In an impressive philanthropic move, billionaire heiress Lily Safra has sold off a chunk of her jewelry collection to benefit nearly three dozen charities.
The 70-piece collection was auctioned off last night at Christie’s in Geneva and brought in $38 million, well above the presale estimate of $20 million, the auction house said.
The top lot was a 32-carat cushion-shaped Burmese ruby and diamond ring, by Chaumet, which sold for $6.7 million.
It was expected to sell for between $3 and $5 million and set a world record for the most expensive ruby ever sold at auction. The buyer was Amer Radwan of Dubai’s Radwan Diamond and Jewelry Trading.
And a group of 18 jewels by JAR, the largest ever seen on the market from a single-owner collection, sold for $11.4 million, becoming the most valuable private-owner collection of JAR jewels ever sold at auction, the auction house said.
30-two charities, including UNICEF, Elton John AIDS Foundation, and Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research, will benefit from the sale.
Safra is the widow of billionaire banker Edmond Safra, who died in a fire in his Monaco apartment in 1999.
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