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$4.2 million for Christmas tree? This one's made of gold, and Disney characters

TOKYO -- For those seeking a glow to their Christmas this year, a jewelry store in downtown Tokyo has just the answer: a pure gold revolving "tree" covered in Disney characters such as Mickey Mouse, Tinker Bell and Cinderella.

The tree-like ornament is made of 88 pounds of pure gold, standing nearly 8 feet high and 3 feet in diameter. It is decorated with pure gold-plate silhouette cutouts of 50 popular Disney characters and draped with ribbons made of gold leaf.

The price tag? A mere 350 million yen ($4.2 million).

But the ornament is actually a deal, said Tomoko Ishibashi, in the marketing department of Tanaka Kikinzoku Jewelry, which runs the Ginza Tanaka jewelry store.

"Right now gold is over 4,400 yen per gram. We used pure gold and had an expert craftsman form each Disney character by hand," she said of the decoration, which took 10 craftsmen two months to complete.

The combination of gold and Disney characters had spectators mesmerized.

"It is very vivid and the gold is very pretty," said Takashi Miura, a 36-year-old jeweler. "The characters on it are also really cute and it really looks like a Christmas tree."

For those with less ready cash, the store offers a scaled-down version that features 20 Disney characters for a mere 2 million yen ($243,000).

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While nobody has yet made a down payment on the larger tree, the miniature has already found buyers, Ishibashi said.

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