They say that the road to the palace of wisdom is paved with excess. The folks at Hang Fung Gold Technology Group in Hong Kong must be very wise indeed. The company's Hong Kong showroom features the "Hall of Gold," which contains several opulent handcrafted treasures. But the tourist favorite is "The World's Most Expensive Gold and Jewelry Sparkling Environmental Friendly Washroom" [source: Hang Fung]. Perhaps the most admired item in the gold bathroom is the 24-carat solid gold toilet.
In early 2008, some concern arose that the famous gold toilet could be melted down. The jewelers assuaged the public's worries by announcing that the toilet will remain intact. However, the company says that some of the other fixtures in the golden lavatory may not fare so well [source: AFP].
The company's owners stipulated that if the price of gold reaches $1,000 per ounce, one ton (32,000 ounces) of the tourist attraction will be melted into bullion and sold [source: AFP]. The company would gross a cool $32 million, and the owners would net about $17.6 million.
The one-of-a-kind posh potty will be spared and remain in Hang Fung's showroom -- it's not for sale. But if you're itching to add some bling to your bathroom, there are some other fixtures on the market that might appeal to your expensive taste. Read about them on the next page.
Luxe Bathroom Fixtures
Even though you can't buy the Hang Fung gold toilet for your master bath, there are plenty of other fancy fixtures available to accent this room. But you're going to have to shell out big bucks for them.
The Neorest 600 certainly falls into this category. The Neorest takes the cake as the most expensive commode available for purchase in the home. Produced by bathroom fixture manufacturer Toto, the Neorest 600 is a tankless, one-piece toilet. It may not be gold, but you could call it green: It's a low-flow toilet, conserving water by sending only 1.6 gallons down the drain per flush. But you'll be too busy sitting in awe of the Neorest to yearn for the water-frivolous days of the full-flow toilet. It's also a bathroom dynamo, doing all of the work your old toilet used to make you do.
When the Neorest senses your approach, the toilet lifts its lid, inviting you to have a seat. Once you do your thing, a gentle blast of warm water cleans your bottom. This is followed by the toilet's air-dry function. And after you get up, the toilet flushes the ionized, self-cleaning bowl and deodorizes the air [source: Toto]. With all of these features, maybe the $5,800 retail price for the Neorest 600 isn't so much, relatively speaking [source: Forbes]. Plus, you can find them for sale as low as $3,159 [source: Buy Plumbing]. Of course, you can get a regular residential toilet in the U.S. for around $150, but these certainly don't come with the bells and whistles the Neorest offers.
If you're going to remodel, why not go all the way? How about some gold leaf inlay in the counter's backsplash? And what about Italian marble tile for the bathroom's floor?
Be sure to install the big fixtures first. There's the Idrolux "L" shower, which retails for around $24,000. This freestanding shower includes UV panels, designed to give you a healthy, tanned glow while you bathe [source: Idrolux]. If you don't like standing when you scrub down, you can opt to rest easy in 21 inches of warm water in Kohler's Kallista Archeo bathtub. Before you sink into the tub, check the price tag: This freestanding copper bathtub goes for more than $66,000 [source: Forbes].
How about a nice sink, too? The Italbrass Mezz'aria dual basin sink might look nice reflecting the blue UV glow of your tanning shower -- the wall-mounted floating sink is stainless steel. The nearly $7,500 price tag doesn't include the complementary mirror to go above it, but you'll want a mirror from another company anyway [source: Quality Bath]. Seura offers wall-mounted, over-the-sink mirrors as large as 45 inches wide that feature an LCD television embedded inside. You can get ready and watch the news at the same time. When turned off, the TV disappears, and the fixture looks like a normal mirror [source: Seura]. The mirrors and their frames can be customized per order, and they fetch around $5,000 for the 45-inch model [source: Home Annex].
Still, starting your day off in a bathroom with all of these luxury features would probably put a pretty good spin on things. And who can put a price on that feeling?
For more information on bathrooms and other related topics, visit the next page.
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More Great Links
- Linder, Melanie. “The most outrageously priced items.” Forbes. February 2, 2008. http://www.forbes.com/2008/02/08/pricing-marketing-luxury-ent-cx_ml_0208pricing.html
- Sherman, Lauren. “Ten trophy home must-haves.” June 27, 2007. http://www.buyplumbing.net/?pg=pd&_i=MS990CGR11
- Weinbach, Jon and Edersheim Kalb, Peggy. “The type-A bathroom.” Wall Street Journal. February 3, 2006. http://online.wsj.com/public/article/SB113893265421064039-uSSWWR_NckuXqKY2saMLDuF6Bbk_20070203.html
- “CAPIZZI Camelot toilet tank white “Company profile: Background.” Hang Fung Gold Technology Group. 2007. http://www.hangfung.com/en/background.htm
- “Golden toilet leaves Hong Kong jeweller flush with cash.” AFP. March 6, 2008. http://afp.google.com/article/ALeqM5hXjqtKnKySLMyKIADwUAVPER9GUA
- “Italbrass Mezz’aria Collection - MZ1004.” Quality Bath. http://www.qualitybath.com/product.asp?ID=46803&cpao=117&zmam=6586835&zmas=1&zmac=2&zmap=MZ1004
- “MS990CGR - Neorest 600.” Toto USA. http://www.totousa.com/productpage.asp?PID=692