PressClub Africa, DOM, East Europe · Article.
A unique vehicle by BMW Individual Manufaktur for the Ellerman House luxury boutique hotel in Cape Town.
25.11.2020 Press Release
Luxury and individual style at the highest level are what characterise the new shuttle car for the exclusive hotel in the South African metropolis - the creative ideas of sculptor Nic Bladen, outstanding workmanship and inspirations from nature turn a BMW 745Le xDrive into a work of art on wheels.
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Munich/Cape Town. Luxurious hospitality, an exquisite art collection and a particularly spectacular view of the sunset on the Atlantic coast make Ellerman House in Cape Town, South Africa, a boutique hotel for discerning guests. In future, even the journey to the refuge in Bantry Bay will be an exceptionally exclusive experience for them. A highly individualised version of the BMW 745Le xDrive luxury sedan (fuel consumption combined: 2.5 – 2.3 l/100 km; combined power consumption: 16.2 – 15.8 kWh/100 km; combined CO2 emissions: 57 - 52 g/km) serves as the new Ellerman House chauffeur car. It was designed by BMW Individual in collaboration with the South African artist and botanical sculptor Nic Bladen. This unique automobile combines a luxurious driving experience with the high-quality elegance of its exterior and interior design and an artistic homage to the unique vegetation of the region around Cape Town.
Just like the luxury cars by BMW, the renowned Ellerman House is predestined for providing its discerning guests with unique experiences. A stay at this exclusive, privately owned boutique hotel with 13 bedrooms and 2 private villas is also an impressive experience thanks to the collection of contemporary South African artwork assembled by hotel owner Paul Harris. A close connection between luxury ambience and art now also gives the BMW 745Le xDrive designed for Ellerman House its unmistakable character. It is perfected by the creations of Nic Bladen. Known for his plants cast in precious metals, the artist created an authentic reference to his home country in the interior of the luxury sedan.
The new official car for guest transfers for Ellerman House is further proof of BMW Individual Manufaktur’s ability to design automobiles entirely according to the wishes and ideas of their future owners. Craftsmanship, attention to detail and an awareness of the highest quality are combined with creativity and the willingness to expand the range of materials used, processing techniques and colour combinations at any time in accordance with the customer's ideas. Maximum customer orientation not only gives rise to tailor-made products, but also to innovative solutions for achieving design that is precisely geared to the owner's personal style. In order to guarantee the BMW Group's high standards of quality and safety, every component produced by BMW Individual undergoes the same testing procedures as those intended for series-produced components.
BMW 745Le xDrive for Ellerman House: Plug-in hybrid drive,
exclusive paint finish, unique interior.
The BMW 745Le xDrive serves as the basis for the unique specimen created by BMW Individual Manufaktur, which will in future be used to chauffeur the guests of Ellerman House. Its plug-in hybrid drive consists of an in-line 6-cylinder petrol engine and an electric motor, which together generate a system output of up to 290 kW/394 hp. Thanks to an electric range of 51 to 54 kilometres, the plug-in hybrid luxury sedan can cover the approximately 25 kilometre drive from Cape Town airport to the hotel’s more than 100-year-old main building with zero local emissions. It’s paint finish in exclusive Brass is combined with the extended BMW Individual High Gloss Shadow Line, 20-inch M light alloy wheels in star spoke design and bicolour finish and an M sports package. The brass-coloured door sills bear the "Ellerman House” lettering.
The interior design Pure Exellence and the BMW Individual Merino full leather upholstery in Tartufo/Cognac colours is enriched by numerous individual accents. In addition to electrically adjustable comfort seats including massage function, seat heating and active seat ventilation, the electrically operated sun blinds, the Sky Lounge panorama glass roof, the Ambient Light and the Ambient Air Package contribute to maximum well-being in the rear. The door panelling frame, the instrument panel, the alcantara roof liner, the floor trim and the leather-covered door entry trim are all designed in Tartufo, as are the panels of the seats and the A and B pillars. The headrests and comfort cushions in the same colour are embroidered with an exclusive floral design. The embroidery on the cushions also includes the "EH" signet on the front and the "BMW Individual Manufaktur" lettering on the back. The centre console, the cover of the centre tunnel and the switch panels located there are covered with cognac-coloured leather. The harmonious colour scheme also includes tone-in-tone seams and draws attention to the interior trim strips, which have been refined into unique works of art.
Natural shapes and precious metal: South Africa's flora blooms
on the interior trim strips.
The innovative and unique design of the interior trim strips for the BMW 745Le xDrive by BMW Individual Manufaktur is the work of South African artist Nic Bladen, who draws inspiration for his work from the characteristic flora of his home country. Using plaster casts and liquid gold, silver or platinum, he creates detailed sculptures of leaves, flowers, roots and twigs, modelled on wild plants. For the art project conceived by BMW and Ellerman House, he developed a special process in which he transferred the replicas of plants cast in precious metal into a two-dimensional form that was as flat as possible. Gradually, an extensive collection of precious prints of the selected motifs from nature was created, similar to a herbarium as botanists use for documenting and identifying plants by means of dried and pressed flowers and leaves. These filigree works of art were then embedded as inlays in the interior trim strips of the vehicle with the utmost care and precision.
Bladen found his motifs for refining the interior of the luxury sedan in the Fynbos region around Cape Town, which is known for its unique biodiversity. Many of the shrubs, trees, grasses and flowers that are exclusively indigenous to the area are now threatened by extinction. Among the best-known natural treasures of the Fynbos landscape are the rooibos, from whose cultivated version an internationally popular tea is made, and the protea plants, also known as sugar bushes or silver trees, whose round, often plate-sized flowers represent the heraldic flower of South Africa. With his latest works of art, Nic Bladen aims to raise awareness for the fascinating plant diversity of the Cape region. His wish: guests of Ellerman House, who admire the interior trim strips designed by him while driving in the BMW 745Le xDrive, should later recognise the plants immortalised there in the wild, in order to remember not only the luxurious driving experience, but also the diverse vegetation of South Africa, which is so worth protecting.
The creation of the new chauffeur car by BMW Individual Manufaktur was documented in a video clip series well worth seeing. The clips are available on Youtube using the search term #BMWxEllermanHouse.
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