So I recently read about this spectacular new luxury mansion in California going for a nine-figure sum.
It’s got 12 massive suites, 21 bathrooms, three fully equipped kitchens, five bars, a 40-seat cinema, a four-lane bowling alley, a spa room, a gym, a wine cellar bigger than the average HDB flat, a 30-metre infinity pool, you name it.
The ultra-luxe villa also comes with its own ready-made US$30 million classic car collection, presumably parked in its massive climate-controlled basement garage.
Now I’m no game hunter, but I would imagine the thrill of a hunt is all in the pursuit – it would be no fun if you just got your hunting guide to deliver the freshly shot antelope to your doorstep. Likewise, surely the thrill in collecting classic cars is not so much the mere ownership of these cars, but the whole acquisition process.
Meaning the days spent trawling the ’net, contemplating your next target, consulting experts, the hunt – online or physical, nationwide or even, if you’re really serious, global – to find the perfect specimen, the bidding, and the thrill of victory when you’re finally handed the keys.
In the case of a “barn find”, even the inevitably protracted and expensive restoration process can be rewarding in its own right.
Car collectors revel in building their own carefully curated fleets over the years, bit by bit. Each car reflecting the owner’s personality, tastes and preferences, even his personal background and history.
It can include some oddball pieces that mean nothing to anyone but you – if you want to include, say, a 1980 Datsun 120Y because that’s the first car you ever drove, that’s your prerogative.
What I don’t get, is having someone else piece together that collection for you – especially someone who does not know you, let alone what your taste in classic cars is, or if you have one at all.
But then again, to the Millennials craving instant gratification, maybe I’m the bizarre, incomprehensible one.Why waste all that time and trouble scouring the world to put together a classic-car collection when you can just buy a ready-made one, to go with your show-villa and your Instagram lifestyle?