If you want one, try to find a demo unit on the internet. List price is ridiculous.
Positive Product Points
Simple, sturdy, and very pretty on the counter. Higher-capacity boiler than Europiccola. Makes excellent single shots. Produces plenty of steam.
Negative Product Points
Long dwell-time between shots. Can only make single shots. List price is very expensive.
If you're the kind of person who believes the best parties end in the kitchen, this is the espresso machine for you. Partly because it's a beautiful conversation piece, and partly because you're going to be spending a long of time in the kitchen making shots.
That said, I still love our La Pavoni Professional. Then again, I also love from-scratch cooking.
I can produce excellent espresso with the La Pavoni. While I have to fuss a little, it wasn't difficult to learn the necessary techniques and tricks. There's a vocal La Pavoni following on the internet, most of whom are willing to share what they've learned.
$700 is a bit stiff for any home machine, in my opinion. It's particularly insane when compared with $400 for a Rancilio Silvia. Demonstrator units are sometimes available at prices which are much more in line with high-end electric-pump units.
I paid $460 for a demo unit from SweetMaria's. It was worth it to me. Sadly, Tom is now out of the demo-pavoni buisness, but you should be able to find similar prices for demo units elsewhere.