We refer to something outlandishly expensive as "costing an arm and a leg." Perhaps a better comparison would be the cost of a unit of blood. The sale of body parts is illegal in most parts of the world, so it is hard to evaluate the fair market value for an arm and a leg.... Continue Reading →
Jean Paul Getty (1892-1976) was one of the wealthiest man in the world. In 1966 the Guinness Book of Records named him as the wealthiest man on the planet with a fortune of $1.2 billion ($9.1 billion in 2017). He earned his fortune in the oil business, and in 1996 The Wealthy 100 ranked him as the 67th... Continue Reading →
They say home is wherever you hang your hat. If you are the Sultan of Brunei, your home has enough space to hang the hats of a sizeable percentage of the human race. Completed in 1984 at a cost of $1.4 billion USD, the Istana Nurul Iman (translated: Palace of the Light of Faith) is... Continue Reading →
Toyota and Rolls-Royce both manufacture automobiles, but the end result is quite different. A 2016 Toyota Camry costs about $24,000 and takes 13 hours to build. In comparison, a 2016 Rolls-Royce Dawn costs $337,750, and spends 6 months being assembled.
The oil used by jewelers to lubricate watches and clocks costs about $3,000 per gallon. Thanks to Factened for this fun fact!
The Densuke watermelon -- commonly known as a black watermelon -- is a luxury item. Grown only on the island of Hokkaido, Japan, this gourmet fruit sells in department stores for $200 - $300 apiece. In 2008 one 17-pound Densuke melon sold at auction for $6,100. Connoisseurs tell us that the melon is unusually crisp, with... Continue Reading →
Cecil Chubb (1876-1934) was in the market for the perfect gift for his wife and thought he found just the thing. Apparently thinking that her love for "big stones" meant something other than diamond jewelry, Chubb purchased Stonehenge for her. The world-famous landmark became his for £6,600 (£477,000 or $624,000 in 2016 values). He was rather... Continue Reading →
The next time you are tempted to complain about the price of a gallon of milk or even the cost of a new car, take a moment to give thanks that you don't have to buy buckyballs. Bucky balls -- also known as endohedral fullerenes -- are small, but their price isn't based on size.... Continue Reading →
If you want to do more than simply satisfy the munchies with a quick snack, you might consider a visit to Sublimotion. A word to the wise, though: it's going to cost you a wee bit more than a trip through the drive-through. Billed as "the world’s most expensive restaurant," Sublimotion is located on the... Continue Reading →
You have to think highly of a person if you are going to suggest that person's face to adorn a denomination of currency. That gives you a pretty good idea of what Salmon P. Chase thought of himself when he selected his own face to be memorialized on the first US $1 bank note. As... Continue Reading →
One of the most expensive substances on the planet comes from one of it's unlikeliest -- and ugliest -- sources: the horseshoe crab. The bright blue blood of the of these inhabitants of shallow ocean waters fetches an astonishing $60,000 per gallon. With one gallon containing 75,708 drops, this equates to each drop of blood being worth... Continue Reading →
Peanut butter has been a source of delight since the time of the Aztecs, and just when it seems well decided that nothing can be done to improve upon an already good thing, scientists have figured out a way to make peanut butter even better. Geophysicist Dan Frost has subjected peanut butter to forces equal... Continue Reading →
Completed in 1937, the United States Bullion Depository at Fort Knox, Kentucky is the primary location of the US gold reserves and other precious items. According to the December 31, 2015 report of the US Bureau of Fiscal Service, Fort Knox holds 147,341,858.382 ounces of the 261,498,926.230 ounces in the total US reserve. At December 31, 2015... Continue Reading →
Someone really likes potatoes -- or at least pictures of potatoes. Someone likes them enough to shell out a lot of money for one particular potato picture. Kevin Abosh, an Irish visual artist and portrait photographer sold his picture of a potato against a black background to an unnamed European businessman for €1 million ($1,095,850). The... Continue Reading →