If you’re planning on attending Monterey Car Week (which happens August 11-19, 2019) and are wondering what to wear, then you’ve come to the right place. From auto exhibits to car forums and beyond, discover event-appropriate fashion tips and outfit ideas via The Monterey Car Week Style Series on Inspirations & Celebrations.
In this new multi-part style guide series, learn what to wear to each type of automotive event. Plus, find out about upcoming events you can attend during car week and shop current pieces that are perfect to wear.
In Part 1, discover style tips and chic outfit ideas to wear to auto manufacturer exhibits and demos.
In Part 2, learn which types of outfits are best for wearing to car forums, test drives & brand experiences.
Monterey Car Week Car Forums, Test Drives & Brand Experiences
Throughout Monterey Car Week, a number of exciting and interesting events occur.
To start with, there are a series of informative car forums (hosted by The Pebble Beach Classic Car Forum at The Inn at Spanish Bay) which features panel speakers and presentations by industry insiders (such as legendary racecar drivers, top automotive designers, and car brand executives), celebrity auto enthusiasts (like Jay Leno, Patrick Dempsey, and Adam Corolla) and notable individuals (like the Editors of MotorTrend magazine).
In addition to the inspiring car forums (which are open to the public), auto manufacturers usually provide test drive opportunities to prospective car buyers or VIP clients. Many of these pre-registered test drives happen on-site at the brand’s designated activation center (often called the “Brand Experience”).
Sometimes these test drives are held at upscale local hotels and venues (like Folktale Vineyards or Quail Lodge), whereas others are hosted at exclusive private estates (like The Cadillac House, which was held in previous years at a massive $10 million-dollar home with Monterey Bay views).
The test drives are usually accompanied by hospitality services, such as catered lunches and on-site brand partnerships (such as a popup shop by fashion designer Jason Wu). This type of setting encourages guests to relax, immerse themselves in the “brand experience”, and simply enjoy the atmosphere created for the week.
What To Wear for Test Drives & Brand Experiences
Since the test drives and brand experiences are generally hosted during the daytime at an upscale property, when planning what to wear, it’s best to opt for casual-chic looks. A couple of outfit examples include refined resort wear (such as linen pants paired with a blazer and flats) or a smart and stylish outfit (like a printed button-down blouse, stacked heeled boots, and skinny jeans).
Essentially, when attending a test drive and brand experience, you should look relaxed and comfortable, while still exuding a sophisticated, savvy vibe. Not to mention – wear appropriate shoes that are suitable for driving a car. Leave the sky-high stilettos at home and wear flat sandals, flats, wedges, or stacked heeled boots instead.
Shop The Style Guide:
How To Book Test Drives
If you’re in the market for a new car, the first place to start would be to contact your local car dealership and inform them that you’ll be attending Monterey Car Week, and are interested in doing a test drive. They can often guide you in the right direction toward reserving a test drive at a brand-hosted venue for car week. Generally, they can provide customers with access to (or at least corporate contact information) these RSVP-required activities.
Keep in mind that depending on the brand, some test drives are invite-only for special guests and existing customers. However, it’s always worth contacting your car dealership to inquire first.
What are Car Forums?
The Pebble Beach Classic Car Forum is held during the daytime (throughout car week) at The Inn at Spanish Bay (in Pebble Beach). These hour-long forums are a great opportunity to learn more about the automotive industry.
From talks about how to collect cars as investment vehicles (pun intended) to riveting panel discussions about the history of different car brands, insight into legendary auto races, and chats about how automotive design and technology has evolved and how these illustrious auto insiders envision the industry-changing, these car forums are truly inspiring and informative events.
Not to mention – they’re a wonderful chance to ask questions and learn more from some of your favorite auto enthusiasts. At this year’s car forum, you can see a number of celebrated guests speak, including Spike Feresten (the funny host of Esquire Network’s series Car Matchmaker with Spike Feresten), Patrick Dempsey (a.k.a. “McDreamy”, for all you Grey’s Anatomy fans), iconic late-night talk show host Jay Leno, comedian & television personality Adam Corolla, and Angus MacKenzie (International Bureau Chief of TEN: The Enthusiast Network), amongst others.
Below are a few of the notable car forums that are open to the public. To attend, simply RSVP online.
- Thursday, August 15th: Spike’s Car Radio Records Live with Special Guest Car Collector Adam Carolla
- Friday, August 16th: Feature Presentation: Spike Feresten Teams up with Porsche to Host a Conversation with Hurley Haywood & Patrick Dempsey about their Movie Hurley and Porsche Racing
- Friday, August 16th: 30+ Years of Japanese Luxury Cars moderated by Ed Loh (Editor-in-Chief of MotorTrend magazine) with panelists Alfonso Albaisa, Dave Christ, Jon Ikeda, Angus MacKenzie & Tom Matano
- Saturday, August 17th: Feature Presentation: Assess & Caress with Donald Osborne & Jay Leno
What To Wear To Car Forums
Since the car forums during Monterey Car Week are held during the daytime in a tent, opting for casual professional outfits is advisable. For example, jeans worn with a blazer are a suitable choice (for both men and women). In addition, a classic sheath dress or wrap dress, paired with a tote bag and pumps is also appropriate.
The key to dressing for a car forum is to exude a smart, savvy, and sophisticated style. Since it’s akin to dressing for a networking event or business-related conference, opting for workwear attire is recommended. Steer clear of racy or sexy-looking outfits, flashy fashion, or anything that’s too casual (like flip flops or shorts).
Shop The Style Guide:
To learn more about Monterey Car Week, check out past years’ car week coverage on Inspirations & Celebrations. Stay tuned for more automotive week content coming soon to I&C, as we’re getting into gear now.