Holiday Gifts: Over-The-Top Items For The Luxury Traveler’s Wish List

For many, making a holiday wish list is a tradition they’ve practiced since childhood. But as we grow up, these “must have” items often become fewer and further between. We can afford most everything we want, from a new iPad to that plane ticket to Bora Bora, assuming we save appropriately beforehand. But, of course, there are always a few extra special items that we’d love if money were no object. Here are a few of our favorites for this holiday season.

Flexjet 25 Jet Card
This debit card allows access to private Learjets and Challenger aircraft for any location on any day of the year. For a minimum $100,000 investment, customers can reach nearly 5,000 airports with just 24 hours advance notice, plus get access to special perks through Flexjet partnerships, including tee times at 50 of the most exclusive private golf clubs in North America, membership in Abercrombie & Kent’s exclusive Marco Polo Club an upgrade (upon availiabilty) to Lake Austin Spa Resort’s Lady Bird Suite and instant elite member status in Korean Air and Qatar Airways’ membership clubs for a full year following the purchase of a single long-haul first- or business-class ticket. Sounds good to us.

Sandy Cay, A Bahamian Private Island
Sure, you could buy your loved one a car or a great trip for their holiday gift, but why not go over-the-top and get them an entire island? For just $15 million, Sandy Cay could be yours. Don’t worry, it comes with a lot of stuff already available for use. The 8+ acre is located in the Abacos and is currently being used as a private family retreat, but, as the brochure says “the potential is enormous for the use of the island as an upscale private boutique resort.” Look there, you’ve bought yourselves a potential hotel too! The island houses four residences ranging from 5,200 to 1,500-square-feet, a private harbor with room for five vessels (boats included), a commercial-grade fitness center, and two beaches. Did we mention there’s also a fully-equipped dive shop and assortment of beach equipment?

%Gallery-171696%Jason Wu’s Grand Tourista Bag for St. Regis
If you haven’t heard of Jason Wu, we’ll give you a hint — he’s the guy who designed Michelle Obama’s inauguration dress in 2008. The acclaimed young fashion designer has made his first foray into travel with the Grand Tourista bag designed exclusively for St. Regis hotels. It’s pricey, at $1,995 (available now for pre-order) but not overly extravagant compared to many designers. The oversized tote combines classic canvas and black Italian leather (products that travel well) and the bag itself is inspired by Wu’s time in Florence, a traditional spot on the European Grand Tour. We’d love to carry this understated bag on our next trip. What about you?

A Travel Trailer No Camper Should Live Without
No camping trip is complete without some sort of tailgate event or ’round the campfire huddle with adult beverages. Trick out your truck with the ultimate trailer by Bulleit Frontier Whiskey. Featuring manly leather furnishings, wood finishes made from reclaimed bourbon casks, glassware and an entertainment system to rival the finest man cave (flat screen, blu-ray, state-of-the-art sound), this truck wouldn’t be complete without a one-year supply of Bulleit Bourbon and Bulleit Rye. This limited edition baby (just two will be made) is a hefty $150,000, with 10% of the purchase price going to a foundation that supports AIDS research. It’s available exclusively through the Neiman Marcus holiday catalog.

A Four Seasons Around-The-World Trip
Many people put an around-the-world trip on their travel bucket lists. But what about a trip that goes ’round and ’round via private jet, staying exclusively at Four Seasons hotels and resorts from Boston to Bali? We’re pretty sure that’s right up there with amazing, and you can go for just $70, 950 (double occupancy — singles are an extra $8,650). From September 14 to October 5, 2013, passengers will travel from Seattle to Tokyo, Hangzhou, Shanghai, The Maldives, Istanbul, St. Petersburg, Marrakech and New York on a 22-day journey, complete with private concierge, educational lectures and much more.

[Image credit:’s Learjet 70 aircraft]

Top five best carry on bags for travel gifts

Top Five Carry On BagsIf you’re looking for a gift for a traveler this year, consider getting them a stylish, utilitarian carry on bag. Carry on bags make great travel gifts, because not only are they useful, but travelers are happy to have more than one — there’s nothing more depressing than having no options.

Carry on bags, in this traveler’s opinion, need to have a few basic things:

  • a slot for easy access to travel documents
  • multiple compartments to keep things organized
  • space for a laptop in a sleeve
  • lightweight build
  • space for at least one change of clothes

As long as it meets those basic criteria, any bag at all can be used as a carry on. Still, some are far and away better than others. Check out the gallery below for Gadling’s Top Five Best Carry On Bags for Travel Gifts — these are sure to delight the recipient’s aesthetic and pragmatic desires.


Gift idea: Clear System by 3-1-1 Travel Bag

Here’s a traveler’s gift idea that has use. The Clear Bag System by 3-1-1 Travel Bag was made with the air traveler in mind. Instead of loading up 3 ounce prepackaged travel size bottles into a zip lock bag, you fill the various bottles of the Clear System with shampoo, mouthwash, lotion, etc. then slip them into the system’s clear plastic carrying case that meets TSA standards. There are a few options to choose from depending on how many products you take along with you.

One thing that I like about this system is that you can fill up the bottles with the products you need and just top them off between trips. It also cuts down on waste because instead of buying travel sizes over and over again, you can fill these from your larger, regular size bottles.

The numbers 3-1-1 refer to the TSA rules for carry-ons.

  • 3 ounce or smaller liquid container or gel
  • 1 quart-size clear plastic , zip-lock bag holding 3 ounce or smaller containers
  • 1 bag per passenger placed in security bin.

Clever, huh? Works kind of like a mnemonic for a spelling bee or some method used to remember the Periodic Table. If you want an explanation for these regulations, the link leads to that as well.