Archive | Experiences

Royal Pains TV Pilot – Black Cards in the Hamptons

I was out in the Hamptons this past weekend and saw the van for Royal Pains out and about. If you haven’t seen it already USA has a new series that starts this Thursday at 10PM EST titled Royal Pains. Royal Pains is about a doctor “Hank Lawson” (played by Marc Feuerstein) who was fired from his position and against his judgment becomes a “concierge doctor” for the rich.

In the show pilot, the writers wasted no time on black card references, the son of the heir to family that invented the blender (Tucker Bryant) wrecks his Dad’s Ferrari and is injured. After some emergency care, Tucker needs transport to a hospital, “[Tucker Bryant] The Hamptons heritage no way man, Dad calls it the local cemetery. [Hank Lawson] What would your Dad suggest we do? [Tucker Bryant] Go into my wallet and get the little black card that says American Express on it.” Tucker is then taken by helicopter to Mount Sinai in Manhattan. You can watch the full pilot for Royal Pains on Hulu

Royal Pains Emergency Tucker Bryant Black Card

Posted in Centurion Card, TV5 Comments

Not All Billionaire Cards Are Black

salma-hayekTwo weeks ago Gawker reported on actress Salma Hayek’s hacked e-mail account, which revealed details on her personal life. Salma Hayek is currently married to born billionaire François-Henri Pinault. Details of the e-mail revealed included her American Express Gold Card Replacement. Gawker editors even note that it’s not the “Centurion Card.” Having a gold card, does not disqualify or mean that she does not have a Centurion Card, because American Express will let you have both if you want (in the US you will have to pay fees for both cards). Marketing research by American Express Departures Magazine has shown that the Rich & Famous seek out unique life experiences and value in their credit cards. But the real question is, if your Salma Hayek or Chuck Bass, do you really need a Credit Card? Seemingly yes, but any unique experience or value a credit card could offer, would certainly be easier to obtain via your own team of assistants. So although most Billionaires (all 792 of them) don’t fly commercial, but they still need credit time to time.

According to a Forbes report in March, the list of billionaires, e.g. those with net worth >= $1 billion, is down to 793 people (that’s 30% less than last year).


Posted in Alternate Cards, Celebrities, Concierge, Entertainment1 Comment

Relais & Châteaux

Relaix and Chateaux Logo Relais & Châteaux was established in France in 1954 with a goal to spread it’s unique “art de vivre” by including only outstanding properties with unique character. Currently 475 properties are members of Relais & Châteaux, which is considered a family of hoteliers, and chefs from around the world who share a “passion for personal commitment” and “ensuring their guests are privy to moments of exceptional harmony.” Relais & Châteaux considers a selection of their properties a choice to “experience an unforgettable celebration of the senses.” Their properties range from vineyards in Napa valley to the beaches in Bali, from the olive trees in Provence to the lodges in South Africa.

Posted in Relais & Chateaux0 Comments

UK Travelodge Guest Leaves Behind His Black Card

American Express Centurion CardA recent Travelodge report from 2008 have suggested that UK Hotel Guests has been leaving behind some, strange but luxurious items: A horse, a Diamond Rolex watch, a set of World War II medals, a Wedding Dress, and an AMEX Black Card.

Topping the UK wide Travelodge list was a Centurion Card, also known as the American Express Black Card, which is the most exclusive credit card in the world with an annual fee of £1,800. The rich owner of the card stayed in the Heathrow Central Travelodge and jetted off without it.

And it wasn’t the only symbol of wealth that was misplaced in the budget chain, the well off also left behind keys to a Porche 911, a set of Maruman golf clubs and a diamond Rolex watch.

Full article here

Posted in Travel0 Comments

Abercrombie & Kent

Abercrombie & Kent is a luxury travel company that has some unique destinations and experiences that are coined “& moments”. Examples Abercrombie and Kent cite, include activities such as participating in a food-offering ceremony with Buddhist monks in Bangkok, explore the citadel of Machu Picchu in the company of it’s resident archaeologist, or end a perfect day on a safari with a five-course banquet under the stars.

Abercrombie and Kent Travel Company

Posted in Abercrombie & Kent0 Comments

AMEX Credit Card Was Originally Purple Paper Not Black Titanium

American Express 1958 Original Card Purple PaperPaper, Plastic, Titanium, and Carbon Graphite?

Credit cards had existed prior to American Express, namely Diners Club (which was actually a paper or cardboard card that was in circulation).

The first AMEX credit card was actually introduced October 1, 1958 – American Express introduced travel-and-entertainment charge card (The original card was actually paper printed with purple ink to resemble Travelers Cheques)

The first plastic American Express appeared in the early 1960s, while their adoption had become increased as vendors found traditional AMEX booklets too difficult to manage. It was because of this that well received the new plastic cards, which used charge plate machines, thereby making transaction and record keeping easier and less error prone.

American Express AMEX First Plastic Card from 1960s

Plastic cards became dominant and remained the main player, however, it was not until 1966 that the common credit card came to, when Bank of America established BankAmerica Service Corporation to franchise the BankAmericard which then became known as “Visa“, still not black). Mastercard, originally Mastercharge, came to be in 1966 in addition, where both Visa and Mastercard credit cards were open-loop (inter-bank), and American Express was closed-loop (intrabank).

American Express took the lead again in 2004 in some parts of Europe, and in 2006 in the United States by changing their elusive BLACK CARD (formally known as the Centurion Card), to a hand crafted titanium card to replace it’s plastic ancestor. Times as changed, this isn’t your grandfather’s “purple cardboard,” although American Express Charter Members (Members since 1958) do get some special privileges.

American Express Centurion Card2008 of course brought the “Visa Black Card“, made from Carbon Fiber. The Wikipedia editors, however, did neglect to include credit cards in applications of carbon fiber (we’re kidding): “The properties of carbon fiber such as high tensile strength, low weight, and low thermal expansion make it very popular in aerospace, civil engineering, military, and motorsports, along with other competition sports.”

We’ll stick with black hand hammered titanium for now, someone update Wikipedia.

Posted in Alternate Cards, Entertainment, General, History2 Comments

Maserati Quattroporte Centurion Edition (for Black Card Members)

A new partnership between American Express Centurion and Maserati has resulted in the creation of the Maserati Quattroporte for Centurion, Special Series. First unveiled at Forbes House (Belgravia, London) for an exclusive audience of American Express Black Card (Centurion Card holders), the Pininfarina designed luxury saloon was received with excitement.

Black Card Centurion Maserati

“The Maserati Quattroporte for Centurion special series is exclusively built to order: finished in stunning metallic Nero Carbonio (carbon black), it features a sumptuous Bianco Polare (polar white) Poltrona Frau® leather interior with embossed Centurion logo on the headrests, a bespoke numbered plaque, titanium coloured trim and 20” ball polished rims. The Maserati Quattroporte for Centurion 4.2 is powered by an impressive 400HP 4.2 litre V8 engine, powering the car to a top speed of 167 mph and allowing it to sprint from 0 to 62 mph in just 5.6 seconds. The fully automatic ZF gearbox ensures a smooth and responsive ride in all conditions.” If that’s not fast enough for you, the Centurion Edition Maserati is also available in a 4.7 litre edition, with 430HP engine that can reach 174mph top speed, and go from 0 to 62 mpg in 5.4 seconds.

Unique Serial # Plate Identification

Black Card Maserati Centurion Edition Plate

Centurion Logo Embossed Headrest

Black Card Maserati Quattroporte Centurion Embossed Headrest

Prices will start from £88,315 (approx $125k USD) for the Maserati Quattroporte for Centurion 4.2 and £94,185 (approx 133k USD) for the Maserati Quattroporte for Centurion 4.7.

Posted in Cars0 Comments

2009 Fine Hotels and Resorts Released for American Express Black Card (Centurion)

amex_fhr2009_small

amex_fhr2009_centurion_benefits

Posted in Travel0 Comments

Centurion Concierge Site: Travel Insights

You can see where the American Express Concierge’s are sending Centurion Cardholders when they need to book a dinner, vacation, or just something fun to do!

travel_insights_centurion.jpg

Here’s a link to the site TRAVEL INSIGHTS from American Express Centurion:
http://www.amexpub.com/travelinsights/flash/index.html

Posted in Concierge, Experiences, Featured3 Comments

Martin Scorsese AMEX Commercial

Black Cardholder Martin Scorsese in an American Express Commercial.

Posted in TV0 Comments

Lamborghini Reventón and Gallardo

$1.45 MILLION DOLLAR LAMBORGHINI REVENTON

The Lamborghini Reventon is a 650-horsepower, 12-cylinder super coupe valued at $1.45 million dollars. This car can move from zero to 62 mph in a mere 3.4 seconds.

Only 20 Reventon’s exist in the world. All of them have been sold. Eleven in the United States, seven in Europe and two in Asia.

American Express has paired with Lamborghini in giving away an experience in sunny Italy for driving the Lamborghini Gallardo around a closed track with instruction from the professional drivers at the Lamborghini Academy near Rome so that those lucky enough to win the car and experience don’t wind up with their new Lamborghini looking like one you would find on wrecked exotics.

Although Lamborghini doesn’t offer their limited edition Reventón model for the American Express giveaway, they have announced that they are manufacturing another 80 models so that you can have your chance to purchase one of your very own. Have your Black Card ready.

Lamborghini Gallardo:

Posted in Cars7 Comments

Centurion Card Members Favorite Spots in Miami (FL)

Centurion Concierge tells us where Centurion Card Members most often frequent the following places when in Miami, FL.

F5F80D26-F348-4B27-8B53-AD7378C51051.jpg

Clubs and Bars

Mansion
Prive
Rose Bar at the Delano
Skybar
BED
Crobar

EEB6AC8D-96C1-4967-AFC8-A00EDF0B8DC6.jpg

Hotels

Setai South Beach
Delano
Mandarin Oriental Miami
The Shore Club
Ritz-Carlton South Beach
Four Season Hotels
Loews Hotel Miami Beach
Conrad Miami
Fontainebleau Resort
Ritz-Carlton Coconut Grove

4AA00221-5B7C-4F6B-813B-411F420920CA.jpg

Restaurants

Nobu
Prime One Twelve
Table 8
The Forge
Morton’s
Mark’s South Beach
Evolution
Joe’s Stone Crab
Bond Street
The Setai

E56A9D5D-BD7E-42D9-8D6E-78323548983C.jpg

Sights

Vizcaya Museum and Gardens
Ancient Spanish Monastery
The Barnacle Home
Miami Science Museum
Miami Art Museum

Posted in Concierge, Entertainment, Experiences0 Comments

Centurion Card Members Favorite Spots in Hawaii (HI)

Centurion Concierge tells us where Centurion Card Members most often frequent the following places when in Hawaii (HI).

A22A6009-6C51-4E11-828B-260954512C97.jpg

Hotels

Halekulani
Kahala Hotel & Resorts
Four Seasons Hotels
Four Seasons Resort Wailea
Hilton Hawaiian Village
Moana Surfrider Hotel
Fairmont Kea Lani Maui
The Lodge At Moloka’i Ranch
Grand Wailea Resort
Waikiki Beach Tower

CBB8DC6E-7C61-4F99-AE45-788B43FF473A.jpg

Restaurants

Alan Wong’s
La Mer
Hoku’s
Chef Mavro
Roy’s Ko Olina
Bali by the Sea
Brown’s Beach
The Pineapple Room
Orchids
Ruth Chris Steak House

Posted in Concierge, Entertainment, Experiences0 Comments

Centurion Card Members Favorite Spots in Los Angeles (LA)

Centurion Concierge tells us where Centurion Card Members most often frequent the following places when in Los Angeles (LA).

33571994-A35F-4B67-9D52-2BD23CD3E62E.jpg

Clubs and Bars

Tropicana
Prey
Les Deux
Hyde Lounge
Skybar
Cabana Club
The Bar

77371167-A6A0-4127-8071-AC7CE21B0E18.jpg

Hotels

Hotel Bel Air
Four Seasons Los Angeles
Regent Beverley Wilshire
Intercontinental Century City
Hyatt Regency Century Plaza
Fairmont L’Ermitage
Ritz Carlton Marina Del Ray
Four Seasons Beverley Hills
Beverley Hills Hotel and Bungalow
Le Meridien Beverly Hills

AE4505F3-8FFE-47D7-84B7-C72324F42D4C.jpg

Restaurants

Campanile
The Ivy
CUT
Osteria Mozza
Koi
Republic
Il Cielo
Urasawa
Melisse
Katana

Posted in Concierge, Entertainment, Experiences, Featured1 Comment

Centurion Card Members Favorite Spots in New York (NY)

Here’s some detail on what Centurion cardholders like to do in New York.

3DE0B483-3FCA-41A3-8C79-87C033AC4E6D.jpg

Broadway Shows

Jersey Boys
Young Frankenstein
Spring Awakening
Mamma Mia
Curtains
Spamalot
Drowsy Chaperone
A Chorus Line
The Phantom of the Opera

A4B09307-0478-4FAA-A08B-2315633D0089.jpg

Clubs and Bars

BLVD
Bungalow 8
PM Lounge
Church Lounge at Tribeca Grand
Whiskey Blue
Frederick’s

18B5476B-3DA8-4FD8-A7A9-AA9D8BE28495.jpg

Hotels

Jumeirah Essex House
The Peninsula New York
New York Palace
Mandarin Oriental New York
St Regis New York
Ritz Carlton Ny
Waldorf Astoria
The Carlyle Hotel
Hotel Plaza Athenee
W Hotel

EFB44BEB-1277-4307-9165-8B726767056A.jpg

Restaurants

Per Se
Babbo
Nobu
Buddakan
Megu
Le Bernardin
David Bouley
Gramercy Tavern
Jean Georges
Chanterelle

6E53C690-B424-413C-A957-994A896D7796.jpg

Sights

Carnegie Hall
Empire State Building
Lincoln Center
Top of the Rock
Radio City Music Hall
Natural History Museum
Metropolitan Museum of Art
Modern Museum of Art
Central Park
Frick Collection

Posted in Concierge, Entertainment, Experiences2 Comments

Black Card Overlay Kit: For the truly Desperate

Some of those truly desperate for the black card have gone the route of the black card overlay kit. Some folks on the 43 Things Users Blog were ordering this for $75. You might be better served reading our HOW TO guide, than spending money here!

Black Card Overlay Kit

Posted in Entertainment10 Comments

Interview with the Jessica Igloe, AMEX Director of Global Sponsorship Marketing at the U.S. Open


American Express Company (AXP)Funny bloopers are a click away

Posted in Entertainment0 Comments

The Seth Tobias affair: Hedge Funds, Cocaine, Gay Bars, Death and a Lucrative Will

Seth Tobias (April 8, 1963 – September 4, 2007) was an American hedge fund manager and financial commentator who made frequent appearances on the CNBC television programs Squawk Box and Kudlow & Company. He graduated from Boston University with a B.A. in Finance.

He was the president of Circle T Partners, a company he founded in 1996 after working for five years as portfolio manager and equity trader at JRO Associate.

Tobias’ body was discovered in the swimming pool of his Florida home; the cause of death has not yet been officially disclosed. The details of his death were widely reported in The New York Times in a major article on December 4, 2007. They included accusations of drug use, bisexual dalliances with a go-go boy and gay porn star named Lexx Parker (pictured below), and murder. Tobias’ wife was a suspect for his murder and his two brothers were left as beneficiaries to his disputed will.

Jim Cramer was actually Tobias’ boss at Goldman Sachs and was quoted as saying, with true cheesy and offkey Kramer style, “I don’t know why this hasn’t ended up on CSI Miami yet.”

To go with all the scandal in Tobias’ life, the man made, and spent, millions of dollars a year. Outstanding expenses at the time of his death included $52,532 on his Black Card, and his mortgage payment for one of his homes was $35,000 a month.

Posted in Cardholder Profiles, Entertainment0 Comments

Black Card UltraLounge opens in Scottsdale, AZ

So you never would have guessed, but not long ago–close to the end of the summer in August–a new club opened up targeting none other than holders of The Black Card. The fact that AMEX is targetting club-goers might come as no surprise to you, but what about the fact that The Black Card Ultralounge opened up in none other than Scottsdale, AZ?

I have got to be honest: I don’t know all that much about Scottsdale, or AZ, other than the fact that there are lots of canyons, cliffs and hippies existing in Arizona. However, when the glitzy and aesthetic club opened its doors on Saturday, August 16, 2008, the owners of the establishment were definitely aiming for older and more upscale visitors.

The club’s owner, Ed Pope, has a Centurion of his own, of course. When asked about the concept of the club, Pope said, “We were just looking at it and we realized what the card stands for is what we want this club to be about.” The club has a maximum occupancy of 615 and is in an affluent neighborhood, in close proximity to other upscale businesses.

The club has been remodeled to a modern but dark sketchbook theme. The DJs at the club play everything from hip-hop to top-40 to mash-ups and house.

Of course the upscale club has an upscale dress-code; however, exceptions are made so long as the untraditional dress-code clothing such as t-shirts and sneakers are with proper labels: Ed Hardy, Diesel, Louis Vuitton, Moschino, and so on. If it’s made by an expensive enough designer then it will probably be acceptable. However, this must mean that the club’s bouncers are aware of the latest fashions and have the ability to distinguish real designer labels from knock-offs. One would hope, anyway.

Last, the VIP section of the club is blocked off with a wrought-iron railing, and of course a Black AMEX must be presented in order to gain entry past the rail. However, due to the small portion of people actually in possession of Black Cards in Scottsdale, AZ, the club allows members to purchase a $1,000 membership to the VIP section. With the membership comes a black metal card with a serial number on it, embossed with a crown, stars and Gothic script, which comes in a black faux-leather wallet.

Pope has already made a name for himself in the California bar scene and has plans to open up eight other clubs in the Valley, with hopes of taking the Centurion card concept to New York, MIami, Dallas, Los Angeles and San Diego.

..

Posted in Clubs2 Comments

European Villa Stays

Whether you are interested in hiking the rugged Andalucian border between Spain and the Mediterranean or prefer to hit balls on the golf courses of Portugal, the best way to get away from the crowds is to go to one of the less-populated locations researched for you by American Express.

In association with Abercrombie and Kent, AMEX has compiled a brochure that features an extensive portfolio of Europe’s finest retreats to suit every taste, exclusively for Centurion cardholders.

If you would prefer Central Europe, visit Abercrombie & Kent for more details on destinations, itineraries and pricing. Why not visit the best travel sites that places like Prague, Vienna and Budapest have to offer this holiday season? Trips for two begin at $20,780.00.

Posted in Travel0 Comments