Friday, March 26, 2010

The Most Expensive American Cities

Imagine living on the warm, sunny beaches of Hawaii--or maybe you would prefer the majestic setting and ski slopes of Aspen, Colo. While these idyllic locations are great places to put down roots, living there doesn't come cheap. Let's take a look at some of the most popular (and costly) places to live.

New York City, N.Y. New York City is the most expensive place to live in the U.S., and the eighth most expensive place to live in the world--a six-figure income will still only give you middle-class status. Just to put that into perspective, making $123,000 a year would buy you the same standard of living.

As someone who makes $50,000 in Houston, Texas, according to the New York Daily News.The average monthly rent for an apartment in the city is $2,800. Think that you can afford a place on $60,000 a year? Think again! Tenants have to make 40 times the monthly apartment rent to qualify without a guarantor. That means you need to make $112,000 just to qualify for a regular apartment.

Monthly day care fees run over $2,000 a month, practically double other parts of the country, and an average cup of coffee costs nearly $4.50.

Los Angeles, Calif.
So your cup of tea is the sunny weather and beaches of Los Angeles? If you want to soak up the L.A. sunshine and hob knob with celebrities, prepare to pay. Los Angeles is the second most expensive U.S. city and 23rd most expensive place in the world to live.

L.A. is often considered the most overpriced city because of the high unemployment rate and high housing prices. Home prices in Los Angeles come in second only to New York, and many L.A. residents work six days a week just to stay afloat. Gas prices are higher in L.A. than in any other city in the mainland, and the high prices can be blamed on the citizens' daily commute.Add in the pollution, smog and earthquakes, and it doesn't seem like such a great deal.

Honolulu, Hawaii
It must be paradise to live on the island and sip Mai Tais all day. Hawaii is paradise, but paradise doesn't come cheap. Honolulu is the fifth most expensive place to live in the U.S. and the 41st most expensive city in the world. That's because Hawaii imports everything, including automobiles, building materials, metals, gas, household products, meat, dairy and food products. Due to all of these factors, living in Honolulu costs 55% more than living in the average U.S. city.

Hawaii has the highest gas prices in the nation, average monthly apartment rental costs of $1,800 and a low-level of worker satisfaction, since most available jobs offer part-time hours.It turns out that the most expensive zip code is not 90210, but 81611. In 2009 Aspen topped the list of the most expensive home prices. Four Aspen properties have sold recently for over $30 million. The average house in the Aspen area was valued at $2.6 million in 2010, and Aspen is known as the home of the rich and famous and boasts some of the world's most luxurious ski resorts.

The city is littered with Gucci, Prada and other high-end retailers, and is a great place to visit for a ski vacation--but buying a home there could bury you under a financial avalanche.Juneau, Alaska
For such a small city, Juneau has really big prices. Alaska faces the same problem as Hawaii, in that the state must import most of its consumer products. Alaskan cities are generally more expensive than other U.S. cities. The costs associated with housing, utilities and health care are 40-100% higher than the national average, and transportation and grocery items are 25% higher than in other major cities.

Rural Alaskan communities have to import fuel by air, causing some cities to charge as much as $9 per gallon for gasoline. The average cost for a home in Juneau was $304,000 in 2009.

Miami, Fla.
"The Magic City" is well known globally for its culture, fashion and entertainment. With stars like Shakira, Enrique Iglesias and Lenny Kravitz calling Miami home, the city has become the "it" place to live. Miami has not only increased in popularity over the past decade, but in price as well.

As the sixth most expensive city in the U.S., you will definitely pay for the beautiful waterfront property and the vibrant nightlife. Miami housing prices have dropped recently, but prices for groceries and public services are still sky high.Conclusion
As you can clearly see, happiness does not come cheap. While these places may be great to visit, living there on a full time basis could leave you flat broke
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Thursday, March 25, 2010

Most Expensive MacBook Pro: AGolden Macbook Pro with Diamond Apple Logo


Apple Macbooks are stylish and attractive. But how come if your Apple Macbook is golden fully! It would be very beautiful, wouldn’t be? A company called Computer Choppers has tried to make this idea practical. It has coated a MacBook Pro in golden color.

Even the keyboard and touchpad’s color match to chassis means it is golden too. But the most expensive part of this design is the Apple Logo. It has been filled by diamond.Well the company has not talked about the price but it is clear that this beautiful and odd MacBook Pro is among the most expensive laptops.
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Saturday, March 20, 2010

'WORLD'S MOST EXPENSIVE TV SET'

An incredible solid gold and gem-encrusted television has been named as the world's most expensive television set, which will cost its buyer £1.5 million, experts said. British designer Stuart Hughes, 38, will only make a total of three PrestigeHD Supreme Rose televisions from 28kg of solid 18-carat rose gold. Each set will have a 55-inch screen and an outer frame adorned with 72 round cut one-carat flawless diamonds.

Hundreds of tiny sunstones and amethysts are mixed into the gold frame, while inner frame will be made from hand-sewn alligator skin. Hughes, who creates dozens of electronic items and gadgets in his workshop in Liverpool, started work on his first TV prototype after months of design preparation. He started designing in his teens and now makes elaborate bespoke iPhones and iPods for wealthy customers that sell in Harrods, London, as well as glitzy Monaco and Marbella.

The father of two was first spotted as a talent by German sports marketing executives after building a gold-plated BMX bike. He now runs in own workshop with four craftsmen and said he is constantly trying to ''push the boundaries'' with his designs. ''My designs are pretty ferocious things and are really aimed at the top end of the market - the uber-rich and the those who have a lot of disposable income," he said. ''Many of them are sold ex
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Thursday, March 18, 2010

Inside The Five Most Expensive ETFs

The rise of the ETF industry is often attributed (in large part at least) to a shift in investor preference from pricey active management to low-cost indexing strategies. ETFs burst on to the investment scene by offering fees equivalent to only a fraction of those charged by traditional actively-managed mutual funds, and have continued to attract assets as investors frustrated with the inability of active management to consistently generate alpha seek out more cost-efficient alternatives.

But not all ETFs offer bargain basement expense ratios. As the product offerings have become increasingly specialized and targeted in recent years, average fees have been on the rise. This trend isn’t necessarily attributable to issuer greed (the low end of the expense ratio range has expanded as well), but rather to increasing complexity and granularity of exposure available through ETFs.

Replicating the S&P 500 is a relatively simple task, but tracking the performance of more complex strategies or far-flung markets often incurs additional costs. There are now a handful of ETFs that have seen expense ratios climb above the 1% mark, venturing into mutual fund territory. Below, we highlight five ETFs that charge an expense ratio of at least 1.0%.
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Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Survey ranks Dubai most expensive city for VPN link

Many international businesses use VPNs as a lower-cost alternative to traditional private lines, allowing them to securely connect offices in different locations to a firm's network.

Telegeography surveyed carrier prices in 102 cities, and it found that the fees vary significantly. In London.

The average cost of a 2Mbps E-1 port was US$532 per month, while in Hong Kong, the average port charge for.

An E-1 was $753. In contrast, the median cost in Dubai of an E-1 connection was an "astonishing" US$14,683.

"The high cost of VPN service in Dubai is a reflection of the other key driver of costs: local competition," said Telegeography analyst Gregory Bryan "The local telecom market in the UAE is uncompetitive, and, despite adequate submarine cable supply, enterprise providers must pay high local access charges to connect customers in Dubai to their network."

The research team found that prices tend to be higher outside North America and western Europe, and that the main factors determining international IP-VPN prices are the underlying cost of international network capacity and the competitiveness of the local communications market.

"We are conditioned to think of global IP networks as ubiquitous and uniform, yet local access regulations and regional transport costs remain critical factors that drive the cost of connecting businesses in a city," added Bryan.
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Monday, March 15, 2010

What is a Vertu Phone One Of The World Most Expensive Luxury Phone

If you are looking this particular article, then you may be curious as to the nature and benefits to using a Vertu phone.

While there are undoubtedly many aspects that are worth mentioning, I will instead point out some of the most distinguishing features and benefits of this device in the coming paragraphs.

The first thing that you should likely be aware of is what a phone like this actually is, as you might not be fully aware. While this is in fact a mobile phone, it is among an elite group that are known as luxury mobile phones. You may not know this, but Vertu is a subsidiary company owned by Nokia, which is a well known company and 800 pound gorilla in the mobile phones arena.

Well, for what reasons should these phones be considered luxurious? Well, for one they are made of valuable materials that really all depends on the model that you have chosen. These excellent displays of mobile devices can be made of genuine leather, rubies, gold, sapphire, and even diamonds.. So it is no wonder that possessing one means you have really made a mark for yourself.

Not to mention that in buying one of these phones, you are enlisted for a free year of concierge service through the company itself. What this basically spells for you the buyer is, that a team of highly skilled people will be waiting for your call to make an appointment for any number of different things for you, to free you from the hassle of doing it yourself. Dinner reservations, flights, lodging all at the simple press of a hot key that will connect you to the team.

However, before you rush yourself to go and buy one of these gadget jewelries, you might want to know the price first. The reason that these are status symbols is that even the lowest model phones will still set you back five thousand dollars. While that is still an impressive number, they have cost as much as over sixty times that amount.

So if you were ever curious about a Vertu phone, I hope that this article has helped you understand more about these awesome phones and what it will mean for you to own one. If you are still curious about learning more, you might look online, as there are a lot of available resources that will talk in great lengths about these mobile phones.
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Friday, March 12, 2010

ixzWorld's most expensive TV debuts, coated with gold and diamonds, costs $2.2 million

This television set is likely more expensive that your home and jewelry collection - combined.

Meet the PrestigeHD SUPREME Rose Edition, designed by Stuart Hughes, the "world's most expensive television.

Total cost: $2.25 million. Whoa! So what do you get for that huge outlay of cash? Well, the 55-inch screen is complemented by gems and expensive materials. Here's some detail: The base and outer frame are made of 18ct rose gold.

The outer frame is adorned with 72 brilliant round-cut 1carat IF Flawless diamonds with additional sunstone and amethysts. The inner screen layer is made of hand-sewn alligator skin. Only three of these TVs will be made.

The company also makes a less expensive version (though it still has a six-figure price tag), the PrestigeHD SUPREME Edition, with a price of $1.5 million. This TV uses fewer diamonds - only 48 and each is only .75ct - and ten, as opposed to three, will be made.
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Thursday, March 11, 2010

Swiss hotels most expensive in Europe

Switzerland’s cities are still the most expensive places to stay in Europe according to the Hotels.com Hotel Price Index 2010. Although hotel prices fell by about 10 percent last year, visitors had to fork out 200 francs on average for a night in a Swiss hotel.

That’s more than the UK, Sweden, Denmark and Norway and almost twice as much as a night in a hotel in the main cities in the Czech Republic, Poland and Hungary. Geneva was the fifth most expensive city worldwide, with an average room rate of about CHF 230. Zurich rounded out the top 10 at CHF 190 per night. Monte Carlo was the world’s most expensive hotel destination city, with travellers paying an average of about 275 francs a night to stay there.
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Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Sydney's most expensive playground


Sydney's Darling Harbour will soon boast the city's largest and most expensive playground. Work has started on the 4000 square metre playground in front of the Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre

It will feature a large climbing rope structure, a sand pit with digging implements, a flying fox and a giant slide. More than 28 million people visit Darling Harbour in the city's centre each year.

And the new playground is expected to attract more visitors to the area, NSW minister for planning Tony Kelly said. The $NZ10.38 million playground is part of the $A500 million redevelopment of Darling Walk by Lend Lease and the Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority.
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Tuesday, March 9, 2010

The Most Expensive U.S. Cities To Visit

For the first time in recent memory, the average price of a hotel room in New York City is less than $200 a night.

Prices are also down in Honolulu, Hawaii, a destination for the kind of lengthy vacations that mainlanders are cutting back on these days.

Across the U.S., the most expensive cities to travel to are also where prices are dropping the most.

Where prices are highest, there's more room to drop. And deals have been the order of the day in 2009 as hotel chains battled a rough economy and falling occupancy rates. Hotels are a lot like houses or airplane seats. Build too many of them during flush times, and you're left with too much capacity. As demand falls off during a recession, prices drop.

The hospitality industry built nearly 400,000 new rooms in the U.S. between 2004 and 2009, according to data from Smith Travel Research, a 9% bump over five years. Meanwhile, average occupancy rates dropped to 55% last year from 60% in 2008. Falling prices have come mostly from the penthouse or other swanky spots.

"You've got five-star rates getting lowered to compete with the three-and-a-half-star rates," says Scott Booker, a vice president at Hotels.com, an online booking service that provides rooms at 94,000 hotel properties worldwide.

The good news for the industry is that price declines are at least showing signs of leveling off. The same comparison six months earlier (for the first half of 2009 vs. 2008) showed a 16% spread, meaning year-over-year price changes are narrowing. Consumers should see the recent trend as a warning that the window they've enjoyed for good hotel deals is beginning to close. As businesses begin easing up their travel restrictions, hotel chains won't be resorting to as many special deals to lure guests.

While prices have fallen across the board, even in the high-priced markets, the traditionally expensive cities have retained their perches relative to others. The average room rate in New York City fell to $199 in late 2009 from $262 a year earlier. But the Big Apple still reigns as the most expensive city in which to get a room for the night. It's followed by other historically expensive destinations whose prices have eased off of late:

Honolulu ($160; down 12%), Boston ($158; down 18%), Washington, D.C. ($144; down 11%) and Miami ($140; down 14%). The bulk of the most expensive cities have one thing in common: they're coastal locations amid dense populations. That means they're drawing from big pools of weekend travelers opting for a quick road trip getaway in lieu of getting on a plane.

Booker sees prices trending back up in 2010, though not in any mad rush. "We've still got unemployment close to 10%," he says. "It will be slow going for most of the year." Still, it'll be a long time before the deals out there are better than they are right now.
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Monday, March 8, 2010

Five of UK's most expensive streets in Barnet

BARNET boasts five of the country's most exclusive streets, according to a survey out today. Five of the most expensive streets in the UK fall within the borough boundaries, according to the Mouseprice street rankings. Ingram Avenue in Hampstead Garden Suburb is the second most expensive road in the country, with an average house price of £6,085,800.

Nearby Winnington Road is in sixth place with an average house price of £5,386,00, and The Bishops Avenue is 16th, with homes a snip at £4,754,700. The streets are also bordered by Courtenay Avenue, which falls into the borough of Haringey, which is third in the list.

All three roads are situated between Highgate and Hampstead golf courses, which according to Mouseprice makes it “one of the most exclusive places to live in the country”. Two other streets, Eden Close and Elm Walk, which border leafy Hampstead Heath in Childs Hill, come in eighth and 11th respectively with average prices of £5,120,500 and £4,927,600.
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Thursday, March 4, 2010

The world’s most expensive Pinotage

The most expensive Pinotage, a blend of pinot noir and hermitage grapes, from South Africa, has just been released according to Decanter, a prestigious wine magazine. Kanonkop Black Label Pinotage 2006, from the renowned Stellenbosch farm, has sold out of its first 600 bottles at R1000 (€95) and will release 400 more in March; the price is yet to be determined. Johann Krige, owner of Kanonkop, told Decanter, "2007 will be released in September this year and the 2008 in March next year".

Krige plans to sell 2012 "En primeur, Bordeaux style" and "develop a secondary market" by introducing the Kanonkop Black Label Pinotage 2012 in November to investors and the press while the wine is still in barrel. According to Decanter, "the next priciest Pinotage is the Ashbourne 2005 from Hamilton Russell Vineyards, retailing in Cape Town for R424 [€55] a bottle."
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Wednesday, March 3, 2010

5 Of The World’s Most Expensive Phones

The release of the Apple iPhone 3GS SUPREME Rose – a jewel-clad iPhone that costs a staggering £1.93 million – making it the most expensive phone ever seen, got us thinking about phones that nobody wants or needs. Granted, none can match the SUPREME Rose in the cost stakes, but if you want to know more about diamond-encrusted smartphones then read on…

Some of the handsets we’ve gathered together below certainly outdo the Apple iPhone 3GS SUPREME Rose when it comes to ‘in-yer-face’ styling – indeed, the SUPREME Rose is actually quite restrained in its design – but nothing can come close to matching the vulgar £1.93 million price tag.

Where rivals are clad throughout in diamonds, the SUPREME Rose features a back panel made out of 112g of 18ct rose gold. That’s not to say it’s a diamond-free zone – quite the opposite, in fact – with 53 diamonds used on the Apple logo alone, and the platinum bezel covered with 130 individual flawless diamonds. Keeping it safe is a case made out of ostrich foot, highlighting the bizarre nature of this end of the market.

Even the majority of the seriously wealthy will baulk at the price of the SUPREME Rose, however, so we’ve also put it up against four of its cut-priced rivals, with a collection of devices that – lets face it – nobody really wants or needs.

Check out some more sensibly priced smartphones

The Diamond Crypto Smartphone
At $1.3 Million, the Diamond Crypto falls a long way short of the Supreme Edition’s £1.9 million price, making it ideal for those having to cut back on life’s little luxuries. At does at least have the advantage of having a distinctive design – rather than borrowing from the immensely popular iPhone – but it also distinctly lacking in features. You will get a platinum body however, and 10 of the 50 diamonds are a rare blue diamond.

Le Million De La Nuit
Le Million De La Nuit – or the million dollar phone is available for less than half the price of the SUPREME Edition iPhone, yet the distinctive design at least goes some way to distinguishing it from the handsets of the common man. It’s a available with a choice of solid gold, or plastered in diamonds, and you’ll be able to choose between 15 different variants depending on your taste (or lack of).

Blackberry Pearl Limited Diamond Edition
This Blackberry Pearl Limited Diamond Edition is a positive snip at a mere £45,000, despite being encrusted with 900 cut diamonds and white gold. That said, there are still plenty of the Blackberry’s original plastics in evidence, so perhaps the extra £1,885,000 for the Apple iPhone 3GS SUPREME Edition is worth it….

Nokia N95 White Diamond Encrusted Luxury Mobile Phone
As is often the case with luxury mobile phones, this Nokia is actually a previous-generation device, but there’s not doubting the bling appeal. With the entire front of this Nokia N95 plastered in 4.4ct of brilliant-cut naturally mined diamonds, it screams ‘LOOK AT ME’ more than any of the other phones here. At £10,000, it’s also a lot cheaper than the SUPREME Edition iPhone 3GS.
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