While most of us rely on budgets and think of Whole Foods as a pipe dream, there are those of you who can get what you want whenever you want with a simple swipe of an AmEx. Below, our writers have chosen some of the best (and one of the worst) ways in which you can blow your dollars in the Bay Area. Enjoy.

$15,000-a-night penthouse at the Fairmont Hotel
Noted for being the location where world leaders concocted the United Nations Charter 1945, the penthouse at the San Francisco Fairmont Hotel will run you a cool $15,000 per night. Coming in at 6,000 square feet, you'll get a several large bedrooms, a grand piano, a formal dining room, a professional kitchen, a two-story circular library, a massive terrace with views of the City, a secret passageway concealed behind one of the bookshelves, a 24-hour butler and chef, and more.
950 Mason (at Mason), S.F.; 415-772-5000


You've heard about it. The New York Times critic has been there twice, and loves it. Bon Appetit adores it. SF Mag critic Josh Sens concludes that despite the steep price, it's "money well spent." All you need to know is that chef Joshua Skenes and his crew are creating a new Northern California cuisine every night at this restaurant, which is served with understated but meticulous skill by a team of servers and sommeliers led by Mark Bright. If you are an open-minded omnivore with some money saved up who wants to be transported and surprised by nearly every dish in the course of 18 or 20 of them, this is the place for your next splurge. If you're really hard to please and think that you should be served only gold-dusted caviar and endangered species for prices like this, Saison may not be for you. — Jay Barmann
178 Townsend (at Third Street), S.F.; 415-828-7990

Stockton Street Apple Store in San Francisco. (Photo: Steve Rhodes)

Replace Your Laptop At The Apple Store
Is your eight-month-old Powerbook not of the Air and/or Retina variety? Horrifying. Then head over to your nearest Apple Store to replace it. Heck, buy two. Just in case. The line at the Genius Bar can be long if one breaks. — Brock Keeling
Find an Apple store nearest you.

Beauty astounds at Auberge du Soleil. (Photo: Auberge du Soleil)

Auberge du Soleil
So you want to go up to Napa and see how the other half lives for a couple of nights. May we suggest checking out the luxurious hotel, spa, and restaurant tucked into a hill in Rutherford called Auberge du Soleil? Afternoons lunching on the terrace, sitting by the pool overlooking the valley with a glass of Sauvignon Blanc, getting a 2-hour massage and a pedicure before dinner from chef Robert Curry — after all this you will probably never want to return to your workaday life, but it will still be a lovely relief. This place is probably second only to Meadowood in terms of the restaurant and spa combo, but has better views and a bit more European flair. And you're just minutes away from a bunch of great wineries on the Silverado Trail. — Jay Barmann

Coi. (Photo: Facebook)

Daniel Patterson's Coi (pronounced "kwa"), on Broadway in the heart of the bombastic yet unassuming North Beach strip, swims in similar seas as Saison and Benu. However, it's more than just molecular gastronomy. It's more than just lichen. It's an altering experience. And with four stars from Michael Bauer and two from the Michelin crew, it's worth every silver dollar.
373 Broadway (at Montgomery), S.F.; 415-393-9000


Rent Out A Movie Theater For You And Your Friends
Want to watch this year's Oscar bait with little chatter from (increasingly) noisy SF audiences? Rent out a theater for you and your friends. Prices vary depending on which theater you chose. For example, CineArts at the Westfield can run you $1,715 for the smallest theater, while renting out the entire space at Embarcadero Cinemas starts out at $700 per screening. — Brock Keeling
Call theater for details.

Bath time at Campton Hotel. (Photo: Brock Keeling)

Campton Place
Since being taken over by the Taj Hotels group a few years ago, things have only gotten more luxe at this boutique hotel by Union Square. It's perfect for a tony staycation in town, and you'll feel like you traveled somewhere because of all the wealthy foreign nationals who opt for this place — probably because the Taj brand means a lot more outside the U.S. Also, the restaurant, which has a Michelin star, is operating at a very high level under chef Srijith Gopinathan, with beautifully plated, complex dishes that combine French technique with East and South Asian flavors. In fact, the restaurant is worth a splurge by itself, but it's always nice to be able to go right upstairs to bed under 1000-thread-count sheets. — Jay Barmann

Caviar, the signature splurge. (Photo: Christine C. / Yelp)

Brunch at Ritz-Carlton Half Moon Bay
Brunch at the Ritz-Carlton Resort in HMB is often hailed as the best in the Bay Area. And with good reason. Navio's Sunday brunch offers an alarmingly wide selection of culinary glee, where there is something for every taste including a caviar bar, hot and cold salads, risotto, crab, chocolates, many cheeses, carving stations, bottle after bottle of champagne, and array of deserts. Seatings are at 11 a.m., 11:30 a.m., 11:45 a.m., 1:30 p.m., 1:45 p.m., 2 p.m. Brunch runs $98 per guest, minus tax/gratuity; $49 for children ages 5-12; freer for children four years and younger.
Ritz-Carlton Half Moon Bay, 1 Miramontes Point Road, Half Moon Bay, 650-712-7000

With IfOnly, you can join Tim Brown in New York City for a private dinner the weekend of The Big Game. (Photo: Facebook)

In lieu of yet another shiny new toy or gadget, Trevor Traina's newest venture offers the elite "extraordinary experiences." (Think David Fincher's The Game, but less harrowing and sans Sean Penn.) As society reporter Catherine Bigelow notes: "These experiences range in price from $35 for a guaranteed Twitter follow from chef Michael Chiarello to $45,000 for a gourmet kitchen redesign and dinner by chef Tyler Florence." Other options available? Tagging along with Michael Bauer on a review meal, a pasta-making class with Thomas McNaughton, Shakira's dress, a video message from Mike Tyson, and more. Much more. (Note: a good chuck of the proceeds go to local nonprofits and charities.)

The Tenderloin in the AM. (Photo: Bhautik Joshi)

Rent A Place In The Tenderloin
Your IPO went bonkers. You already own a home in the Temescal and up in the Hills. And Sarah Lacy just started following you on Twitter. Isn't it time you greedily rented an understated 1BR in the Tenderloin for the rare overnighter in the CIty? So gritty. So real. After all, that family of four isn't going to displace itself. Sleep well. — Brock Keeling

Honorable mentions

Meadowood Napa Valley Resort & Spa: 900 Meadowood Lane, St Helena; 707-531-4788

Nob Hill Spa at the Huntington Hotel: 1075 California (at Mason), S.F.; 415-474-5400

Wild nettle purée with small piece of wild salmon, potato purée, and anise hyssop at Saison.(Photo: J. Barmann/Grub Street)