The tiara that belonged to the Savoy family, former royals of Italy, focused attention at Sotheby’s auction of Magnificent Jewels and Noble Jewels in Geneva (totaled 56 million). The tiara sold for $ 1.6 million, one of the highest prices paid for such a piece of jewelry in recent years. The tiara was also advertised by Sotheby’s using an original marketing tool: it was possible to virtually wear the tiara through Instagram (this happened 22,000 times). The jewel, in natural pearls and diamonds, was most likely given to Maria Vittoria dal Pozzo on the occasion of her marriage to Amedeo I of Savoy, Duke of Aosta in 1867.
With their mix of magnificence and intimacy, tiaras have an X factor that transcends times and cultures. This tiara encapsulates all the pomp, power and presence associated with royal jewels and over the past couple of weeks, it has captured the imagination of collectors and Instagram users alike. The price achieved today is testament not only to its exceptional craftsmanship and the quality of its materials which makes it a true work of art, but also to its historical and emotional resonance.
Benoit Repellin, head of Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels auction in Geneva
But the tiara was not the only jewel to attract the attention of collectors. A 55.19-carat Kashmir sapphire (the largest gem of its kind ever up for auction) did even better. The gem is paired with another 25.97 carat sapphire: the stones are mounted in a 1930s diamond brooch, which belonged to Maureen Constance Guinness, Marquise of Dufferin and Ava. The jewel was sold for over $ 3.9 million.
The auction also recorded the sale of a group of seven jewels from an important collection owned by the nobility, with large diamonds and precious stones, many of which were set in spectacular designs by Harry Winston. 100% of the lots in this collection found buyers, reaching a whopping 19.8 million dollars, well above the pre-sale estimate (10.9 – 16.5 million). Among the most important pieces was a Harry Winston sapphire and diamond necklace, which holds a detachable pendant with a 111.73-carat cushion-shaped sapphire of Ceylon origin and royal blue color, sold for 4.7 million dollars.