Coordinating a wedding, Bar/Bat Mitzvah, or any other celebration is a major undertaking. The first priorities typically include selecting a professional planner, venue, theme, caterer, entertainment and so on. Transportation is frequently an afterthought. One of the last things to worry about is how to shuttle key individuals around. Just get a limo, right?
Not necessarily. When planning a special event, the transportation ought to be considered an integral component of the event theme. A Lincoln Town Car, SUV, stretch limo or Sprinter van indeed will get passengers from Point A to Point B, but an upsurge in demand for classic, vintage cars suggests that many people are looking for something out of the ordinary to complement their events. Brides and grooms, Bar/Bat Mitzvah boys and girls, prom couples and other event honorees are being chauffeured in style!
Recognizing this trend, Distinctive Carriage opened for business last year to provide the Southern California wedding, special event or occasion, and corporate branding markets with transportation experiences that are a little bit different—stylish and elegant but fun. The company does this by offering clients a touch of England in the form of imported, customized, vintage London Taxis driven by seasoned chauffeurs. The vehicles’ interiors have been completely redesigned to deliver the ultimate in luxury and comfort, including fine upholstery, woodwork and air conditioning.
Another “driving” factor behind the company’s strategy has been the desire to provide affordable pricing for its transportation packages. One bride looked at several limousine services, all of which had four-hour minimums at a total cost of $1,000 or more. Such minimums for weddings or other special events are the norm. Distinctive Carriage has no such requirement. Clients can reserve a chauffeured London Taxi “carriage” for as little as an hour, if that’s all they need, and put their cost savings toward other uses.
Finally, recognizing the important role that the chauffeur has in ensuring a superior customer experience, the company’s personable, outgoing, London Taxi hobbyist/owner does most of the driving himself. Supplemental chauffeurs are supplied by Personal Driving Services, a top tier provider of drivers for hire.
Distinctive Carriage primarily offers its services to clients in Ventura County, Malibu, and the West Valley, although it can reach a much broader area. Their first booking in May 2017 entailed taking a young couple to and from their high school prom in Calabasas. More recently, this past November, a few days after the devastating Hill and Woolsey fires started, the company’s bright white taxi was featured in a vintage-themed, evening wedding at Carondelet House, near the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. At the event’s conclusion, the bride and groom were whisked from the venue to their home, with a midnight stop at In-N-Out on Sunset Boulevard because the bride wanted to enjoy a burger while still wearing her wedding dress, thus capping off her matrimonial experience.
In December, the white taxi was in Santa Barbara, transporting newlyweds from their beautiful ceremony at the County Courthouse to their reception. This month it makes its way to Rancho Palos Verdes for a picturesque wedding on the bluff, subsequently carrying the bride and groom to their reception in San Pedro. Looking ahead, the company already has several reservations through the end of 2019 and into 2020.
So, when planning a wedding, special event or even just a night out on the town, recognize that you do have a choice in transportation. Traditional, tried and true limos will always be around. But if you want to stand out, then you might consider some of the more “distinctive” alternatives available.
Based in the Conejo Valley, Distinctive Carriage can be reached at 805.419.9883 or via their website at DistinctiveCarriage.com.