Every year Neiman Marcus does a great job of reminding 99.9% of humanity that they are not filthy rich by publishing The Neiman Marcus Christmas Book, which includes a section of high-end Christmas gift ideas for those shoppers who have no need to look at price tags. The 2009 edition is out and here are the top seven items you probably won’t be seeing under your Christmas tree this year:
7. The Cascade Lancashire Chandelier
There’s something hypnotic about the way individual sparks reflect back and forth from the clear floral petals that cascade to the floor. And something fascinating about the whole creative process. British artist Michelle Brand’s work invites us to reset our expectations about what it means to recycle as she takes sustainable design into the realm of fine art with the Cascade Lancashire Chandelier. With a personal and professional commitment to reduce-reuse-recycle, Michelle discovered that if she placed a cut just right, the natural shape of a flower appeared out of the base of a plastic soda bottle. With that discovery, her artistic vision became clear, and she built the Cascade Lancashire using 366 plastic bottles she rescued from the landfill. Like all great works of art, it took a good bit of time. Each bottle was carefully washed, dried, hand trimmed, and hand sanded, all to Michelle’s exacting standards. The brilliant result: a waterfall of light that measures five feet long and two feet in diameter.
6. 2010 Jaguar XJL Supercharged Neiman Marcus Edition
Unveiled to the world this summer, the Jaguar XJ flagship line has been totally re-imagined from the ground up—and is the star of the international auto industry. Presenting the heart-racing mix of next-generation engineering and world-class luxury that is ours exclusively: the 2010 Jaguar XJL Supercharged Neiman Marcus Edition. The challenge: Only 50 will ever exist. The reward: One of them could be yours. Let’s start with the all-new frame. It is pressure cast from aluminum and magnesium to give the XJL a strong, light architecture that improves fuel efficiency and structural rigidity. The new panoramic safety-glass roof provides a tremendous sense of spaciousness in the cabin and an amazing view for every trip. The powertrain? A new third-generation supercharged 5-liter V8 that delivers 470 horsepower. The Jaguar Sequential ShiftTM six-speed ZF automatic transmission adapts to its driver, with wheel-mounted shift paddles and Sport, Standard, and Winter modes. So, let’s give you a taste of the intuitive technology. Instead of dull dials, there’s an interactive 12.3″ high-def screen to display all the pertinent info in your line of vision. An integrated navigation and entertainment system is at your fingertips to access audio, Bluetooth® 2.0, hard-drive based GPS navigation, and climate control systems via touch screen or by speaking your commands into the Interactive Voice™ system. There’s a media hub with docks for MP3 players and USB devices, a Bowers & Wilkins® 1,200-watt premium sound system with Dolby® ProLogic® IIx Surround Sound and an aural-inspiring 20 speakers throughout the cabin. Let’s see: massaging front seats, electric sun blind, heated steering wheel, four-zone climate control, integrated security system—we could go on forever. Our Neiman Marcus edition also features an exclusive Celestial Black metallic paint outside and the NM nameplate on the custom interior intaglio, of course. Dazzling 20″ double-10 spoke polished alloy wheels complete the exterior. Inside, there’s a custom interior of butter-soft navy and ivory leather and Zebrano matte wood accents. Other refined details of our automotive masterpiece include illuminated tread plates and trunk finisher. We’ll even throw in a five-piece set of matching Jaguar luggage, in navy blue leather. Did we already mention that only 50 will ever exist? Just checking. Whet your automotive appetite now with a visit to www.jaguarusa.com/neimanmarcus for all the details. Then beginning promptly at noon EDT on Friday, October 16, 2009, call 1-866-524-6963 to reserve yours. Missing out? Ahhh, we don’t even want to think about that.
5. Mission One Electric Motorcycle
The clean, pure ride you’ve been waiting for is here, with 150 mph of quiet, gorgeous power. Say “Hi” to the Mission One, the world’s fastest electric sport bike. It debuted at this year’s TED Conference to rave reviews—and giddy celebrity pre-orders. What it isn’t: another lame-tech exercise in green disappointment. What it is: the official obsolescence of internal combustion cycling. Crank it up to 150 with an amazing 100 ft-lbs. of instantaneous torque at every speed. (You shouldn’t speed or break traffic laws yada yada yada.) With zero carbon emissions, the ear-splitting tailpipes and planet-killing exhaust are history. Its liquid-cooled AC induction motor and single-gear transmission also eliminate the distraction of shifting. There’s no need for a gas tank, with a next-generation lithium-ion battery pack that runs a full 150-mile range between charges. Use the interactive interface (just like pro racing teams use) to collect data on your laptop, adjust the throttle maps and tweak the regenerative braking system to suit your riding style. And look at it: The amazing profile and clean lines are from world-renowned designer Yves Behar. Our exclusive edition is limited to just 10 bikes tricked out with numbered NM plaques, exclusive wheels, and a special paint job. Come to San Francisco to meet your bike and the people who designed it. You’ll get one-on-one training with a pro on a test track, learning the nuances of handling for optimal performance. For more information on the Mission One Motorcycle, please visit http://www.ridemission.com/
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Photos: Barcroft/Fame Pictures
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