My family had just landed at Malpensa airport in Milan, Italy, and I needed to rent a car for the week. My options were: a) rent the kind of car I could get in Cleveland, or b) spend $200 more and drive a Maserati.
When is the next time I will have a chance to drive a Maserati?
I’m into making memories and collecting experiences, and this was a vroom, vroom kind of deal!
I’ll save money elsewhere.
I signed the dotted line, and my family and I climbed into a black Maserati and took off for the mountains.
Luxury is a mindset
I think people have this idea that you have to be a gazillionaire to have luxurious experiences. That’s not true. If you appreciate luxury, you can find ways of building it into your life.
I didn’t always have the luxury mindset. I spent a number of years just getting by and learning the value of a good deal. But one day a friend of mine taught me another valuable lesson.
He treated me to dinner at a swanky, white-tablecloth kind of restaurant. Fine dining at its finest. While we were dining, an employee cleaned the table with a crumber and refolded our napkins.
I thought: “This is nice. I really like being pampered.”
Luxury is civilized
While full-scale pampering is always nice, even a little luxury can make a world of difference.
I was on a business trip recently and had to fly out of this little, not-so-nice airport. Right past security, I saw a little sanctuary – aVino Volo bar. So, like a civilized human being, I sat at the barstool and had a lovely glass of Cabernet and a cheese plate with dried fruit and nuts. Ah, luxury.
The chaos of the airport was still there, but I was able to step outside of it for a little while. As I enjoyed my simple lunch, I felt like a civilized human being instead of an animal herded through the airport.
Absolutely worth it!
And honestly, it was a good financial decision, too. I would have spent the same amount of money for a mass-produced cheeseburger that was … not so luxury.
Luxury can be affordable
When I tell people that I take my family skiing in Italy and Austria because it is cheaper than going to Colorado, they look at me and say, ‘What are you talking about?’
OK, I admit that airfare to Italy is slightly more expensive than a flight to Vail. But, when you get to Europe, everything is significantly cheaper than it is in the States. Seriously, everything. The accommodations, ski pass, ski rentals, car rental, food.
So, I can have this exotic, luxurious vacation skiing with my family in the Alps, and I don’t have to break the bank to do it.
Now, occasionally I will break the bank and go all out for a luxury experience. If it is something I really want to do and it comes with the promise of amazing memories, I am down.
My point is luxury is a mindset. It is good to splurge a little bit. Be on the lookout to treat yourself to some luxury. You can plan things in advance or grab the opportunities when they come.
Just remember – always pick the Maserati-level option!
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