Jewels with intruiging provenance or rare qualities piqued bidders' interest at Geneva auctions that fetched an impressive total of about €140m. A tiara commissioned for a German princess was among several record-setting pieces in the spring sale series in Switzerland.
Christie’s sold more than €75.8 million over three days, including the record amount of €7.65 million paid for an internally flawless, 56-carat heart-shaped diamond. The buyer was reportedly Graff.
A buyer dropped €5 million ($7.1 m) on a 130-carat Burmese sapphire and an antique Imperial Mughal spinel necklace realized more than $5 million.
Sotheby’s tallied €62.4 million with a notable record price of €8.9 million ($12.7m) paid for a rare emerald-and-diamond tiara that a German prince named Guido Henckel von Donnersmarck commissioned for his second, Russian-born wife around 1900.
An intensely pink 11-carat diamond from the mines of India sold for €7.57 million ($10.8m), the third highest price for a pink diamond at auction.
Sotheby's also sold €702,000 worth of necklaces, brooches and earrings featuring emeralds, diamonds and rubies from a former American World War II spy who married into Spanish nobility to become Countess Alina de Romanones.
More than 90 percent of Sotheby's 479 lots were sold, with 97.5 percent of its total estimated value achieved, making it the third highest for a sale of jewelry at auction