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The Insane Hennessey Venom GT Price Tag

When it comes to expensive cars, one of the first things that people want to know before spending a massive amount of money is how fast the car can go. There is a lot of competition between manufacturers on who can make the fastest car, but the current champion in a lot of speed categories is Hennessey Performance Engineering.

Hennessey’s fastest car is known as the Venom GT, which set the Guinness World Record for the fastest production car to reach 186 miles per hour (or 300 kilometers), hitting the mark in just 13.63 seconds. The Venom GT also set the record for fastest to reach 200 miles per hour, doing it in 17.68 seconds. Not only that, but a couple of different speed trials have found that the Venom GT can reach speeds of more than 270 miles per hour.

That’s a lot of speed, and not a lot of people are able to handle that much in a car…let alone afford it. So how much does the fastest production vehicle in the world cost? Well, hold onto your wallets, because this dream machine will set you back a minimum of $1.2 million.

There are a few different editions of the Venom GT that have reached this price tag. In 2014, Hennessey released the “World’s Fastest Edition” which sold for $1.25 million each, and only three of them were made. There is also a new edition called the F5 coming out in 2016 that will be delivered to customers for $1.2 million with 30 in production.

And that $1.2 million actually won’t get you much in terms of add-ons, as the crazy price tag does not include delivery or any of the additional options. The options that you can get with the Venom GT F5 edition include Michelin Pilot Sport Cup tires, right hand drive, a carbon fiber finish and even an interior designed by Stefano Ricci or a stereo system that was designed by Aerosmith lead singer Steven Tyler.

If you get just the stock edition of the Venom GT, you are still getting a V8 twin turbo engine with 1244 bhp with huge 345.30R-20 tires. Stopping also won’t be a problem with Penske coilovers, double A-arm suspension and carbon ceramic rotors. It’s a safe car despite its high speed, and checks in at a surprisingly light 2,743 pounds.

You have to act fast if you want to buy one of the new Venom GT models, as nearly a dozen of them have been sold already, mainly in the Middle East in places like Dubai. Company founder John Hennessey said that “Guys in the Middle East like the best and want to drive the fastest, most exciting cars. And the Venom GT delivers exactly what they are seeking.”

Of course, if you want the stripped down version of the supercar (especially if you don’t plan on setting any speed records), you can do that to. There are five regular Venom GT’s that are produced each year, and each one of them costs $950,000 without the options, taxes or deliveries. There is also a six month waiting period when you order a Venom GT so they can get it customized for each customer.

Basically what the manufacturer is saying is that if you want a Venom GT for 2016 to give as a gift (or keep for yourself), you might already be too late.

The Single Most Expensive Thing in the World

Whenever you get some extra money into your bank account, you might get the urge to spend that bonus dough right away. You start thinking of the most expensive thing you could possibly buy and still have all of your normal money leftover. Typically, you might settle for a really nice meal, a night out at the movies, or even making a bigger dent into your debt.

There are a lot of expensive things that will never be within the reach of the average person, but it’s always fun to think about what life would be like if you could afford them. If you had one of the largest bank accounts in the world, what exactly could you spend all of that money on? Perhaps you would splurge and throw your money at the world’s most expensive item, but what is it?

Some of the most expensive things are intangible, such as control of the biggest companies in the world, so we didn’t want to focus on that. We wanted to show the most expensive item that you can take home and physically look at whenever you want. Now, it’s not a car (or even a home) that’s the most expensive thing in the world. As a matter of fact, we already covered those and the most expensive car is north of $4 million and the most expensive house is $2 billion.

The most expensive single item that you can buy is the History Supreme, a $4.5 billion yacht that was designed by Stuart Hughes of the United Kingdom. The History Supreme is nearly 100 feet long, and is covered in more than 200,000 pounds worth of gold and platinum paint on more than half of the yacht’s surface.

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In case you wanted to see actual solid gold, you’re in luck, as the base of both the well and deck are made of solid gold, as are the dining areas, rails and even the anchor. If platinum is more of your thing, then you just have to go to your bedroom since it’s covered in platinum. Also in the master bedroom is a wall that has a built in aquarium made out of 24 carat gold and stone from an actual meteor.

There are plenty of possessions on board that boost the value of the yacht, including a statue that is made from the bone of an actual Tyrannosaurus Rex bone and a liquor bottle that contains an 18.5 carat diamond, which is one of the rarest gems in the entire world. The History Supreme took three years to complete in terms of just decoration, so you can count labor into the cost as well.

It’s amazing to see how the History Supreme stacks up to other yachts, as well, with one of the world’s most expensive being the Eclipse that belongs to Roman Abramovich. The Eclipse is only 10 percent of the cost of the History Supreme, and it even has its own missile system and a submarine!

But who was the person that ponied up the staggering price tag for the History Supreme? According to sources, it was made in Malaysia for a billionaire that wished to remain anonymous. If you wanted to buy one for your own, how much would it cost? Let’s say that you are lucky enough to be getting paid $20 per hour. It would take you 225 million hours with no taxes to afford it, which equates to 5,625,000 working weeks or a total of 108,173 years. That’s a lot of lifetimes worth of saving just to take a spin on a fancy boat!

The Most Expensive Car in the World

According to research, the average price of a new car in the United States reached $33,560 while the average used car is worth $16,800. This may seem like a lot of money, but when you put it into the context of the most expensive cars in the world, it is mere peanuts. There are several cars out there that cost more than $1 million, but the five most expensive ones cost at least $2.5 million.

The five most expensive cars in the world are the Ferrari F60 America ($2.5 million), the Mansory Vivere Bugatti Veyron ($3.4 million), the W Motors Lykan Hypersport ($3.4 Million), the Lamborghini Veneno ($4.5 million) and of course the most expensive, the Koenigsegg CCXR Trevita, which is worth a whopping $4.8 million.

The car was actually purchased in August 2015 by professional boxer Floyd Mayweather, who had just sold his $4 million Ferrari to trade up for the Koenigsegg. There are only two of these cars in the world, and the other is an unidentified man that lives in Geneva. The CCXR is actually produced more, but not this particular version.

The Koenigsegg CCX was the original model in the brand, and it went into production in 2005. The CCXR uses ethanol fuel and is estimated to have a 1,004 horsepower with a torque of 5,600 rpm. Forbes even listed the CCXR as one of the 10 most beautiful cars to ever be produced, but that was a few years before they got a load of the CCXR Trevita.

So what is it that makes the Trevita more valuable and more rare than its CCXR counterparts? The Trevita limited edition has a finish that has never been seen before, since its exterior has the Proprietary Diamond Weave, which was a result of the Swedish automaker coating carbon fibers with diamond dust. So there you have it, this car is literally covered in diamonds.

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Since the exterior of the car is carbon fiber, there is literally no paint, so Mayweather and the mystery man in Geneva won’t have to worry about getting a touch up due to rusting. The wheels are also incredibly expensive, as they are 19” x 9.5” alloy wheels in the front and 20” x 12.5” in the rear. The tires are Michelin Pilot Sport 2, which normally carry a pricetag of about $250-400 for each tire. That’s some expensive rubber.

Originally, Koenigsegg had planned on making three of these vehicles, but only two were made because of how difficult it was to make the exterior. As for what’s inside of the car, there is an inconel exhaust system, paddle-shift, anti-lock brakes, a double carbon rear wing, an entertainment system and more bells and whistles than can even be counted.

So how fast can Mayweather’s toy go? The top speed for the CCXR is listed at more than 250 miles per hour, and can go from zero to 60 miles per hour in just three seconds. Not that there are any roads in the United States where Mayweather is going to be able to go that fast, but it’s there if he feels like breaking the law.

Still, as long as Mayweather is going the speed limit, he doesn’t have to worry about getting pulled over since the vehicle is actually street legal in the United States. As a matter of fact, Mayweather’s is the only one of the two that was designed to be legal on American roads. Just don’t expect to see one out in about in public anytime soon unless you live close to his mansion in Las Vegas, Nevada.

The name for the Trevita itself comes from the Swedish word meaning “Three whites,” referring to the exterior of the car. For comparison, the second most expensive car that is produced by Koenigsegg is the One:1, which is estimated to come with a pricetag of $2 million, and it’s actually faster than the Trevita.

To put the price into perspective for anyone that has the Koenigsegg CCXR Trevita as their dream car, you would need to work for a few lifetimes. If you make $15 per hour right now, you would have to work 320,000 hours. That translates to 8,000 working weeks, before taxes, where you spend literally no money just to save up. That’s more than 153 years, so you might want to start saving now!

Exotic Billionaire Customized This Jaw-dropping 400 Million Dollar Jet to Travel in Style

When the Boeing 747 aircraft was first introduced it was being sold   for $24 million, but these days it costs about $350 million to pick one up!   But owning a private Boeing 747 wasn’t enough for one billionaire, he had to up the ante. It’s unclear who was in charge of the remodeling of this aircraft to make it look like a mansion that touches the skies, but they did an incredible job with it. Check out these photos of the $400 million renovation to the jumbo jet that has everything.

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With opulence and elegance the airplane more closely resembles a cruise ship. There are multiple bedrooms, a restaurant, and even VIP lounges; as if everybody on board wasn’t already a VIP.

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The master bedroom comes with a king size bed equipped with only the finest sheets and comforter. If that wasn’t enough, there is a couch and a recliner in the bedroom for peak relaxation. The deco style carries a sense of high class and comfort suited for the “high” life of a luxury aircraft.

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When you have that kind of money to spend on an airplane, there’s a good chance that you’re in big business. The board room of the jet features state-of-the-art electronics and has seats that would make you wish the flight would never end. The jet  comes with a buffet line for those important trans-continental luncheons, that way you don’t have to land the plane when someone get’s hungry. You won’t find any peanuts on this bad boy; it’s decked to the brim with the finest champagnes and desserts.

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The waiting room comes equipped with large and comfortable chairs, and looks like the finest lobby of the grandest hotels. This jet originally could have seated 500 passengers, butwas gutted to only house about 30 people at one time. The craft went from all classes to first class only, as it was built for the first-class life.

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If the regular boardroom seems a little too tedious,  the plane comes with a private office with two couches, a TV, and a removable desk.The privacy of a regular office just wasn’t enough for this billionaire, so they took their privacy to the solitude of the skies. Now if only they could get rid of all those birds!

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Here is a look at one of the plane’s other bedrooms;  the style evokes a feeling of homeliness, instead of being crammed on a commercial flight like sardines.

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The dining room shows what the luxurious life is really like, with an extremely long table big enough for a dozen guests. The centerpieces might not fare well during turbulence, but I’m sure that’s no consequence for the opportunity to dine in such luxury.

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There are more than a dozen televisions spread throughout the plane, and they all come with satellite TV and cable instead of the awful in-flight movie you’re usually subjected to. You may never want to leave if your favorite show comes on mid-flight, but you probably didn’t want to leave anyway.

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The 747 isn’t some tiny single engine Cessna, this gorgeous plane has an upstairs area with a lounge to relax in during those long international flights. The plane’s lounge shimmers like a diamond as you relax in complete serenity.

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Staying in a fancy hotel is already a pretty amazing experience, but being able to live in one that soars through the air is about as amazing at it can get; I imagine it’s the closest you can get to sleeping on a cloud. The sleep you’d get here is probably the best sleep you could ever have on a flight, or anywhere else for that matter.

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The parallels between an airplane and a cruise ship continue when you see that this plane has its own stateroom, you might even forget you’re in the sky altogether. It’s hard to imagine an airplane possibly getting any better than this, and flying in anything else now is going to be an experience as sour as those apples.

Cartier’s Motto: Diamonds and Gems on Everything for the Ultra Rich

For nearly 175 years, Cartier’s name has been a symbol for opulent wealth and high status. The London-based jeweler comes from humble beginnings, but they’ve worked their way to the top of the luxury goods market. In fact, it’s not Cartier’s penchant for gluing rubies on anything that will sit still for it, but instead their willingness to innovate, which has caused them to grow into a worldwide brand.

Cartier: Putting Diamonds on Pretty Much Everything Since 1847

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There aren’t too many other jewelers with Cartier’s reputation for decadence and quality, and it’s a reputation that they’ve certainly earned. In fact, some of the most glamorous, over the top pieces have been put on public display recently. The creatively-named Denver Art Museum’s exhibition features some of Cartier’s greatest hits from the 20th century, and people are lining up to see them all.

One striking piece shows off a huge emerald, making it the centerpiece of a diamond and gold necklace. Owned and worn by the Countess of Granard, it’s literally fit for royalty.

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In fact, many of Cartier’s pieces have been worn by royals over the years. The Duchess of Windsor commissioned a brooch in the shape of a flamingo, detailing the bird with opulent gemstones.

Jewels Formerly Owned By The Duchess Of Windsor To Be Auctioned At Sothebys

Incredible timepieces are another thing that Cartier’s is famous for. This striking clock, with an Egyptian motif done in mother of pearl and lapis lazuli, was purchased by Mrs. George Blumenthal in the 1920’s and lent out to the museum for display.

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It’s not just the latte-sipping museum crowd who is excited to see what Cartier can do, though. At this year’s SIHH, a Geneva convention for luxury watches and high-end jewelry, Cartier stole the show. As you might expect, their watches were brilliantly designed, absolutely packed with precious gems, and crafted with an attention to detail which sets Cartier apart even from other world-class jewelers.

Twinkling Diamonds and Gold Panthers

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One of the innovations that the jeweler put on display was their Serti Vibrant gem setting. This setting, which is completely unique to Cartier, makes every carat count by moving the gemstones on the watch face slightly. A vibrating watch sounds silly, but just take a look at the way that the facets of each diamond catch the light and twinkle.

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Cartier’s SIHH showing wasn’t all technological tricks, though. Their new Metiers de Art line of men’s watches were much more traditional, but still stunned spectators with their over the top use of gemstones and incredible craftsmanship.

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One of the big favorites with the crowd was Cartier’s Reversed Tourbillon — available today for just a bit more than $122,000 — flipped one of their most popular men’s watches inside out.

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Another piece that Cartier showed at SIHH features a pair of leopards on the face, rendered in delicate gold filigree and accentuated by dozens of carats worth of gemstones.

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If You’ve Got It, Flaunt It

Wearing any of these Cartier watches sure does make a statement. In a world where every broker and businessman has a gold Rolex, Cartier offers a way for people of exceptional taste and wealth to let the nouveau riche know that they’re a step behind you. If you’re at the top of your game, or just willing to sell your house in order to buy a watch, Cartier has proven time and time again that they’re the brand to buy.

Apple Watch: Will Apple’s Latest Pricey Gadget Make Swiss Watch Makers Their Latest Victim?

If you keep up with the latest in tech – or fashion – you definitely did not miss the Apple Watch event, which recently took place at the Yerba Buena Center in San Francisco. While, the Apple Watch line up was first unveiled back in September, many crucial details were purposely omitted – including the highly speculated upon price tag.

Before getting into the cost of the devices, let’s take a closer look at the Apple Watch line up. The well-crafted collection of smart watches includes – Apple Watch, Apple Watch Sport, and the absolutely breathtaking Apple Watch Edition; each of which can be paired with a number of high quality bands or straps.

Apple is not usually the one to offer their customers so many choices, especially with new devices, but the Watch is definitely an exception to this unspoken rule. The Apple Watch is the most personal, and customizable device from Apple, yet.

To quote Apple, “everyone’s style is different, as is everyone’s wrist”. The design team at Apple tackled this problem by offering each watch in both, 38mm and 42mm case sizes. Even though there are two different sizes, presumably men’s and ladies, Apple does not market the watches with such a bias – everyone is free to choose what fits best. In fact, Apple employees across the country have been trained to help potential customers decide on what watch and band combination will best suit their needs.

Even though the three models look unique on the outside, the guts are identical across the line up. That being said, the watches are so well crafted, that each one deserves their moment under the spotlight.

First on stage is the Apple Watch Sport. This beautiful piece of engineering is the “cheapest” Apple Watch in the lineup. The starting price of which is $349 for the 38mm model, and $399 for the 42mm. While this starting price might seem steep compared to other wearables on the market, Apple justifies the hefty price tag by talking about the high quality materials used in production.

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If you watched the Keynote, you definitely remember the “how it’s made” type of video, narrated by the company’s design guru – Jony Ive. The short film covered the materials used in building of the Apple Watch.

Apple Watch Sport is crafted out of an aluminum alloy the company has created themselves. The aluminum used in production is just as light as the regular alloy, but it is about 60 percent stronger. Jony Ive then goes on, and on about how beautiful, and magical the device is. While he is obviously a bit biased, it’s quite hard to disagree – the watches truly are beautiful. Besides the watch cases, the bands have also been carefully considered and designed. In the case of the Sport model, the watch comes with a vibrant elastomer band available in 5 colors – very iPhone 5c like.

Next in the new product line up is the Apple Watch.

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This model is built in a stainless steel casing and is available in 20 different combinations – quite impressive for Apple. Since the bands are interchangeable, you can use the Sport’s elastomer bands with your Apple Watch, on top of the many beautiful metal and leather options that Apple Offers specifically for the steel model (more on these later). Just like the Sport model, this watch is crafted out of re-engineered metals. Apple took a popular alloy that is known for being durable and resistant to corrosion, and made it even stronger. The steel undergoes a specialized cold-forging process and becomes up to 80% harder. This helps the watch become less prone to dents and scratches.

While Apple paints a pretty picture with their description of the Apple Watch, it’s hard not to wonder about the price. In the case of Apple Watch, the price range is very broad; there are models ranging from $549 to $1099. That’s right, some of the watches in this lineup will cost you more than your iPhone 6. The factor that influences the price of the watch is the type of band you want to go with. The cheapest Apple Watch – 38mm Stainless Steel Case with a colorful Sport Band will cost you $549, and the most expensive model – 42mm Space Black Case with a Space Black Stainless Steel Link Bracelet – will have you forking over $1099.

Outside of the two combinations mentioned above, Apple offers a number of other bands as well, and allow customers the option of purchasing individual bands separately. That being said, it might not be as affordable as you think. For example, the Modern Buckle will cost you an additional $250, and if you decide that you want the Steel Link Bracelet, prepare your wallet for a serious hit as this band sells for $449 – 100 bucks more than the whole Sport model, complete with the elastomer band. The price would suggest that these bands are made from rare unicorn leather, or that the steel bands must’ve been crafted from metals used in the Titanic.

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If the Apple Watch and the Apple Watch sport still seem a bit too cheap for you, then the Apple Watch Edition is likely to be right up your alley. Apple really went all out with this model and crafted the case out of solid 18 karat gold. Since gold is generally a soft metal that is susceptible to nicks and scratches, Apple engineered a brand new alloy that is nearly twice as hard.

The beautiful gold Apple Watch comes in 8 different models, starting with a modest $10,000 price tag. Both, yellow and rose gold models are available, in the 38mm and 42mm case sizes. The lower tier of Apple Watch Edition is either the Yellow or Rose Gold 38mm model with the Sport band. The Sport band that comes with the Apple Watch Edition is not the same band that comes with the Sport watch. All of the metal components are swapped for gold parts – matching the finish of the casing. If you’re interested in a more fancy band to go with your Apple Watch Edition, then you can pick from either the Classic or Modern leather buckles. Opting for a more formal band will raise the price tag and set you back up to $15,000.

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If the $15,000 price point seems ridiculous to you, then you’re clearly not Apple’s target demographic for this new product; and chances are – they aren’t worried. No one is going to be saving up for the Apple Watch Edition. People will simply buy it. Maybe not you or I, but there is always a market for luxury accessories, and if anyone can sell a product, it’s Apple.

As mentioned above, all of the Apple Watch line up comes with identical specs, and the same exact software. The only differentiating factors are your case and band choices. Apple is really trying to push this device as more than just a notification center for your iPhone – marketing heavily in the fashion and fitness industries alike. That being said, much of the Apple Watch lineup will run you more than the total cost of your latest iPhone, in a way making your phone an accessory to the watch.

If reading about the upcoming Apple Watch has you excited, then you might be a bit disappointed to find out that the devices do not begin to ship until the 24th of April. A little bit of good news, though, if you’re already set on a certain model, the preorders will begin on April 10th.

Mark this date in your calendar, as this is also the date the Apple Watches begin to make their appearance in Apple Stores nationwide. Customers will be able to take a closer look at the watches, and even try them on. If you’re interested in picking up a watch for yourself when the time comes, keep in mind that the Apple Watch requires an iPhone 5 or later to function.

Vertu: The Mobile Phone For The Filthy Rich

Vertu – the manufacturer of handmade, luxury phones – is headquartered in the United Kingdom. Although the company was originally established as a subsidiary of Nokia in 1998, the phone manufacturer was since sold to a private equity group (EQT VI) for an undisclosed amount. Rumor has it that the deal total was in the neighborhood of 200 million, with Nokia retaining a 10% share of the company.

“In 1995, Frank Nuovo, the chief designer of Nokia, had an idea that mobile communication devices would one day be available not just in the mass market, but also in the luxury market. That idea was discussed and talked about for several years.” This is the president of Vertu talking, regarding their brand in 2000.

The idea behind their phones was to design a device that is a union of craftsmanship and technology. The beautifully designed handsets simply scream extravagance, and exclusivity. In essence, Vertu to the cellular device market is what the Rolex is to the wristwatch. The phones are crafted only from the best materials available on Earth (more on that later), and each handmade device undergoes a series of extensive and stringent quality checks.

When shopping for a Vertu phone, the price becomes rather hard to ignore. Since these cutting-edge devices run between $10,000 and $25,000, the cost of the phone is practically part of the feature set.

So, what exactly makes the Vertu phone so pricey?

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Well, besides providing exclusivity, the phones are also rather well made. While, the original Vertu line up ran on the Symbian operating system, newer models ship with the latest Android software.

Next, let’s look at the hardware. Using Vertu Signature Touch as an example; the phone’s large 4.7-inch touch screen is coated with a sheet of sapphire crystal, making it nearly impossible to scratch. In fact, unless you have diamonds lining your pockets, you can safely bet that the display stays in its pristine condition during its lifespan. That being said, if you fall under the category of people willing to drop upwards of $20k on a mobile phone, you may also be part of the subset of people carrying diamonds in their pockets, so beware.

Another factor that adds to the cost of the phones are the materials used in production and the build quality of the phone. Some of the materials responsible for the exorbitant price of the device (including the scratch-resistant, sapphire screen) are: strong and durable titanium (or gold, depending on your taste), some ceramic is used around the earpiece of the handset, and premium animal hide is used to coat the back of the device. These are just a few, among many other luxury materials used in production.

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It is also worth mentioning that a single builder assembles each individual phone by hand in a factory in England. If you own a Vertu phone and are curious to see who assembled it, you can look for the etching of the builder’s name on the underside of the SIM door.

Since the company went all out with the production materials, it comes as no surprise that the phone feels great in the hand. When you’re holding a Vertu phone, you instantly know that you’re holding a premium device. Using the Vertu Signature Touch as a reference point, we can get a feel for the whole extravagant line up.

Coming in at a hefty 6.77oz, the phone is nearly twice as heavy as an iPhone 5. The heavier, seemingly more sturdy build of the Signature Touch pairs nicely with the rather strong haptic feedback from its high definition touchscreen. Interestingly enough, it has been reported that Vertu phones tend to smell just as nice as they look. The stitched calfskin apparently emits “a rich, intoxicating leathery scent,” or to translate this quote to consumer English, “just another quality to add to the already heavy price tag”.

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While the Vertu lineup is sure to please the senses, that’s not the only quality-set that sets these phones apart from the rest of the market. There are two other ‘special’ features that are worth a look – the in house Concierge service and the Silent Circle encryption.

Privacy is clearly something that Vertu holds in high regard, and their customers can rest assured that their text messages and phone conversations are locked down. Vertu phones use voice, video-chat and text encryption powered by Silent Circle. Emails, are unfortunately not protected under this feature. Another thing to keep in mind, is that the receiving party must also be running the Silent Circle encryption in order to enjoy full end-to-end encryption. Also noteworthy – Silent Circle services are free for the first year, but require a subscription afterwards.

In fact, pretty much any special feature of the Vertu phone requires a subscription of one sort or another. Since the company already managed to sell you their $15k phone, chances are rather good that they can milk you for some more easy money. A great example of this ingenious marketing is the Concierge service that comes with every Vertu classic.

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Much like Silent Circle encryption, the Concierge is free for the first year, but the price is then bumped to about $3,000 yearly. This service – or feature, whatever you want to call it – grants you access to a personal assistant 24 hours a day, and 7 days a week. You press a small button on the side of the phone, the Concierge app gets fired up – and a real, live person is ready to take your requests. Needless to say, quite a bit more intricate than Apple’s Siri.

When talking to someone from the Concierge, you can request any number of things, and the assistant on the other side will make them happen (within limits of reason, of course). From getting a cab, to securing seats in the VIP section of a popular club, the Concierge service does it all. When initiating the service for the first time and setting up your profile you can choose include your credit card number so that you can be billed directly for plane trips, exotic vacations, and concert tickets booked via the Concierge.

While this service is not cheap, it is certainly convenient. Chances are, if you’re buying a Vertu phone, you’re not worried about the yearly costs of the Concierge. If you are concerned with the cost of these extra features, though, then chances are you’re not the type of person that Vertu is after.

The CEO commented – “Many of our customers desire and appreciate the compact size of Vertu products that comfortably fit inside the pocket of a well-tailored suit, or in an expensive clutch bag.”

While there is definitely a market for uber expensive phones, the question remains – is the Vertu phone really worth 50+ iPhones? Additionally, there are some serious limitations regarding Vertu’s internal engineering; specifically their lack of expandable storage and a mediocre battery life. Anecdotal evidence suggests that Vertu phones generally last half a day on a single charge. On the other hand, if you ever find yourself running low on juice, you can just ask your assistant or butler to plug it in.

Rolex: What Exactly Makes Having One So Special?

While, not too many of us own one, it’s almost certain that most of us are familiar with this luxury watchmaker and their quality timepieces. Much like the watch itself, the history of Rolex is quite intricate.

In the year 1905, at the age of 24, Hans Wilsdorf founded a company specializing in the distribution of timepieces. At the time, wristwatches were not regarded as precise or very reliable, however Hans Wilsdorf sought to change that. The visionary strongly believed that wristwatches could transition from the mediocre clocks that they were – to become reliable timepieces that also made a fashion statement.

Hans worked hard on what he believed in. His life’s work concentrated on the quality of the movement, and his relentless quest for precision led to the company’s quick success. In 1910, the Rolex was the first ever wristwatch to receive the Swiss Certificate of Chronometric Precision – more on that in a bit. Ten years later, Rolex moved to Geneva, and was registered under Montres Rolex S.A.

After the move to Geneva, the watch quickly made progress in its structural design. The Rolex brought with itself many firsts that are now considered standard in every modern day watch. First came the world’s first waterproof watch (1926), and shortly after (1931) came the first ever, perpetual movement watch. This was the first implementation of a self-winding mechanism with a perpetual rotor in history of timekeeping. This ingenious system raised the bar for the wristwatch, and the mechanism is to this day implemented at the heart of every automatic watch.

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While these watches are as undoubtedly beautiful, as they are functional, it’s not unreasonable to ask ‘what makes them so special?’

Well, let’s take a closer look at one of the world’s most luxurious watches. For starters, think of a Rolex wristwatch as an investment. This piece of Swiss engineering will last you a whole lifetime, and it might even become a family heirloom. Also, since the watches are highly regarded, they will retain (and even often gain) value as the years go on.

To begin answering our question, one must consider the intricate design of a Rolex watch. First, these watches contain many unique features, and each wristwatch takes about a year to make (sometimes even longer). Interestingly enough, nearly every single part of the watch is created in-house at one of the four – state of the art – Rolex manufacturing locations scattered over the beautiful Switzerland. The in-house quality control is more than rigorous; the watches do not leave the factory unless they are absolutely perfect. So far so good, the company has been able to keep up their impeccable image for over a century.

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While the watches look stunning on the outside, the internals are even more impressive. The carefully crafted Rolex movement is made up of hundreds of meticulously manufactured components. The level of perfection that Rolex aims to achieve ensures that every single watch withstands the test of time, and guarantees long-term performance.

Each Rolex watch also undergoes an extreme ‘exacting process’, which entails careful assembly, minute adjustments as well as the positioning of the oscillator to ensure the watch’s absolute accuracy. After this process each Rolex becomes a certified Swiss Chronometer – a title that not every watchmaker can claim to hold.

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In order to achieve a chronometer certification, the movement must not only be made from the absolute highest quality components, but also needs to be in the special care of the finest watchmakers and timers during assembly. Fun fact: the fine regulation and chronometer characteristics of a watch can be destroyed in seconds by a rough or inexperienced hand.

That’s not all; each watch is then individually tested for over two weeks in 5 positions, and at three different temperatures. Measurements are made on a daily basis with the help of specialty cameras. After the stats are gathered, seven pieces of criteria are calculated – the watch must then meet the (rather high) minimum of all, in order to receive the certification. Just to give you some perspective on the luxury status of this certification, consider that only 3% of high quality Swiss watches receive this honor each year.

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Outside of the rigorous manufacturing and quality control process, the watch has a number of other notable features. Take the Oyster case for example – this Rolex original combines form and function into one attractive package. Regardless of construction material – steel, gold, or platinum – the case guarantees the movement protection from the elements.

In fact, the Oyster case was the world’s first waterproof case for a wristwatch. Additionally, about a year after the introduction of the Oyster case (1927), Mercedes Gleitz became the first person to swim across the English Channel wearing a watch. Care to guess what timepiece he was wearing?

While, Gleitz crossing the Channel was a notable time for Rolex, there have been even more interesting events surrounding the world-renowned classic since. For starters, the first ever expedition to fly over Everest was equipped with Rolex Oysters. A Rolex classic was also on the wrist of Sir Malcolm Campbell, as he set a land speed record of over 300 miles per hour back in the 1930s.

Since the Rolex surfaced, there have been many famous events in which the watch was somehow involved – some of them were mentioned above. That being said, the most intriguing connection between the high quality timepiece and the outside world is the curious murder case that a Rolex helped solve.

The tale of Albert Walker is a dark and twisted one, but the man is now paying his dues thanks to the wristwatch that brought him to justice. To summarize, a scam artist by the name of Albert Walker Johnson had murdered his partner – Robert Platt – and dumped the body into the English Channel. After getting rid of the body, Walker decided to steal Platt’s identity and go into hiding.

Meanwhile, nature took its course beneath the rough waters, quietly turning the cold corpse into fish food – all while the Oyster casing stood its course on Platt’s wrist. After about two weeks, the lifeless body got caught in a fisherman’s net, and the only identifiable object on the deformed body was the timepiece. Since every Rolex watch comes with a unique serial number, the police was able to determine the owner’s identity, which led them directly to Walker. It’s kind of poetic, really – the sea gave up its dead, and the Rolex gave up Walker – who is now serving some serious time for his transgressions.

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While the murder-mystery is tough to beat, it’s also worth noting that a Rolex watch was used during the great escape. That same exact watch was recently put up for auction at over $50,000. Even though not every Rolex timepiece has a story of similar caliber, each individual timepiece if a work of art on it’s own.

With the Rolex line up being so desired, comes the inevitable consequence of fakes surfacing all over the place. They say imitation is the ultimate form of flattery, and if that’s true, then Rolex is quite widely complemented. In this day and age you can find imitation Rolexes ranging from $20 fakes, to super well-engineered movements using actual Rolex parts. In either case, if you decide to pick up one of these replicas for yourself, the only person you’re fooling is yourself.

Worlds Wealthiest Pets: Animals Living Life in First Class

Take a moment and try to remember when you got your last deep tissue massage. How about the total in the past year? My bet is – not too many, if any at all. Now, if you were Trouble - Leona Helmsley’s spoiled brat of a Maltese you’d need more than two paws to count your therapeutic sessions with a professional masseuse.

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Trouble is a lucky mutt, inheriting over $12 million (even more in dog money) in a trust fund that disinherited both of Hemsley’s grandchildren.

Leona’s precious pup isn’t the only pampered pooch that is driven around Manhattan in a stretch limo. Karlotta Leibenstein’s beloved German shepherd – Gunther III is currently richer than 99% of the human population, with an offensive net worth of over $320 million. Unfortunately the millionaire canine passed away a month after the death of its owner, and the fortune went to one of Gunther’s pups – Gunther IV.

Now that we’ve established the fact that we live in a very twisted world, let’s talk about the lavish lives these pets actually lead. For some of the wealthiest people their pets are their only sources of true love. This is especially true for eccentric individuals that alienate themselves from all other humans. These people are also in the subset of those that spend thousands of dollars on psychic readings and life coaching seminars for their pets.

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Some of the wealthiest pets get to enjoy custom-made meal plans – and not for medical reasons, either. Special diets are seen as “good for the animals”, with the owners spending hundreds if not thousands of dollars on meals prepared by world-class chefs.

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More than a quarter of millionaire dog spoilers report that they spend in the ballpark of $25k on wardrobes of their pets, and the same amount on birthday gifts,  each year. Yup – twenty-five thousand dollars – an amount equivalent to a modest down payment on a house.

 

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If you think that’s ridiculous then you’re going to love this.

Several pets soar over skyscrapers and beautiful landscapes in private aircrafts – alone, while most of us have to cramp in business class.

Dogs are not the only pets that are privileged to receiving royal treatment. There are many cats, birds (chickens included) and at least one primate that are richer than the majority of the worlds population will ever be.

Many regular, every-day people think that this spoiled treatment is a bit over the top regarding puppy care (and rightfully so), however, trust accounts are still being set up for the four-legged one percent. With complete disregard for humanitarian efforts and charitable causes, these self-centered mammals are laughing/barking all the way to the bank, while the average folk struggle along, scraping to get by. So much for being a man’s best friend.

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So, how much do the worlds richest pets actually have in their accounts? Let’s take a look at the list Forbes doesn’t tell you about:

  1. First on the list is the aforementioned Gunther III. The German shepherd that is richer than 99% of Germans has his paws on over $320 million.
  2. Next is Blackie – worlds most spoiled feline. This lucky (and ironically black) cat is worth in the neighborhood of $25 million.
  3. Frankie has about $14 million to his name – this mutt lives in luxury in his San Diego estate. Talk about a quality doghouse…
  4. Gigoo the hen has a bank account with a modest balance of approximately $10 million. Makes you wonder how much a Gigoo-egg omelet would cost… hmm.
  5. Betty White’s Golden Retriever – Pontiac is next on the list. The dog has a $5 million trust fund set up in his name, and is set for life in case anything happens to its loving owner.

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The above listed millionaire pets are only some of the many cats and dogs that live well above anything the regular folk can image. The only question here is: what possesses these eccentric pet-owners to sign away their life savings to their furry mammals? In the case of the aforementioned Maltese – Trouble, the courts officially declared that its owner Leona Helmsley was in fact mentally disturbed. Funny enough, the dog had a team of lawyers who defended the case for the mutt to keep the fortune. Good for the dog, not so good for the lawyers – who temporarily become the laughingstock of the lawyer community.

 

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With the pets being worth what they are, it comes as no surprise that the furry drool machines can be at risk of dognapping. Many of these pampered pups receive dozens of threats in their lifetimes. Puppy snatchers will threaten to kill or kidnap a loved pet with the hopes of collecting a meaty ransom. In the case of Trouble, who received in the neighborhood of 20 to 30 death and dognapping threats, its owner went to great lengths to keep the pup safe. Helmsley hired a full time security guard to tail (pun intended) and protect her beloved Maltese.

Regardless of the security measures these eccentric millionaires take, the dogs don’t live forever (at least they go to heaven, right?). In most cases where the dog previously inherits a fortune from its late owner dies, the money is reverted to the family estate – some good news for those of us annoyed by the luxurious (and sometimes downright silly) displays of pet aristocracy.

Although these millionaire pets don’t live much longer than a decade, the amount of love and luxury they receive in their few years is often much more than what an average person can imagine.

Apparently it’s a dog’s world.