DSB at 1987 jewel auction at Sotheby’s

website aAs we know Dame Shirley Bassey loves jewelry. Here is a short clip of Shirley and Beau Mills at an auction in Geneva at Sotheby’s where the jewels of the Duchess of Windsor were being auctioned. Also some articles from Dutch magazines about Shirley’s jewelry being stolen in London from her hotel room and in Paris from her dressing room. Shirley loves living in Monte Carlo because it is the only place in the world where you can walk the streets safely, night and day, wearing  jewelry, she says.

GENEVA, APRIL 2 — The jeweled mementos of one of the great love affairs of the century — between the late duke and duchess of Windsor — were auctioned here tonight for an unexpected $33 million, much of which will be used by Paris’ Institute Pasteur to fund research into AIDS.

In the auction conducted by Sotheby’s in a massive white tent erected on the promenade on the banks of Lake Geneva, bidding was furious at times for 97 of the “uncrowned” jewels given to the duchess by the duke, who in 1936, as King Edward VIII of England, gave up his throne to marry the twice-divorced American.

About 1,000 bidders and 300 media representatives crowded the tent for the two-day auction’s black-tie first evening. Fur coats seemed to be everywhere. Streets were lined with Rolls-Royces, Ferraris and other luxury cars that had brought the crowd of potential buyers. These included the ex-wife of the King of Jordan’s brother, members of the Italian royal family and singer Shirley Bassey.

Buyers ranged from Tsuneo Takagi, a Tokyo gem dealer, who paid a staggering $3.153 million for the duchess’ famed 31.26-carat diamond ring, to actress Elizabeth Taylor, who by poolside telephone from Los Angeles successfully bid $566,000 for a 1935 diamond clip designed by the then-prince of Wales for his future bride, then Wallis Warfield Simpson.

For an interesting article from People CLICK HERE

For an article from the New York Times CLICK HERE

For an article from The Washington Post CLICK HERE


jewelery 1

Why Shirley Bassey wears fake jewelery:

Shirley Bassey is able to laugh about it now when she tells “Story” about her jewels being stolen from her London suite.

But on the day she found her own jewels in the window of a Soho-London jewellers she almost died from shock. “After a performance at the London Palladium I came back to my hotel room and there was a terrible mess. Every inch of the room had been searched over and over. I cried like a child I must confess. But I really got scared when I tried to call the police and noticed that the telephone wires had been cut. It felt like somebody was getting at my throat. I ran downstairs, crying and the receptionist called Scotland Yard immediately. But after their requires they only say what I already knew: all my jewellery was gone. I only had two more rings and a bracelet, everything else was gone. All and all worth approximately 30,000 pound.

After two days my husband Sergio and I flew back home to Switzerland and I already made peace with the fact that I lost it all, forever.

But when we came back later to London we walked pass this little jewellery shop in Soho, I looked in the window and yelled out to Sergio: “Look my jewels”! At fist he didn’t believe me but it really was all there. Unbelievable. Shaking with nerves we went inside and I asked if they could show me the jewels and yes, a few bracelets had my initials. Well that solved the case. The police came and questioned the jeweller and he confessed that he bought the jewels from a chamber maid from the hotel. She had the key to the room and had all the time in the world to search the place. Well it taught me never to take too much jewels with me on a trip and the jewels I wear on stage are not worth more then ten pound.”…

jewelery 2

While Shirley Bassey was performing at the Champs Elysee theatre in Paris and the audience was enjoying her performance, thieves took her jewels and travellers cheques.  The estimated value: 300.000 pound!.

2 thoughts on “DSB at 1987 jewel auction at Sotheby’s”

  1. Very interesting Pieter. How fortunate that DSB and Sergio walked past that jewelry store. It seems the jeweler/owner should have been suspicious seeing a hotel housekeeper come in with such lavish and expensive jewelry. Maybe this was a partnership. Thanks Pieter again.

    Liked by 1 person

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