After a week of car shows, parties, auctions, and races, the grand finale of Monterey Car Week always culminates with the crème de la crème of automotive celebrations.
To start off the festivities, the annual Tour d’Elegance puts auto collectors and spectators into high gear as the prized historic vehicles competing in the Concours get to go full throttle on a drive around the Monterey Peninsula. To cap things off, the weekend concludes with the highly-anticipated Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance – an elegant daytime fête and automobile competition on the famed 18th fairway of the Pebble Beach Golf Links.
From priceless automobiles to world-renowned car collectors, it’s easy to see why this spectacular display of rare and impeccable vintage automobiles is truly one of the most celebrated car shows on the planet.
To help you dress the part, discover style tips and outfit ideas in The Monterey Car Style Series.
Monterey Car Week Style Series
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 outfit ideas for auto manufacturer exhibits and demos.
In Part 2, learn which types of outfits are best for car forums, test drives & brand experiences.
In Part 3, find out what looks are best to wear to car shows and VIP parties.
In Part 4, get outfit inspiration on what to wear to Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance and the Tour d’Elegance.
On Thursday, August 15th, the Pebble Beach Tour d’Elegance takes the historic automobiles out for a spin around the Monterey Peninsula. Waking up on an early morning to freshly brewed coffee and pastries is even more enticing when incredible historic cars are part of the festivities. Starting at 7 am in Pebble Beach, then stopping at a private reserve at Tehama Golf Club in Carmel, and then heading on toward Carmel-by-the-Sea, and around the Monterey Peninsula, the Tour d’Elegance makes being on-the-go half the fun.
As Forbes magazine calls it, “In this awe-inspiring drive that traces portions of the famed 17-Mile Drive, hundreds of vintage cars traverse the roads and show off their impeccable elegance.”
Since there’s some moderate walking involved on uneven terrain (especially at Tehama, as pictured above), opting for comfortable yet chic boots is always a smart starting point. Pair with skinny jeans, a warm sweater, and an oversized blazer (since it’s often foggy in August). For chilly or misty mornings, pack a cozy scarf and bring a lightweight tote bag (to easily store your belongings).
A casual alternative for the Tour d’Elegance is a sporty athleisure-inspired outfit. A cashmere sweatshirt paired with jeans and slip-on sneakers makes for a stylish yet sporty look. Finish the look with a classic watch and designer jewelry for an elevated look.
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Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance
If there’s one auto event that you could dress as flamboyantly as you want, it’s Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance.
As The New York Times calls it, “The Pebble Beach event strives to honor the artistry and craftsmanship of bygone eras.” Part of that sense of history extends beyond the vintage automobiles into the style and manner of the spectators’ apparel.
From over-the-top hats to vintage dresses, it’s perfectly acceptable to be a bit of a spectacle at this world-class event. Many women (and even men) dress in period attire, donning everything from elaborate hats and fascinators to demure designer dresses and parasols.
As an alternative, you can just as easily pull together a smart and stylish outfit that’s decidedly more modern. A blazer, dress pants, and blouse look effortlessly elegant. Make sure to opt for walkable shoes (since the event is held on the grass). Espadrilles, wedges, stacked heels, and flats are the best choices in this case.
Other suitable looks include tasteful daytime dresses (such as sheath dresses, sundresses, and maxi dresses). Just be sure to bring a jacket or sweater, as the weather is often unpredictable, especially in August.
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To learn more about Monterey Car Week, check out past years’ car week coverage on Inspirations & Celebrations. For more car week coverage, follow I&C on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. We’ll take you behind-the-ropes to the most exclusive Monterey Car Week celebrations, events, and brand experiences in town this week.