Twice a year, in May and November, Geneva becomes the capital of high end and prestigious auctioneering. Mirroring the city's development into both Europe’s foremost center for jewelry and the watch capital of the world, auction houses such as Christie's or Sotheby's hold private sales that have been able to reach record amounts in the past years.
Christie’s Geneva lies at the heart of the city’s historic center, in a listed 16th century building once used as a dormitory for monks from the nearby Cathedral. In June 1968, the firm's first ever auction in Switzerland included a collection of porcelain bearing a Royal provenance. Over the years, more than 250 auctions have been organised in various categories of art.
Located in the historic Beau-Rivage Hotel on the shore of Lake Geneva, Sotheby’s Geneva has played host to sales of jewellery and watches for 35 years. The famous collections entrusted to Sotheby’s Geneva include the jewels of the Duchess of Windsor. Recent world records for jewels set in Geneva include the Blue Moon of Josephine, which sold for $48.5m in November 2015 (beating the previous world record set by Sotheby’s Geneva with the sale of the Graff Pink for $46.2m in 2010), and the Sunrise Ruby ($28.3m, 2015). Sotheby’s watch sales in Geneva continue to attract connoisseurs and watch-lovers alike from around the globe. Rare vintage timepieces with impressive provenance are sold alongside some of the most innovative complications today’s major watchmakers have to offer.