Inside the First Luxury Card Lounge

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In my opinion the ‘Luxury Card’ products are pretty good credit cards when considering only the benefits but with annual fees that are too high for their overall value proposition — at least in the U.S. and with current offerings. That could change.

When these cards first came out they had signup bonuses that were worth the fee in year one. However they have absolutely awesome music in their commercials.

Issued by Barclays Bank Delaware these are stainless steel and carbon credit cards. (The American Express Platinum Card is now metal as well.)

Back in December I wrote about a Japanese version of the MasterCard Gold Card which offers Hawaiian Airlines Platinum elite status and airport lounge access; transferable points to ANA and Japan Airlines; airport limo reimbursement; 3 points per 100 Japanese yen (at current exchange rates that’s 3 points per $0.92!).

They also launched their first very own Luxury Card cardmember lounge called Luxury Lounge NY

  • Location: 645 Madison Avenue at 60th Street, New York
  • Hours: Monday through Saturday 10am – 7pm, Sunday 12pm – 6pm
  • Amenities: complimentary beverages, wi-fi, Luxury Magazine, concierge

So far there’s just this one location, but the Luxury Card folks say they’re “actively looking to expand to other cities” and also that they’re planning “art exhibitions, wine tastings, trunk shows, concerts” in the space.

This isn’t like American Express Centurion lounges (or Citibank’s own little-known network of airport lounges). It’s a city lounge, not an airport lounge, more like the Citibank lounge for Citigold customers in New York or a permanent version of the Centurion Lounge popup in Deer Valley and the Chase popup for United cardholders each holiday shopping season at the mall in Short Hills, New Jersey.

It will be interesting to see if these spread.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Love how you delete any comments negative of your sh*t blog [commented edited, no I only delete comments with nasty racism or descriptions of the sex acts the commenter wants others to perform, like this comment did – gl]

  2. Gary, can you ban TJ from posting here? He may not be posting racist comments but he clearly doesn’t have anything worthwhile to say. Waste of everyone’s time. If TJ has a negative thing to say that is helpful I am all for it. Clearly he doesn’t.

  3. Yes, that makes sense. But the balance you need is to encourage people to read the comments and the drivel of posters like TJ makes me less inclined to bother going to the comments. I know this is a common problem everywhere online, so no worries. I’ll just skip the stupid posters and focus on those with something to say.

  4. Looking for greater clarity so far was told re guests “friends and family members are welcome to check out the space when accompanied by a member. “

  5. Is it possible for Americans to sign up for the Japanese Master Card that you wrote about in December with Hawaiian elite status etc? If so, can you give us the link to your post about it? Thanks!

  6. Gary, the intriguing thing I’ve wondered since I first heard about this lounge is: why there?

    Sure, I get it … branding exercise, marketing, etc.

    But Madison Ave + East 60th Street?

    How many people will seriously go out of their way to walk in there for “complimentary beverages”. Uh ok, visitors are tired from shopping nearby or wandering around Central Park?

    Guess time will tell. But I’ll still wonder about this.

  7. These generally seem like a waste of space/money to me, since I doubt many people will ever use them.

    Maybe if Citi or Barclay put one of these inside Penn Station, that would be more meaningful and impactful (providing premium card holder travelers a beverage and respite from the madhouse that Penn Station can be). I know Amex has a nice business lounge inside the Javits Convention Center, which is not far from Penn Station.

  8. Hi Gary – This lounge was opened and operated by Luxury Card, which is a Co-Brand partner of Barclays. The issuing bank had no role in opening this lounge. I’m a Gold Card member and have used it multiple times since December. The staff are wonderful and it really is a nice place to stop and chill out for a short period of time between meetings in the Upper East Side.

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