Synopses & Reviews
How the Other .0001% Live
It's looking like another banner year for America's moneyed over-class, the lucky .0001 percent sitting on $30 million-plus in liquid assets.
But sadly, most of the newcomers joining their ranks are simply not prepared to make the decisions that come with having it all. Unsure about everything—butler or majordomo? St. Tropez or St. Thomas?—they will blow their hard-earned billions on tacky houses, outrageous wardrobes, and outré diversions of various stripes. Because, while there are countless ways to make a fortune these days, there's still only one way to be Filthy Rich.
Fortunately, in the spirit of The Official Preppy Handbook—the 1.3-million-copy bestseller that taught all of us how to be WASPily top drawer—help has arrived. A dead-on, deadpan guide to living large in the land of plenty, The Official Filthy Rich Handbook yanks the monogrammed pashmina off a world few mortals ever get to see. Packed with insight and savvy, it brings this rarified universe to scandalous new life, feeding our endless fascination with the tastefully loaded, while offering practical instructions for those who dream of joining them.
In it, you'll learn not only where to live and what to wear, but about the things that really matter. How to hire a household staff. The right cosmetic surgery procedures for you...and your children. The proper way to name your houses. The sacred role of privet hedges. Why the Filthy Rich swim naked. The down-and-dirty on your fellow plutocrats (The Nerdling, The Raider, and the Grande Dame, to name a few). The moochers and scoundrels to know and avoid. How to buy a gigayacht. The right spots to party in Sardinia, Aspen, Nantucket, and St. Barts. The world's hottest tax havens. The four interior decorators worth waiting for. The Filthy Richest rehabs. Boarding schools of the rich and feckless. Why it's so hard to break into the art market and how to sound smart about Richard Serra. And much, much more. The rich "are different from you and me," F. Scott Fitzgerald wrote. Wait until you see the Filthy Rich.
"Those top-drawer trendies from the 1980 Official Preppy Handbook have grown older and richer; it's time now to tweak the lifestyles of the ber-rich, people Tennant, one-time columnist for the New York Post's 'Page Six' gossip column and cofounder of Radar magazine, knows well. Tennant opens with a 'plutocrat primer,' a sketchbook detailing various Filthy Rich types, from hedgers to 'heirheads.' Chapters follow on where to buy homes and how to hire staff, especially that 'jewelry handler' who carries 'illicit substances' for high-echelon rappers. Vacations are another big issue, involving whole new wardrobes and leisure activities. Sports are great for conspicuous consumption of time and money; the most desirable sports, like fly fishing, big-game hunting or polo, can involve special vacations of their own. Even simple sports like golf require joining the right club; Tennant's matter-of-fact listing of the clubs' discriminatory barriers speaks for itself. Then, since 'to heir is divine,' there's a chapter on having children which boils down to buying the most exclusive baby buggy, hiring the least marriage-threatening nanny and picking the most ego-satisfying boarding school. Jazzy page layouts and endless name-dropping make for a great tongue-in-cheek humor book. (June)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
It's looking like another banner year for America's moneyed overclass, that lucky .0001 percent of the population sitting on $30 million-plus in liquid assets. Sadly, every year thousands more will be joining their ranks and discovering it's not so easy to have it all. St. Tropez or St. Thomas? Maybach or Hummer? So many choicesand#8212;and worse, so many opportunities to make the wrong choice.
Now help has arrived. In the spirit of The Official Preppy Handbookand#8212;the 1.3 million-copy bestseller that taught us all how to be top drawerand#8212;here is a dead-on, deadpan guide to living large in the land of plenty. Packed with wry insight and savvy, The Official Filthy Rich Handbookyanks the monogrammed pashmina off a world few mortals get to see. An actual instruction manual, this nuts-and-bolts guide (phone numbers included) feeds our endless fascination with the world of the loaded while offering practical instruction for those who aspire to join them.
The difference between a majordomo and a butler. The proper way to name your houses. Acceptable Privet Height: A Cautionary Tale. Meet your new peers in the Plutocrat Primerand#8212;including The Speculator, The Thrillionaire, The Moguless, The Heirheadand#8212;and the mooches and scoundrels to know and avoid. Cosmetic procedures for you and your children. The right spots to party in Sardinia, Aspen, Napa, St. Barts. Bodyguardsand#8212;ex-Mossad vs. ex-NYPD. The Top 10 Charities. Why the Filthy Rich swim nude. The Official Filthy Richand#8211;Approved List of Rehab Centers. Why it's so hard to break into the art market (and how to do it). Fun gadgets: La Cimballi M3 Cappucino Station, the Toto Washlet S300 no-paper toilet. Colleges you'll want your kids to drop out of. What to wear when interviewing with the co-op board. And much, much more.
andquot;The rich are different from you and me,andquot; said F. Scott Fitzgerald. But at least now you know what they know.
Having serious bank is just the beginning.
The real issue is how to spend it—tastefully, self-confidently, and with just the right dash of presumption. Here is priceless help:
-Where to live, where to summer, and what to drive—or fly—to get there
-The importance of seeming arty
-The right cosmetic surgeries for you…and your children
-The only clubs worth joining
-The Top 10 colleges you’ll want your kids to drop out of
-Bullet-proofing the Maybach
And much, much more…
About the Author
Christopher Tennant has previously chronicled the foibles of the rich and infamous as an editor and writer at New York magazine, Talk, the New York Post's "Page Six" column, and Radar, the influential pop culture magazine and daily web site he co-founded in 2003, which was nominated for a General Excellence award by the American Society of Magazine Editors. Born and raised in the leafy suburbs of Boston, he currently lives beyond his means in New York City.
Table of Contents
1. The Plutocrat Primer: Meet your new friends
2. Where to Live: Homing patterns
3. It Takes a Village: The art of staffing up
4. Buying a Better You: Looking the part
5. The Social Whirl: Out & about
6. Travel & Leisure: Summer is a verb
7. Float Some & Jet Some: Tycoons on the move
8. Playgrounds & Pastimes: Get a hobby
9. To Heir is Divine: Billionaire breeding habits
10. Afflictions & Pretensions: Surviving at the top