When Things Go Wrong

Most of the time with VIP Limousine, everything runs extremely smoothly, including vehicles and staff.

Most of the time.

Sometimes, things go wrong. So we’d like to take a few minutes to reflect and hopefully laugh a little bit, too, but also highlight that if and when they do, why you should choose VIP Limousine for your transportation needs. Nobody in any of the following incidents have been named to save embarrassment…though the management team knows who they are!

One of these particular recent incidents involved an overnight trip back from Nevada. Everything was going smoothly until suddenly…SNAP. Even after inspections and checks, the belt changed its mind about staying in one piece. At 3 a.m. In the middle of nowhere. Blast.

Now why, in light of this incident, should you choose VIP Limousine? We have the largest limousine fleet in Utah, and as a result, this possibly-ruined trip actually turned out well for our passengers.

Upon the incident’s occurrence, we immediately dispatched a chauffeur with another limousine to their location and picked up the passengers so they could arrive home in as timely a manner as possible. Plus, they got to experience a fresh chauffeur and a freshly-cleaned limousine.

Some years ago, while getting ready to pick up a passenger at the Salt Lake City International Airport, one of our chauffeurs was rear-ended by a Cadillac Escalade. Thankfully, our Suburban was unscathed, but in order to make sure everything got settled, we sent another chauffeur in another Suburban so that our passenger could still be picked up in a timely manner.

However, sometimes we’re less lucky. Two days after repainting the back bumper of our Lincoln Town Car limousine, somebody else ran into it. It was dented and scratched from the hit-and-run. These days though, the bumper looks good as new, and we willingly paid for its repair.

The air conditioning in one of our vehicles quit in the middle of a corporate run during the summertime. It turns out it was the compressor exploding into little pieces under the hood, and losing all of the Freon and pressure in the process. We dispatched a back-up vehicle immediately to the scene; the passengers continued on their way in the fresh limo, and we quickly got the affected vehicle repaired and pumping crisp air back into the cabin. Melting in the Utah summertime heat is not acceptable to us.

Another vehicle once smashed into the front of one of our Sprinter limousines, rendering it useless for several weeks, so we utilized a substitute until it was road-worthy again. We used genuine Mercedes-Benz parts for the full repair…lesser substitutes don’t fly with VIP treatment.

While getting into our Lincoln Town Car, a passenger went to sit down and the spring came up through the seat into her jeans. We immediately took the vehicle to an upholsterer and got upgraded materials. The bench seat is now as good as new, and no more mortified passengers have been there since.

In addition to these incidents, we have the VIP Limousine Wall of Shame, full of memories of moments of wrongdoing. They include the following:
-A smashed taillight from a Suburban
-A Hummer engine fluid line clip which took five hours to remove
-A radio antenna which was ripped off in a car wash
-A Cadillac Escalade bumper

The point is, we at VIP Limousine work hard to take care of our vehicles, even when mishaps happen. If we take care of our vehicles, we can always take care of our clients, regardless of the incident. Each of these problems was swiftly dealt with and attended to by expert mechanics and repairmen to keep or return the vehicle into top shape, and we always make sure something else is serviceable just in case.

Trolley Square in Salt Lake City, Utah: Our Home, Part 9

With its signature water tower lit up at night, it's hard to miss Trolley Square. Photo credit: counterjihadreport.com
With its signature water tower lit up at night, it’s hard to miss Trolley Square. Photo credit: counterjihadreport.com

Circling back down the hill to the east of the downtown core, Salt Lake City still has more businesses hiding as treasures. Some, though, are a bit more obvious to those living on the eastern side of the city, since they are housed in the historic Trolley Square shopping center.

Located along 700 East, one of the main thoroughfares in Salt Lake and its suburbs, Trolley Square gets its name from its original intended function: storage for the old Salt Lake City streetcars which previously plied downtown and The Avenues. It operated 37 years, but was eventually dismantled, and the facility sat unused until the 1970s. It was then that the building was converted into a shopping center, a function it has maintained ever since.

Trolley Square has undergone several makeovers since it was converted, however these primarily consist of trying to maintain the quirky and older atmosphere of industrialism and brick-and-mortar build. The hallways wind around in different directions creating a cacophonous set of corridors and a slightly mysterious world. Wrought iron is featured in a wide variety of architectural and decorative features, lending further character from the early 20th century. Much of the brickwork and the floor has been left and maintained as close to original as possible, filling in track gaps and making the building walkable throughout. These period features are coupled with a modern network of elevators, parking garages, directional lighting, full accessibility, updated windows and technology, and an array of local and large business establishments.

Some of these places include Lululemon, Whole Foods, and Pottery Barn, as well as The Rodizio Grill Brazilian Steakhouse and Google Fiber. Trolley Square is also home to a branch of The Falls Event Center, an expansive space which caters to many different needs and occasions.

It may not be centrally located, but Trolley Square is worth a look. It’s another reason why we love our home in Salt Lake City.

Going Local: Alamexo

Simple neon lighting greets night-time customers at Alamexo. Photo credit: Yelp
Simple neon lighting greets night-time customers at Alamexo. Photo credit: Yelp

One of the great things about a growing city is seeing the rise of other local businesses, especially the restaurants. Today’s VIP Limousine favorite is one of the best-ranked establishments in Salt Lake City: Alamexo, a mid-level restaurant with high quality Mexican cuisine.

Located near The Gallivan Center/Gallivan Plaza, and a short walk from the UTA TRAX Gallivan Plaza station, Alamexo has a clean approach and philosophy about food and style. Approaching the restaurant, potential patrons are greeted with a simple exterior with an outdoor deck for the warmer months. Inside there’s an expansive number of tables, including some for large groups and families.

The menu adjusts a little bit depending on the time of year, but includes a simple and delightful luxury: table-side guacamole, hand-made by your waiter or waitress according to your request. This simple approach to service elevates the atmosphere here.

Beyond the guac, the main menu is a mixture of simply-made Mexican classics, some with modern twists, to make sure that the flavors speak volumes to the taste buds. Service is rapid without feeling rushed, and the food is consistently delightful. It’s no wonder that Alamexo was named as one of the top 25 restaurants in Salt Lake.

Be sure to check it out!

University of Utah: Our Home, Part 8

An overview of the University of Utah campus, just above downtown Salt Lake City. Photo courtesy of the University of Utah School of Dentistry.
An overview of the University of Utah campus, just above downtown Salt Lake City. Photo courtesy of the University of Utah School of Dentistry.

The next stop on our tour of our hometown takes us up across The Avenues and into the Wasatch Mountain foothills just above the downtown core of Salt Lake City. Nestled between these two, and with a frankly astonishing view, lies the main campus of the University of Utah.

The flagship collegiate institution in the state, the the University of Utah was founded on February 28th, 1850 as the University of the Deseret by LDS Church leader Brigham Young. It began as a very small collection of buildings above the planned downtown area. The oldest remaining parts of campus are centered around what is now known as President’s Circle, home now to the music school and near other components of the fine arts divisions. Slightly to the south are the facilities for the natural and social sciences, as well as the S.J. Quinney College of Law. The law school received a new building just a few years ago, and is one of the most striking features of campus.

Across the street sits Rice-Eccles Stadium, home of the University of Utah football team. The complex seats 45,807 people at maximum capacity and was completed in 1998. Besides football games, the tower attached to the western side holds a variety of special events, including high school prom. However, the stadium is probably best known for hosting the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2002 Winter Olympic Games. With the Olympic Torch still situated south of the stadium grounds, coupled with a small history center and an assortment of Games logos placed across the complex, the stadium serves as a reminder to students and guests what the University of Utah can achieve and the significant role it played in hosting what is still known as the best Winter Olympics ever.

Continuing eastward, we approach the complex for the College of Social Work and the Social and Behavioral Sciences. Next to this sits the J. Willard Marriott Library, named after the alumnus who founded Marriott Hotels, the largest hotel chain in the world. Around the library also sits the University Union building, and to the south the architecture center. Continuing east is the center for the David Eccles School of Business, as well as the College of Education and new facilities for the Tanner Dance Center. Back up north, we find the Center for the Humanities, the Engineering Building, and the Lassonde Studios for entrepreneurship.

Towards what seems like the top of the hill is the Marriott Honors Community, home to the housing for students in the Honors College. Adjacent to it is the state-of-the-art Student Life Center, complete with an Olympic pool, health center, jogging track, and much more.

Moving across Mario Capecchi Drive, there is more uphill to the core of student housing and the student center, which doubled as the Athlete’s Village during the Olympic Games. This is integrated into Fort Douglas, the old army compound which previously had guns pointed down at the valley in the 19th century. Moving further back north, we approach the arguably most-renowned part of the campus: the University of Utah Hospital, Primary Children’s Hospital, and the Huntsman Cancer Institute, poised to become the largest cancer research center in the world. All of these combine to make one of the best university hospital systems in the United States.

In case you are wondering, we’re not making these things up. We love our hometown of Salt Lake City, but it’s because all of these things are genuinely great. We look forward to serving you in your travels here.