Elegant Limousine Serves Celebrities and Dignitaries

Posted on October 29, 2008 by LCT Staff - Also by this author - About the author

SAN ANTONIO, Texas – George Mery, president of Elegant Limousine & Charter Services, sees himself as an ambassador for San Antonio. He, or one of his employees, is often the first person many celebrities and dignitaries see when they come to San Antonio, and the last person they talk to before they leave town.

Making a good first impression is what the limousine business is all about, Mery says.

“We drive the celebrities and they have nothing but nice things to say about our city,” Mery says. “When you hear over and over every day how beautiful and friendly San Antonio is ... it is really exciting. Everything is so optimistic and upbeat about our city.”

Mery is a co-founder of Elegant Limousine with his brother, Vincent. It is currently the largest limousine service in San Antonio and third largest in Texas.

Elegant Limousine is the official transportation service provider for the San Antonio Spurs, and was recently tapped to be the preferred transportation provider for the new Grand Hyatt convention center hotel downtown.

Not bad for a company that started just 11 years ago with only one limo. In 1997, the company made just $10,000. Today Elegant Limousine has annual revenues in excess of $5 million and is growing at a rate of about 20% each year, Mery says. The company has 90 employees, including 15 in Austin, and a fleet of 60 vehicles — buses, vans, sedans, SUVs, stretch limos, and stretch Hummers.

The company maintains a 24-hour operation within its nerve center at its office at 5157 Blanco Road, which Mery says is right at the center of San Antonio and just 15 minutes away from anyplace its drivers need to be.

Elegant Limousine always has someone on duty watching incoming flights at San Antonio International Airport and directing its fleet of vehicles — which are tracked in real-time via GPS-tracking on a large flat-screen monitor mounted on the wall.

Mery says the company grew as a result of an acquisition strategy. “We recognized that this is a people-oriented business and so we went out and acquired the experienced and talented people we needed to be successful,” he says.

Several of the top managers with the company have experience that pre-dates the founding of the company.

One natural byproduct of the limousine business is meeting lots of celebrities. The walls at the Elegant Limousine offices are covered with autographed photos of all types of celebrities and dignitaries, from Mick Jagger and Pamela Anderson to Eva Longoria and Colin Powell. Mery recalls one time several years ago when he went to the airport to pick up a guest and all he knew was the person’s name was E. Lagasse. Not realizing his passenger was the celebrity chef Emeril Lagasse, Mery asked the airport to page him and did not realize what he had done until he saw a large crowd of enthusiastic fans gathered around at the pick-up site calling out Emeril’s catch phrase: “Bam!” Another factor in the company’s growth, Mery says, is the fact that San Antonio is such an attractive “destination” city that brings tourists in regardless of economic conditions.

“Under the best and worst conditions, San Antonio is always a place where people want to come because there are so many things to do and many things are free,” he says. “The Alamo and the River Walk are the top two tourist destinations in Texas, and they don’t cost anything to visit.”

Mery credits the city’s emphasis on conventions and tourism as the economic engine that keeps his industry in business.

“We wouldn’t survive without tourism, and San Antonio is primed for the next 20 years to grow its tourism business,” he says. “The city is allowing this business to grow. They make our industry worth it. You can own $2 million worth of vehicles and feel secure in the fact that the business is going to continue to be strong.”

Mery notes that his business is carefully regulated by the city. His drivers have to be specially licensed by the city and they are not allowed to respond with less than an hour’s notice so as not to be in direct competition with taxi cab services.

“We are regulated in a very positive way,” Mery says. “I can’t imagine a better work environment.”

Source: San Antonio Business Journal

View comments or post a comment on this story. (0 Comments)

More News

New Online Limo Service Brokerage Offers Discounted Rides

The two-year-old company racks up results and fans as it helps operators fill unused vehicles and seats.

Celebrity Worldwide Launches New Charter Jet Website

Clients of the Philadelphia-based company can book seamless air travel worldwide through an easy, more informative site.

No Way Uber Worth $70 Billion, Investor Says

Meanwhile, the feds have penalized the TNC for misleading consumers on its privacy practices.

Updated Uber For Business Gives Companies More Control

The TNC's refreshed platform will help streamline corporate ride-hail use, especially for unmanaged travel programs.

Dream Team: How One Company Keeps Clients And Staff

eNews Exclusive: Concierge Limousine along California’s Gold Coast knows that without happy, loyal employees, an operation will fall apart.

See More News

Facebook Comments ()

Comments (0)

Post a Comment



See More

LCT Store

LCT Magazine - August 2017 $12.95 MILLENNIALS/FAST 40 ISSUE COVER STORY: * How to Score & Keep The Best Young Talent * *


Experience the three annual industry events for networking for business, showcasing vehicles and products, and getting the tools for success.

Read About Your Region

What’s Happening Near You?
Click on any state to see the latest industry news and events in that region.

More From The World's Largest Fleet Publisher

Automotive Fleet

The Car and truck fleet and leasing management magazine

Business Fleet

managing 10-50 company vehicles

Fleet Financials

Executive vehicle management

Government Fleet

managing public sector vehicles & equipment



Work Truck Magazine

The number 1 resource for vocational truck fleets

Metro Magazine

Serving the bus and passenger rail industries for more than a century

Schoolbus Fleet

Serving school transportation professionals in the U.S. and Canada

Please sign in or register to .    Close