Rare jewelry auctions set record prices in Geneva

May 19, 2011 - 5:27 AM

GENEVA (AP) — Austerity, what austerity? Spring auctions in Switzerland have fetched nearly $200 million (euro140 million) in sales of rare jewels, watches and wine, some at world record prices, in the past week.

Christie's said it has sold more than $108 million in three days, including record amounts of $10.9 million paid for a 56-carat heart-shaped diamond and $7 million for a 130-carat Burmese sapphire.

Sotheby's said its Tuesday auction brought in $89 million, including record prices of $12.7 million for an emerald-and-diamond tiara once belonging to the Duchess of Windsor Wallis Simpson and $10.8 million for an 11-carat pink diamond.

Sotheby's also auctioned a collection of jewelry belonging to a former American World War II spy who married into Spanish aristocracy.