Holiday Gift Guide 2015: 10 stylish, luxury gift ideas

by W. Andrew Powell
Samsung SUHD TV

Get inspired for the holidays with one of our favorite guides: the luxury gift list. Whether you’re shopping for that very special someone, or you just want to day-dream about what you really want this year, we’ve got you covered with “wow” worthy gift suggestions featuring Samsung, Hamilton Watches, Burberry, Grand Marnier, The Macallan, Rado, Bulova, Ted Baker, and Boconi.

Samsung 65″ 4K Ultra HD 3D Curved TV | $6000 (Pictured above)

Samsung’s curved SUHD televisions come in a range of sizes and price points, and they are all very impressive, but it’s hard to top the 65″ 4K Ultra HD 3D Curved TV. This TV is big, bold, powerful, and it offers incredible colour depth, with brightness that’s more than double what you see on a conventional television.

All of the features lend to the wow-factor: the curved display makes you feel closer to the action, no matter what angle you’re viewing it at; the TV up-converts video to make it pop on the 4k display; and it has serious brains with a smart built-in entertainment browsing experience.

Earlier this year I had a special preview of Samsung’s SUHD TV in a luxury home in downtown Toronto, which just proved to me how well the various sizes of the television fit in nearly any room, but if you want to add a major highlight to your living room or home theatre space, this is the television.

[column size=one_third position=first ]Hamilton BeLOWZERO[/column][column size=two_third position=last ]Hamilton BeLOWZERO | $1795

There are watches, and then there is the very serious, and very sharp, Hamilton Khaki Navy BeLOWZERO.

Featured in The Martian and worn by Matt Damon on-screen, the BeLOWZERO is chunky and almost entirely matte-black, except for the bright white of the date that pops from the watch face. The epic time piece is also seriously water resistant: it’s rated for up to 1,000 metres underwater, which makes it perfect for outdoor enthusiasts and divers.

I have been wearing a BeLOWZERO since the Toronto International Film Festival, when The Martian premiered, and it’s a watch that gets, and deserves, attention. There are lots of chunky time pieces out there, but the BeLOWZERO is also serious, intense, and commands a certain amount of respect for the sheer rugged nature of the design. It’s classy, and at the same time the construction means that it can take a fair amount of abuse for the active wearer.[/column]

[column size=one_third position=first ]Burberry Cashmere Scarf in Parade Red[/column][column size=two_third position=last ]Burberry Scarf Bar | $550 to $925

Burberry is one of the classiest, most stylish brands on the planet, and this year they have launched something uniquely customizable: the Burberry Scarf Bar, which have arrived just in time for your holiday wishlists, and they’re perfect for dressing up something casual, or making the ultimate stylish statement.

These cashmere, lightweight scarves come in a range of colours, designs, and prints–30 in all–and to make them totally yours, or for that special someone, they can also be monogrammed.

Offering designs that will suit men or women, these Scottish-made scarves are luxurious, unique, and beautiful, especially with winter just around the corner.[/column]

[column size=one_third position=first ]Burberry Heritage Trench Coat in Parade Red[/column][column size=two_third position=last ]Burberry Heritage Trench Coat | $1950 to $2195

Compliment the Burberry Cashmere Scarf with a stunning Burberry Heritage Trench Coat that features a modern, comfortable fit and a tapered waist.

Made in England, the coast features weatherproof cotton gabardine that has been a staple of Burberry since Thomas Burberry created it in 1879. Best of all, the coat was made for all seasons, so your loved one can wear it year-round, with jeans or a dress.

The Heritage Trench Coat also comes in three lengths to match any style, and it features the very iconic Burberry check undercollar.[/column]

[column size=one_third position=first ]Grand Marnier Quintessence[/column][column size=two_third position=last ]Grand Marnier Quintessence & Grand Marnier 1880 | $999 & $399

The Grand Marnier Cuvée Collection is a beautiful marriage of premium cognac with fine ingredients, which have been brought together through a tradition of excellent distilling, and each spirit in the series tastes like you’re sipping the nectar of the gods.

Grand Marnier Quintessence is the ultimate spirit in the collection and the more complex of these two liquors, featuring cognac that has been aged up to 100 years, with notes of the tell-tale orange, citrus, plus apricot, and hazelnut. It’s a rich flavour that is impossible to forget, and it lingers a wonderful, long time, but it’s also surprisingly easy-tasting.

Grand Marnier 1880 on the other hand features cognac aged up to 60 years, and a more complex flavour, with notes of orange, oak, apricot, and hazelnut. It has a long finish as well that is slightly more intense, but it finishes beautifully.

For those who enjoy the already rich flavour of Grand Marnier, these premium spirits are a taste above, and they make excellent aperitifs for a fine holiday meal.

Please note that they are available in select Canadian markets, so contact your local liquor store for details and local pricing.[/column]

[column size=one_third position=first ]The Macallan Rare Cask[/column][column size=two_third position=last ]The Macallan Rare Cask | $399

What goes into something as unique as The Macallan Rare Cask? The new whisky requires a very special selection process that uses less than 1% of the casks from the distillery. Only a very special few casks are selected by the distillery’s Master Whisky Maker, and from those, this rare spirit is blended using 16 different types of barrels.

At the heart of this uniquely spicy, chocolaty whisky is The Macallan’s recipe, as it were, that calls for first-fill Spanish and American sherry casks, which lends a lot of flavour to the finished Scotch. There’s also a hint of oak, cinnamon, and the ever resonant oak behind the blend. It’s a robust flavour that is warm and inviting, and it has a long, bright finish.

With a vibrant mahogany colour, The Macallan Rare Cask is beautiful in the glass, and on the nose there are sweet notes of fruit, vanilla, and a faintly oaky base.

Enjoy Rare Cask straight, with a drop of water, or open up the flavour with an ice ball.[/column]

[column size=one_third position=first ]Rado HyperChrome Diamonds[/column][column size=two_third position=last ]Rado HyperChrome Automatic in Brown Ceramic | From $3,980

Celebrate the holidays with a watch that brings the elegance of fine Swiss chocolate to a luxury timepiece that uses high-tech ceramic to achieve a colour like none other, inspired by the hue of premium chocolate.

Rado’s HyperChrome watches in brown ceramic are designed like other timepieces in the HyperChrome line, but the special ceramic materials makes these watches one-of-a-kind, reflecting changing light to go from soft and light to dark and creamy. The unique colour is also a vivid alternative to standard watch designs, matching well with fall and winter designs especially.

Best of all, the ceramic brown watches are available is a polished design, or a matte finish.[/column]

[column size=one_third position=first ]Bulova 140th Anniversary Special Edition Precisionist Chronograph[/column][column size=two_third position=last ]Bulova 140th Anniversary Special Edition Precisionist Chronograph | $925

To mark 140 years of Bulova watches, this specially designed precision timepiece features new Ultra High Frequency technology that keeps the watch incredibly accurate–precise to 1,000th of a second, which ensures it only loses a few seconds every year.

Designed with green accents in the dial as a nod to the company’s unique Accutron timepiece from the 60s, which was the world’s first fully-electronic watch, the Special Edition Precisionist Chronograph is graceful and modern, with a style that is still elegant and bold.[/column]

[column size=one_third position=first ]Ted Baker Cascading Floral Luggage[/column][column size=two_third position=last ]Ted Baker Cascading Floral Luggage | $525 *

This 21″ luggage from the Ted Baker collection is highlighted by a stylish floral print that is vibrant and lively, giving your travel plans a fashionable upgrade from the usual black and drab suitcases available otherwise.

Made from lightweight and modern materials that keep the luggage light, the case has smooth-glide spinner wheels, and a twin mesh sleeve and elasticated straps, plus a TSA-approved combination lock.[/column]

[column size=one_third position=first ]Boconi Cargo Duffle Bag[/column][column size=two_third position=last ]Boconi Cargo Duffle Bag | $650 *

Take this pebble finish Italian leather bag and head out on the road in style. The Boconi Cargo Duffle Bag is durable, beautiful, and a perfect carry-on bag for your next flight, or for that long weekend driving adventure.

Featuring a tan khaki interior lining, the bag is just the right size for the modern traveller, with a style that is perfectly timeless.[/column]

* Note: Ted Baker Cascading Floral Luggage and Boconi Cargo Duffle Bag are available from BLACKBOOK TRAVEL CO. in Toronto and Montreal.

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