Monday, February 15, 2010

Matchmaking: '$55,000 for 28 Months of Unlimited Introductions'

Getting ready to watch "The Bachelor" in a little while. So, let me share some day-after-Valentine's blog stuff. From the Los Angeles Times, "Matchmakers' Personal Touch Thrives Despite EHarmony,":

Like social networking, which had many dating industry experts inaccurately predicting the demise of paid Internet dating sites, Internet dating hasn't killed matchmaking, but fed it. In fact, the three go hand in hand, leading relationship-minded singles to ever higher levels of paid service.

Though social networking sites such as Facebook may bring people together and do it for free, there's no guarantee that those brought-together people are available and looking for a relationship. And though Internet dating sites such as Yahoo Personals do a better job of bringing together singles who are motivated to get together because they are paying to find dates, they don't always do a good job of sorting out the serious from the players, or even to help individuals select people who are truly good for them.

Personalized matchmakers promise to do just that. Of course, they also charge a higher price — anywhere from $1,000 to $100,000, depending on the exclusivity of the service, the number of matches they've said they'll provide and how willing they are to go the extra mile.

"You're the therapist, the mother, the best friend, the sister, the nonsexual girlfriend. You have to be everything," said Patti Stanger, star of the Bravo reality TV series "The Millionaire Matchmaker" and proprietor of the L.A.-based Millionaire's Club matchmaking service.

"It's not good enough to say, 'Here's a nice girl.' You get them a girl, they'll sleep with that girl, cheat on the girl. Then I've got to get that girl back. I have to go in and do an intervention and be on call seven days a week. That's why I get the big bucks," said Stanger, who charges men a minimum of $25,000 a year and female "millionairesses" $55,000 for 28 months of unlimited introductions. (She finds her female clients take longer to match.)

Whether it's hooking up her clients with a personal stylist to improve their appearance or enrolling them in an improv class to get over their shyness, "there are 5 million things to do," she said. There are more details to attend to with clients: manners, appearance, expectations. "In the old days, it was, 'OK. I know who I'm going to give you. Here she is. Bye.' "
More at the link, especially the discussion of April Beyer of Beyer & Co.

And that's the lovely
Karen Alloy at the video.