Aston Martin Reading and Cheltenham host Belgian Road Trip

Who needs Santa’s sleigh when you can drive an Aston Martin on a Christmas adventure?

Customers, friends and representatives of H.R. Owen’s Aston Martin dealers in Reading, Berkshire, and Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, recently enjoyed some festive fun when they completed a three-day/two-night road trip to Ghent in Belgium.

The select group travelled in convoy, with some members of the party initially meeting at the much-loved Podium Place supercar coffee stop in Newbury, before driving to join the rest of the group at the Eurotunnel terminal in Folkestone, Kent.

From there it was a short hop across the Channel to Calais in France, before tackling the 95 miles to the picturesque Belgian city.

Base camp for the visit was the luxurious Pillows Grand Boutique Hotel Reylof, a Louis XIV-style townhouse mere steps away from the city’s historic centre.

The hotel’s restaurant has earned itself a fantastic reputation, and guests enjoyed some outstanding gastronomy during their stay, with firm friendships formed over full group dinners across the two evenings.

The travelling party got in the festive mood at the Ghent Christmas Market, with 150 wooden stalls set among firs and pines selling everything from food and drink to souvenirs and authentic craft artefacts.

And this inspired an impromptu Christmas competition with guests encouraged to pick up a small gift and compose a backstory, with a bottle of champagne and Aston Martin Callaway golf balls up for grabs for the winner.

Ultimately, the standard was so high the prizes were split, although one festive poem that was created by two of the guests proved especially popular (and is published in full below).

All in all, a great time was had by everyone, with the convoy heading home on day three having made memories to last a lifetime.

Christmas in Ghent, 2022

“Imagine you are Rudolf, a reindeer with a really bad cold,
Your red nose is running, you are trying to be bold.
Santa won’t be happy, your nose is not shining bright,
He might find another, to guide his DBX sleigh tonight.

So, you ask the Elves to help, and make you a Satnav,
Apparently they’re all the rage, and this year’s must have.

The Elves do what they can, with a map and some string,
And then tie around your neck, a huge GPS ‘thing’.

The ‘thing’ shouts go left, go right, and straight on through the stars,
The ‘thing’ loudly demands you cut up the DB11s, DBSs and all those other cars.

The ‘thing’ yells about U turns, and roads to be crisscrossed,
The ‘thing’ screams directions, until you are hopelessly lost.

And Santa gets all moody, and pulls you up rather short,
He insists on an exchange, to a ‘thing’ of a quieter sort.

“Sit back cries Santa, it’s time for a pause”,
“We don’t need Satnav my friend, for I am Santa Claus”.

With a twinkle and a sparkle, the deliveries over and done,
You both race the DBX back to the Pole, with you riding shotgun,

And so our reindeer mug is to remind us all, with some reflection,
That sometimes it’s better to ditch the Satnav, and choose our own direction.

But if you do catch sight of Santa, with reindeer pulling his DBX along,
Then let’s face it, you are probably drunk, your last drink far too strong!”