10 Very Extravagant Gifts
Love makes the world go around; love also makes you gift the most extravagant things to the one you love, be that your partner, your friend, your child or parent. People tend to spend more when it comes to buying gifts for the ones they love. History is witness to this fact. Here’s a list of the most expensive gifts in the world, from the least expensive to the most expensive.
10. Victoria Beckham’s BagDavid Beckham gifted Victoria Beckham a rare diamond-studded bag of which only three are made in a year. The Silver Himalayan, as the bag is called, was a Christmas present from David Beckham to his beloved wife. The bag is made out of fine white crocodile leather and has a 3-carat diamond on the lock. Victoria Beckham has several top end designer bags gifted to her by her husband, the total value of which would be over USD $ 3 million.
Cost: The bag cost Beckham a whopping USD $129,000, a sum that can buy a home in several places in the world.
9. Beth Ostrosky’s Engagement Ring from Howard SternSirius radio megastar Howard Stern designed the 5.2-carat emerald-cut engagement ring that he gifted to his girlfriend Beth Ostrosky on Valentine’s Day 2007. The couple married on October 3, 2008. Ostrosky’s ring recently came in at #2 in the list of biggest celebrity engagement rings, with the number 1 position taken by Rebecca Romijn’s 6-carat sparkler ring that was gifted to her by actor Jerry O’Connell.
Cost: The ring is valued at over $250,000.
8. King Abdullah’s Gifts to President ObamaSaudi Arabia’s King Abdullah made an elaborate show of cooperation and courtesy by bestowing USD 300,000 worth upon US President Barrack Obama of jewelry, rare books and other items, during the President’s first year of presidency. This princely gift exceeds normal bounds of courtesy. It is considered the most expensive gift given by one ruler to another in recent times.
Of this generous gift is a set of luxury gems valued at USD 190,000, that includes a ruby and diamond jewelry set, valued separately at USD 132,000. Other gifts from King Abdullah were a marble ornament adorned with miniature gold palm trees and camels, diamond earrings for the President’s daughters worth $ 7000 each, and a Jaeger-LeCoultre brass clock.
Cost: The total value of all the gifts that King Abdullah heaped on President Obama, the First Lady and her two daughters is over 300,000 dollars USD.
7. The Statue of LibertyThe great Statue of Liberty that stands as a welcoming beacon on the shores of New York commemorates the friendship between the French and the Americans. Designed by eminent designer Bartholdi, the Statue of Liberty stands 151 feet high, and stands for liberty, justice and freedom.
The statue was a gift to the United States from the people of France. The figure represents Libertas, the Roman goddess of freedom bearing a torch and a stone tablet on which the American Declaration of Independence is inscribed. A broken chain lies at her feet, denoting the breaking of the chains of slavery and subjugation.
Cost: The statue of Liberty cost the French USD $530,300 to build. The base cost about $280,000, most of which was donated by American public.
6. The Taylor-Burton DiamondElizabeth Taylor was given many costly gifts by her erstwhile husband Richard Burton. However, in 1972, Burton got her a 40th birthday gift that surpassed all of his other gifts. The 69.42-carat pear-shaped diamond that was gifted came from a rough stone found in South Africa. Cartier jewelers purchased the diamond for USD $1,050,000. The “Taylor-Burton” diamond was displayed by Cartier in New York and Chicago even after it was sold to Burton. Elizabeth Taylor auctioned the diamond for USD 5 million in 1978. The present value of this diamond is not known.
Cost: The Taylor-Burton diamond cost Richard Burton over a million dollars USD.
5. Beyonce Knowles’s RingSinger Beyonce Knowles received a stunning 18-carat flawless diamond set in platinum, presently valued at over $5 million. Designed by jeweler Lorraine Schwartz, the ring is one of a kind that’s been insured or an equal amount. The same designer has created pieces for Christina Aguilera, Jessica Simpson and Jennifer Lopez. Beyonce, however, also has a $5,000 imitation ring that she wears in the public, for safety.
Cost: Rapper Jay-Z paid 5 million dollars USD for the 18-carat engagement diamond that graces his wife Beyonce’s ring finger.
4. Roman Abramovich’s SculptureOne of the richest men in the world, Roman Abramovich paid around $14 million on a bronze sculpture for his girlfriend. The sculpture is by Swiss sculptor Alberto Giacometti and is called “Femme de Venise”. Apart from this, the billionaire is reputed to have spent $60 million in a month buying expensive pieces of art for his girlfriend. His other extravagant gifts to her include villa in Colorado and two paintings by Lucian Freud and Francis Bacon for $120 million.
Cost: The sculpture cost around $14 million.
3. The Orlov DiamondThe Russian empress Catherine the Great lavished gifts on Count Grigory Orlov, a military commander. She gifted him 800 serfs, built a magnificent palace for him, and bought him the Gatchina country estate near St Petersburg. In return, the Count gave her unique diamond that was half as big as a pigeon’s egg, in 1798. The diamond was named the Orlov and was incorporated into her scepter. The Orlov is considered priceless, as no value has been placed on it yet. The Orlov diamond weighs 198.62 carats and is of a blue-green color.
Cost: The Orlov diamond cost 400,000 Russian Rubles in 1798, a very princely sum indeed.
2. The Kohinoor DiamondOriginally found in Andhra Pradesh in India several centuries ago, the Kohinoor is considered the largest diamond ever found. Over time, this diamond has belonged to literally monarch that ruled India, before finally falling into British hands. The British defeated Maharajah Dhulip Singh of Punjab, a descendent of the great king Ranjit Singh and claimed the Kohinoor as the spoils of war. However, it was later arranged that the diamond should be gifted to the then British Monarch, Queen Elizabeth, by Maharajah Dhulip Singh himself. It was a reluctant gift indeed, but history now records it as a gift. Today, the once 186 1/16 carats stone weight less than half its original size. At one point, the Kohinoor was valued at the expense equaling the maintenance of half the world for a day.
Cost: Since the Kohinoor diamond’s monetary value was never documented in those days, we don’t have a clear idea as to its then cost. This diamond is considered priceless. However, the current incarnation of the Kohinoor diamond is the most important part of the British Royal Crown jewels, whose total worth at present is between £10bn and £12.7bn. Since the Kohinoor is the main focal point of this collection, the value of the diamond itself must be in billions of pounds.
1. The Taj MahalThe beautiful Taj Mahal has been hailed over the centuries as the everlasting embodiment of true love. This breathtaking structure is constructed entirely of white marble and is a real to watch in the moonlight. Built by the Emperor Shah Jahan to celebrate his love for his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal, the Taj is mute testament to the lengths a person will go to declare their love and devotion.
Mumtaz Mahal, a Persian princess was Emperor Shah Jahan’s one true love. She died when she was 39 years while giving birth to the couple’s 14th child. Her death shattered the great emperor, who built this lasting monument, a mausoleum more beautiful than any the world had seen before, to honor her last wish. Construction began in 1632 and it took 22 long years, and 20,000 workers and craftsmen to complete the mammoth mausoleum.
Cost: The total cost towards building this great monument is estimated to be about 32 million Indian Rupees at that time (1653), which would be 710,000 USD approximately.
Top 10 Exclusive Foods
Of the top ten exclusive and most sought after foods a few come to mind while others come as a bit of a surprise. Often these foods are quite expensive due to the rarity of the product, astronomically expensive in some cases, appearing only at the tables of the rich and famous. Of those tasty morsels that are the most prized, some are meats, spices, fungi, fish eggs, melons, chocolate, saliva, yes, you heard me right, saliva, and even precious metals.
10. SaffronTo start off, what is life without spice? The highest ranking of spices is the elusive Indian spice Saffron. Although Saffron is not hard to grow and is harvested worldwide, it is derived from the saffron flower which requires painstaking care to collect. The labor and resources needed to harvest just 1 pound of saffron takes 50,000 to 75,000 flowers to make. The sum total of an entire football field of these small flowers. The spice costs between $500 per pound to $5,000. With that price tag, the crocus saffron stamens pack the sweetest nectar and the biggest buck blooming in at number 10.
9. The Dansuke WatermelonWatermelons may line the sides of country roads in summertime but these costly watermelons won’t be at any common picnic. These watermelons are not large in size, a measly 17 pounds, but in Japan they cost a great deal more than their weight and are made up mostly of water. The Dansuke Watermelon is a black watermelon, the most expensive watermelon in the world that is harder and more crisp than the American watermelon. One watermelon can cost as much as $6,100. They grow only on the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido and are usually given as rare gifts. Only a few grow, perhaps 65 in a season bringing the Dansuke Watermelon to number 9 of the top ten expensive, exclusive foods.
8. Yubari MelonAnother Japanese fruit, the Yubari melon can cost anywhere between $60 to $150 in the US. Generally, the best of the variety cost $200. In 2008 two Yubari melons went for $26,000. What do you think of them melons? They are grown in Yubari, Hokkaido, a small populated town close to Sapporo. They are similar in appearance to the common cantaloupe except they are perfectly round and have smooth skin. They are exceptionally sweet although the sweetness is not considered overpowering. It is said that the high volcanic ash content in the soil makes it the sweetest, juiciest melons in the world bringing these very special melons in at number 8.
7. Matsutake MushroomMushrooms are mysterious, neither plant nor animal, and the Matsutake mushroom, another Japanese delicacy is one mystery that costs between $90 to $905 per pound. It has been highly prized in Japan for centuries and is found on particular pine trees in Japan, Korea and China and a few other places in the world. They form a symbiotic relationship with the tree’s roots and never grow again in the same spot more than one time. The flavor is pungent, spicy and meaty like portobello mushrooms. The Japanese refer to it as the “the king of autumn flavor” and “the king of the mushrooms.” For such royal mushrooms, they pop up into the top ten list at number 7.
6. Chocopologie by KnipschildtThe most prized chocolate in the world is by Chocopologie by Knipschildt. It costs $2,600 per pound. It is a handmade chocolate truffle that contains 70% Valrhona cacao and black truffle. Dark chocolate is the most expensive and it can only be pre-ordered. The exclusive chocolate was created by Fritz Knipchildt, a Chocolatier from Denmark who moved to the US and founded his famous bittersweet delicacy in 1996. It is made with no preservatives or additives and from what can be told about it, is a tiny morsel that any chocolate lover should not pass within the top ten of exclusive foods at number 6.
5. Kobe BeefWhere’s the beef? The best of it comes from the most pampered cows in the world, the Wagyu cows of Japan. The most hefty priced beef, Kobe beef, comes from Japanese cows that are fed the best grass and beer! They are bovines raised in the lap of luxury receiving daily massages to ensure the tenderness of the product. The most expensive and sought after beef is the most tender in the mouth and the most hard on the wallet. A 200 gram filet costs more than $100. Up to $770 per kilo, the Kobe beef has a heavy marbling of fat that adds to the flavor of this legendary meat, bringing the Wagyu cows home at number 5.
4. CaviarThe Almas Caviar variety is the most highly esteemed because the eggs of the Beluga Sturgeon fish are very hard to come by. They are tiny, pale, amber eggs that cost an astounding $8,400 to $15,500 a pound. The word ‘Almas’ is Iranian for diamond and these little fish eggs sparkle the brightest. It is because the Beluga fish takes over 20 years to mature making its eggs limited. These fish are rare although they have existed for over 120 million years, they are the oldest survivors of the dinosaur era. The fish are found mainly in the Caspian Sea and live up to 80 years old. The Almas Caviar is prepared in Iran and is sold only in London at one outlet called, The Caviar House and Punier. The waiting list to buy this caviar is 4 years and it is sold in a 24 karat, gold tin box spawning in at number 4.
3. White TruffleWho when they think of the most expensive foods does not think of truffles? The holy grail of mushrooms is the White Truffle. Pigs root them out in the woods in search of the truffle’s unique aroma that resembles their own sex hormones. Neither animal nor plant, the White Truffle crowns the forest floors with the most prized truffle because of its intense flavor, aroma and scarcity. The White Truffle sells for between $1,360-$4,200 per pound and resists the measures man has taken to domesticate and cultivate it. The fungi is only found underground and grows on the roots of certain trees in particular regions in Italy and Croatia. The most expensive White Truffle ever sold was for $330,000! How’s that for a magic mushroom? It comes in at number 3!
2. Bird’s Nest SoupOne of the rarest foods, and one of the highest sought after, is Bird’s Nest Soup. Otherwise known as the “Caviar of the East” this is a food that has been served in China for over 400 years. It is made up of the saliva nests built by cave swifts, a bird found in southeast China. It is dissolved in water to create a gelatinous soup. It is the most expensive animal product consumed by humans. In Hong Kong a bowl costs up to $30, the red version can cost $10 per gram, the most prized nests of them all. Per pound the cost ranges from $910 to $4,535. The saliva is believed to have nutritional, medicinal and aphrodisiac properties bringing in just a simple bit of spit at number 2.
1. GoldNo, these consumers do not have Pica, the nutritional disease where people eat things like plaster, dirt or newspaper; these people eat a precious metal because it has no ill effect on the human body and just because you can say you did. Eat this as the number one top ten of exclusive and highly sought after foods and you too will be able to say you’ve eaten gold. It is the world’s most expensive food, a product with a flavorless taste, used mainly in small quantities as flakes or gold leaves for decoration to adorn other expensive foods. The price for edible gold is $33,000-$110,000 per kilo. One gold-eating customer paid to cover an entire Christmas turkey with gold leaf. It is insanely popular around the time of the Oscars where people use it for drinks and to make Oscar-shaped cookies where gold, celebrities, and goodies gain certain attention.
Top 10 Most Beautiful EyesFinding the world’s most beautiful eyes was challenging, to say the least. With a list that started at 50 sets of beautiful eyes that then had to be reduced to 10, well, you can imagine the hesitation to exclude some of the many gorgeous women that were considered. Some of the lovely ladies who missed breaking the top ten were Megan Fox, Raquel Welch and, believe it or not, Marie Osmond who were all in the initial 50.
One of the most difficult tasks for this list of the most beautiful eyes was finding a large head shot that showcased their eyes. Most photos included the entire female’s body and when you look at the list of women below you know why that is a good thing – most certainly had a beautiful body to match their incredible eyes. So we did the best we could and looked for nice photography that concentrated on the face and the eyes. At least you can be sure that none of these beautiful eyes have had plastic surgery, at least at the time this list was created.
1. Aishwarya Rai
Her eyes are truly the most beautiful eyes in the world, and that is enough, but just for kicks, what else? Aishwarya was chosen by Time magazine in 2004 as one of the World’s “100 Most Influential People” and she is widely considered the most beautiful woman in the world and with eyes like that you can “see” why.
2. Angelina Jolie
Okay her eyes are drop-dead gorgeous and her lips are incredible, but what else? She is the daughter of Jon Voight and won an Oscar Best Actress in a Supporting Role for Girl, Interrupted in 2000.
3. Lynda Carter
Azure blue eyes that sparkle are nice, but what else? Lynda was the superhero Wonder Woman and won the 2004 TV Land Award for Superest Super Hero for “Wonder Woman” which aired in 1976.
4. Elizabeth Taylor
Her blue eyes make the sky look pale, but what else? She won two Oscars, one for each beautiful eye. She won for Best Actress in a Leading Role in Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? & Best Actress in a Leading Role in Butterfield 8.
5. Sharbat Gula
Her sparkling green eyes are mesmerizing, but what else? She is known as the cover girl for National Geographic because Steve McCurry was fortunate enough to take her photograph while on assignment for National Geographic. Her photo is the most popular that the magazine has published.
6. Audrey Hepburn
Her eyes are beautiful, of course, but what else? Audrey won the Oscar for Best Actress in a Leading Role
in Roman Holiday.
7. Giada De Laurentiis
Okay, her eyes are amazing, but what else? She is a professional chef and has her own cooking program, Everyday Italian, which has been broadcast on Food Network since 2003.
8. Kristin Kreuk
She’s has gorgeous green eyes, but what else? She has starred in “Smallville” as Lana Lang and has kissed Superman.
9. Sophia Loren
She’s got sexy eyes, but what else? She won an Oscar for Best Actress in a Leading Role
in Ciociara, La.
10. Charlize Theron
She’s got stunning eyes, but what else? She won an Oscar for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in Monster.