Thursday, May 19, 2011

Christie's Geneva sale churns over $78M

Christie's closed its sale of magnificent jewels in Geneva, with revenue worth over $78M, the highest it has ever generated in an auction in Switzerland. The sale was also marked by some lots breaking previous sale records in the category of ‘heart shaped diamond’, ‘sapphire’, and an Indian jewel. François Curiel, President of Christie's Switzerland : “Forty-two years after our first sale in Switzerland, Geneva remains a vital, specialised auction centre in today’s global market.”

The top lot in the sale was a 56 ct heart-shaped diamond, which sold for more than $10M, which made it the most expensive heart-shaped diamond ever sold at auction. Previous to this, the record for a heart-shaped diamond was set by Heart of the Desert Diamond – a heart-shaped D, internally flawless, diamond of 64.42 cts sold in 1994 at Sotheby’s Geneva for US$ 5,248,846.

François Curiel further added, “The jewellery sale in Geneva was marked by strong bidding with moments of passionate enthusiasm, exemplified by an antique Imperial Mughal spinel necklace realising more than $5M. While the ‘blue chip’ diamonds and coloured diamonds were in great demand, a 130 ct Burmese sapphire stole the show at $7.1M.”

The cushion-cut Burmese sapphire of 130.50 cts sold for US$ 7,122,742, breaking the previous world record price for a sapphire at auction which had been held by a cushion-cut Kashmir sapphire ring of 42.48 cts (sold in 2008 at Christie's Geneva for US$ 3,475,210).

An Imperial Mughal spinel necklace sold for US$ 5,210,902 also breaking a world record price for any Indian jewel at auction, held previously by a Mughal ruby, emerald and jade covered flask North India, first half of 17th Century The Clive of India Treasure (sold in 2004 at Christie’s London for US$ 5,210,209).

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