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Norfolk Tourism Awards

How the super-rich other half gift at Christmas

PUBLISHED: 11:24 12 December 2017

The £40,000 dog ballgown made by Rachelle Fawcett for the dog that has everything

The £40,000 dog ballgown made by Rachelle Fawcett for the dog that has everything

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THe World’s Most Expensive Presents on Channel 4 reveals what Britain’s billionaires will splash their cash on this Christmas

I think I speak for us all when I say that the sky’s the limit when it comes to the budget for our beloved dog’s ballgown.

Once you tot up all the little extras you spend at Christmas – bubble bath for your Mum, a video game for your son, a £40,000 silk designer ballgown for your dog – it really adds up, doesn’t it? It’s easy to think ‘hang the expense’ when you’re looking at something as important as putting a dog in several metres of silk and sequins for absolutely no reason.

The World’s Most Expensive Presents, tonight, Channel 4, 9pm, is an eye-popping romp through the gift lists of people who have more money than sense and think it entirely reasonable to commission a bicycle made of 24-carat gold as a gift (the designer says: “it’s a piece of art, but is also a practical bike which can be ridden to the local shop to pick up eggs.” Er, OK).

An artisan baker creates a pair of edible shoes as a 30th birthday present to a woman whose parents wish to gift her their diamond portfolio (that old chestnut). Debbie Wingham makes a pair of £11.5 million heels with gold heels and 1,000 stones, including pink diamonds which cost £3.5 million each and blue diamonds worth £1.9 million each – eat with care, or at the very least with a sieve in the bathroom.

In comparison, the giant chocolate container which dispenses Champagne and conceals a one-of-a-kind $1 million Hublot black diamond watch is a bit bargain basement.

Ian Beck, who drew the famous cover for Elton John’s Yellow Brick Road, creates a £23,900 bespoke colouring book for super-rich clients which contains “a tapestry of emotions” and there are some £2,000 ‘James Bond’ leather shoes with all manner of gadgets in the sole and which have laces made from Kevlar (sounds like a character from Gavin and Stacey) which can cut through any material and can tow a car.

Still not inspired? How about a £60,000 poker set with a black alligator case and Swarovski crystal-encrusted chips? Or a custom-made Monopoly set with a solid white gold dice and real money for £500,000? It’s enough to make your teeth itch

In essence, this show is like an extended version of Harry Enfield’s I Saw You Coming sketch. I tried to find a link to a sketch which didn’t contain swearing, but failed.

If your desire to see dogs in ballgowns isn’t satisfied after The World’s Most Expensive Presents, may I suggest you hasten promptly to where there more dogs in expensive dresses (and a few cats) than you can throw a stick for. In particular, look out for Gracie the Bulldog, whose shame is evident.

Want a little bit more? 10 more of the world’s most expensive presents

1) Kreuther chocolates – for the knockdown price of £750, you get 24 chocolates which are flavoured with limited edition tequilas. Which will you choose? The chestnut confit bites enrobed in crimson-hued milk chocolate or the Quebec forest honey ganache with citrus-almond Florentine crumble? There’s no Caramac flavoured one: swiz.

2) Saint Laurent crystal boots – just £6,855 a pair, these practical boots can be worn for any occasion as long as it’s indoors and doesn’t involve walking.

3) Winnie the Pooh first editions – you can buy a set of first editions of the Winnie the Pooh books which have been signed by both the author and the illustrator for £30,000. Many of the pages aren’t opened, which means these books have never been read, just in case you needed this gift to be a little more soulless.

4) Chanel shopping basket – under the category of ‘you really shouldn’t have’ is this Chanel-inspired version of that classic, the wire shopping basket. Made from calfskin, the silver basket has a tasteful Chanel logo and costs just £7,999.

5) Vetements string bag – and along the same lines…do you remember the string bag your Nan used to bring to the market? Wouldn’t it be awesome to have one made of leather which costs £2,890? No.

6) Joseph’s Toilet Paper – possibly my favourite gift of them all, you’ll feel flushed with triumph when you see the look on your loved one’s face when you hand them a toilet paper set that costs £100 for 150 sheets.

7) Linley Downton Abbey jewellery box – made from maple wood and lined with faux suede (not even real suede!) this replica of Highclere Castle where Downton was filmed doesn’t even contain as much as a novelty Downton keyring and it still costs £65,000.

8) A handcrafted version of your favourite racetrack – what could be better than having the race track you love most created for you at 1:32 scale? Having a “white glove installation” at your home, that’s what. And all for the knockdown price of around £225,000.

9) Custom-made gemstone locket – nothing says ‘bespoke’ like making your gift recipient travel to Germany with jeweller Monica Rich (shallow laugh) Kosann to select the gemstone you’d like to make your own necklace. Why Germany? Why can’t she email over some options? Why can’t someone spend £85,000 to send me to pick a gemstone in Germany?

10) Mr Kennedy gold shoelaces – what do you get the person who really, really, really does have everything? These. They’ll set you back £14,250. You’re welcome.

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