Rolls Royce is already synonymous with luxury, but the new Rolls Royce Serenity, based on the Phantom Series II, takes luxury to a whole other level. Terms like “redefining luxury” and “taking luxury to a whole other level” are clichés employed in countless commercials for your standard luxury sedan.
But the Serenity is a car that goes beyond leather seats and heat warmers and makes those clichés actually mean something again.
An Awesome Interior
To explain the Serenity’s insane luxury, it’s probably best to begin with the interior. Believe it or not, the interior cabin does not actually have leather — the trunk does. The trunk is lined with Arctic White leather and matching Arctic White carpet. Getting a little too sunny at whatever unspeakably exclusive club you decided to drive your Serenity to? That’s okay; the trunk also has two parasols strapped to the trunk lid with two Bespoke leather loops.
Rolls Royce aficionados know that the cars typically have umbrellas hidden in the door, so why the change to parasols? Because it fits in with the rest of the car’s theme. What? Your car doesn’t have a theme? While my car’s theme would be an expression of my natural aversion to shop vacs, with accents of loose change, the Serenity’s theme is a bit more refined. The designers decided to invoke ancient Eastern royalty in their design.
The Logic Behind the Theme
Cherica Haye of the Rolls Royce Design department explained the thinking behind the Serenity’s theme by saying, “The rear compartment of a Phantom is the most tranquil, beautiful place to be, a place where time and the outside world simply slip past. This tranquility made us think of the Oriental tradition where emperors would take to their private gardens to reflect in solitude under the blossom trees.
“The blossom motif is one that is cherished in Far Eastern culture and has been beautifully applied to royal robe design over the centuries. We felt it was the perfect representation of tranquility and serenity for a beautiful modern interior from Rolls-Royce.”
To that end, the interior of the Serenity is lined with silk. Naturally, it couldn’t be mass produced silk, either. They went to Suzhou, China, where the silk for the real-deal royal robes was made. Then it was hand-dyed by Chinese artisans. Upon its arrival in the Rolls Royce factory in the UK, the silk was hand-painted with crimson blossoms by artists, after it was fitted to the car’s interior. All in all, Rolls Royce says the process took up to 600 hours of work — per panel.
To match the blossoms, Rolls Royce trimmed the interior with smoked cherry wood inlaid with bamboo. They also decided to inlay rubies and mother of pearl in the speedometer and clock face, because apparently no surface of the car could go without some flourish that probably costs more than my entire car.
And don’t think for a second they were just going to throw a standard coat of paint on the exterior after doing all that work on the inside. They did a three-stage paint job with mother of pearl, which took twelve hours to sand, cut, buff and polish. Put the Serenity on your wish list in case you become an emperor in the near future.