Guide to Exotic Gifts
At the low end of the gift-giving scale rests the traditional tie, money clip, or soap-on-a-rope, and at the high end - well, the sky's the limit. There's always someone on your list worth indulging, and sometimes there's even the money to do it. And while you might not be in the same league as Donald Trump or Tiger Woods, it's always fun to look.
Speaking of The Donald, you might recognize this teched-out computer from the first season of The Apprentice. After all, would Trump outfit his lair with anything less than the best? The tekpanel.com($7,995) is billed as the first all-in-one multimedia PC for home entertainment. It has a Pentium 4 processor and ATI graphics packaged in a super-size 37-inch widescreen LCD panel. The ultra-slim 4 1/2 -inch casing mounts right on the wall and blends effortlessly into almost any décor. The TekPanel is HDTV-ready, holds a built-in TV tuner and DVD recorder, and provides TiVo-like control over its hard drive. A Klipsch ProMedia 2.1 speaker system (not shown) supplies the sound and a wireless keyboard with an integrated mouse gives you full control.
No wonder ultrasone.comheadphones ($3,000) feel so good - those are genuine Ethiopian sheep-leather pads next to your ears. But you should buy these for the sound quality, not the leather, right? Ultrasone uses its S-Logic Natural Surround Sound technology to make it seem that sound is all around you, instead of just in your head. The trick is that the 'phones reflect sound off your outer ear before it reaches your ear canal. Only 999 of these headphones have been made, and each one is numbered and elegantly presented in a cherrywood box.
Settle in for a soak with jacuzzi.comtub (from $32,150), a home "bathing and entertainment center" for two. Inspired by the famed Milan opera house, this tub treats you to the ultimate home theater experience - with surround sound! - while you and your tubmate enjoy a whirlpool bath. Watch movies on the 42-inch high-definition plasma monitor (the system includes a floating remote) while ten adjustable jets deliver a head-to-toe hydrotherapy massage. The La Scala comes in white, black, or high-luster platinum, and since it's part of a limited production run, each tub is certified and numbered.
Home theater in a hot tub? Absolutely! Up to eight friends and family can all relax and enjoy the show under the stars with calspas.com($18,500). Your entertainment package includes a pop-up 17-inch cable-ready flat-screen TV and your choice among ten 5.1-channel speaker rigs. Complete your system by adding a DVD player and VCR, and connect an antenna, cable, or satellite system to watch all your favorite shows. Each spa is built to order, so you can choose the shell style and outfit the tub with as many as 67 jets. Cal Spas claims that its ATS (Adjustable Therapy System) seats will give you a penetrating massage to relax tense muscles while you enjoy the movie.