Would you pay $6,000 for a toilet?

A $6,000 Toto Neorest heated toilet with a three-stage flush engine. A $65,000 Hastens Vividus bed with hand-teased horsehair and an Arctic-pine frame. A $1.5 million Bugatti Veyron automobile with a top speed of 253 miles per hour. Superhype or worth the cost? Benjamin Wallace finds out as he samples these and other high-end luxury goods in a hilarious and fascinating article, “Is It Worth It?” appearing in the May 2008 GQ. Highlights:

  • For $30,000 a night, the 4,300-square-foot Ty Warner Suite at the Manhattan Four Seasons indulges you with a grand piano, “Zen” room with ceiling-to-floor waterfall, four balconies, and a Rolls-Royce (with driver) on call around the clock.
  • Apparently 60 percent of Japanese homes have computer-automated toilets, some of which will take your blood pressure and transmit data to your doctor.
  • Fixing a flat tire for a Bugatti Veyron will cost you $9,000. Michelin manufactured the tires exclusively for this automobile. (Talk about a proprietary system.)

Check it out. (I could not find the article online. You’ll have to buy a good-old fashioned hard copy unless you can do a better job than I did finding a link.) And if you’ve ever sampled the $148,000 Wilson Audio Alexandria hi-fi stereo system, let me know your impressions. (Not that I could afford one, but how about a vicarious thrill?) By the way, if you’re going to dish out $148,000 for a stereo system, you’ll probably want to visit one of my favorite websites, SA-CD.net, a critical look at the sadly fading market for super audio compact discs.

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