Gina Lollobrigida's jewellery auctions for $5m

International screen star Gina Lollobrigida's jewellery auctioned at Sotheby's Geneva on May 14.

Gina Lollobrigida jewellery auction
Lollobrigida wearing the world record breaking pear and diamond ear pendants

The collection sold for a total of $5m, with an exceptional pair of natural pearl and diamond pendant earrings, which Lollobrigida wore when she met the late Princess Margaret, bringing $2.4m - a new world record price at auction for a pair of pearl ear pendants.

Lollobrigida was often photographed sporting the natural pearl pendant earrings, believed to have once belonged to the House of Habsburg.

1950s and 1960s pieces by Bulgari also proved popular during what Sotheby's labelled an "electric" sale.

The star Bulgari lot was a 1954 diamond necklace/bracelet combination, which made $783,851.

Lollobrigida comments: "Jewels are meant to give pleasure and for many years I had enormous pleasure wearing mine.

"Many people tried to persuade me to sell them but for a long time I was unwilling."

Lollobrigida, who intends to donate a large part of the auction proceeds to stem cell research, concludes: "It now gives me great pleasure to see that these jewels will create a legacy which will live on after me and continue to do good."

Sotheby's David Bennett, who has called Lollobrigida's collection "very special", suggests that the jewels "captured the public imagination".

For more information on market trends, see Paul Fraser Collectibles' free guide to investing in fine jewellery and watches.

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