The presenters at the 2011 Hoodie Awards couldn’t hide their shock when, for the fourth year in a row, Showroom Shine Express Detailing took home the prize for Best Detail Shop, exclaiming, “They defend it every year!” The award was no surprise to the shop’s lengthy list of regulars, a loyal group that includes professional athletes, tons of locals, and the annual Ferrari calendar’s racy centerfold car. The staff sends rides from its lot to gleam in the sunshine, or it deploys its mobile detailing team to you. The meticulous detailing packages cover cars and SUVs from bottom to top as the team members scrub tires, shampoo carpets, wipe consoles, and wash and wax exteriors. They can also tint windows, repair windshields, and clear out foggy headlights.
So established is Circle K Midwest that even brand-new vehicles recognize what its red-and-white logo stands for—fuel, snacks, and everything else a car might need to keep powering down the road with its driver. Circle K's story starts back in 1951, when Fred Hervey bought three Kay's Food Stores in El Paso, Texas. Under his guidance, these three little shops grew into the more than 3,000 convenience stores that crouch on our nation's street corners today.
After rolling up to a Circle K, drivers can pump their faithful roadsters full of high-octane fuel and send them skipping through a car wash to experience the cleansing touch of Blue Coral Beyond Green and Rain-X products. Then it's time to step inside the air-conditioned shop for a peek at the provisions. Rows of sodas hibernate behind glass doors, and snacks, candy, and their ATM guardians stand boldly out in the open. Some Circle Ks also offer the Take Away Fresh Café, which presents an appetizing lineup of healthy road fare including sandwiches, fruit cups, and fresh-cut vegetables. Drivers can gear up for a long drive with premium coffees or enjoy a cold Polar Pop, whose specially formulated cup keeps drinks colder thanks to the family of tiny snowmen trapped in its foam walls.
Specializing in brakes, suspension, alignments, air conditioning, and drivability, Midtown Tire & Auto Service unleashes a team of ASE–certified technicians to ensure autos stay safe, straight, and stoppable. Mechanics can clear troubled exhaust systems, strengthen strained axles, or replace batteries drained of their juices. With a full stock of name-brand tires from Bridgestone, Firestone, and Goodyear, mechanics also pair passengers with new sets based upon size, shape, and preferred scratch-and-sniff scent. Midtown Tire & Auto Service cares for cars through dozens of other services, including cooling system maintenance and exhaust-system repair.
At Skyview Carwash, robotic washers and old-fashioned elbow grease collide to restore cars to a showroom shine. Vehicles zip through the sudsy tunnel for a thorough exterior wash and rinse, including spritzes of Blue Coral undersealant and triple coat and helpings of Rain-X protectant. Once exteriors are clean and shiny, car-wash attendants groom interiors by vacuuming up dirt, clearing smudges from windows, and donating old pine-tree air fresheners to the deprived lumberjacks of the world.
Nothing dampens a traveler's getaway glow faster than having to solicit friends and neighbors for a rush-hour ride to the airport. That’s why Skypark Airport Parking set up just a three-block jaunt away from Lambert–St. Louis International Airport, providing passengers with a safe, convenient place to park their self-driven taxis. After kissing cars goodbye inside the fully lit and fenced-in facility, guests can grab their luggage and hop aboard a shuttle that will transport them to their terminal. Parking patrons can even request optional upkeep such as car washes and oil changes to ensure vehicles are shiny and ready to roll when they return. The facility is open 24 hours a day to accommodate redeye flights, which often stop to peek inside and coo at the sleeping cars.
Speedemissions' technicians excel in emissions and safety testing. Because they don't do vehicle repairs, they are actively rooting for all cars to pass and are invested in administering tests with integrity. In addition to more than a dozen locations in the Atlanta area alone, they also deploy four mobile testing vans to perform onsite testing that saves drivers time and fuel better spent taking an eco-conscious driving tour of the world's most interesting trees.