About Mike

Mike has a two year old, a four year old and an insatiable appetite for travel. Thankfully, miles and points help make family adventures much more affordable. When he’s not obsessing over his points balances, Mike is playing with his kids, enjoying the Arizona sunshine or watching hockey and football.

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Review: Saxon Hotel, Villas & Spa Johannesburg

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My friend Mike recently shared his experience with an SPG Moments event, whereby he got two tickets in the SPG Suite at a Paul McCartney concert, followed by his experience using the American Express Platinum concierge to secure reservations at Jules Verne, the restaurant in the Eiffel Tower.

Mike seems to get more value out of his American Express Platinum card than just about anyone I know, and is back with a report on a truly memorable hotel stay in South Africa. It isn’t often that I’m jealous of hotel rooms, but damn!

**Trip Background**

I’ve always wanted to do a safari and finally persuaded my wife to let me plan a trip to South Africa. Because we have young kids and can’t be gone for too long, it was a relatively quick trip.

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Should Hotel Suites Be Off-Limits To Kids?

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As Travis has noted here on the blog, traveling with kids means dealing with a new set of challenges and is a much different experience.

With our two and four year-old in tow, my wife and I have very different expectations and priorities about where we stay, what we do and where we go. Fortunately, points and miles help us fulfill our goal of doing at least one family trip and one parents trip per year.

After our family trip to New Zealand and Australia last year, we learned the hard way that too much travel for the little ones can induce a physical response. Let’s just say I was less than excited about the free breakfast for having Hilton Gold status when I was wearing it 10 or 15 minutes after my oldest daughter ate it.

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Review: Using AmEx Platinum Concierge For Eiffel Tower Restaurant

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My friend Mike recently shared his experience with an SPG Moments event, whereby he got two tickets in the SPG Suite at a Paul McCartney concert.

Mike is back with another guest post, sharing his experience using the American Express Platinum concierge to secure reservations at Jules Verne, the restaurant in the Eiffel Tower.

Truth be told, I don’t remember the last time I used the concierge service on one of my credit cards, so I was keen to hear about his experience. Based on the below it sounds like I might have to give them another shot soon!

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Review: SPG Moments With Paul McCartney

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There is no doubt Starwood Preferred Guest points are one of the most valuable currencies out there. With great hotel redemptions and airline transfer partners, there are a lot of ways to get great value out of your SPG points.

Another, perhaps lesser-known, redemption option from Starwood is their SPG Moments program, which offer fixed price redemptions and auctions for a host of sports, music and other cultural events.

While Ben is holding out for a Real Housewives cast meet and greet to be his first SPG Moment, I recently took advantage of the program for the second time to see Paul McCartney in concert at the O2 in London. Here’s a little bit about my experience:

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