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When cars become a part of your home’s décor

We know all about beautiful homes and stunning architectural design, as well as luxurious cars that are gems of industrial design. Indeed, both can be works of art in their own right and are highly prized reflections of wealth and success, but what happens when the two worlds come together?

In the past cars lived in garages – beautiful cars in beautiful homes. Most typically they were rather unpleasant, dank, dark spaces crudely finished in concrete and brick. You’d be lucky to find a window and the lighting was usually unwelcoming too. Moreover, for a long time the main difference between a normal home garage and that of a luxury villa was the fact that the latter was a much larger space, which could house several cars.

If you think of it this doesn’t make a lot of sense. After all, why would you invest so much in a luxuriously appointed home and an enviable fleet of expensive cars only to house them in such an unpleasant environment? Admittedly, as the years wore on the standard of garages gradually improved, but even so the best you could usually wish for was a nice coat of paint on the walls, softer light and floors covered in a rubberised finish. It was still just a garage.

Showcasing moving works of art
Suddenly the coin dropped. People have been lovingly displaying collections of all manner of luxury items ranging from art and antiques to even sports and entertainment memorabilia, so why shouldn’t they showcase their beautifully styled cars in the same way? It might seem a little strange at first, but if you consider it well a sparkling Rolls Royce, imposing Mercedes limousine or sports cars both modern and classic are works of artistic and design art, and if presented properly they can certainly complement and enhance the beauty of a home’s décor.

As a result, the old ‘hangar for cars’ is being rethought and in the top end of the market the old garage is slowly but surely giving way to a whole new way of keeping and presenting cars that is far more integrated into the home and focused on deriving maximum pleasure from gleaming collections otherwise left unseen in underground catacombs. The most advanced luxury homes therefore include garages that are becoming lifestyle areas in their own right, with beautiful tiling, walls clad in luxury materials and soft lighting that is backlit at night to make your cars a showpiece visible from other parts of the home.

This is made possible through open-sided or glass-wall garages that connect with open courtyards, but also through glass lifts that take your car up right into the home’s living areas, where they are displayed in Burago-like cases. And why not, a 1960s Ferrari or Aston Martin can be every bit as wonderful an objet d’art as a grand piano or a Picasso painting. Not to be left out, the most luxurious apartment buildings are now also beginning to feature glass lifts – both internal and external ‘bubble’ ones – that take your prized vehicular possession up to the dizzy heights of your penthouse living room or study. Some might consider it to be the ultimate expression of a ‘boy’s toy’ but I sense this is just beginning of a renaissance for car storage and display.

-Michel Cruz-

Image courtesy of dornob.com