5 Affordable Splurges

Luxury doesn’t have to be fantasy

Courtesy of jademarketingtechnology.com

We all deserve somethin’ extra shiny, or an experience to (humble) brag about every now and then. If our picks in November’s “Worth the Splurge” feature exceeded your wallet’s comfort zone, we selected a few more accessible indulgences.

Unmatched Experiences

For those that like to get their motor running (sans speeding ticket), skip a visit to the Tesla dealership and instead head to The Brainerd International Raceway. The Raceway, as part of the BIR Performance Driving School, offers rides in a Corvette Z06 for $100 or in a Lamborghini Gallardo for $175 (4 laps), and for the real adrenaline junkies, a chance to drive a Spec Ford Racecar for $325 (1 session). If you already splurged and bought a sports car of your own, take it to the track for $310 (full-day).

Swank Style

Shop ’til you—and the prices—drop. The brands at high-end resale stores, Fashion Avenue (50th & France) and Fashion Avenue 2 (Wayzata), are worthy of a splurge, but certainly won’t feel like it thanks to discounted prices. All pieces are carefully selected for the store—they must be no more than a couple of seasons old, must be in new or excellent condition, and must be a notable brand. Louis Vuitton and Chanel are the most popular items and typically snatched up quick once on the floor.

Fabulous Food

There’s no such thing as too much chocolate, but the $24 brownie at Manny’s Steakhouse may come close. You can find chocolates in smaller portion, but still rich in taste, at several chocolate shops in the area. Legacy Chocolate sells chocolate truffles and other novelties (like sipping chocolate), all made with local butter and cream, and no corn syrup or preservatives are used. Dr. Chocolate’s Chocolate Chateau’s imported truffles and chocolate-themed gift shop may be affordable, but the setting feels a bit grander with its location inside of a Victorian mansion on Selby Avenue in St. Paul.

Premium Products

You could cover up an “oops” paint job with a $50 million Monet painting—or you could wander the MCAD Art Sale, held every year on the weekend before Thanksgiving, which features work that averages about $100 per piece, and nothing is priced over $1,500. Thursday’s opening day tickets are $150—with an esteemed reputation, collectors flock to the sale with an itch to find the best emerging artists (more than 400 artists participate each year), so if you’re on a budget, it’s best to visit on Saturday when entrance is free.

Superior Service

You’ve got the cooking chops and party know-how to throw your own shindig at a reasonable cost—so you should enjoy it! In this case, the splurge is letting someone else tend to the chores so you can be the life of the party. Hire a Host is an event planning company that offers wait staff and bartending services. They’ll help you set up, greet guests, serve food, wash dishes, clean up afterward, and any other duties that may come with throwing a party. Consider the staff your co-hosts for the evening.

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