I used to work less than a block from the original Neiman-Marcus in downtown Dallas. I always enjoyed going to Neiman's especially at Christmas time. From time to time, I actually bought a few gifts there. Shopping at Neiman's is a real experience.

I'll share a Neiman's shopping experience later in this article, but first, I wanted to share with you some of the Neiman-Marcus Christmas Fantasy Gifts for 2012

If you're not familiar with the Neiman-Marcus Fantasy Gifts, they are not for the casual shopper. Basically, these are true fantasy gifts for the very rich. While most folks can't afford a $400 pair of cuff-links, it's still fun to see what the folks at NM have come up with. For Example:

Let's start off with the lowest price item on our list:

1. BEST GIFT, BAR NONE! & BULLEIT TO GO:

Neiman-Marcus
  • Two limited-edition trailers available. (First available for immediate delivery; second available within six months of placing order.)
  • Transportation and delivery of trailer is included within the continental United States.
  • Created by designer Brad Ford, who has more than 10 years of experience in interior design and was named one of America's Top Young Designers by House Beautiful and recognized as one of the Rising Stars of Interior Design by the International Furnishings and Design Association.
  • Moore & Giles, founded in 1933 in Lynchburg, Virginia, is dedicated to designing and developing the most luxurious natural leathers, working with tanneries worldwide and delivering unparalleled quality.
  • Entertainment system by Sony® and includes: TV, sound-bar speakers, receiver with touch screen, and smartphone controls.

10% percent of the proceeds from the purchase of the Bulleit Woody Party Trailer will benefit amfAR™, The Foundation for AIDS Research.

Price Tag: $ 150,000

2. PRIVATE DINNER FOR 10

Neiman Marcus

The details:

  • Dinner will be prepared in the customer's home by Thomas Keller, Daniel Boulud, Richard Rosendale, and Jerome Bocuse.
  • A professional event planner will arrange and oversee the entire evening.
  • Casa Dragones' cofounder and CEO, Bertha Gonzalez, will host a professional tequila tasting and discuss the craftsmanship and innovative process of creating her well-honed libation. The tequila will be served during the cocktail hour and then specially paired with a course during the meal. Fine wines will accompany all other courses.
  • All guests will receive a personalized bottle of Casa Dragones inscribed with their names. Each limited-edition bottle is handcrafted from pure, lead-free crystal and individually engraved, hand-labeled, numbered, and signed by the Maestra Tequilera.

Price Tag: $ 250,000

3. Neiman Marcus Edition 2013 McLaren 12C Spider

Neiman-Marcus

It's more than just another convertible. Your Neiman Marcus Edition 2013 McLaren 12C Spider—one of just 12 made—is heralded as the most technologically advanced supercar ever.

With a push of a button, the butterfly wing-like doors swoosh open. You glide into the comfortably bolstered seat, taking note of the beautiful red contrast stitching. From the console to the cleverly placed gears and gadgets, it's as though the entire cockpit has been designed just for your comfort. You hit the big silver button and the 616 horse-powered V8 twin turbo engine begins to purr behind your seat. It's all here—everything that makes a McLaren so coveted: the carbon-fiber composite chassis and Formula 1™ "brake steer," Seamless-Shift gearbox technology, and active aerodynamics. The car's an arresting mix of contradictions: lightweight and strong, powerful and efficient, comfortable and exhilarating, compact and spacious. And, unlike other supercars in your collection, this one offers heart-pounding racecar performance with a ride akin to an executive's saloon car.

What will it be today? "Normal," "Sport," or "Track" mode? You set the handling and head out. It's a beautiful day for a drive. How about putting the top down? No need to pull over—with the push of a button, it retracts in just 17 seconds while traveling under 20 mph. The coast is clear, and you punch it. AHHH! The incredible rush of hitting 60 mph in 3.2 seconds. Curve ahead! Channeling Bruce McLaren, you head into the turn . . .

The 2013 Neiman Marcus Edition McLaren 12C Spider in Volcano Red includes limited-edition features and a McLaren luggage set. Plus, you'll receive a business-class trip to England for a VIP dinner with McLaren Chairman Ron Dennis and a tour of the McLaren Technology Center (February 6-8, 2013).

The details:
The 2013 Neiman Marcus Edition McLaren 12C Spider in Volcano Red includes lightweight diamond-cut wheels with Gloss Black inners, Gloss Black graphics, contrast red stitching, a stainless steel special-edition numbered badge, McLaren luggage set, two business-class airfare tickets to Heathrow from the Continental US, two nights of accommodations and meals at the Coworth Park Hotel, all transfers, private VIP dinner with McLaren Chairman, Ron Dennis at Coworth Park, and a tour of the McLaren Technology Center.

Price Tag: $354,000

And now...For the person who has, or can afford, everything!

4. His and Her's Watches...And A Trip

Neiman-Marcus
  • The "Poetic Wish" watches are a marvel of technology and craft. The movement alone took three years of development and a highly skilled team of 5 engineers and watchmakers.
  • Each watch features an innovative Five Minute repeater movement, three integrated automatons (a person's silhouette, a mother-of-pearl cloud, and either a diamond shooting star or an enamel kite), and a handcrafted enamel dial executed with marquetry, stone setting, and gold sculpting—each depicting a Parisian landmark: his, the Notre Dame; hers, the Eiffel Tower.
  • Dial scenes become animated on demand, and the love story is brought to life both visually and audibly. On the lady's, the woman's silhouette indicates the hour by moving slowly across the observation deck of the Eiffel Tower, and a lucky kite indicates the minutes as it ascends in the sky. As these characters are in motion the sound of the Notre Dame bells chime: one sound for the hours and another sound for each five-minute interval. Similarly, on the men's dial, a young man on the Notre Dame moves across the terrace to indicate the hours, and a diamond star shoots up in the sky to indicate the minutes. The sound of the Notre Dame bells unites the two lovers.
  • Time may also be read on the backside. A transparent crystal case reveals the innovative movement of this Five Minute repeater, hammers, bells, and two display dials: one for the hours and minutes; the other for the seconds.
  • An engraving that reads "Reve A Paris, Fait A Geneve" (Dreamed of in Paris, made in Geneva) can be read through the sapphire crystal back. This reveals VCA's unique creative process and development of this poetic masterpiece between Paris, the magical city of love and romance that is home to Van Cleef & Arpels, and Geneva, the heart of high-end watchmaking.
  • Each watch arrives in a handmade mother-of-pearl inlaid wood cabinet. The marquetry cabinets depict the Parisian scenes that corresponds to the watches: the Eiffel Tower and Notre Dame. When the two cabinets are positioned side by side they reveal the landscape of the love story.
  • Watch cases are 18-karat white gold and set with diamonds of D, E, or F color and VVS clarity.
  • Straps are a pearl gray moiré silk for her and navy alligator for him.
  • The package includes a trip to Paris for a weekend, where you'll visit the Van Cleef & Arpels boutique and jewelry atelier. And a trip to Geneva for a day of private tours of the Van Cleef & Arpels watchmaking workshops and a meeting with the designers and watchmakers.
  • While in Paris and Geneva, Van Cleef & Arpels will arrange luxury accommodations, remarkable dining experiences, and entertainment to suit your preferences.
  • Date of trip is subject to availability and confirmation from Van Cleef & Arpels.

Price Tag: $1,090,000

 

 

Now for my Neiman-Marcus shopping story.

flickr/jon williamson

I was in the "Christmas Gift" department looking at decorations and such. There was a display of brass and stainless steel trunks  filled with an assortment of goodies. Most contained wine and snacks from around the world.

The lady in front of me, asked the clerk if they could deliver the trunks anywhere in the world. The answer was, of course, "of course."

So, the lady asked, "How much is this one with all the red wines and treats?" The clerk told her that its was $1,500. The lady's face lit up as she said, "Great! My Christmas shopping is done! I'll need 15 of them."

I felt awful only buying a $50 tree ornament.

Happy Thanksgiving and Merry Christmas!