A solid gold MasterCard for the UAE

Part of the Aurae Lifestyle Program, the 18k cards come with a concierge service and private butler.

Neil Churchill January 18, 2016

What does your bank card look like? We’re guessing its plain coloured, worn around the edges, your signature’s faded and the security number is barely visible anymore.

Ours too. Maybe then it’s time for an upgrade. Maybe it’s time for a solid gold upgrade. 

That’s what MasterCard is now offering the UAE, with the launch of its Aurae Lifestyle Program. The elite service offers members a fully functional and bespoke card made of either 14k or 18k yellow or rose gold. They can even be engraved with custom designs and bejewelled with precious stones. 

The Aurae Lifetsyle Program is essentially a private concierge service. Membership – which is by invitation only – begins at $50,000 (AED 184,000) signup fee, with annual dues of $5,000 (AED 18,400). Note that we said begins – the three tiers of membership are Executive, Private and Elite.

Aside from the bling card, Aurae gives members the use of a dedicated lifestyle manager – read: a butler. Your personal Jeeves is at your constant beck and call, 24/7, to get you access to exclusive events and shows across 115 countries. (Not sure how you'd make use of a lifestyle manager? Click here to read more about the crazy world of private concierge services.)

The gold cards can take between three and eight weeks to be produced, depending on how intricate you are with the design.

However, this is not a credit card. It is in fact a card to a debit account at the UK bank Barclays. Members can deposit up to $1.2 million (AED 4.4m) and spend up to $200,000 (AED 735,000) per month, for the first six months.

A quite major drawback on the card is that given its weight from the gold and optional stones, it won’t work on a standard ATM machine. Members can however withdraw $16,000 (AED 59,000) in cash over the counter.

Concierge service aside, mostly this is a chance to own a completely bespoke, gold debit card. And you can be damn sure your signature won’t fade.

To apply for membership visit auraelifestyle.com.