Lamborghini and Ferrari rental club, Stan’s Donuts, Texas R…


You can get behind the wheel of high-end luxury cars that many people will only see in real life at the roped-off supercars section of an auto show.

But you’ve got to join the club.

A new membership-based exotic and luxury car club is giving Region residents the chance to drive exotic luxury cars like Lamborghinis and Ferraris.

NWI Exotics at 1122 Arrowhead Court in Crown Point is now signing up members who will have unlimited access to its fleet of 14 or 15 high-end luxury cars, collectively valued at more than $3 million. The cars, which cost as much as $500,000 each, can be taken out for a day or two, owner Ray Naser said.

Half of the vehicles are valued at more than $250,000. NWI Exotics has Bentleys, BMWs, Corvettes and Cadillac Escalades, as well as a few classic cars like Camaros and Mustangs.

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NWI Exotics plans to start with 60 members.

“Once we have enough members we can add more cars to the fleet,” Naser said. “That’s enough members for the inventory we have right now.”

It also has membership-based rentals of boats, including speed boats, from marinas across Chicagoland.

Eventually the inventory will be expanded to include more classic cars, sports cars, and dirt bikes for off-roading.

Naser was involved in another exotic car rental business but decided that a membership-based business was more affordable. NWI Exotics charges an initiation fee, a monthly membership fee and a surcharge for miles, except at a higher tier, where mileage is covered. 

“It appeals to a wide demographic of car lovers who can get unlimited booking of exotic vehicles it would normally cost $4,000 or $5,000 a month to own,” Naser said. “It’s hassle-free carefree access to very expensive cars where you don’t have to worry about the expense or maintenance.”

In the long term, he hopes to grow the business to 100 to 120 members. He may later expand the concept to other cities such as New York, Miami, Dallas and Fort Wayne.

The computer system is not yet up and running for online booking but people can visit the office or email info@nwiexotics.com to sign up for memberships and book cars.

“People like to rent them for wedding anniversaries, proms, dates or just to take a fun ride,” Naser said. “If you’re a member, you can take them out at any time.”

For more information, visit nwiexotics.com or find NWI Exotics on Facebook, Instagram or TikTok.

Coming soon

Stan’s Donuts, the popular Chicago chain spun off from a legendary Los Angeles donut shop, is coming to Schererville.

Developer Al Krygier filed plans with Schererville to build a new Stan’s Donuts at 1020 U.S. 41 in the Boulevard Square development. That’s the shopping center that’s home to Up Your Alley, Planet Fitness, Sky Zone Trampoline Park, Salvage Plus, El Salto and Region Ale.

Stan Berman founded the iconic donut shop that bears his name in the Westwood neighborhood of Los Angeles in 1965. It became a hit on the west side, especially with UCLA students.

The small storefront offered drip coffee and glazed donuts with fillings like peanut butter and jelly.

It expanded to Chicago in 2014 when Blue Island native Rich Labriola of Labriola Baking Co., a longtime friend of Berman’s, opened Chicago’s first Stan’s Donuts & Coffee.

The original Stan’s in Los Angeles closed in 2020 during the pandemic when Berman decided to retire after 55 years.

But the spinoff has thrived in Chicago, expanding to more than a dozen locations, including downtown and in choice suburban spots like the Woodfield Mall.

Stan’s serves up a wide array of donuts including Maple Long John, Cinnamon Sugar Cake, Biscoff Pocket, Chocolate Glazed, Lemon Pistachio Old Fashioned, Vanilla Glazed Crueller, Strawberry Bismark, Apple Fritter, Devil’s Food Cake, Pistachio Glazed, Peanut Butter and Jelly Pocket, Carrot Cake, Chocolate Pocket with Nutella, Le Stan Croissant Donut, Toffee Cake, Blueberry Old Fashioned and Red Velvet.

Stan’s Donuts also offers a full espresso bar and many varieties of cold brew, including barrel-aged and with hazelnut cold foam. The food menu includes all-day breakfast “Stanwiches,” as well as breakfast fare like oatmeal, bagels, hash browns, croissants and breakfast burritos.


A new Texas Roadhouse is now grilling steaks in Crown Point.

The Louisville-based chain, which has steakhouses in Dyer and Portage, opened its latest Region resident at 701 E. 109th Ave., just off Interstate 65 on the booming east side of town.

The restaurant employs 220 people, including servers, line cooks, hosts and meat cutters. It’s known for hand-cut steaks, ribs, made-from-scratch sides and freshly baked rolls served with whipped butter.

Texas Roadhouse raised money for Lake County Indiana Animal Control and Phil’s Friends to celebrate its opening.

“Lake County Indiana Animal Control is a no-kill shelter dedicated to finding permanent homes for homeless pets,” Managing Partner Barry Jones said. “Phil’s Friends is a local charity committed to helping people throughout this community affected by cancer. We’re proud to celebrate our opening by supporting these incredible organizations.”

Founded in 1993, Texas Roadhouse has expanded to 600 locations in nearly every state and 10 countries.

The Crown Point location is open 4-10 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 4-11 p.m. Friday, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. on Saturday and 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Sunday.

For more information, visit texasroadhouse.com or call 219-274-0671.


Smoothie King is now blending smoothies and pressing juice at a new restaurant in Munster.

The Dallas, Texas-based food company, which caters to the health conscious, opened at  8130 Calumet Ave. in Munster. It’s located next to the new Parlor Donuts in a newly constructed strip mall, giving people in search of a quick snack a choice of whether to be naughty or nice to their waistlines.

Smoothie King makes smoothies with whole fruits and vegetables and no preservatives, artificial flavor or added sugar. It also has locations in Crown Point, St. John, Schererville and Merrillville.

The menu encompasses fitness blends, hydration blends, wellness blends, slim blends and clean blends made with organic vegetables. Its Immune Builder Veggie Superfood, for example, blends together spinach, kale, carrots, bananas and dates.

Smoothie King in Munster is open 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Sunday.

For more information, call 219-513-9880.


NWI Customs and Detailing is giving vehicles car wraps, window tinting and other services in Crown Point.

The business at 1128 Arrowhead Court specializes in installing higher-end protective film, ceramic coating and window tint, owner Eric Hamilton said.  It’s worked on many higher-end luxury cars like Bentleys and Ferraris.

It installs XPEL, a leading paint protection film.

“The protective film protects against rock tips and things like that,” he said. “The clear chemical-resistant coating is like waxing your vehicle, except it lasts for years.”

NWI Customs and Exotics provides a window tinting service that’s been endorsed by the Skin Cancer Foundation as protection from UV rays. It helps with eczema and other skin issues as well as offering privacy, he said. 

It also installs lift kits, suspension upgrades and aftermarket accessories, as well as offering services like handwashing.

Customers should try to book appointments ahead of time, especially if they’re seeking professional detailing or another service that will take a significant amount of time and effort.

The company also does fleet maintenance, providing fleets with detailing and other services.

“Our long-term goal is to do more community outreach and to donate to more sports teams in the area. We help people and do things for families. We had a guy come in with his son who was autistic and real scared of loud noises come and sit in the cars and check them out. He was crying he was so happy to see the stuff in person,” he said. “We’d also like to lease or offer cars for sales that we’ve customized. We could deck out a sports car or Jeep and turn them over the the public and sell them that way. The end goal for me would be to offer the services and sell the vehicles in the future.”

It’s open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday or by appointment. For more information, call 219-671-4229, visit nwicustoms.com or find the business on Facebook, YouTube or TikTok.

If you would like your business to be included in a future column, email joseph.pete@nwi.com.

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