Amex is opening a chic new lounge in Midtown Manhattan – here’s how to get inside

American Express is showing off its lounge muscles with the opening of an exclusive club in one of New York City’s tallest skyscrapers.

The issuer is building the so-called “Centurion New York” in the 93-story One Vanderbilt building in Midtown Manhattan, just a few blocks from Grand Central Terminal and Bryant Park.

While the space is named after American Express’ invitation-only Centurion Card, the lounge will actually be open to everyone. Here’s what we know so far.

The information for the Centurion Card was collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been verified or provided by the card issuer.

When is Centurion New York opening date?

The Centurion New York is scheduled to open in March. Reservations are expected to open at the end of February.

What is in the Centurion New York?

The exclusive Centurion Club offers all Amex cardholders a luxurious escape from the hustle and bustle of New York.

Amenities include an extensive menu, an extensive drinks list, and plenty of space to relax and mingle with other cardholders.

Popular chef Daniel Boulud, best known for his Michelin-starred restaurant Daniel, will be crafting a casual and upscale dining menu for Centurion New York, although it wasn’t immediately clear if the dining option would be free.

The Centurion New York. TPG READER

Centurion New York will be staffed by specially trained concierges who will assist cardholders with all personal inquiries, from dining reservations to travel arrangements.

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While the lounge’s size and layout are a closely guarded secret, Amex advertises that the space was designed by renowned studio Yabu Pushelberg. The walls will be adorned with a rotating selection of artworks curated by Artsy, an online art marketplace. If you are interested, these pieces can be purchased.

Your olfactory senses will be surprised too, as Diptyque have created a special scent to be pumped into the lounge.

While some of the amenities are available to all cardholders, many are reserved for those with the Centurion (“black”) card.

This includes exclusive members-only events, one of which is dedicated to learning more about wine, according to information shared with TPG by a Centurion cardholder. Other events focus on arts, culture and lifestyle programs.

There will be a private dining area in the lounge that can be reserved in advance by Centurion cardholders for business meetings or other special occasions. Other private rooms and lounge areas are reserved for Centurion members.

How do I get access to Centurion New York?

The Centurion New York. TPG READER

While some might think that Centurion New York will be limited to those holding a black card, that is actually not the case.

All American Express cardholders can access Centurion New York with an advance reservation through Resy, according to people familiar with the matter, including Amex members.

In fact, members of the general public, including those who do not yet have an Amex card, can also make reservations to visit Centurion New York. Reservations are expected to open in late February, and we’ll update this story with more details as they become available.

Once you’ve secured a reservation – there’s no word yet on how difficult that will be – access is free to all cardholders and members of the general public. It wasn’t immediately clear how long each reservation window will last, or how many guests you can bring into the lounge.

While the lounge is open to all cardholders, Centurion Cardholders receive priority access and extended availability.

While Amex never shares too many details about the Centurion card experience, the invitation-only black card is typically reserved for very notable individuals and businesses with hundreds of thousands of dollars in monthly expenses and extremely high net worth.

The issuer has offered Centurion cards to celebrities, CEOs and other VIPs in the past. The Centurion Card comes with an annual fee of $5,000 (in addition to the one-time $10,000 initiation fee).

We’ll update this story with more access details as they become available, but most Amex cardholders will likely be thrilled that the issuer won’t limit the club to those with premium cards.

Where is Centurion New York located?

ZACH GRIFF/THE POINTS GUY

Centurion New York will open in March on the 55th floor of One Vanderbilt Building, the fourth tallest skyscraper in New York City.

Steps from Grand Central Terminal, One Vanderbilt is located in the Midtown East neighborhood of Manhattan.

In addition to the Centurion Club, the building features an exciting observation deck that opened in 2021. Summit One Vanderbilt is also home to Apres, a patio and lounge helmed by Union Square Events, hospitality icon and restaurateur Danny Meyer.

bottom line

As Amex faces increasing competition from Chase and Capital One for premium credit cards and airport lounges, the company is once again raising the bar on what it means to be a cardholder with the opening of Centurion New York.

While we’ll reserve judgment until we’ve fully reviewed the new lounge, Centurion New York is poised to become a swanky spot in the heart of Manhattan that’s sure to be popular with cardholders (and members of the public) working in or will be visit New York City.

While it’s possible that other Centurion clubs outside of the airport are in the pipeline, I would imagine the initial focus will be to nail the New York experience. In the past, Amex has opened cardholder pop-up lounges in places like Vail, Colorado; Deer Valley, Utah; and Tokyo, although Centurion New York will become the issuer’s first permanent non-airport club.

It’s interesting that Amex will also welcome non-cardholders into the lounge, although far fewer reservations are likely to be released to members of the general public. Of course, it’s also possible that the issuer is trying to monetize the club experience with expensive food and drink offerings.

As the opening nears, stay tuned to TPG for more details and a full look at Centurion New York.

For more information on American Express Centurion Lounges visit:

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