Jason H. Harper
When Kristin Brown decided that she wanted her SF90 Stradale to be unique, she headed for the New York City Ferrari Tailor Made showroom. The lady from Palm Beach was blown away by the options on offer
When Kristin Brown walked into the Ferrari showroom on Park Avenue, she already knew what she wanted: something in white. The avid Ferrarista had an SF90 Stradale on order and wanted to make it utterly unique. Hence her Manhattan visit. The New York dealership is only the third one outwith Italy itself that boasts a design studio of the Tailor Made programme, the brand’s highest level of personalisation.
“Tailor Made clients tend to be highly fashionable people, art collectors, and design aficionados,” says Catherine Santos, the showroom's Tailor Made Specialist. Brown – whose eight Prancing Horse creations include a 488 Spider and 488 Pista – perfectly fits that profile.
“I have a common theme on all my cars,” she says. “They are all white exteriors, with black or carbon wheels. And I always do accents of red: red brake callipers, red accents in the interior.”
The chance to be tactile with the fabrics is essential to the whole process. “It’s still quite old fashioned that way,” says Santos.
Brown arrived to find inspiration – including renderings – already waiting for her on a design board.
With such a huge number of options, the in-house specialists act as guides, helping clients “find their true north star,” as Santos describes it.
The programme's three ‘collections’ are Classica, Scuderia, and Inedita. Classica is inspired by great elements of the brand's past, such as English leathers that echo the interiors of 1950s racing cars.
Scuderia is for the performance-minded, emphasising highly technical materials. “We offer bulletproof and military grade materials, which are super aggressive and quite unique,” explains Santos.
The Inedita collection, as its name suggests, gives full rein to experimentation and creativity. “Inedita literally means unedited,” says Santos. “And we describe it as the boldest collection both in terms of imagination and materials that we use.”
Kristin Brown, who drives all her cars and loves the racetrack, naturally gravitated to the Scuderia collection. “When I walked into the showroom and the specialists showed me their proposal, I was floored,” she exclaims, admiringly.
She and the specialists elected to add the factory-recommended Assetto Fiorano package, which includes performance enhancements such as a revised rear spoiler. “It’s a far more aggressive look,” says Santos.
For the exterior body colour, Santos guided Brown toward Bianco King, “the whitest white that Ferrari currently produces,” with thin Rosso Corsa metallic “dreamlines” along the bonnet and flying buttress.
The black interior received the desired red accents, and Brown excitedly accepted the suggestion of painting dreamlines on the carbon interior of the car, too. “The special paint and metallic line stripes on the exterior and interior of the car weren’t even available a month ago. They have access to things from the factory that no one else does,” Brown enthuses. Of such fine detail Tailor Made is made.
The super-fabric, Mycro Prestige, was chosen for the seats and interior, in lieu of leather. This high-tech material offers exceptional grip, is one third the weight, and is both flame proof and water resistant. “I wanted something appropriate for driving on the track, and that material complements the theme of the car itself,” Brown confirmed.
Santos hugely enjoyed working with the Ferrari collector. “She's very passionate, and that enthusiasm comes out right away. She has a great design eye.”
Kristin's husband, Matthew, a collector whose Ferrari are all yellow, is now himself considering his Tailor Made options for his own SF90. For her part, Brown is already thinking about her next car. “Once you go Tailor Made, it’s hard to even think about not doing the process for every car.”