge of the case holder then “snap” the left side into it. It will be a tight fit but it should not take too much effort to get your phone into it.
If you are like me and you like folio, book style cases, there is nifty little trick that many people miss on Noreve cases. The magnetic closure lines up perfectly whether you have the case closed or the front flap bent back open. You can bend the closure tab backwards and it will magnetically lock to the button on the front of the case. This gives you a bit of a wedge to hold in your hand while you type or view your iPhone.
Conclusion and Recommendation
Let me get the most obvious statement out of the way: I cannot recommend Noreve cases highly enough and now that I’ve had the opportunity to review their ultra premium Tentation Tropezienne, if you have the extra few dollars to spend on it, do it. You will not be disappointed.
In general, you are not going to find a better, more well constructed and functional case for your iPhone than the cases from Noreve. The hand crafted cases a stunning, both visually and feeling. This is a case you want to hold and want to touch. It is sexy.
As I briefly discussed at the beginning of this review, the Tentation Tropezienne leathers are a premium leather and are more expensive than the traditional leathers used by Noreve. So, by example, the Tradition B case for the iPhone 8 in their Perpetuelle smooth leather, starts at $68. In Tentation Tropezienne, the case starts at $130. Is it worth the difference? In my opinion, yes. You are getting a uniquely designed and crafted French case for your iPhone that will set it apart, even from other Noreve cases. The printed bell tower on the inside of the case is a nice, elegant touch that reflects the pride Noreve has in their cases and their home city. It is haute couture at its finest.
As for colors, you have a wide range to choose from on the Noreve site. Generally speaking, the Negre poudro (black) leather cases for your iPhone in the Tentation Tropezienne are in stock and ship within 24 hours. Other colors will take up to 14 days to hand craft and ship to you. Also keep in mind that if you select a custom color leather, there is no return of those products.
To get more information on the cases available for iPhones, including this exquisite Tentation Tropezienne case for the iPhone 8, head over to Noreve.