luxury travel

The $400,000 Way to Do the Super Bowl

Every conceivable way to splurge in Houston this weekend.

Clock Is Ticking on Scoring Super Bowl Tickets

Oh, you think sitting at the 50-yard line is the most extravagant thing you can do on Super Bowl weekend?

Try hobnobbing with celebrities and supermodels, chowing down a porterhouse and washing it down with a magnum of Château Cheval Blanc, and partying in a warehouse-turned-club with Fergie and DJ Khaled. That's the real way to do the Super Bowl in extreme luxury. Here’s your guide to every big ticket in Houston this weekend and what it would cost to truly do the Super Bowl like a champion, Vince Lombardi trophy included.

 

Fly in a private jet with team-themed cabin décor

A Gulfstream 550 outfitted in Broncos colors for last year's Super Bowl, courtesy of Jet Edge.

Source: Jet Edge

What it’ll cost: $73,130

Private jet charter company Jet Edge won’t just hook you up with a Gulfstream 550—they’ll outfit the cabin interior with pennants, pillows, and floral arrangements that reflect your favorite team’s colors. Also included: round-trip ground transport in your choice of exotic cars, Super Bowl-themed snacks for the flight, and a driver to take you to and from the football stadium (so you don’t have to deal with parking).

Total budget, so far: $73,130

 

Drive around Houston in a very fancy car

Photographer: Hannah Elliott/Bloomberg

What it’ll cost: $4,000 for the long weekend

Car rental company Enterprise has a little-known Exotic Car Collection, which lets you rent Corvette Stingrays, Escalades, and Range Rovers in markets from Washington to Salt Lake City. Our top pick available in Houston? An Aston Martin Rapide, going for $1,000 a day.

Total budget so far: $77,130

 

Stay in the most expensive new suite in town

The exterior of the brand-new Marriott Marquis Houston.

Source: Marriott Hotels & Resorts

What it’ll cost: $30,000 for the long weekend

We’ve already told you about the Marriott Marquis, Houston’s splashiest new hotel opening (where all the players will be staying). And though it’s already sold out, the $7,500-a-night, 2,130-square-foot Presidential Suite is where you’d most want to be. It has floor-to-ceiling windows that look out onto downtown Houston and Discovery Green, along with plenty of entertaining space and enough beds for four.

Total budget so far: $107,130

 

Score the most coveted seats to the big game (while giving to charity)

SANTA CLARA, CA - FEBRUARY 07:  A general view of Super Bowl 50 at Levi's Stadium on February 7, 2016 in Santa Clara, California.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

50-yard-line seats are just the beginning.

Photographer: Harry How/Getty Images

What it’ll cost: $150,000

At press time, the most affordable Super Bowl seats on Stub Hub were going for $1,900 in the Upper Corner section. But what’s the fun in that when you can get four club-level tickets by going to Luminaries of the Game, a red carpet gala benefitting education and youth health causes throughout Houston? The top-tier Ring of Champions table package also gets you guaranteed seating with a Hall of Fame NFL player and post-game field access, so you can sneak a photo op with that famous Tiffany-designed trophy.

Total budget so far: $257,130

 

Get access to football legends …

SAN FRANCISCO - NOVEMBER 18:  Joe Montana #16 of the San Francisco 49ers heads to the sidelines during a National Football League game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers played on November 18, 1990 at Candlestick Park in San Francisco, California. (Photo by David Madison/Getty Images)

NFL legend Joe Montana, who hosted last year's Big Game, Big Give event.

Photographer: David Madison/Getty Images

What it’ll cost: $28,000 for the two biggest tickets

Taste of the NFL is an annual event raising money to help fight hunger across the country. Chefs from all 32 NFL cities will be dishing out food and wine pairings alongside players from around the U.S. The chefs aren’t household names, but The Band Perry is headlining, and sports stars include Dick Anderson (of the undefeated 1972 Miami Dolphins) and Donny Anderson (who played with the Packers when they won Super Bowl I). A VIP table will run you $10,000. Big Game, Big Give is much more intimate: at their event last year, only 10 couples joined Joe Montana for dinner, for a cool $18,000. This year, they're organizing a poker tournament benefitting the Giving Back Fund with a much smaller $2,000 buy-in, but you'll spend the leftover $16,000 bidding on items like a swim lesson with Michael Phelps or a chance to cameo in Josh Brolin's next movie.

Total budget so far: $285,130

 

… Including at an epic tailgate party

What it’ll cost: $700

Ignore the fact that this event is being co-hosted by Guy Fieri. The Players Tailgate is less about the Buffalo grilled chicken tacos and Mac Daddy Mac n’ Cheese and more about rubbing elbows with big name players such as Landon Collins (NY Giants) and Hall of Famer Walter Jones.

Total budget so far: $285,830

 

Be at all the hottest parties

SCOTTSDALE, AZ - JANUARY 30:  General view of the atmosphere at ESPN the Party at WestWorld of Scottsdale on January 30, 2015 in Scottsdale, Arizona.  (Photo by Gustavo Caballero/Getty Images for ESPN)

The 2015 ESPN Super Bowl party in Scottsdale, Ariz.

Photographer: Gustavo Caballero/Getty Images for ESPN

What it’ll cost: $77,250

Want to meet Talyor Swift or sit at a table with a Victoria's Secret model? If you get in with the right people, it’s possible. Ken Spalasso, who runs Super Sunday HQ, a site that tracks the best Super Bowl parties and events each year, says that “most of the big events are more than willing to customize a unique experience for high-rollers, but they like to be very discreet about these opportunities.”

In other words, it’s worth inquiring about what’s possible. It may be more expensive and more exclusive than the $17,500 VIP tickets for the Rolling Stone Party headlined by Diplo, Nas, Big Sean, and DJ Cassidy; the top-tier $20,000 package for the always successful Leather and Laces party (this year with supermodels Emily Ratajkowski and Sara Sampaio hosting the Saturday night event); or the $38,500 Premium Suite Package at the Maxim Party, with premium access to the Travis Scott and DJ Khaled performances.

The best party, though, is invite-only: the ESPN Super Bowl Party, hosted by Fergie and DJ Khaled in a 65,000-square-foot warehouse in the Houston Arts District. To get in, Spalasso recommends keeping an eye on reseller sites such as vividseats.com—rare standard-access tickets can sometimes be found for about $1,250.)

As for the parties to avoid? Insiders say the Playboy and 1 Oak parties are on the decline this year.

Total budget so far: $363,080

 

Sports swag that’ll make super-fans cry with jealousy

A collectible helmet with 43 different autographs and a signed Tom Brady jersey—some of the best NFL swag money can buy.

Source: NFL Shop

What it’ll cost: $13,100

Autographed jerseys are usually kept behind museum-proof glass, so it won’t go unnoticed when you wear your $1,100 Tom Brady jersey, hand-signed by the quarterback himself, to NRG stadium. Add this $12,000 souvenir helmet with the signatures of 43 football greats, and you might just outshine the action on the field.

Total budget so far: $376,180

 

Check out Houston’s booming dining scene in style

Chris Shephard's hit restaurant, Underbelly.

Photographer: Julie Soefer

What it’ll cost: $16,600 for two blowout meals

Plan to spend big at Houston’s legacy steakhouse, Pappas, where it’s easy for a group of 10 to spend $15,000 on Porterhouses, foie gras appetizers, seafood towers, and double magnums of Château Mouton-Rothschild. (It takes a $2,000 minimum to book the wine room for a private event—go that route for both privacy and exclusivity.) Going whole hog at Underbelly, Chris Shepherd’s “new American Creole” hotspot, is far more affordable: $1,600 can buy a family-style spread of slow-braised beef shanks, Cha Ca-style snapper, and Korean braised goat dumplings (plus booze) for a large group.

Total budget so far: $392,780

 

Get in on Houston’s biggest thrill

What it’ll cost: $10,000

Enough football. You and your friends can rent out Houston’s motor speedway—a favorite of IndyCar and American LeMans drivers—and hit the track for $7,700 per day. The rest of the fee covers such mandatory add-ons as the ambulance, fire rescue, and wrecker that you hopefully won’t need.

Total budget: $402,780

 

Grand total: $402,780

(Corrects details about the Big Game Big Give event in the sixth paragraph.)
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