Road to Luxury

The third edition of Cartier Travel With Style Concours D'Elegance celebrated the love for vintage automobiles

Dotted with chic vintage cars and elaborate marquees done up in white and maroon, the venue resembled the setting for a royal wedding, except that it wasn't one. However, the Taj Lands End in Mumbai did wear a festive look on Sunday as it played host to the third edition of Cartier Travel With Style Concours D'Elegance. Visitors were in for a feast as 70 vintage cars and 32 motorcycles — rare automotive treasures from bygone days — jostled for their attention. And given that this is one-of-a-kind exhibition and competition that takes place every two years in India — the first two were held in Mumbai and Delhi in 2008 and 2011 respectively — it was not surprising to see a liberal sprinkling of royalty and celebrity in attendance.

While Manvendra Singh of Barwani was the curator for the exhibit, British conservationist Mark Shand was the event director. Singh emphasised that with each edition, they attempt to raise the bar by introducing exciting new categories. "Apart from showcasing rare and vintage motorcycles for the first time, we have added the category called 'Edwardian Class', which includes cars from the turn of the 20th century to 1919, and the 'Shikar Class' that has automobiles used for royal hunts," Singh said.

The day clearly belonged to the winners in multiple categories — Pre-War, Post-War, Indian Heritage, Preservation and Roadster, to name a few. Maharaja Gaj Singh of Jodhpur beamed proudly as his 1935 Rolls Royce Phantom II was declared the Best Car of the show, while the Best Motorcycle award was bagged by a 1915 model of the Indian, owned by Subodh Nath. "To be honest, I am not a big vintage car enthusiast, but it feels great to have one's car appreciated on such a platform," said Maharaja Gaj Singh. Winners in other categories included the 1906 Napier owned by Princess Esra of Hyderabad, a 1934 Rolls Royce owned by Yuvraj Mandhatasinh Jadeja of Rajkot and a Chrysler and a 1933 Studebaker, both owned by Viveck Goenka, Chairman and Managing Director, The Indian Express Ltd. "This is the first time that an owner has won awards for two of his cars," said Goenka.

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