“A love letter to jewellery”: Sotheby’s to auction spectacular private collection in Geneva and Paris this May

sotheby's jewellery

One of the world’s greatest private jewellery collections ever to come to auction is to go under the gavel at dual Sotheby’s sales in Geneva and Paris in May. 

Over the course of two days, more than 250 exquisite 20th century pieces, including a vast number of René Boivin-signed accessories, will be sold by the acclaimed auction house of Sotheby’s. 

The Geneva portion of the sales – 46 of these exceptional items – will be taking place during Sotheby’s Magnificent Jewels sale on 12th May while the remaining pieces will be presented on 14th May in London as part of the ‘Iconic Jewels: Her Sense of Style’ event.  


““When you come across a jewellery collection as consistently stunning and substantial as ‘Iconic Jewels: Her Sense of Style’, it’s a heart-stopping moment – the kind you know you’ll never forget,” says Marie-Cécile Cisamolo, a jewellery specialist at Sotheby’s Geneva. “This collection, with its many dazzling signed jewels from the most beloved and sought-after design periods in jewellery history, is truly one-of-a-kind and one of the most important private jewellery collections I’ve ever seen. It is an incredibly powerful and sophisticated love letter to jewellery from an enlightened private collector, which I know will inspire other collectors and connoisseurs all around the world.” 

The pieces, which represent a range in styles as diverse as Art Nouveau, Belle Epoque, Art Deco and Modernism, come from some of the most prestigious jewellery houses in the world, including Cartier, Van Cleef & Arpels, Bulgari, Boucheron, Chaumet, David Webb, Mauboussin, Marina B, Sterlé and Mellerio dits Meller.

The real draws in this collection, however, are from Parisian jewellery marque René Boivin. The sale will feature the largest selection of the house’s jewellery ever to come to auction.  


In a collection of exceptional pieces, there are nevertheless a few that really are very special. Among them: a Cartier Panthère bangle from 1969 that is estimated to sell for between €260,000 and €360,000; Bulgari earrings once owned by Baroness di Portanova that are set with two intense yellow diamonds each weighing just under 10 carats and are projected to sell for €416,000 to €623,000; and a gold, sapphire and diamond René Boivin necklace and earrings set from 1947, which is expected to fetch in the vicinity of €52,000. 

For those who can’t attend the auctions in person, online bidding is taking place from 2nd to 16th May on www.sothebys.com. 

Read related:

Jean Cocteau and Jean Marais haven listed by Sotheby’s for €13.7 million


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Photos courtesy of Sotheby’s