What defines luxury? For years, the world looked to Coco Chanel for florid descriptions of what is or is not luxurious. That would seem most unwise today, considering it has been recently reported that she was a Nazi intelligence operative and an anti-Semite.
Perhaps the most WIRED view would chime with that of American playwright and novelist Thornton Wilder, who said that “the future is the most expensive luxury in the world.” For me, though, Oscar Wilde put it best (naturally): “I’m a man of simple tastes. I’m always satisfied with the best.” It’s a yardstick I thoroughly endorse—and, for those of us with friends or family for whom it is impossible to buy, heeding this maxim should never fail to deliver a desirable gift, even to someone who supposedly already has everything they could wish for.
Here then is a compilation of ridiculously fine items in all manner of categories, from audio marvels to dramatic coffee tables, from electric rides to poker perfection. All would make truly astounding presents, though none, I should warn you now, will be wallet-friendly. After all, high-end too often equals high price. For those understandably on a budget, never fear, we have you covered with our superb list of absolute bargains for $25 or less, as well as plenty of other smart gift guides. Anyone else wanting to indulge in some gear grandeur, read on.