Published On: Tue, May 31st, 2016

Diamond-encrusted Hermes handbag sold for record $300,000



HONG KONG: A diamond-encrusted crocodile-skin Hermes handbag with white gold details has broken the record for the world’s most expensive ever sold at auction, fetching nearly $300,000 at a Hong Kong sale.

The rare Himalaya Niloticus Crocodile Diamond Birkin 30 went to an unknown phone bidder late Monday (May 30) for HK$2.32 million ($298,655), beating a pre-sale estimate of $2 million, the auction house Christie’s said.

“It was the world record price for any handbag sold at auction,” Bingle Lee, a Hong Kong-based spokesman for Christie’s, told AFP.

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Designer handbags are increasingly seen as investment opportunities and are the latest craze for collectors, taking global auction houses by storm and scoring record prices.

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The new record beat one set last year, also in Hong Kong, when a fuchsia-coloured Hermes bag sold for $222,912.

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The handmade bag – described by the London-based auctioneers as the “rarest, most sought-after” – is encrusted with diamonds, while the buckle and trademark mini Hermes padlock are made of 18 carat white gold.

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“It is believed that only one or two of the Diamond Himalayas are produced each year, globally, making it one of the lowest production runs for handbags,” Christie’s said in a statement issued before the sale.

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The bag was made in 2008 and is from Hermes’ iconic “Birkin” series named after actress and singer Jane Birkin, who was born in Britain and lives in France.

A smaller Himalaya Niloticus Crocodile Diamond Birkin 25 handbag will go under the hammer on Wednesday with an estimate price of HK$1.3 million to HK$1.5 million.

The auction was part of the firm’s 30th anniversary sales to mark its presence in Asia, with a range of luxury goods on offer, including Chinese paintings, watches and wine.


About the Author

Syed Ammar Alavi

- is Lahore (Pakistan) based journalist & writer with 25-year experience in print, wire and broadcast forms of journalism. His major fields of interest are politics, film,tv,sports, climate change and technology