Rolls-Royce Serenity: a silky one-off special for Geneva

Published: 04 March 2015

► One-off Phantom with special silk-lined interior
► Described as the 'most opulent' cabin possible
► On display at the 2015 Geneva motor show

The Rolls-Royce Serenity is a one-off Phantom created for the 2015 Geneva motor show. It’s shyly described as having ‘the most opulent interior of any luxury car’ and takes its inspiration from the world of textiles, in particular liberal application of silk throughout the cabin.

What’s the Rolls-Royce Serenity all about?

It’s all about what’s inside – this is a bespoke interior project within an otherwise standard Phantom rather than an exterior design flight of fancy.

All Roller interiors are bespoke to an extent, of course, created according to the owner’s tastes – it’s not a tickbox kind of company – but this car takes customisation a stage further. The Serenity hasn’t been created for an external customer, but as a showcase to demonstrate just how far its designers can go. That’s not to say that if a well-heeled individual has a word at Geneva they won’t see what they can do, of course.

Giles Taylor, Rolls’ design director, says the concept was inspired by poring over the history of elite Rolls-Royces from the early 1900s. The Serenity’s cabin harks back to an age when chauffeurs would sit on leather while the passengers in the back would recline on the most opulent fabrics possible, and the new car celebrates ‘the historical role played by silk as a symbol of regal and imperial power.’ 

They’re not joking: there’s a lot of silk going on here. The rear headrests are finished in woven silk, and the headlining and even the floor mats are trimmed with the same stuff. Some of the more complex silk-clad panels are said to have taken up to 600 hours to complete. That blossom motif on the headlining (inspired by Japanese royal kimono designs) is hand-painted by the way, by someone with an extremely steady hand.

What about the outside?

Exterior-wise, there will be no differences from the standard Rolls-Royce Phantom apart from a fairly serious 'Mother of Pearl' paintjob, the most expensive one-off paint Rolls-Royce has ever made. Layered in a three-stage pearl effect, it was then painstakingly polished for 12 hours to get the kind of shimmering effect the designers were after. Show-goers who leave greasy fingerprints on it won't be popular.

Click here for CAR's full A-Z guide of the most important cars at the 2015 Geneva motor show.

By James Taylor

CAR's deputy features editor, automotive design graduate, Radical champ

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