The Centurion Suite at Barclays Center
The American Express Platinum card has a very cool perk that I was able to try out recently during the Sia concert: The Centurion Suite at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, NY. This little perk makes my Platinum card more valuable although I am unlikely to use it very often.
In short, anyone with a ticket (concerts, sports, etc) and a Platinum or Centurion (Black card) American Express can get in and bring 1 guest. You will need to show up early to get one of the limited (30-50?) wrist bands and grab one of the 16 excellent seats. How Early? Doors will probably open 1 hour before start time of the show but its been difficult to get details from Amex. Those who get in will enjoy excellent views from anywhere in the suite because it is smack in the center of the stadium. And yes, you can buy the cheapest seats available this saving potentially hundreds of dollars!
The wrist band gives you access to come and go as you please. Food and drink are not free (wouldn't that be nice!). In fact the food is more expensive then the stadium options, but it is higher quality and does come with service so you can enjoy the show and skip the long lines.
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Centurion Suite Locations
Here are the Centurion Suites that I have found so far. This post is about Barclays Center location.
- Centurion Suite at Barclays Center, Brooklyn
- Centurion Suite at Staples Center, Los Angeles
- Centurion Suite at O2, London
- Centurion Suite at Paddock Club, Singapore
Benefits & Amenities
- Premium food & beverage, including a selection of finely crafted cocktails, beer, and wine available for purchase
- Dedicated servers
- Flat-screen TVs
- Complimentary Wi-Fi access
- Phone charging stations
The view is excellent – right in the center. It is still a bit far from the stage but certainly better than most other seats. Even if you buy more expensive tickets to get closer, it's not as comfortable as hanging out in a suite.
There are 16 seats available (8 lower and 8 upper) and as long as everyone is sitting, you won't have to look at the back of anyone's head. There are also plenty of bar stools and seats that are not facing the stage. The suite doesn't get too crowded due to capacity limits that Amex enforces through the wrist bands.
TIP: Grab some of the lower 8 seats if you want some privacy or upper 8 seats if you want to be able to move around easily (without stepping over everyone else). Remember, you will need to one of the first to enter the lounge to grab one of these seats. Doors generally open 1 hour before event start time.
Some of the security guards and the website provide instructions on how to get it: enter on the side of the stadium, next to the EmblemHealth Atlantic Entrance. When you walk to the left side of the main entrance, you'll see this big “PLATINUM ENTRANCE” sign, but… it was closed. Security at the VIP entrance right next to the Platinum Entrance sent us back to the main entrance and then later let some friends through. The VIP entrance (EmblemHealth Atlantic Entrance) was meant for those who had VIP tickets ($500+) only but I guess it depends on who you talk to.
So… you'll probably want to try the VIP entrance and Platinum Entrance when you go. If that fails, go into the main entrance then find the Amex Platinum booth to receive your wrist band.
Get your wrist band
The Amex Platinum booth is located close to where the Platinum Entrance is (across from sections 9-10). Once the wrist bands are gone… no one else can get in.
I suggest having dinner before getting to Barclays Center, if you have time. You will have to arrive early to get your wrist band and for the SIA concert that meant doors opening at 6pm and the show starting at 7:00pm (but Sia starting at ~9:30pm). Most people didn't arrive to the stadium until almost 9pm.
The menu (pictured below) does have slightly better offerings than the food vendors and they do charge a premium. For example, a pretzel costs $8 vs $5 in the concession stands. A cocktail will cost you $20 vs $15. A full bottle of wine started at $50+. Three+ hours hanging out at the Centurion Suite can add up though so will eating at the concession stands ($6 for a slice of pizza, $10-12 for sandwiches/sausages/hamburgers, $5 pretzels). Here is a list of your dining options. If you prefer the concession stands, you can bring it back into the suite (which I found a bit surprising).
Free Phone Charging Station
The Centurion Lounge also has a convenient free charging station just in case you don't carry your charger everywhere you go.
Have you been to the Centurion Lounge? What did you think?