By TMA Howe
Founded in 1919, Bentley has always embodied the best of British craftsmanship. No other marque has combined luxury and speed in such a way. Founded by Walter Owen Bentley, the cars were very soon winning races and setting records. And now, nearly 100 years later, the company still builds cars that are beautifully engineered and best in class.
During the ‘Roaring Twenties’, Bentleys were regular winners at race circuits around the world, including Le Mans, and wherever the cars were seen on the track, the infamous ‘Bentley Boys’ and ‘Bentley Girls’ – the vehicle’s diehard fans and owners – were always there, too.
Now the company that has produced some of the world’s most respected books on art, fashion and culture – Assouline Publishing – has produced the exquisite The Spirit of Bentley: Be Extraordinary, a limited edition masterpiece that’s fit to grace any coffee table.
Author Count Gelasio Gaetani d’Aragona Lovatelli travelled across the UK to research this exquisite Bentley book. To give photographic justice to these glorious luxury cars and their owners, Maison Assouline recruited the assistance of three of the world’s most celebrated photographers: Paris-based photographer Aline Coquelle, along with Laziz Hamani and Harald Gottshalk. The result perfectly captures landscapes, cars, and their owners and truly epitomises the true spirit of Bentley.
Spirit of Bentley Book’s Boys and Girls
The Bentley book not only goes into wonderful detail as it illustrates the engineering excellence of the marque, but also introduces us to today’s ‘Bentley Boys and Girls’, owners that, like their cars, are beyond classification. Stories of owners of these wonderful machines include:
- George Bamford, ‘personaliser’ of bespoke watches
- Alice Temperley, British fashion designer
- Composer, drummer and car collector Nick Mason
- Savile Row master of bespoke suit making, Harold Tillman; and
- Bespoke furniture craftsman David Linley… and many more
“This book develops themes that have always defined and continue to define Bentley owners,” says Dr Andreas Offermann, of Bentley Motors. “From family, friendship, and entrepreneurship to craftsmanship, conservation, and competition – these are values we all share and live by.
“From the grandest of gestures to the smallest of details, our winged ‘B’ badge represents more than just the world’s most finely crafted cars,” he continues. “It is an approach to living: a blueprint for every experience our hurried lives can offer. And its message is as challenging as it is reassuring: springboard off yesterday, race today, and, above all, chase tomorrow.”
To learn more, visit the Maison Assouline website at www.assouline.com
TMA Howe is Luxury Globe Media’s UK Automotive Editor.