Actress Lollobrigida’s Gems Fetch $5 Million in Geneva

Actress Lollobrigida’s Gems Fetch $5 Million in Geneva
Actress Gina Lollobrigida is shown in this vintage portrait wearing her natural pearl and diamond pendant earrings, which jewelers said were previously in the House of Habsburg collection. The earrings were sold in a May 2013 charity auction. Source: Sotheby's via Bloomberg.

The jewelry collection owned by Italian actress Gina Lollobrigida sold last night for nearly $5 million, double its estimate.

The Sotheby’s sale is part of a series in the Swiss city that has already seen Christie’s International set a record auction price for a Rolex wristwatch. Later today, Christie’s has a potentially internally flawless 26 carat diamond, as well as the largest flawless D color diamond ever to be offered on sale at 101.73 carats, estimated at $20 million.

“Jewels are meant to give pleasure and for many years I had enormous pleasure wearing mine,” Lollobrigida, 85, told reporters after the sale. “This will create a legacy to live on after me.” She wants the proceeds to go to a new Italian hospital that will develop stem-cell treatments.

Sotheby’s yesterday sold a diamond ring designed by Suzanne Belperron for 269,000 Swiss francs ($282,000) in a jewel sale, including the actress’s collection, which raised $78 million and set a record for a fancy yellow diamond, at $2.9 million.

Lollobrigida arrived in Geneva last week in a Pagani sports car with her friend, the carmaker Horacio Pagani, to showcase last night’s sale of her items, which raised 4.7 million Swiss francs.

Her natural pearl and diamond pendant earrings, which jewelers said were previously in the House of Habsburg collection, raised 2.3 million Swiss francs. This was an auction record for a pair of natural pearl ear pendants, beating the figure set by Elizabeth Taylor’s earrings in 2011.

Earlier, a 1942 split-second Rolex chronograph, described by Christie’s as the “most exclusive” model ever made by the Swiss brand, sold for $1.16 million, including the buyer’s premium, the auction house said. Christie’s sold 94 percent of the lots in the watch auction following a Sotheby’s sale on May 11 in which 24 percent of the timepieces went unsold.

Muse highlights include Farah Nayeri on film.

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