As with all our executive cars, we have added additional features to this new E-Class estate which are designed to enhance your journey with us. The spacious interior benefits from rear controlled air conditioning and heated rear seats (just wait until those chilly early mornings in winter!). Whilst for sunnier days there are sun-blinds and privacy glass too. We have even added a luggage partitioning system in the spacious boot designed to prevent items moving around when in transit.
This is the first estate car for our ever expanding fleet, which got us thinking about the history of estate cars and their rise in popularity from functional station wagons to stylish executive cars. The very first ‘station wagons’ were created in America from a truck chassis with a railway carriage welded on top used to transport people to and from the station – hence the name!
From this functional start, in 1922 an American company in Detroit called Essex, developed a more passenger friendly version adding covered seats rather than wooden benches plus a window in place of curtains. It was largely American manufacturers who continued to evolve the design of the station wagon during the 1930’s, with the greatest developments occurring post World War II when wood body construction was replaced by steel bodies. During the late 1950’s through to mid-1960’s the market in America continued to expand as more manufactures including Oldsmobile, American Motors, GM and Chrysler continued to bring new models onto the market.
It was not until 1977 at the Frankfurt Auto Show when Mercedes-Benz introduced their bespoke estate version of their popular W123 model as they entered the touring and transport market. Today the C-Class and E-Class estate models have become a staple of modern family life to transport kids, dogs, luggage and sports equipment! Our E-Class can comfortably transport three passengers plus luggage – which is perfect if you have a plane to catch to go on your summer holiday.
In our previous post we suggested a number of reasons why the chauffeur option (as opposed to driving yourself or taking the train) makes more sense from both a business and personal perspective. In the process of writing it we came across some fascinating research that provides strong, and perhaps surprising, evidence that reading novels is not a self-indulgent waste of a time for the busy executive – it’s actually a very smart way to get ahead!
We were naturally intrigued, because it adds even more weight to the arguments in favour of letting us do the driving – even if you just use the time to read The Great Gatsby or Brighton Rock (as opposed to something on personal development or business strategy) you’ll benefit from a very positive return on investment.
Published in the authoritative Harvard Business Review, and written by a successful Executive Vice President, The business case for reading novels* is extremely compelling.
She cites data indicating that fiction-reading activates neuronal pathways in the brain that measurably help the reader better understand real human emotion — improving his or her overall social skilfulness.
She goes on reveal "a significant relation between the amount of fiction people read and their empathic and theory-of-mind abilities". Theory of mind, she explains, is the ability to interpret and respond to those different from us — colleagues, employees, bosses, customers and clients. And she reminds us that “This is plainly critical to success, particularly in a globalized economy. The imperative to try to understand others' points of view — to be empathetic — is essential in any collaborative enterprise.”
So, if you are going to read novels to enhance your performance in the workplace, what would we recommend? On the basis that you’ll feel slightly less guilty if some of the action takes place in the world of business try these for starters.
The Bonfire of the Vanities by Tom Wolfe
The book charts the fall of Wall Street Master of the Universe Sherman McCoy and is a swirling drama about ambition, racism, social class, politics, and greed in 1980s New York City. Meticulously researched by the journalist turned novelist it has a richness of detail that paints a vividly realistic picture of the knotty underside of life’s rich tapestry.
The Fear Index by Robert Harris
A bad day in the life of Geneva based hedge fund manager Dr Alex Hoffman. Without giving too much away, the story has a twist that’s reminiscent of Frankenstein. Which is nicely ironic – Mary Shelley had the idea for her famous novel whilst staying in a villa on the shores of Lake Geneva, and the landscape helps set the dark and mysterious tone of her gothic tale. Read it before the film comes out! Again, written by a journalist turned novelist, and gripping from the very first page.
A Week in December by Sebastian Faulks
Follows a handful of very different character over the course of a week, at the end of which they all attend the same dinner party. At the heart of the drama is John Veals, a hedge fund manager with a chillingly dispassionate and clandestine approach to enriching himself, even at the expense of others.
Money by Martin Amis
Narrated by John Self, a successful director of TV commercials who is invited to New York by Fielding Goodney, a film producer, to shoot his first film. Inspired by Amis’s own experience working on the script for the disastrous film Saturn 3 it charts the anti-hero’s slobbishly indulgent self-destruction in viscerally bubonic prose.
You might detect a trend here. All four leading characters lack emotional intelligence – and pay the price.
Link to article:
As part of our ongoing marketing partnership with Clifton Life we were recently featured in their Business Insider section.
If you would like to read the recent profile on Sybaris Chauffeurs published in their May edition please click here to see the article in full.
Back in August of last year we wrote a post making the business case for hiring a chauffeur – coming from a purely logical perspective we argued that it provided an excellent return on investment for the busy and successful executive. But that’s not the only reason why our clients use our services. There are many instances where the decision has nothing to do with efficiency and everything to do with just enjoying oneself!
Creating memories that last a lifetime
People who work hard understand that time is money – because they trade one for the other. But that doesn’t mean the two commodities are the same. They are fundamentally different in that money is replaceable whereas time is not. You can always earn more money, but time spent is gone forever. So the latter is incredibly precious, and spending money to make the most of it is nothing short of good sense.
Look at it this way - life is a once-only experience, made up of fleeting moments that become lasting memories. Sometimes those moments happen by happy accident. But others are the result of careful planning - a wedding day, a honeymoon, a special anniversary, a romantic break, a family holiday, time spent with close friends. Looking back, you’ll realise these are the events that have shaped your life, invested it with meaning and value. So they absolutely demand to be celebrated with all the style and exuberance you can muster to give the occasion the magic it deserves.
You can always fit a little bit more glamour into your life
At these all-important moments every little detail either adds to the experience or detracts from it - and hiring a chauffeur definitely falls into the former category. For starters, you or another member of the party doesn’t have the burden and distraction of driving, navigating and parking. Everyone can fully relax, join in the conversation and take in the view. What’s more, there’s the added excitement of a prestigious and luxurious vehicle that that not everybody will be familiar with – there’s nothing quite like riding in the latest Mercedes-Benz S Class!
What’s more, the sheer novelty and indulgence of having your own personal driver just adds a further layer of sophistication and exclusivity to the experience – everyone feels that extra little bit special when they are being given the celebrity treatment!
Go on – enjoy yourself
When you are having the time of your life you don’t want any niggling worries or tiresome distractions. Stressing about staying awake on the drive home, whether it’s alright to have just one more glass of wine, walking back to the car in the rain or missing the last train home can really take the edge off things – you want the freedom to throw yourself into the occasion knowing that getting home is totally taken care of.
Open your mind to the possibilities
Hiring a chauffeur is something that naturally comes to mind for occasions such as a wedding, or a party where wining and dining is a big part of the fun. But there are so many other opportunities for making enjoyable events even more special.
We all love holidays, but getting to the airport, negotiating the traffic, parking the car and transferring your luggage to the terminal is nobody’s idea of fun. Nor is doing it all in reverse, when you are tired after the flight, on your return. When you add the parking fees on top of the effort and hassle a chauffeur-driven start and end to your holiday becomes a very appealing option indeed. And just think of all the other times when having a chauffeur will turn a great event into a truly amazing one. How about a day at the races with half a dozen of you in a smart people carrier, a rugby or football match with your mates, or a day out at Henley, Wimbledon or Silverstone?
You could travel in a luxurious limousine to and from an intimate dinner for two at that Michelin starred restaurant you’ve heard so much about, or enjoy a night of theatre or music in Bristol, Bath or the West End. Or maybe you fancy a day at the Bath & West Show, the Hay Festival or shopping with the girls up in town.
All work and no play…
Parkinson’s Law states that “work expands to fill the time allotted for it” - which is another way of saying that the fun in your life has to be scheduled and planned. So take some time out and make the most of every moment with a chauffeuring service that offers the ultimate in comfort and relaxation.
If you’d like more details of how we making getting to and from the airport less of a hassle and more of a pleasure then click here. For all other occasions, and lots of inspiring ideas, visit our events pages.
Whilst writing our previous post about the Mercedes S-Class we came across this quotation by the company’s legendary founder, Gottlieb Daimler: “The best or nothing at all.” The engineers who have followed in his footsteps obviously took this maxim to heart and the S-Class is an enduring testimony to the fact that words can inspire great achievements.
This got us thinking – what other quotations could we share with our clients to urge them on as they journey along the road to greatness? Hopefully this short list, picked from the sayings of ten of life’s biggest achievers, will provide positive impetus. However, just to give it a twist, we’ve turned it into a quiz:
- “Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.”
- “In a world that's changing really quickly, the only strategy that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risks.”
- “Chains of habit are too light to be felt until they are too heavy to be broken.”
- “Sometimes by losing a battle you find a new way to win the war.”
- “Intellectual property has the shelf life of a banana.”
- “One must give ideas the chance to become true.”
- "Ingenious people begin great works, hardworking people finish them.”
- “If you think you can do a thing or think you can't do a thing, you're right.”
- “The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.”
- “A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.”
So, great food for thought. And now for an amusing dessert.
- “Brevity is the soul of lingerie.”
- “Some cause happiness wherever they go; others whenever they go.”
- “I used to be Snow White, but I drifted.”
- “The reason so many people turned up at his funeral is that they wanted to make sure he was dead.”
- “The difference between stupidity and genius is that genius has its limits.”
- “Your manuscript is both good and original; but the part that is good is not original, and the part that is original is not good.”
- “You know your children are growing up when they stop asking you where they came from and refuse to tell you where they're going.”
- “I am not afraid of death, I just don't want to be there when it happens”
- “Go to Heaven for the climate, Hell for the company.
- “Recession is when a neighbour loses his job. Depression is when you lose yours.”
Answers to serious quotes
- Steve Jobs
- Mark Zuckerberg
- Warren Buffett
- Donald Trump
- Bill Gates
- Thomas Alva Edison
- Leonardo da Vinci
- Henry Ford
- George Bernard Shaw
- Winston Churchill
Answers to fun quotes
- Dorothy Parker
- Oscar Wilde
- Mae West
- Samuel Goldwyn
- Albert Einstein
- Samuel Johnson
- PJ O’Rourke
- Woody Allen
- Mark Twain
- Ronald Reagan