Sky's the limit for Elizabeth Taylor gem sales
By Chris Michaud
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Wealthy jewelry collectors, movie fans and the just plain curious are training their eyes on this week's auctions of Hollywood legend Elizabeth Taylor's collection of jewelry, haute couture and memorabilia.
And if the monumental exhibition at Christie's, which was more elaborately staged than many a museum show, is any indication, interest will be sky high. The 10-day sale preview sold out, with 25,000 tickets fetching $30 apiece.
The auctions, which begin on Tuesday night with Taylor's world-renowned jewels, "have generated unprecedented presale interest with registrants from all corners of the globe," said Marc Porter, president and chairman of Christie's Americas.
"We're delighted with the worldwide interest in the live auction," Porter said. "And participation in the online-only auctions in each category -- jewelry, fashion and memorabilia -- continues to increase."
The vast collection of the Hollywood actress, who died in March at age 79, includes some 1,000 lower-priced pieces in a special online auction running December 3-17.
Even the sale's various catalogs, with some signed special editions priced over $2,000, have virtually sold out.
A world tour of highlights from Taylor's collection drew crowds in Hong Kong, Moscow, Los Angeles and London.
Porter, who worked closely with Taylor for over a decade as she made plans for her collection after she was gone, said the star "provided us with the vision of the sale that she wanted, and gave us a specific instruction about her collections that we've taken very seriously: "Give them a really good home!" Continued...