How to Maximize The Amex Platinum for a Trip to Aspen, Colorado

Jan 7, 2019

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I always enjoy attending the special events American Express hosts for card members, such as the Amex Platinum House and the EMP Summer House in the Hamptons. Now that winter is in full swing, Amex and Eleven Madison Park — the world famous Daniel Humm-helmed restaurant in New York City — have moved west, to Aspen, Colorado: arguably the country’s premier winter-weather destination.

I got to spend a few days exploring this stunning mountain town, and, of course, enjoyed a fantastic meal as an Amex Ambassador at the very first EMP Winter House in partnership with American Express..

The pop-up restaurant, which opened Dec. 15, is housed in the Chefs Club at the St. Regis in Aspen and runs through April 6, 2019. You can either dine indoors in a rather swanky dining room or outside in the very on-trend Yurt Village in the courtyard.

After all, it really wouldn’t be a winter-themed eating establishment without yurts, would it? They’re really fun, and perfectly fit that ski lodge vibe.

Love me a yurt.
Love me a yurt.

The à la carte menu was awesome — it was actually inspired by chef Humm’s childhood — with dishes like smoked trout toast, fondue and an enticing lobster wedge salad. But my personal favorite was the veal schnitzel, which was savory and delicious: the perfect winter comfort food. In addition to the amazing schnitzel, the cocktails were also fantastic.

With more than 250 wine options, there’s plenty to warm you up on a frosty evening.

The restaurant also has a special Après Ski menu in the afternoon with snacks and light bites, in addition to its dinner menu.

My visit to the restaurant was a blast, even though I was more affected by the altitude in Aspen than I’d like to admit, and the location in the St. Regis was gorgeous. (Don’t worry, the hotel has canned oxygen at its Reméde Spa.)

In fact, the entire hotel was stunning, and I had a fantastic stay. Thanks to booking the St. Regis with Amex, I got FHR benefits, which included a room upgrade upon arrival, daily breakfast for two, a guaranteed 4pm checkout, complimentary Wi-Fi and a 12pm check-in, plus a special amenity — in this case, a $100 food and beverage credit. Although I’d get some off these perks anyway for having Platinum Premier Elite + Ambassador status, I always appreciate a solid food and beverage credit.

Although I enjoyed my meal  at the EMP Winter House indoors with one friend, I would love to come back with a group and dine in one of the yurts. It was fun checking the cozy tent-style huts out, though — I loved the decor, and they are perfect for groups. In fact, my brief hangout in the yurt had me thinking that perhaps Mongolia should be added to my 2019 destination list?

Eleven Madison Park and the EMP Winter House pop up are part of the Amex Global Dining Collection program. It allows Platinum Card Members to make reservations at hundreds of restaurants around the world, as well as offering off-the-menu perks and in some cases, even gifts at select restaurants for all-around unique dining experiences. To give you an idea of how special this program is, Amex partners with some of the world’s greatest culinary minds like Daniel Humm, Stephanie Izard, José Andrés, Massimo Bottura, Michael Solomonov, Dominique Crenn, The Roca Brothers, Virgilio Martinez, Heinz Beck, Alain Ducasse and Marcus Wareing. If you’re looking to access these event, you can easily do so with the help of the Platinum Concierge.

I always find the Platinum Concierge helpful, actually, especially when it comes to dining. During my Aspen trip, they got me a reservation to dine at Matsuhisa, a sushi restaurant with Chef Nobu’s new-style Japanese cuisine.

Who Is Eligible and How to Book

In addition to being the only form of credit card payment accepted at the EMP Winter House, American Express Card Members will also get exclusive access to reservations.

I was able to secure my reservation back in November, and any Amex cardholder can reserve a table now through the end of January on the EMP Winter House website. Reservations for February 2019 opened the first of January, and reservations for March 1 to April 6 will become available on Feb. 1, 2019, so mark your calendar if you want to score a table. If you’ve got The Platinum Card® from American Express in your wallet, you can also book reservations through the Platinum Concierge.

You’ll pay directly at the restaurant after your meal using any American Express card, though a $50 non-refundable deposit per person is required for all reservations, which will be applied to the final dining bill.

My recommendation, of course, is to use your American Express® Gold Card to get 4x points on your bill. When booking, keep in mind that the largest table accommodates eight people, so really be sure of who you want to invite. Bon Appétit!

The Platinum Card® from American Express

WELCOME OFFER: 100,000 Points Terms Apply.

TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $2,000

CARD HIGHLIGHTS: Delta Sky Club and Centurion lounge access, up to $200 annual airline fee credit and up to $200 in Uber Cash annually (only for use in the U.S.)  (Enrollment required for select benefits)

*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.

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More Things to Know
  • Earn 100,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $6,000 on purchases on the Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership.
  • Plus, earn 10x points on eligible purchases on the Card at restaurants worldwide and when you Shop Small in the U.S., on up to $25,000 in combined purchases, during your first 6 months of Card Membership.
  • Earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year.
  • Earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points on prepaid hotels booked with American Express Travel.
  • $200 Hotel Credit: Get $200 back in statement credits each year on prepaid Fine Hotels + Resorts® or The Hotel Collection bookings with American Express Travel when you pay with your Platinum Card®.
  • $240 Digital Entertainment Credit: Get up to $20 in statement credits each month when you pay for eligible purchases with the Platinum Card® at your choice of one or more of the following providers: Peacock, Audible, SiriusXM, and The New York Times. Enrollment required.
  • New! American Express has expanded The Centurion® Network to include 40+ Centurion Lounge and Studio locations worldwide. Now there are even more places your Platinum Card® can get you complimentary entry and exclusive perks.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit: Get up to $200 in statement credits per calendar year in baggage fees and more at one qualifying airline.
  • $200 Uber Cash: Enjoy Uber VIP status and up to $200 in Uber savings on rides or eats orders in the US annually. Uber Cash and Uber VIP status available to Basic Card Member only.
  • $300 Equinox Credit: Get up to $25 back each month on select Equinox memberships. Enrollment required.
  • $179 CLEAR® Credit: Use your Card and get up to $179 back per year on your CLEAR® membership.
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