Category Archives: The Unexpected

Unique Gifts for Him, Your #1 Valentine

Valentine’s Day presents an opportunity to give the top guy in your life a unique gift he didn’t even know he wanted. Forget the old stand-bys of aftershave, shirts, and gift cards. This year, encourage him to appreciate softness and luxury with one of these ideas that put the emphasis on relaxation.

Incredibly soft, yet practical for everyday wear, these ultra-comfortable lounge pants are made entirely from washable cashmere. Hand-combed from the fine, downy undercoat of Cashmere goats, the fibers used in these fancy pants have been treated to withstand repeated washing without shrinking, eliminating the chore and expense of dry cleaning. The pants offer a relaxed fit for comfort, with unparalleled elegance and warmth. 

Create your own unique gift bundle when you pair the lounge pants with this genuine Irish robe from County Donegal, available only from Hammacher Schlemmer. Unlike typical flannel that’s napped only on one side and combed on the other, this robe’s cotton flannel is napped on both sides, resulting in a luxuriously soft hand and unequaled warmth for late-winter mornings.

To give your Valentine the unique gift of pure relaxation, this programmable massage chair tops the list. Storing up to three personalized massage patterns, the chair targets 61 different pressure points and provides a pulsing shiatsu massage that kneads arms, shoulders, the lower back, buttocks, legs, and feet. Infrared heat eases muscle fatigue in the middle back, lumbar region, and surrounding tissue. Finally, the chair connects via Bluetooth to an Android device to play music through a pair of integrated speakers in the headrest.

Still undecided? Whether he’s a sportsman, an A/V enthusiast, an at-home chef, or the consummate entertainer, our customizable online gift guides will help you choose the ideal unique gifts for him this Valentine’s Day. And of course, they’re all backed by our unconditional and unwavering Lifetime Guarantee, so you can relax, too.

Creative Means to Tackle Workplace Problems

Many large, forward-thinking corporations keep their employees distracted with puzzles and games.  Sounds non-productive, right?

Just the opposite is true; research has shown that games and puzzles create the right distractions to stop the brain from dwelling on seemingly unsolvable problems. As little as a half hour of intense play and puzzlement gives the work-a-day mind the unique gift of a brief vacation to re-boot and find alternative solutions.  

To that point, this three-dimensional spherical labyrinth challenges the limits of manual dexterity and spatial understanding as the player maneuvers a wooden marble through its entire course. Available only from Hammacher Schlemmer, the orb is a complex network of chicanes, multi-planar hairpin turns, zig-zags, and channels—even a sliding gondola. The entire track laid out on a straight line measures up to 192′. Six intertwined pathways challenge players to complete each course without letting the marble fall off the track.

Set up friendly team building competitions with this vertical chess set that mounts to a wall, allowing games of indefinite length. Generating a sense of intrigue and anticipation–“did they move yet?”–it allows for weeks-long play without interruption. An included “last move” marker hung around a recently promoted pawn-turned-Queen signals to the opposing players that without an equally crafty counter, the game will end soon. The chessboard mounts on any wall like a framed picture with its included hardware.

Looking for an employee giveaway that displays corporate pride and is truly a unique gift? This custom jigsaw puzzle is created from a satellite map of your company HQ or any other address in the U.S. The full-color, 400-piece jigsaw puzzle is created from a view of the selected address as seen from roughly 7,500 feet. It includes surrounding details such as main roads, water features, and buildings.

Encourage coworkers and associates to regroup, relax, and play to allow their minds to think of lateral solutions. Your team will enjoy more job satisfaction and from them, you’ll receive the unique gifts of increased productivity and greater employee retention as a result.

Oenophiles Know It’s Wine O’Clock Somewhere

If you have wine lovers on your holiday shopping list, you are lucky.

You’re lucky because there are so many clever and unique gifts to choose from for the oenophile. Lucky because a bottle of wine is an easy accompaniment to round out the gift. And especially lucky because the appreciative wine lover just might share some of their favorite grape juice with you.84117_1000x1000

Here’s a suggestion for a unique gift for a real wine lover that’s a favorite among our customers: a seamless mouth-blown glass that can hold an entire bottle of wine. Its classic Bordeaux shape fits an entire hand, enabling effortless quaffing without abandoning social mores. It also serves teetotalers as an impressive display for olives, candies, or floating candles. This fun glass allows users to assure that they, in all honesty, had only one glass of wine…although we cannot bear responsibility for any next-morning hangovers.86245_1000x1000

These wine glasses lend a different touch of whimsy with a playful tilt. Their bent stems set a relaxed, lighthearted mood at the beginning of a gathering or add fun as a surreptitious stemware switch after guests are about to start on their second Syrah. Each glass is hand-blown into a unique vessel with stems that bend a bit more or bowls that tilt a bit more than others, supporting the adage that wine affects everyone – and every glass – differently.87690_1000x1000

To drink the wine, you must get the bottle open. This wooden puzzle keeps a bottle’s virtue intact by confounding quaffers from cracking its corded code. A wooden cage secures a bottle’s bottom while a mortise and tenon joint that caps a bottle’s top “locks” into place with a corkscrew “pin”. A cord connecting the bottom and top wraps around the corkscrew to deceive the desperate and the thirsty into thinking that a simple unraveling can easily release the bottle for indulgent imbibing.

These represent just a few of the unique gifts we have available for pleasing wine connoisseurs and others getting into the spirits of the holidays. Check out our full selection for wine lovers today.

Fishermen Get Another Chance as Dog Days Breeze into Fall

Fishermen agree springtime is the most productive season for catching the big ones. But there’s a time before the first hard freeze when ponds, lakes and rivers cool down and our fine finned friends surface for the last time before winter takes hold.88659_1000x1000

The kids are in school and the boat is out of the water, but you know your pond holds Nessie-sized secrets so you need – no, you are compelled – to wet a line just one more time. To outfit you for last minute spontaneous angling, we recommend this compact portable fishing pole that fits into your car’s glove box. A quality rod and reel constructed from aluminum, zinc alloy, and fiberglass, it’s ready to land a fighter on a moment’s notice. It even includes plastic worms, hooks, and a sinker.86966_1000x1000

To reach hot spots and honey holes where you just can’t cast far enough, try this unique gift: the replica fish-catching radio controlled bass boat. At just 17-1/2″, it’s able to slip into small areas otherwise out of reach behind weeds and tree roots. Just bait the hook and cruise the boat out to where the fish thought they were untouchable and lure them to the frying pan with a systematic sweeping motion just like commercial fisherman do.11302_1000x1000

Perhaps you or your family view fish as cute cartoon characters rather than dinner, and you dream of snorkeling through a Caribbean reef. In that case, you’ll love the unique gift of this aquarium coffee table. Gazing through the glass is a dream of summer’s fleeting sun and sand. The acrylic sides provide clear viewing of the interior, while the removable glass tabletop is large and sturdy enough to accommodate coffee cups and cocktails, a sculpture, and hardcover books.

With fall upon us, just mullet over: you need to go fishing. For one day, leave work and chores to salmon else. Any fin is possible, and once winter’s snow flies, you will thank cod you didn’t let this oppor-tuna-ty pass you by. We’re not squidding.

This Season, Pigskin is In

By this time of the year, baseball thrills only those fans whose teams are poised for the playoffs. For everyone else, football season is more than welcome!

Among the best reasons to attend a football game is the tailgate party beforehand. 12452_1000x1000It’s a chance to socialize with friends, trash talk the opposing team, and enjoy the unique gifts of a beautiful fall day outdoors. Some folks we know don’t even enter the stadium and just tailgate all the way from kickoff to the final whistle.

And why not, when you have this dual hammock that sets up on a trailer hitch in just 10 minutes. Two hammock chairs have hanging footrests, allowing tailgaters to relax in a reclined position while keeping feet and legs elevated. Any frequent tailgater would appreciate this unique gift.12410_1000x1000

No tailgate party is complete without a friendly “bags” competition and this tournament bean bag set comes decorated in the logo of your favorite NFL team. Equally suited for at-home halftime festivities or playoff-season pre-game hype, this set is constructed to ensure compliance with the exacting standards set forth by the American Cornhole Organization.12849_1000x1000

Back at the house, celebrate your team’s victory with this outdoor LED projector that casts the emblem of your NFL favorite on your home’s exterior. Displaying six images of a team’s officially licensed logo up to 40′-tall, the projector makes no mistake where your loyalties lie on Sundays. A built-in light sensor automatically turns the light display on and off as the sun sets and rises. We can’t think of a better unique gift for the ultimate football fanatic in your life.

So here’s to the still-fresh football season and best wishes that the sun does not set prematurely on your favorite team’s aspirations for victory.

Bug Off! Unique Gifts Keep Insects at Bay

West Nile virus…Zika virus…yellow fever. Virtually every day, news reports relay more potential dangers from mosquito bites.

Even if these viruses are not yet prevalent in your area, there’s no denying a mosquito bite causes unnecessary discomfort. The same goes for bites from spiders and flies and stings from bees, wasps and yellow jackets. Yet, there are simple, chemical-free ways to protect your family. We have several unique gift ideas to keep insects at bay both inside and outside your home.81846_1000x1000

This chemical-free trap attracts and kills mosquitoes in yards up to one acre. The trap mimics the natural conditions of human habitation by emitting heat, odorless carbon dioxide and light to lure mosquitoes. Carbon dioxide is generated when ultraviolet rays from two fluorescent bulbs react with a titanium dioxide coating inside the trap. When mosquitoes are drawn inside the device, a built-in fan traps the insects and sends them to a removable net where they die of dehydration.84925_1000x1000

This completely portable enclosure slides over a patio table’s umbrella to provide a protective canopy. Eliminating the need for sprays or candles, its sturdy polyester netting is too small for pests to penetrate. It fits over umbrellas up to 9′ in diameter, extending all the way to the ground or deck floor. The bottom’s entire perimeter stays in place even in the breeze using an integrated PVC ring that can be filled with water. A zippered flap provides easy entry and exit.86575_1000x1000

Should a pesky bug find its way inside your home, here’s the handheld cordless bug vacuum that earned The Best rating from The Hammacher Schlemmer Institute because it captured the most bugs in the shortest time and was easiest to handle. Its powerful motor generates more airflow than lesser vacuums to draw flies, bees, spiders and other insects into its telescoping tinted nozzle that lets you capture stationary bugs from arm’s length.

We have many other unique gifts designed to keep mosquitos and other insects away from you and your family. Visit our online Mosquito Protection Center today for ideas.

Setting the Path for Jet-Setting Travel

Sixty-seven years ago tomorrow, the world’s first passenger jet airliner, the British De Havilland Comet, made its premiere test flight in the U.K. The jet engine was a game-changing unique gift for the airline industry, reducing by half the time it took to fly.12628_1000x1000

You can learn more about this and other great moments in the history of flight in this personalized book of New York Times articles focusing on aviation through the years. Procured from the archives of The Times, the book presents highlights spanning from the Wright Brothers’ first flight to Charles Lindbergh’s Transatlantic crossing and Amelia Earhart’s mysterious disappearance. The bound book displays the recipient’s name and “The New York Times History of Aviation” stamped in gold on the cover.11803_1000x1000

Ready to make your own aviation history but can’t quite get off the ground? This amazingly realistic flight simulator is installed into a cockpit that equips players with the same flight controls found in actual aircraft. Fore/aft and left/right movement of the yoke controls pitch and roll just like real airplanes; toggles and buttons provide authentic control of navigation and radio options. The software features realistic graphics and includes 80 flyable aircraft ranging from the ubiquitous Mooney Acclaim to the daunting Boeing 747-800.82741_1000x1000

Complete the experience with these aviators’ sunglasses, just like those worn by U.S. Army AH-64 Apache Helicopter pilots. Made by a supplier to the U.S. military for more than 30 years, the sunglasses feature the iconic aviator shape and a non-corroding nickel silver frame. The scratch- and impact-resistant lenses are made from the same distortion-free glass used on watch faces, with a grey tint providing the truest colors.

That prototype Comet jet was designed to carry 36 passengers at speeds up to 500 mph. Although the original design was plagued by catastrophic flaws, aviation historians agree that De Havilland’s Comet left the unique gifts of a legacy that changed the way we travel today.

Unique Gifts that Make a Splash

With summer in its prime, you may be whiling away many hours at the pool. We can’t think of many better ways to appreciate a lazy summer afternoon.88422_1000x1000

But for some, boredom may be setting in. If you’re looking for some new ideas for pooltime, here are a few unique gifts to get you in the swim of things.

In-pool socializing takes on a shady nature with this floating 7 ft. umbrella. Five built-in cupholders keep both bathers and beverages out of the sun, while encouraging shaded socialization. The umbrella is supported by a 6 lb. counterweight at its bottom so it stays in an upright position in both breezes and waves87339_1000x1000.

For some quiet “me time”, this unique floating hammock supports your head and feet, while your core remains pleasantly in the cool water. Available exclusively from Hammacher Schlemmer, this hammock’s unique design offers a blend of support and buoyancy that mimics the feeling of swaying in a favorite hammock, while giving you the unique gift of floating in soothing water.12425_1000x1000

When you want to simply sit poolside, this motorized entertainment lounger has built-in misters, speakers, and a USB charging port, all powered by the sun. A control pad on the left armrest provides push-button operation of the backrest’s reclining position. The integrated Bose speakers sync wirelessly to any Bluetooth-enabled device to provide the music. While this lounger can’t make you another frozen margarita, it can keep you just as cool by emitting a refreshing mist.

So get ready to make a splash…much of the U.S. is predicted to hit the 90s in the coming weeks, but you’ll have your fun in the sun when you keep cool at the pool.

Revving Up Interest in Collectible Cars

Driving around today, you may have noticed an unusual number of restored vintage or reproduction vehicles on the road. That’s because today is National Collector Car Appreciation Day.

This annual event was launched six years ago to celebrate the classics of both the past and the future. The automobile has been a unique gift to American history, and no other country appreciates the car as thoroughly as does the U.S.

Whether you are a serious car collector or you merely dream about the day you’re able to give yourself the unique gift of an extraordinary automobile, here are some truly unusual models to inspire you.12197_1000x1000

No car will attract more attention than this officially licensed, roadworthy replica of the Batmobile. Built on a custom Lincoln chassis, the crime-fighting cruiser comes standard with a 430-horsepower, 383 Blueprint Crate engine and a Monster TH350 automatic transmission. The vehicle’s cockpit honors the gadgetry of the TV series with a blinking Batphone, switch-operated electric actuators that open the hood and trunk, and a rotating red beacon. A rear-facing propane tank creates the same afterburner effect as the original. The exterior bears the hallmarks of its namesake, from bubble-canopy windshields to chrome “rocket” tubes behind the rear windshield.12796A_1000x1000

This 1:2 scale gas-powered version of the iconic Jaguar XK120 unleashes adults to careen and cruise as if driving the real thing. Faithful to the details of the 1948 original—sweeping rounded fenders, long hood and tapered grille—this version seats its driver within a padded leather aircraft-style cockpit. The interior includes a wood-rimmed aluminum steering wheel and dashboard, while the exterior can be finished in any color, including the classic glossy British Racing Green of yesteryear.12350_1000x1000

If you have a bigger crew to haul around, this authentic London Hackney cab holds six passengers plus the driver. This version is a fully restored and overhauled Fairway taxi from the 1980s. Designed with a high degree of English sensibility, it provides the roominess and appointments of a limo in a smaller size. Of course, it’s updated with modern convenience, luxury, and U.S. safety standards. With its 2.7-liter Nissan diesel engine, it delivers dutiful performance while turning heads.

Many communities show appreciation for collectible cars throughout the warm weather months with rallies, cruise nights, and car shows. Even if you don’t have fancy wheels of your own to show off, you might enjoy attending a local car show to scope out that unique gift for yourself, for when the time is right.

You Have Your Reasons to Splurge – and We’re Here to Enable!

It’s time to plan a big splurge, that “someday” purchase you’ve been planning. This Saturday is National Splurge Day and Hammacher Schlemmer’s unique gifts are perfect for the occasion.

It could be something for yourself. Or, perhaps you plan to reward your finest, most industrious associates who have always been there for you: partners and craftspeople who help you beyond measure and compensation. We are here to be the enabler, searching the world to find the most amazing unique gifts that make others green with envy.12820A_1000x1000

This one-of-a-kind digital grand piano derives its sleek design from the graceful yet powerful form of the Orcinus orca. Handmade in the U.K. to suit individual preference, each instrument is crafted using components from Kluge and Renner, providers of the world’s best piano mechanics. The 88 Ivoplast and ebony keys provide the same balanced hammer action as a concert grand, while beneath its dorsal fin-like lid, a 500-tone Roland audio processor suffuses each note with realistic acoustic character and nuance. This is a splurge worthy of the world’s greatest pianists.12796D_1000x1000

Maybe your splurging daydreams lean toward a vintage sports car replica. This 1:2 scale gas-powered version of the iconic Jaguar XK120 unleashes adults to careen and cruise as if driving the real thing. Faithful to the details of the 1948 original—sweeping rounded fenders, long hood and tapered grille—this version seats its driver within a padded leather aircraft-style cockpit. The interior includes a wood-rimmed aluminum steering wheel and dashboard, while the exterior can be finished in any color, including the classic glossy British Racing Green of yesteryear.11726_1000x1000

Here’s a splurge that makes a splash – literally. This two-person submarine can descend to a depth of 1,000 feet. Providing access to underwater features such as coral reefs, shipwrecks and the ocean floor, a completely transparent, climate-controlled acrylic pressure sphere keeps explorers safe while dipping even into the mesopelagic zone, offering a chance to see exotic, bioluminescent species. With a maximum speed of three knots, it provides up to six hours of continuous undersea adventure.

Splurging is all relative and unique to each individual. If your dreams of a splurge revolve around an extra hour of sleep or a decadent dessert, that’s a good thing, too. But if you’re ready for that one big unique gift to yourself, we’re always here to help.