Christie’s Geneva Autumn Magnificent Jewels Sale held on November 15, 2016 at the Four Seasons Hotel des Bergues, Geneva, successfully concluded the company’s 250th anniversary sale season in Geneva with a sale total of CHF 96,860,750/US$97,117,588, selling 82% by value and 77% by lot. Overall the Geneva auctions throughout 2016 achieved a sale total of CHF282,534,174/US$283,283,348. As observed in Christie’s auctions held in other locations around the world, the sale in Geneva too was driven by international demand and extra-ordinary interest shown for exceptional and privately sourced objects.
As anticipated the top lot of the auction was Lot 216 – A Rare Colored Diamond Ring – set with an extraordinary fancy vivid pink pear-shaped diamond weighing 9.14 carats, that sold for a staggering CHF18,127,500 / US$18,174,631, the second highest price achieved by a pink pear-shaped diamond sold at an auction, working out to a price-per-carat value of approximately US$2,000,000. According to Christie’s the buyer of the diamond was an unidentified Asian buyer.
The second highest selling lot of the auction, achieving a price of CHF17,567,500/US$17,766,004 was Lot 188 – titled MIROIR DE L’AMOUR (Mirror of Love) A SENSATIONAL PAIR OF DIAMOND EARRINGS, BY BOEHMER ET BASSENGE, one of the two outstanding pieces of jewelry from the collection of Boehmer et Bassenge, marking the launching of their “Maison de Haute Joaillerie” in Paris. The price realized was a new record price for a pair of earrings sold at an auction. The “Miroir de l’Amour” ear pendants are the world’s largest perfect pear-shaped diamond drop ear pendants ever to be offered at auction. Each pear-shaped diamond is D color, Flawless clarity and weighs respectively 52.55 and 50.47 carats, with perfectly symmetrical cuts.
The third highest selling lot is lot 223 – AN IMPRESSIVE DIAMOND FRINGE NECKLACE, BY HARRY WINSTON, which was bought back by Nayla Hayek, Winston CEO for CHF8,327,500/US$ 8,421,597, who, commenting on the purchase, said, “a masterpiece, which we are delighted to own again.”
The fourth highest selling lot of the sale achieving a price of CHF8,047,500/US$8,138,433 is Lot 187, the other outstanding piece of jewelry, by Boehmer et Bassenge, titled LE JARDIN D’ISABELLE (The Garden of Isabelle) – AN EXQUISITE DIAMOND AND COLOURED DIAMOND NECKLACE, BY BOEHMER ET BASSENGE. The lot sold within the pre-sale estimate of CHF 8,000,000 – CHF12,000,000 (US$8,072,727 – US$12,109,091).
AN ELEGANT DIAMOND RING, BY BULGARI – Lot 115, achieving a hammer price of CHF4,351,500/US$ 4,400,670 was the next highest selling lot of the sale, which was twice the lower estimate of CHF 2,000,000/US$2,022,598 and 1.45 times the upper estimate of CHF 3,000,000/US$ 3,033,898.
It is indeed significant to observe that after a colored diamond lot and four white diamond lots the next highest selling lot of the sale was a natural pearl lot, bearing Lot No. 143 and titled AN IMPORTANT TWO-STRAND NATURAL PEARL AND DIAMOND NECKLACE, which had a pre-sale estimate of CHF 2,000,000 – CHF 3,000,000/US$2,023,256 – US$ 3,034,884), and sold within the estimated range for CHF 2,887,500/USD 2,920,127.
Once again the 7th highest selling lot of the sale is a colorless/white diamond lot – AN IMPORTANT DIAMOND BRACELET, bearing Lot No.222, with a pre-sale estimate of CHF 1,800,000 – CHF 2,500,000 (USD 1,820,339 – USD 2,528,248) and sold above the upper estimate for CHF 2,707,500/USD 2,738,093. The 16 cm platinum and white gold bracelet is set with nine pear-shaped diamonds, ranging in weight from 4.36 carats to 9.10 carats and interspersed with smaller pear-shaped diamond graduated clusters. Nine lab reports by GIA certify that the nine pear-shaped diamonds are all D-Color, Type 11a with clarity grades varying from VS1 to IF.
The 8th highest selling lot is a sapphire lot bearing Lot No.217 and titled AN EXQUISITE SAPPHIRE AND DIAMOND BRACELET, BY VAN CLEEF & ARPELS with a pre-sale estimate of CHF1,700,000-CHF 2,700,000/US$1,719,209-US$2,730,508 and selling within the estimated range for CHF 2,497,500/US$2,515,642. The 14.5 cm platinum bracelet of crossover design is set in the front with two cushion-shaped and an oval-cut Kashmir sapphires,weighing respectively 6.56, 5.73 and 5.72 carats, within a baguette-cut diamond surround, and the articulated bracelet also set with baguette-cut diamonds. Two lab reports by SSEF and GGL certify that the three blue sapphires are of Kashmir origin with no indications of heating,and the accompanying appendices state that the three natural Kashmir sapphires possess a richly saturated and homogeneous colour, combined with a high degree of transparency, and a finely proportioned cut.
The next highest selling lot is also a colored gemstone lot, AN EXCEPTIONAL RUBY AND DIAMOND RING, bearing Lot No. 186, with a pre-sale estimate of CHF 1,700,000 – CHF 2,200,000 (US$ 1,719,209 – US$ 2,224,858) and selling slightly above the upper estimate for CHF 2,287,500/US$ 2,304,116. The size 6 1/2 white gold ring is set with an oval-cut, pigeon blood-red ruby weighing 7.08 carats, flanked by fancy-cut diamond shoulders. SSEF and GGL reports state that the origin of the ruby is Burma (Myanmar), with no indications of heating, and that the colour may also be called ‘pigeon blood red’.
The 10th highest selling lot is another colored diamond lot, bearing Lot No. 155 and titled, “A SUPERB COLOURED DIAMOND RING,” selling within the estimated range of CHF2,000,000 – CHF 3,000,000/US$2,022,598 – US$3,033,898 for CHF2,107,500/US$2,122,809.The size 6, platinum ring is claw-set with a fancy vivid orange-yellow, octagonal step-cut diamond weighing 10.30 carats, flanked by tapered baguette-cut diamonds on its shoulders.
Altogether 15 lots sold for more than one million US Dollars at this auction, out of which we have already considered 10 lots. The remaining five lots are Lot Nos. 214, 114, 218, 178, and 123.
Lot 214 – A SET OF DIAMOND JEWELLERY, BY CARTIER – with a pre-sale estimate of CHF 1,500,000 – CHF 2,000,000 (US$ 1,513,636 – US$ 2,018,182), sold within the estimated range for CHF1,867,500/US$1,888,602.
Lot 114 – A RUBY AND DIAMOND RING – with a pre-sale estimate of CHF 300,000 – CHF 500,000(US$ 303,389 - US$ 505,649) sold for a much enhanced price of CHF 1,747,500/US$ 1,760,194, which was 5.8 time the lower estimate and 3.5 times the upper estimate.
Lot 218 – A SPECTACULAR SAPPHIRE AND DIAMOND RING – with a pre-sale estimate of CHF 1,700,000 – CHF 2,700,000 (US$ 1,719,209 – US$ 2,730,508), sold slightly below the lower esstimate for CHF 1,687,500/US$ 1,706,568.
Lot 178 – THE STAR OF SIERRA LEONE VI – A DIAMOND RING, BY HARRY WINSTON – with a pre-sale estimate of CHF 1,400,000 – CHF 1,800,000 (US$ 1,415,819 – US$ 1,820,339) sold within the estimated range for CHF 1,447,500/US$ 1,463,856.
Lot 123 – AN IMPORTANT ART DÉCO RUBY AND DIAMOND BRACELET, BY VAN CLEEF & ARPELS – with a pre-sale estimate of CHF 300,000 – CHF 500,000 (USD 303,389 – USD 505,649) sold for a much enhanced price of CHF 1,291,500/US$ 1,306,093 which was 4.3 times the lower estimate and 2.6 times the upper estimate.