Christie’s Magnificent Jewels sale in Geneva on Tuesday, November 11th, 2014, dazzled the auction world with its spectacular results. The $150.2 million sale was the highest total ever for a jewelry auction. Christie’s sold 89% of the lots and 94% by value. The sale exceeded the standing record of the late actress Elizabeth Taylor’s collection, which netted $116 million three years ago.
The show highlight, The Blue Belle of Asia, the 392.52 carat sapphire set in a diamond fringe necklace, brought nearly $17.3 million, nearly double it’s high estimate of $9.5 million, setting a new world auction record for a sapphire.
Many of the jewels on the block in Geneva were from the large estate of a late Saudi collector, experts said.
The cushion-shaped sapphire, weighing 392.52 carats and suspended on a diamond tassel pendant, soared to double its pre-sale estimate at the auction, where private collectors and professional traders from the Middle East bid heavily.
Rahul Kadakia, International Head of Christie’s Jewellery Department said “Christie’s Geneva welcomed over 600 registrants to the sale from over 30 countries. We are extremely proud that the Blue Belle of Asia established a new world record for any sapphire sold at auction for $17,295,796. The private collector, seated in the room, is now the new owner of the most valuable sapphire in the world”.
There were many other amazing pieces sold. If you are interested, take a look at the results here.