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Articles from DIAMOND JEWELLERY (984 Articles), WATCHES (859 Articles), (PAID ONLY) DIAMONDS LOOSE - FANCY COLOR (133 Articles)

Patek Philippe watch
Patek Philippe watch

Record prices in week of jewellery sales

A blockbuster week of jewellery auctions has seen price records broken and expectations greatly exceeded.
A number of jewellery auctions took place in Geneva, Switzerland this week as rival auction houses Christie’s and Sotheby’s held their semi-annual jewellery sales.

The week of auctions is considered a blockbuster event for jewellery collectors, and this year’s sales didn’t disappoint.

According to a Christie’s press release, all pre-sale estimates were exceeded as the auction house pulled in a combined total of $63.46 million in sales, a 65 per cent increase over last year’s May sales.

Highlights of the Christie’s auctions included a record-breaking price for a historic Swiss watch; a Patek Philippe watch more than doubled its pre-sale estimate, selling for $6.24 million.

The price was a record for a yellow gold watch sold at auction, and was the second-highest price on record.

Made in 1943-44, the Patek Philippe perpetual calendar chronograph wristwatch was revolutionary at the time of its release, setting the standard for all future watch designs.

Christie’s watch department co-head Aurel Bacs described it as the, “Mona Lisa of all watches”.

Estimated to sell for between $1.5 million and $2.5 million, a fierce bidding war pushed the price far higher.

According to Bacs: “European bidders were fiercely challenged by international collectors, especially buyers from China.”

The buyer’s identity was not revealed, although Christie’s said it was a private museum in Switzerland. Speculation suggests the buyer may have been the Patek Philippe museum, located in Geneva.

Sotheby’s reported similar success at its sales, netting $60 million, nearly double the low end of its pre-sale estimates.

The highlight was a blue cushion-shaped diamond, weighing 7.64 carats, which sold for an astonishing $8.93 million.

The price was double the pre-sale estimate, and set a world record price per carat for a fancy, intense blue diamond at auction.

The diamond, mounted in a yellow gold and platinum ring, went to an anonymous buyer.

Other highlights included a white emerald-cut 52.82-carat diamond fetching $8.8 million, while an Alexandre Reza ring mounted with a 5.02-carat blue diamond sold for just over $7 million.

Sotheby’s jewellery chairman David Bennett said this week’s sales "demonstrate the vibrancy and depth of the international jewellery market and the enormous appetite throughout the world for jewels and gemstones of the very best quality".

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