Christie’s New York Magnificent Jewels

Christie’s announces the New York auction of Magnificent Jewels on Wednesday, December 7 with more than 300 lots on offer and estimates ranging from $5,000 to $5,000,000. Highlights include exceptional fancy colored and colorless diamonds, colored gemstones, and signed jewels from Buccellati, Bulgari, Cartier, David Webb, Graff, Harry Winston, JAR, Oscar Heyman & Brothers, Tiffany & Co., Van Cleef & Arpels and more.

Exceptional lots from prominent US private collections comprise the breadth of the sale. Highly sought-after signed jewels include Art-Deco Cartier from the Blair Family Collection, a pair of JAR quartz and diamond brooches within the Collection of Robert and Sylvia Olnick and a stunning multi-gem and diamond necklace by Oscar Heyman & Brothers from a prominent Rancho Santa Fe collection. Important gems from The Lichtblau Collection comprise an impressive fancy intense yellow diamond ring of 34.56 carats and a rare F color rectangular cut diamond ring of 18.37 carats. A Superb Collection of Important Gemstones from a Private Collection include The Burma Blue a sensational Burmese sapphire ring of 75.41 carats, The Mandalay Blue, a superb Burmese sapphire ring of 31.38 carats, and a D color Internally Flawless diamond ring of 22.72 carats.

Christie’s is also honored to be entrusted with property from the Estate of Betsy Bloomingdale. The private collection, Betsy Bloomingdale: A Life in Style, will be offered across two Christie’s sales, beginning with iconic pieces of her jewelry collection in Magnificent Jewels. Synonymous with style, glamour, and philanthropy, the collection of Betsy Bloomingdale will offer a group of spectacular lots, including a sweep of stunning Harry Winston jewels: an impressive diamond ring, a diamond cluster necklace, a pair of cluster earrings and a diamond cluster waterfall brooch.

Magnificent Jewels will conclude the special celebration of Christie’s 250th anniversary year with a dedicated sale section that evokes and celebrates significant Christie’s jewels sales, by reoffering an assortment of jewels from historic sales. A main highlight includes a pair of ‘mystery-set’ sapphire and diamond ear pendants, by Van Cleef & Arpels, formerly from the Collection of Elizabeth Taylor, sold at Christie’s New York, The Legendary Jewels, Evening Sale on December 13, 2011.

Complementing the live sale, Christie’s Jewels Online, December 1 – 9, offers a dynamic assortment of signed modern, vintage, and retro designs. A standalone online sale from December 1 -13, Cufflinks for the Modern Gentleman, presents unique cufflinks suitable for all occasions and gifting needs this holiday season.


Few society figures remain as iconic as Betsy Bloomingdale. A true emblem of glamor and style, she epitomized the confidence of a post war United States: a moment in history in which the sun-soaked terraces and candle-lit tables of Southern California captured the world’s imagination. Forever draped in haute couture, jewels, and an irresistible smile, Betsy Bloomingdale was a woman defined by exuberant, joyful elegance.

From a young age, the collector learned the hallmarks of good taste in the California fashion: a combination of intuition, confidence, and compassion that reached beyond wealth and background to transform acquaintances such as Cary Grant and Jimmy Stewart into international stars. “Style,” Mrs. Bloomingdale often remarked in later years. “Everyone has it, anyone can get it.”

In 1946, Betsy Bloomingdale married department store heir and future Diners Club chairman Alfred S Bloomingdale, the “father of the credit card” with whom she would have three children. Throughout the latter decades of the twentieth century, the Bloomingdales came to stand as influential figures in business, politics, culture, and fashion. With homes in Los Angeles, New York, and Washington, they inhabited the world of the newly inaugurated jet set. Amongst their inner circle, the Bloomingdales counted some of America’s most notable families: names such as Kempner, Buckley, Forbes, Paley, Annenberg and, most famously, Reagan.

Magnificent Jewels

7 December 2016

20 Rockefeller Plaza, New York, NY, 10020

  • Auction

    7 Dec, 10am (Lots 1 – 166)

    7 Dec, 2:30pm (Lots 167 – 301)

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