A word of advice: Go easy on the caffeine at Canepa Cars & Coffee. There’s already enough stimulants of the automotive kind when Bruce Canepa hosts the monthly open house at his automotive wonderland. —Story and photos by Rick Voegelin.
Canepa and his staff open the doors to his eponymous Canepa complex in Scotts Valley, California on the second Saturday of every month from April through October. There are no barred doors, no off-limits signs, and no burly security guards admonishing visitors to stay behind the velvet ropes. Enthusiasts are welcome to wander through the glistening showroom, the racing and restoration shops, and the superb motorsports museum. In return, the guests treat the hardware with reverence and the place abounds with good vibes.
This laid-back approach attracts the right crowd, and no crowding (as our British friends would say). The parking lot in front of Canepa’s becomes a freestyle auto show on designated Saturdays. Eclectic is the theme; you’re likely to find a ’56 Chevy sedan in black suede parked alongside a bleeding-red Ferrari Modena.
The Canepa building formerly housed hard-drive manufacturer Seagate. Seven years ago, Bruce was in the right place at the right time and scored the real estate deal of the century, re-purposing the 70,000 square feet to create a stunning environment for high-end automobiles. Think Ultimate Garage raised to an exponential power.
Situated on the central California coast near the newly minted millionaires of Silicon Valley and the Old Money of Carmel and Monterey, the Canepa group of companies attracts an affluent clientele. At any given time, there are more than 100 significant automobiles in residence, and the staff includes former Formula 1, Indy, and Trans-Am mechanics who bring decades of experience, specialized skills, and the racing spirit to work every day.
Canepa will accommodate the pilgrims heading to the Monterey Peninsula for Car Week by opening the doors on August 10-20, kicking off with the next Cars & Coffee klatch on August 10. For directions and details, check out www.canepa.com. And if you can’t make it in person, join us for a virtual tour here on Mac’s Motor City Garage. More at