Welcome to Salon Privé, a motor show like no other. Hosted in the grounds of Syon House in London, residence of the 12th Duke of Northumberland, the setting is more Alice in Wonderland than a traditional show hall. Forget mainstream manufacturers such as Mazda, Ford and Honda. This event is all about prestige welcoming Ferrari, McLaren and Lamborghini. A suit is the usual attire as well as a healthy chequebook. As I emerged out of the rabbits warren and into the grounds I was astonished at the sight of what lay in front of me.
A huge lawn with Syon House in the background and in front of it some of the most desirable machines on Earth. To my right a collection of hyper cars including Jay Kay’s famously green LaFerrari. Surrounding it was a Koenigsegg Agera, Pagani Huayra and a Bugatti Veyron. On my left a host of the latest Ferraris including the one-off Ferrari F12 TRS. What amazed me was that all of these magnificent machines were not fenced off, but instead were tangible and real. Where most motor shows would have you at a distance of 10 feet, there I was with my head inside a Veyron. The roster of modern marvels was magnificent with not one, but three LaFerrari in attendance. Morgan used the event to unveil a bespoke SP1 car that takes inspiration from the 2009 LifeCar concept. Classics were also well represented with four Ferrari F40 in attendance as well as legendary Jaguar D-Types, handsome Aston Martins and historic racing cars. You couldn’t turn your head in any direct and not be impressed. Ian Callum’s own Jaguar Mark 2, recently announced for limited production, was absolutely beautiful. The craftsmanship from Classic Motor Cars Limited truly is exquisite. Concept cars, poster cars, dream cars. It was a petrol heads fantasy. A convoy of Pagani entered with the most soul enriching soundtrack. A white and carbon detailed Huayra was in the middle of this Zonda pack. As the door rose upwards who claimed out of the drivers seat other than Mr Pagani himself! A very polite gentleman who was happy to answer a few of my questions. More on that soon.
After a delicious lobster lunch and finishing press conferences, I set about wondering the grounds in continuous awe with a glass of champaign in my hand, naturally. The garden party atmosphere was interrupted by a loud rumbling. Thunder? How typically British… However, it was not nature calling time on the outdoor event. Along came a parade of supercars in all of its combusting glory. The Gumball 3000 decided to take a lap of the event as did many other four wheeled marvels. Two wheeled stars were also on hand including Royal Enfield, Harley Davidson and French company Midual. Silverstone auctions were also attending with a collection of cars that would soon go under the hammer. The 1931 Bugatti Type 51 Pur Sang caught my eye in particular, but then so did the Miura, first ever Range Rover, F50, Z8, and original Rolls-Royce Phantom.
After afternoon tea I departed expecting to wake up and for this to have all been a dream. Salon Privé is unique. As bespoke as a tailored suit, you have to attend to fully appreciate this majestic event.
Take a look at our extensive Salon Privé gallery HERE.