Date: 2017-11-15 18:38
I agree to meet P at a restaurant on Madison Avenue. I sit down at a table. He arrives, and although he is indeed tall and dark, resembling none other than Mr Big, I know in less than five seconds that I will never fancy him. But, after a few minutes, and much to my surprise, I start to enjoy his company immensely. What do you look for, I ask. He says women in New York are only interested in how much money a man makes.
My first date takes place in London. Mairead phones to tell me about M, who is 96, in wealth management, whatever that is, and a divorced father of two grown-up boys. He lives between London and Oxford.
“Mairead Molloy is internationally renowned for playing cupid to singletons,” reported Luxurious Magazine. “Berkeley International is one of the most exclusive introduction agencies in Europe.”
As for persuading clients to remain part of a longer-term members' club, Ms. Verbeeck says this will involve counseling and couple-specific concierge services. "It's about how to keep the flame alive. People don't have time so they need our help to keep it going."
And you know what? On Christmas Eve, millionaire number one texts to say he found me 'intelligent and, dare I say it, sexy', and that he wants to take me out for dinner 'some time soon, and for a much longer date this time!'
Speaking in the breakfast room of an upmarket hotel on the Rue de Rivoli, in the elegant heart of Paris, the 85-something Belgian is chic and relaxed as she discusses sorting out love matches for the super-rich. But until just three years ago Ms. Verbeeck was chief executive of her family's €655 million steel trading business in Antwerp, where she lives. Then, she spent her days haggling with mills and manufacturers for reject steel to flog to clients around the world.
The Big Short, the film adaptation of Michael Lewis' book of the same name about the causes of the financial crisis, opens in UK cinemas this weekend. How will the story stack up against the greatest films about business?
I tell him I live in the middle of Exmoor, have horses, dogs, cats and rescued farm animals, and am recently divorced. We agree to meet the following night in the bar at Claridges. I tell him I have dark hair, and will be wearing purple Burberry platforms. He laughs.
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My friend Kerry, tired of my moaning, had told me about an upmarket dating agency that takes on only high-achieving rich people. 'You need someone generous,' she said, my husband's name unspoken between us, 'with a bank account, not a piggy bank'.