Chinese interest rules the auction world

In a bold recognition of the world’s fastest-growing auction market, Sotheby’s recently hoisted China‘s flag at the most conspicuous spot outside its New York headquarters. The flag now flies between those of the US, UK, France, and Switzerland, where the auction house has established its core client base. “We proposed it. To my great surprise, … Continued

Christie’s sued in counterfeit wine case

A Palm Beach billionaire has uncorked a suit charging Christie’s auction house is in cahoots with counterfeit wine sellers. William Koch is still steaming about four bottles of wine supposedly owned by Thomas Jefferson that he bought for more than $300,000, which allegedly turned out to be fakes. He’s already sued the seller – and … Continued

Joseph Stalin’s Limo for Sale

A 1949 ZIL ZIS-110 limousine that belonged to Joseph Stalin is being offered for sale in Finland via online luxury marketplace JamesList at an undisclosed price. The car is based on the Packard Super Eight and powered by a 6 liter, 8 cylinder engine producing 140 hp with a top speed of over 87 mph. … Continued

Schindler’s List goes on sale for $2.2million

The only privately owned list drawn up by Oskar Schindler of Jews he helped save from Nazi Germany is now for sale at $2.2 million. The 13-page list of 801 names is dated April 18, 1945, and was made popular by Steven Spielberg’s Oscar-winning movie “Schindler’s List.” Zimet described it as “a true treasure, and … Continued

Record estimate for disputed Picasso painting

A Picasso painting owned by Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Art Foundation, which was at the centre of a dispute about its Nazi-era history, is to go under the hammer. Lloyd Webber — composer of musicals like “Cats” — originally announced his intention to sell “Portrait of Angel Fernandez de Soto” for charity in 2006. It was … Continued

Lacroix designs to go under the hammer in Paris

Paris haute couture week had to do without Christian Lacroix this past January, but while some are still bemoaning this fact, others are already preparing to cash in on the bankrupt designer’s legend: one of his collections for couture house Jean Patou will be auctioned in Paris this March.

Lotus and Naomi Campbell Team Up for Haiti

Naomi Campbell and Lotus Cars are to auction eight specially-designed Evora sports cars to raise money for the relief effort in Haiti. The “Naomi for Haiti” Evora sports car has been specially designed by Lotus Design Director Donato Coco to reflect Campbell’s “design direction” and features a colour scheme that reflects the flag of Haiti. … Continued

Rare Luxury Ferrari 250 GTO For Sale

An extremely rare example of Ferrari’s legendary 250 GTO from 1963 is being offered for private treaty sale by RM Auctions. The car, chassis no. 4675 GT, is one of only 36 250 GTOs originally produced and one of a limited few with Series II GTO bodywork. “The Ferrari GTO is unquestionably one of the … Continued

€260,500 paid for Bugatti in the lake

Bonhams has confirmed that a bidder paid €260,500 for the remains of a Bugatti that was pulled from the depths of Switzerland’s Lake Maggiore after 73 years. The price for the 1925 Bugatti Type 22 was even more astonishing given that it had a reserve price of between €70,000 and €90,000. The final high bidders … Continued

1970 Monteverdi Hai 450 SS

An extremely rare 1970s Swiss supercar prototype is one of the starring attractions at Bonhams’ Retromobile sale in Paris on Jan. 23. To show the world that Swiss engineering could keep up with the likes of Lamborghini, Maserati and Ferrari, Peter Monteverdi built the Hai 450 in 1970. Painted in a unique shade of magenta, … Continued

Brescia Bugatti Found in Swiss Lake To Be Auctioned

A rare Bugatti that has spent 73 years at the bottom of a Swiss lake is expected to fetch more than €90,000 at auction, the same as a brand new luxury motor. The 1925 open-top Type 22 is known as the Bugatti Brescia, after the Italian track where the model took the top four places … Continued

Macau hotelier wins bid for Michael Jackson’s glove

Macau’s Ponte 16 casino will display next year ten pieces of iconic Michael Jackson memorabilia, including the cream leather rhinestone glove he wore for his first Moonwalk performance on television. Michael Jackson’s glove was sold to Hoffman Ma, deputy chief executive of the casino, at New York’s Julien’s Auctions at a whopping US$350,000. “We’re a … Continued

Steps from Eiffel Tower sell for 85,000 euros

A piece of a staircase from the Eiffel Tower sold at auction for 85,000 euros (124,000 dollars) in Paris on Monday. The 7.8-metre chunk of the tower’s spiral staircase, containing 40 steps, was part of a larger piece removed from the tower in 1983. It was bought on Monday by an ironworker from the town … Continued

1788 Cognac sells for $37000 at Paris auction

A bottle of Vieux Cognac dating back to 1788 — the year before the French Revolution — sold at a Paris auction of wine and spirits for $37,000. Paris’ landmark Tour d’Argent restaurant has cleaned out its cellar, considered one of the best and biggest in the world, putting 18,000 bottles up for auction. The … Continued

George Washington letter sells for $3.2M

A letter penned by George Washington praising the new Constitution sold for $3.2 million at an auction, the highest price for a letter by America’s first president. The four-page letter was written in 1787 to the president’s nephew, Bushrod Washington, and urges adoption of the country’s new constitution. Last year, a 1864 letter in which … Continued

“Vivid pink” diamond sells for record $10.8 million

A ring with a pink diamond the size of a chickpea was auctioned off for a record HK$83.5 million ($10.8 million) in Hong Kong on Tuesday. “Vivid Pink,” as it’s called, is a five-carat stone flanked by two white diamonds and set in a ring by elite jeweler Graff. It hails from a private collection. … Continued

Second Largest Pearl Auctioned Off by Bonhams

Bonhams will auction off what is believed to be the world’s second-largest documented pearl, a five-pound gem found off the coast of the Philippines. Dubbed the “Palawan Princess,” the gem is next to the 14-pound “Pearl of Allah” in size that was also found off the coastal waters of the Philippines. The natural non-nacreous pearl … Continued

Louis Vuitton for French Red Cross

The Louis Vuitton auction, held last night at Sotheby’s on New Bond Street, saw seven special orders sold for a total of £495,000 in aid of the Red Cross. Louis Vuitton offered six masters of savoir-faire the opportunity to create a unique special order that embodies their expertise in their respective professions.

For New Year’s, rent a whole hotel

Want to spend New Year’s Eve at The Curtis? This year, it’ll cost you a minimum of $51,000. But at least you can bring along 600 of your nearest and dearest party people to share in the experience. The Curtis Hotel, a boutique with a mid-century modern theme and 330 rooms, has started an auction … Continued

Rarely seen Rembrandt to be auctioned

A Rembrandt masterpiece is expected to fetch up to £25 million ($41 million) when it goes under the hammer at Christie’s on December 8, 2009. The painting could break the record price for a Rembrandt, which currently stands at £19,800,000 paid for Portrait Of A Lady Aged 62, in December 2003. The painting, titled “Portrait … Continued