A look at Spitzer's Emperors Club Web site

"Our goal is to make life more peaceful, balanced, beautiful and meaningful."

By Farhad Manjoo
Published March 11, 2008 7:30PM (EDT)

In court papers, law enforcement officials describe the Emperors Club, the house of prostitution through which New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer allegedly booked his fateful night with "Kristen," as a classy outfit. This wasn't a place to find just any hooker. No, at the Emperors Club you would meet a sophisticated female companion, someone with poise, grace and discernment, as well as a habit of traipsing around in next to nothing.

But to look at the ring's Web site, the Emperors Club seems only slightly classier than your run-of-the-mill corner operation.

The site, which is now offline but has been unearthed through the indispensable Internet Archive by the quick-thinking folks over at Digital Alchemy, certainly sets out to look like a high-class affair.

But it has a strong whiff of spam and scam to it -- misspellings, big words used incorrectly, sentence structure that would set off SpamAssassin's least sensitive filters. And there's this gambit: The Emperors Club offers big-money males not only women but also "contemporary art" and "investment services." It's your one-stop shop for refinement!

Here's a bit from the site's Welcome page:

Best of all, our innovative social introduction / dating services allow you a luxuriously enjoyable dating / travel experience with some of the wolrd's (sic) most exclusive companions. We match our customers with the most compatible models, most competitive contemporary art leads, and finest concierge luxuries for both their personal preferences and the occasion. Our services are professional, reliable and luxuriously pleasurable.

Much of the site's action takes place at its portfolio pages, where body shots of its many models are laid out meat-market style, with each lady rated on scale of three to seven animated flashing diamonds (though the animation is so poor they look more like cubic zirconia).

As the Emperors Club rate page explains, diamonds are awarded "according to individual education, sophistication, and ambiance created by each of our models." (The models create their own ambience!)

Obviously, you'll pay more for more diamonds: Prices range from as low as $1,000 per hour for a three-diamond lady to $3,100 per hour for seven diamonds. Full-day rates -- "dawn-to-dawn" -- are also available. Want a seven-diamond woman for a whole day? That'll cost you $31,000.

For international guests, prices are outlined in euros and pounds sterling; the site accepts credit cards, cashiers' checks and "most foreign currencies," and -- best of all! -- it offers gift certificates. (Hey, maybe Spitz was just buying something nice for a friend? Maybe a certain former president ...?)

Alas, Kristen, the "American, petite, very pretty brunette" that court papers say rendezvoused with Spitzer, is not listed on the site. But the governor is alleged to have paid less than $5,000 for four hours' time, which would indicate that Kristen rated three or four stars.

Should you be in the mood for something more refined, check out seven-flashing-diamond Maya, whose slightly NSFW page raves of her "sex appeal, style and grace." Maya, who is now based in Los Angeles, "has conquered the fashion and entertainment industry while achieving stardom status around the World with her incomparable look and electrifying presence," the site says.

One more thing: The Emperors Club marketed itself as "a positive force, intensely committed to serving our customers honestly. Our goal is to make life more peaceful, balanced, beautiful and meaningful."

Considering that this did not happen for Spitz -- peaceful? balanced? -- he'd seem to have good cause to ask for his money back.

Farhad Manjoo

Farhad Manjoo is a Salon staff writer and the author of True Enough: Learning to Live in a Post-Fact Society.

MORE FROM Farhad Manjoo

Related Topics ------------------------------------------