As 2012 comes to a close and we look ahead to the new year we’re taking cue from celebrated American novelist, Jack Kerouac, and hitting the road! Lady Holiday may love to jump on a jet plane, but the true American dream doesn’t insist on much more than the simple freedom of the open road in the company of your best friends (in my case, the Mr. and the puppy). One of the few vacations where one will impose equal emphasis on the journey and destinations, the Ultimate Road Trip will take us on a scenic route across our nation stopping at our best luxury hotels, resorts, spas, shopping and fine dining destinations. Lady Holiday‘s Ultimate Road Trip begins with finding a luxury grand touring car that’s a Cinderella-fit for a couple with distinct Mr. & Mrs. requests and a spoiled growing puppy. Our requirements? Hefty horsepower and torque for him, luxury driving essentials like Distronic Plus (an advanced radar-based cruise control that practically drives the car) for her, and ample back seat room for a baby Presa Canario that will easily tip the scale at 150-pounds when he’s full-grown.

For Lady Holiday, the Ultimate Road Trip presents the perfect opportunity to explore and create our definition of quality of life—spending time with those you love, enjoying the journey and the destinations and discovering people, places, things and experiences that are worth sharing with you, our readers. Above all, quality is paramount and if we can make little adjustments (in perspective or tangibly) to enhance our daily lives, relationships and well-being then I believe we’re living the good life. One of Lady Holiday‘s key life philosophies is that if have the right tools for whatever project at hand, you’ll be set up for success. And that brings us to Lady Holiday‘s Ultimate Road Trip vehicle.

Hello, Mercedes-Benz AMG.

In our search for the iconic grand tourer, we’ve found a particular liking to the Mercedes-Benz AMG CL63. As Mr. puts it, “The CL63 AMG says, ‘I’m retired and I don’t give a f$%!#, but if you really wanna race I’ll smash you.'” With its super sleek lines and all the safety and performance bells and whistles that Merc is known for, it had me seduced at Pre Safe Brake—working with the radar-based cruise control that scans for slowing or halted traffic, the Pre Safe Brake not only alerts the driver, but brakes for them. And if the driver manages to brake in time, but fails to apply enough pressure the Merc’s Pre Safe Brake will employ a calculated maximum amount of pressure based on your pre-monitored driving behavior to prevent collisions in both front and rear ends. Did I mention I’d prefer it in black on black? When it comes to cheap thrills we like to think of a convertible as a vacation in a car—jump in, roll down the windows and cruise up the coast with salty air blowing your worries away—no destination required. The Mercedes Benz AMG CL63 features a sunroof and a pillarless coupe design, which creates an open convertible feeling while maintaining my hairstyle. It’s practically flawless. Of course, any car shopper (or dealer) will tell you it’s not over till it’s off the lot, so we’re still entertaining other makes and models if there’s one that can trump the CL63 AMG. Suggestions are welcome. And of course, the car is only half the fun—next up is the route! With a map and a marker, we’re planning the Ultimate Road Trip across America with a luxe-list of exclusive boutique hotels, resorts, shopping and fine dining detours!