An amazing collection of jewelry amassed by billionaire socialite and philanthropist Lily Safra is set to hit the Christie’s auction block on May 14 in Geneva. The auction house estimates that the 70 items, including the largest single-owner selection of jewels by JAR ever to be offered at auction, should fetch more than $20 million and will benefit 20 charitable institutions.
Camellia flowerhead brooch: 173.09 carats of rubies, set in sterling and gold. By JAR Paris. Estimated: $1.2 – $1.5 million.
Rectangular-cut diamond ring: 34.05 carats, with shield-shaped diamond shoulders, set in platinum. Estimated: $3.6 – $4.6 million.
The Brazilian-born Safra is considered to be a connoisseur of fine jewelry, as she has collected statement pieces for five decades. According to Forbes, her jewelry reflects her refined taste, and includes important diamonds, rubies and sapphires, as well as an outstanding array of fine antique and period jewelry.
Emerald, pearl and diamond ring: set in platinum. By JAR Paris. Estimated: $500,000 – $700,000.
Fancy intense yellow oval-shaped diamond ring: 15.75 carats, set in platinum. By JAR Paris. Estimated: $400,000 – $600,000.
A highlight of the auction will be a grouping of 18 items by JAR, most of which were created specifically for Safra by the renowned Paris-based designer between the 1980s and 2000s.
Sapphire and diamond bangle: 1941-1945, set in platinum. By Suzanne Belperron. Estimated: $80,000 – $120,000.
Five turquoise and diamond necklaces: gold scale body, head and tail in turquoise, mid-19th century. Estimated: $150,000 – $200,000.
“Only a connoisseur with an eye as refined as that of Mrs. Lily Safra could have collected such an ensemble of jewels, and only someone with her philanthropic conviction could have expressed such powerful support to worthwhile causes in all charitable fields,” said François Curiel, international head of Christie’s Jewelry Department.
Emerald and diamond bangle: rose-cut diamond body, rectangular-cut emeralds, round diamonds, set in gold, mid-19th century. Estimated: $100,000 – $150,000.
Diamond brooch: old-cut diamonds, set in silver and gold, mid-19th century. Once the property of a European royal family. Estimated: $80,000 – $120,000.
According to Forbes, Lily Safra has carried on the philanthropic tradition of her late husband, Edmond J. Safra, one of the 20th century’s most accomplished bankers and founder of the Edmond J. Safra Philanthropic Foundation. Since 2000, she has chaired this foundation, which supports hundreds of projects related to education, science and medicine, religion, culture and humanitarian relief in more than 40 countries.
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