RCL Exclusive

The 50 Best Gifts to Treat Yourself This Holiday Season

Not sure what to put on your list? See what savvy editors are coveting in our 2018 gift guide

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Years ago, a prominent NYC restaurateur taught one of our editors what has come to be known as the “one for them, one for me” method of gifting. For each gift he selected for a loved one, he would also treat himself.  But let’s start with you. Here are 50 ways you can do the same for yourself.

For the Outdoorsman:

Weekender 10′ Inflatable SUP – $499

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Weekender 10′ Inflatable SUP from Ten Toes – $499

It’s no wonder stand-up paddleboarding has surged as an outdoor activity in recent years — great workout + sun on the face + zen vibes = good times. Transporting/storing an SUP, however … not so much. Enter this handy inflatable number, which can tackle everything from placid lakes to ocean surf and rolls down to the size of a backpack when not in use.
BUY HERE

Bulova Precisionist – $825

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Bulova Precisionist from Bulova – $825

In his more outdoorsy pursuits, it behooves a fella to sport a timepiece that’s both extremely precise and built rock solid. The Precisionist fits the bill perfectly (and handsomely), sporting a beefy 46mm stainless/blue IP steel case containing a proprietary eight-hand quartz movement with a 262kHz vibrational frequency. That’s EIGHT times greater than standard timepieces, with a deviation of just +/-10 seconds per year. Yes, year. Add a textured polyurethane strap, handsome carbon fiber dial and a sweeping second hand that rivals most automatics, and you’ve got yourself a wrist cannon that’ll play from a weekend triathlon right into the boardroom on Monday.
BUY HERE

Yeti Rambler 14oz Insulated Camp Mug – $25

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Rambler 14oz Insulated Camp Mug from Yeti – $25

So, yes, this mug is perfect for the most rugged of outdoor pursuits. Like everything else Yeti makes, it’s built like a tank and will last you forever, whether you’re sitting around a campfire with friends and or hiking the AT (though it might be a bit heavy for that). But here’s a secret: It also works very well for extremely lazy people who just like to sit and drink coffee on their couch without having to worry about bugs or rain.
BUY HERE

Merino 250 Base Layer – $95

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Merino 250 Base Layer from Smartwool – $95

A few years ago, we got one of these for Christmas and wore it every single time we ran (upwards of 30 miles per week) until it was too warm outside to keep wearing it. So call it March. And we didn’t wash it. Ever. Not even once. While we’re not super proud of this fact, it taught us something very important about the garment: it didn’t smell at all. Our wife (we all share one) even begrudgingly confirmed it for us, after insisting for a very long time that we were vile.
BUY HERE

Mountain 600 Hiking Boot – $135

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Mountain 600 Hiking Boot from Danner – $135

The Mountain 600 is among the most versatile hiking boots on the market, suitable for technical trails and city streets alike. Thanks to Vibram’s SPE super plush midsole and their Fuga outsole, the boot is extremely comfortable (like, sneaker comfortable) and provides ample traction for those days when weather becomes a factor. It’s available in a ton of different colors, but we’re partial to this handsome green and brown waterproof suede option.
BUY HERE

 

For the Dapper Gent:

Bulova CURV Chronograph – $1095

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Bulova CURV Chronograph from Bulova – $1095

A truly dapper gent knows that the best accessories are those that are both chic and a little bit left-of-center — the sort of devilish details that show he appreciates the classics but still marches to the beat of his own sartorial drum. Equipped with the world’s first curved chronograph movement, this five-handed stainless steel showstopper also comes with high-performance quartz precision, an elegant combination of modern and industrial design cues, and a profile that’s truly one of a kind. Much like the stylish fella wearing it, right?
BUY HERE

The Guide to Street Fashion and Culture – $45

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The Guide to Street Fashion and Culture from Highsnobiety x Gestalten – $45

As the Venn diagram of music, art, fashion and street culture continues to overlap, global authorities Highsnobiety affirm their place as the movement’s unofficial historians with their first hardcover tome. Featuring treatises on everything from Commes des Garcon to Pusha-T, a must-own for sneaker-sportin’ devotees of the era of creative crossover.
BUY HERE

Full Dose Valet Tray – $68

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Full Dose Valet Tray from Jonathon Adler – $68

Just as buying jewelry for a lady can be a dicy enterprise (she has preferences; you may not quite grasp them), buying clothes for a style-obsessed man is no easy task. One way to make sure you don’t go wrong? Buy something style adjacent, like this insouciant valet tray upon which he can deposit the accessories — watch, cuff links, wallet — he prefers to pick out for himself.
BUY HERE

The Maritime Shirt Jacket – $188

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The Maritime Shirt Jacket from Taylor Stitch – $188

A must-have for outdoorsmen and city slickers alike, this perfectly weighted “shacket” combines the weather-resistant properties of wool (50%) with the strength and structure of polyester (50%). Looks equally dashing over a sweater or under your favorite topcoat, depending on the time of year you choose to don it.
BUY HERE

The Bruiser Moto Jacket – $495

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The Bruiser Moto Jacket from Buck Maison – $495

There are a handful of items every man should invest in once and then keep in his wardrobe for life. Among these items? A black leather jacket. Buck Mason’s is supple but lightweight, made from twice-washed lambskin and priced to move … at least as far as black leather jackets go.
BUY HERE

For the Globetrotter:

Custom Brown Leather Luggage Tag – $49

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Custom Brown Leather Luggage Tag from Boarding Pass – $49

The best part of this veg-tanned, hand-stamped leather number isn’t that it’s so eye-catchingly unique, or the fact that it’s something even a seasoned jetsetter wouldn’t  get for his/herself. It’s the fact that the more beat up it gets, the better it looks.
BUY HERE

Power Core 20000 – $60

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Power Core 20000 from Anker – $60

Anyone traveling frequently in this day and age will need some sort of portable power device. Anker produces a ton of great chargers, and this one straddles the line between power and convenience nicely. About the size of a small remote, with more than 6.5 phone charges worth of power.
BUY HERE

Carry-On Cocktail Kit (Full Bar Set) – $144

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Carry-On Cocktail Kit (Full Bar Set) from W&P Design – $144

The joy of flying 0ccasionally warrants something a little more complex than a vodka and soda. These kits provide everything you need to create stress-reducing quality cocktails mid-flight. Completely carry-on-able; just add in-flight booze.
BUY HERE

QuietComfort 35 Wireless Headphones – $350

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QuietComfort 35 Wireless Headphones from Bose – $350

Ever had a crying baby on your flight? Well then you know just how important it is to be able to block out any and all intrusive noise when flying. These over-ear wireless headphones will provide noise cancellation along with superior sound quality.
BUY HERE

Fine Leather XL Duffel Bag – $975

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Fine Leather XL Duffel Bag from Moores & Giles – $175

This is a very serious bag for a very serious traveler: a supremely sturdy, XL duffel with the type of old-school cool sure to get compliments, while still nicely fitting in the storage above your seat.
BUY HERE

For the Tippler:

Bottled Classic Cocktails – $20

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Bottled Classic Cocktails from BT SVC – $20

Your correspondent ran across these charming apothecary-styled drams in a hotel room mini-bar, figuring they most likely looked better than they tasted. Boy was I ever wrong. Each of BTL SVC’s classic tipples are carefully crafted with top-shelf booze and ingredients, and it shows — pour one over ice and you’d never know it didn’t come straight from behind the bar at your favorite craft haunt. Grab ‘em individually or, you know, try the whole set — Lord knows I did.
BUY HERE

Jackson Cannon Bar Knife – $65

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Jackson Cannon Bar Knife from R. Murphy -$65

Put down that dull, overused kitchen knife. Designed for bartending professionals (by an award-winning mixologist), this high carbon stainless steel blade works just fine for home bartenders. The square tip can notch citrus for garnishes, remove seeds and slice citrus peels. Caveat: Do note the skill level of your host with sharp objects.
BUY HERE

Absolut Elyx Gift Set w/ Original Copper Pineapple – $130

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Absolut Elyx Gift Set w/ Original Copper Pineapple from Reserve Bar – $130

We went to Sweden a few years back to learn the whole process behind Elyx, an elevated vodka (seriously) that works just as perfectly in a vodka martini as it does in a cocktail. The pineapple? Originally, those were gifted to nobility. Now? They’re both ornamental and a great vessel for a variety of delicious drinks (to be enjoyed by the host on an off-party night).
BUY HERE

Whiskey Club Membership and Advent Calendar – $170+

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Whiskey Club Membership and Advent Calendar from Flaviar – $170+

About a gift that keeps on giving? An adult take on a holiday tradition, this advent calendar is filled with 24 different whiskies from around the globe — from well-known single malts to Irish tipples, along with a few surprises (a beer-barrel bourbon, an ex-bourbon cask whiskey from Taiwan, etc.) Throw in a year-long membership to Flaviar and your host will get a new (non-advent) sampler every month.
BUY HERE

The Balvenie Bar Cart – $3900

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The Balvenie Bar Cart from Todd Synder – $3900

Yours truly has been to a few cooperages in his time — there’s a wonderful craftsmanship behind the making of each whiskey barrel (one that involves a lot of fire). Reclaiming these barrels for a made-to-order bar cart (charred interior included) creates a perfect whiskey cycle of life, or some other end-of-year mumbo-jumbo you can impress your host with over a few drams.
BUY HERE

For the Tinkerer:

Practice Lock Picking Set – $35

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Practice Lock Picking Set from Curious Smith – $35

This kit doesn’t come with the tools to pick any lock (who do you think we are?), rather six transparent locks to try your hand at MacGyvering them open. We don’t condone using your new skills for nefarious purposes, but it’s one helluva bar trick.
BUY HERE

Torch 250 Flashlight – $80

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Torch 250 Flashlight from Goal Zero – $80

The tinkerer occupies a unique position in society, simultaneously siding with the “don’t make ‘em like they used to” crowd and the younger generation hungry for newfangled tools. The Torch 250 bridges the gap, upgrading the humble flashlight with a solar panel, USB-charger and hand crank.
BUY HERE

SolarHome 620 MIDNIGHT – $150

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SolarHome 620 MIDNIGHT from BioLite – $150

Turn any structure — your van, shipping container, geodesic dome — into an off-grid home with this limited-edition BioLite kit. Think of it as Solar Power 101, with a 6W solar panel, three hanging lights and a control box that acts as a light, USB charge out and MP3/radio.
BUY HERE

Sterling Silver Swiss Army Knife w/ Free Engraving – $210

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Sterling Silver Swiss Army Knife w/ Free Engraving from Victorinox – $210

Victorinox’s “Classic SD” knife makes for a damn handy keychain, and when done in gleaming sterling silver with your name/initials/credo engraved on it, the exact kind of keychain you’ll eventually pass down to your son, he to his, so on and so forth until the robots enslave us and confiscate it.
BUY HERE

The Gerstner 25X Tool Chest – $1248

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The Gerstner 25X Tool Chest from Best Made Co. – $1248

For how much you wax poetic about your tool set, you’d think they’d have better digs than a banged up plastic box. Gerstner & Sons is the Ferrari of tool chests, and Best Made Co. commissioned this statuesque specimen in American cherry, polished brass and felt lining.
BUY HERE

For the Gourmand:

Southwest Salt Set – $38

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From Los Poblanos – $38

Anyone worth their salt (sorry) in the kitchen knowns why that idiom is still commonplace. It’s an indelible part of the cooking process, and finding only Morton’s in the cabinet simply won’t cut it. These salt blends will add some depth and flavor to any cook’s dishes.
BUY HERE

Classic 8” Chef’s Knife – $55

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Classic 8” Chef’s Knife from Henckels International – $55

Germans make some quality stainless steel, and stainless steel makes for some quality chef’s knives. It’s also fully forged, meaning it’ll feel great on the hand and you won’t have to worry about any blade/handle detachment issues.
BUY HERE

30” Digital Electric Smoker – $170

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30” Digital Electric Smoker from Masterbuilt – $170

Anybody who’s anybody is getting into the meat smoking game these days. Just ask your boy Mark Zuckerberg. For real though, smoking will open up a whole new world of meaty goodness in your culinary life, and thanks to this idiot-proof device from Masterbuilt, it requires a criminally minimal amount of knowhow/effort. Trust us, we tested it ourselves.
BUY HERE

American Wagyu Gold Grade Bone-In Prime Rib – $399

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American Wagyu Gold Grade Bone-In Prime Rib from Snake River Farms – $399

Truth be told, this will in all likelihood go down as the most unnecessary thing you eat this year. But if the holidays aren’t the time to swing for the culinary fences on a dinner party showstopper like 10 pounds of American Wagyu slow roasted to succulent perfection, we don’t know what is.
BUY HERE

7-Piece Cast Iron Set – $695

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7-Piece Cast Iron Set from Finex – $695

While a full set of matching cookware isn’t a prerequisite to being a gourmand, it certainly doesn’t hurt and sure looks good. This set from Finex comes with four seasoned pans in varying sizes, with two lids and a laser-cut cherry wood trivet.
BUY HERE

For the Gym Rat:

Speed Rope 2.0 – $45

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Speed Rope 2.0 from Fraser – $45

When it comes to portable fitness equipment, you really can’t beat a good old-fashioned jump rope. Compact enough to fit inside a shoe, the humble jump rope not only provides a hell of a cardio workout, but helps with coordination and cognitive function as well.
BUY HERE

9″ Mako Lined Short – $59

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9″ Mako Lined Short from Rhone – $59

If we had to choose one pair of shorts to serve all our fitness needs, from lifting at the gym to running local trails or doing yoga in our living room, it would without question be Rhone’s Mako short. They’re cut perfectly — not too slim but far from baggy — and they’ve got more than enough pockets to hold your essentials, including two side pockets that make them suitable for running errands after your workout. And perhaps most importantly, they hold up to washing like it’s nobody’s business.
BUY HERE

Charcoal Gym Duffel – $165

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Charcoal Gym Duffel from Aer – $165

There are cheaper options out there, for sure, but none of them come packed with as many features as this superlative example from Aer. First off, it looks great, with no gaudy logos all over the place. It has a nicely designed shoe compartment that, unlike shoe compartments in other bags, actually fits shoes in sizes that a grown man might wear. There’s a padded laptop sleeve, a ventilated compartment for your nasty, wet gym clothes and a separate one for your clean clothes. All that and it feels like it’ll last forever.
BUY HERE

Delphin Waterproof Streaming Media Player – $220

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Delphin Waterproof Streaming Media Player from Swimbuds – $220

In terms of a workout, tough to beat swimming: low-impact, works your whole body, great cardio, torches calories. Only problem is it can get a little … monotonous. Enter the Delphin, a waterproof streaming music player and earphone set that rocks everything from Spotify playlists to Audible audiobooks while you swim laps. And for those looking to dial up their aquatic regimen, workouts narrated by Olympic gold medalist Rebecca Soni will surely prove useful.
BUY HERE

Mirror Interactive Home Gym – $1495

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Mirror Interactive Home Gym from Mirror – $1495

When off, it’s an unassuming (and useful) full-length mirror. When turned on, it’s an interactive fitness wonderland boasting 50+ live classes a week covering everything from yoga to strength training to boxing with real time instruction from pro coaches. An included Bluetooth heart rate monitor tracks biometric data to help optimize your workouts and drive results. Come January, you’re gonna want this thing.
BUY HERE

For the Audiophile:

Beastie Boys Book – $30

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Beastie Boys Book from Amazon – $30

Because it’s not your typical music biography, and everyone under 50 likes the Beastie Boys. Adrock and Mike D, the surviving members of the seminal NYC hip-hop group, not only spill on their past — they also present a cookbook by chef Roy Choi, a graphic novel, a map of Beastie Boys New York, mixtape playlists and guest contributions (Amy Poehler, Wes Anderson, Colson Whitehead).
BUY HERE

Now Spinning Panel + Record Divider – $100

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Now Spinning Panel + Record Divider from Koeppel Design – $100

Vinyl lovers are showoffs — they’re certainly not hiding their collection. Enable their habit: This birchwood panel keeps track of what they’re spinning, and the A-Z tabbed organizers keep the rest of the records nicely organized. Groovy.
BUY HERE

An American Treasure by Tom Petty – $130

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An American Treasure by Tom Petty from Amazon – $130

If you love Petty, you’ll hear something new. If you think you’re not a fan, this six-record box set — full of previously unreleased material, rarities and live tracks, along with photographs and essays about the legendary singer — will make anyone a convert.
BUY HERE

MW07 True Wireless Earphones – $299

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MW07 True Wireless Earphones from Master & Dynamic – $299

M&D crafted these buds from handcrafted acetate and stainless steel. Style-wise, they’re more like cool sunglasses (particularly the tortoiseshell variation). And the sound? It’s never gonna match a wired, over-ear pair, but it’s crisp and the buds’ll block out the outside world.
BUY HERE

Loft Stereo Console – $3499

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Loft Stereo Console from Wrensilva – $3499

Equipped with a fully decoupled belt-driven turntable, 300 wpc Bang & Olufsen “ICEpower” amp and Sonos connectivity, it doesn’t get much better than the Loft in terms of bringing the crackly joy of vinyl to life in your home. Also doesn’t get much handsomer, if you ask us.
BUY HERE

For the Man of Leisure:

Smartphone Projector 2.0 – $30

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Smartphone Projector 2.0 from Luckies – $30

Watching videos on your smartphone, upgraded. This ingenious little projector is compatible with all types of phones, magnifying photos and videos up to 8x with adjustable focus  and no power source necessary. What it lacks in fidelity, it makes up for in costing $30.
BUY HERE

Colorful Backgammon Set – $89

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Colorful Backgammon Set from MoMa Design Store – $89

The 5,000-year-old Game of Kings gets a pop-art makeover care of the country’s most storied contemporary art museum. Now you just have to learn to play (it’s easy to pick up, but hard to master). Oh, and find a friend. An analog one.
BUY HERE

Faux Fur Throw – $389

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Faux Fur Throw from Restoration Hardware – $389

Don’t let the names of the patterns (“African Lion”; “Timber Wolf”) fool you: these plush, enveloping and exceptionally stylish throw blankets are 100% synthetic, though no less comfy than the real thing. Great for long winter naps, costume parties and scaring the dog alike.
BUY HERE

Marijuana Humidor – $219

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Marijuana Humidor from The Apothecarry Case – $219

These excuisite alderwood cases will keep your buds tidy, fresh and discreetly stowed away thanks to a Boveda humidity system uniquely designed for storing cannabis, airtight glass jars and — because they’re not for everyone — a lock. Beats a shoebox, that’s for sure.
BUY HERE

OriginX Retro Gaming Console – $3300

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OriginX Retro Gaming Console from Love Hultén – $3300

The ultimate retro gaming machine for both looks and performance, this handcrafted Pong cabinet can store over 10,000 classic gaming emulators (versions of old games you can download online). Every edition is handcrafted by the maker in his studio in Gothenburg, Sweden; as such, be forewarned that delivery times may vary based on demand. He also takes custom orders.
BUY HERE

For the Gadgethound:

Leather AirPods Case – $30

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Leather AirPods Case from Nomad – $30

Look, we’re not going to pretend anyone needs a Horween leather case for their AirPods, which of course already came with a perfectly fine case that presumably almost no one but the AirPod owner will ever see, but it’s the holiday season, and if you only give people presents they actually need, then you are a horrible bore.
BUY HERE

Echo 2.0 Smart Speaker – $70

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Echo 2.0 Smart Speaker from Amazon – $70

Amazon’s Echo line, from the Dot on up to the Plus, allows you to voice control as much of your life as you’re inclined, whether you’re simply asking Alexa the weather or you’re using it to control smart lights and thermostats. For our money, though, the middle-tier Echo is the smartest buy, as it offers almost all the same features as the pricier Plus (minus an integrated smart hub), and sounds worlds better than the cheaper Dot.
BUY HERE

Go Standalone VR Headset – $180

Go Standalone VR Headset from Oculus – $180

Everyone wants to try virtual reality, but no one really wants to shell out for it until it becomes a little more … well, fun, useful, affordable and easy to use. That makes the Go a fantastic gift: it allows your giftee a chance to test out VR in a painless manner. Working as a standalone unit — no need for an expensive PC or game console to power these up — the Go makes gaming and movies more immersive (the built-in speakers here are surprisingly awesome, too). The real selling point? Apps like MelodyVR, which place you virtually in the midst of great concerts with 360-degree views — you can even jump on stage.
BUY HERE

Coffee- and Tea-Brewing Alarm Clock – $445

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Coffee- and Tea-Brewing Alarm Clock from Barisieur – $445

Boasting the handsome silhouette of a contemporary record player, this Scandinavian-minded nightstand champion will gently wake you up with the sound of bubbling water as a fresh roast or loose-leaf tea readies itself. In the words of one InsideHook editor, “a rarely seen blend of beauty, functionality and zaniness.”
BUY HERE

Mac Mini – $800

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Mac Mini from Apple – $800

Freshly upgraded for the first time since 2014, the new Mac Mini is garnering rave reviews from Apple enthusiasts and Windows converts alike for its fast, powerful computing (it equips an eighth-generation Intel processor), easy portability (it’s a great choice for creatives on the go who prefer a desktop to a notebook) and most of all, its accessible price (at least by Apple standards): at $800, it’s the most economic way to get your hands  on a macOS.
BUY HERE

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