Private concierge service caters to power players
Got your heart set on a Mercedes McLaren or a Birkin bag in ostrich, with gold hardware? How about a last-minute table at Cut, or seats in the Dodger dugout? For far less than a personal assistant’s salary (fees range from $1,250 to $3,000 per month), the Preferred Group’s staff will make the calls necessary to make it happen.This private concierge service — or “lifestyle management company” — counts dignitaries, royalty and top level executives among its members, all of whom rely on CEO Emad Ghobrial’s extensive contacts to make their lives a little more luxe. “It’s about having a great black book,” says the former Four Seasons Newport Beach and Beverly Hills Peninsula concierge, who founded his first private service in 1999. With his background, Ghobrial naturally also has contacts at all the top hotels around the world, which is key since 75% of his clients are international (all of them come by referral). Even better, while members are brandishing their credit cards like kids in fancy candy stores, the staff is managing their rewards points and turning those splurges into air travel gold. Notes Ghobrial: “You travel first class to London, you’re looking at eight or ten thousand dollars right there. So the membership fee pays for itself, a little bit.” In other words, why shouldn’t you buy that rare case of Lafite tracked down by PG’s in-house sommelier? By that logic, you can’t afford not to.