The Perks of Privilege

Southhampton, on New York's Long Island, is a preferred playground of the wealthy. Inside a $20 million home there, you can find every amenity imaginable: a master chef, fitness trainer, limo service.

All of it can be yours for a price, thanks to surgeon Steven Greenburg.

"The ultimate luxury Hamptons package is for the wealthy patient who really wants to take this to another level and really recover in luxury," Greenburg said. " The package for $500,000 enables the patient to have unlimited cosmetic surgery for the summer."

That's right, it's an all-you-can-enhance extravaganza. You can get a tummy tuck, nose job, boob job, lipo -- plus a month's worth of recuperation in a Southhampton mansion, pending Greenburg's medical OK.

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It's the cosmetic surgery equivalent of the salad bar at Sizzler -- a deal that says you can have it all, and then, you can have it all lifted!

Greenburg says that despite the economy being a little unstable now, "patients at this level who would spend $500,000 for a luxury package, are still spending the money and not even questioning it!"

That's because they're not like us! In this tax bracket, just having isn't enough. Just ask "Richistan" author Robert Frank.

"There's one guy in the book who commissioned a $10,000 alligator skin toilet seat for his private jet," said Frank. "And I said, 'Well, why would you want to do something like that?' And he said, 'Well, I wanted to have the only alligator skin toilet seat in the skies.' And I'm sure he does!"

Therein lies the personal privilege of the super-rich. They can spend on the unique or the unforgettable.

Like an Indian-themed affair, moonlit and majestic on a New York City rooftop. An airplane hangar transformed into a mythically luxurious airline. A 20th anniversary in Mexico bathed in alabaster.

How do the rich get to enjoy such pre-eminently privileged parties? Two words: Colin Cowie.

Cowie has been feting the fabulous for years, masterminding everything from destination and location, to food and drink, and from entertainment to fireworks. The results?

State-of-his-art-and-their-bank-account celebrations that cost the clients $6,000 to $50,000 per attendee.

He has planned parties all over the world. In fact, Cowie says 60 percent of his business is outside of the United States.

He is famously discreet about his clients, but Oprah Winfrey has long sung his praises.

"Oprah is, without a doubt, the most extraordinary person to plan parties with," Cowie said.

He has planned many celebrations with Winfrey, including her 50th birthday bash and her well-known Legends Ball.

The bottom line for Cowie? "If you can write that check, I'll make it happen."

And his sensationally satisfying parties help to remind billionaires why they bothered to make all that money in the first place.

"No is a word that does not exist in our vocabulary," Cowie said. "We make it happen."

The rich would much rather say yes to the best jets, boats and estates, the finest wine, watches and songs. They not only spend, they hire people to help them spend. Like the staff at Quintessentially, which, for fees ranging from $5,000 to $45,000 annually, will provide key advice on pricey purchases like expensive jewels.

Quintessentially even helps clients get into ultra-hip parties and hot spots.

Founded by Ben Elliot, Quintessentially bills its services as akin to having a well-connected best friend in every city.

From restaurant reservations and theater tickets to $10,000-a-night hotel bookings, Elliot said his company "prides itself in accessing the inaccessible."

But for the well-to-do, there's no hassle like day-to-day life -- fraught as it is with vast domestic responsibilities they cannot manage alone.

That's why Mary Starkey's school is the answer to a plutocrat's prayers.

Since 1981, Starkey has run the Starkey International Institute for Household Management in Denver, where an eight-week program teaches students to become "HMs" -- household managers.

But in keeping with the preferences of the estimated 2 million households that need staff, these students aren't stuffed shirts in the British butler mold.

Starkey likes to pair her graduates with the ideal household, where they can earn up to $200,000.

So that they can someday instruct their own staffs, they learn fine food, fine wine and flower arranging; management software and security techniques; how to oversee an estate; and how to serve a formal dinner party.

Oh, and in case you're in the public eye, they've been instructed to be discreet.

What happens if you find yourself in a romantic relationship with the guy you're working for?

"Well if he's married, you'd better pack your bags!" Starkey said.

But what does happen when good love goes bad among the wildly well-to-do?

Many turn to Hollywood lawyer Neal Hersh. He's handled divorces for everyone from Halle Berry to Drew Barrymore, to Kim Basinger's battle with Alec Baldwin. Whoever the wealthy client is, Hersh said the big question is often the same: "Can I live the same lavish lifestyle?"

Hersh's frequent response: "Yes you can!" It's very much appropriate to be maintained in the marital lifestyle, Hersh said, "and you're not a gold digger for asking for your share of that!"

Heather Mills got about $50 million after her divorce from Paul McCartney, but she'd reportedly asked for a whole lot more in annual pricey perks, like $1.29 million for housekeepers, $250,000 for clothes, $1.08 million for security and $78,000 for helicopters to go to the hospital.

"Well that shows you that is the type of lifestyle she thought she was accustomed to," Hersh said. "We're talking about the mega-wealthy you know, you're talking about some people who have enjoyed exorbitantly high standards of living."