I've gone to powder coating for many of my automotive projects... VERY durable, now its inexpensive, and just looks great! Examples!
my powder coated valve cover... it actually comes red like this from Japan but i had it re done so it was shiny and new... $100 for a triple stage.
My brother's engine... also a triple stage but with rainbow flake added... pic doesnt show the flake too well.
And also... for your high temp needs... TEFLON coating. I had my turbo manifold coated with the standard gray as seen here... after heating up it becomes a kinda glittery matte silver... very cool. Also allows you to hone out the strong cast iron manifolds and still make them pretty like the after market ones but you dont have to worry about the darn things cracking.