Famous Collections: Princess Salimah Aga KhanJan 29th, 2018
You probably like your jewelry a lot – you might even love it – but only the super rich and wildly famous can express their obsession like this! In this new blog series, we’ll be sharing an inside look some of the most extraordinary private jewelry collections of all time, from Liz Taylor’s silver screen stockpile to the Duchess of Windsor’s royal repository and many points in between.
We’ll be kicking off the series with a tour of a jewelry collection steeped in royal scandal – the sumptuous jewels of Princess Salimah Aga Khan.
A former model, Princess Salimah was born Sarah Frances Croker-Poole, but changed her name upon marrying Prince Shah Karim Al Hussaini, Aga Khan IV in 1969. The Aga Khan is reported to be one of the world’s richest men, worth over $800 million in US dollars, and he wasted no time in lavishing his bride with stunning jewels. Over the course of their marriage, Princess Salimah commissioned original pieces from the world’s most notable jewelry houses, including Cartier and Boucheron.
However, as the years passed, their marriage became increasingly strained, finally culminating in their divorce in the mid-1990s. The split was anything but amicable. Ultimately, the pair wound up in court over the fate of the Princess’s jewelry collection, which she wanted to auction off in order to start a charitable foundation and which the Aga Khan believed should stay within the Aga Khan’s family.
In 1995, the court ruled in favor of Princess Salimah Aga Khan and her entire collection went to auction, fetching an astonishing $27,682,601. Included in the auction was a custom emerald and diamond lavalier necklace created by Cartier and a suite of diamond and yellow diamond jewelry created by Boucheron for the Princess. But perhaps the most famous piece that was sold was a blue, heart-shaped diamond known as the Begum Blue, a 13.78 carat diamond that was set into pendant necklace purchased for $7,790,708 by diamond kind Laurence Graff.
Princess Salimah Aga Khan’s private collection comprised more than 200 pieces of rare, unique and exquisite jewelry fit for royalty. You can start your own collection of custom jewelry thanks to Koerber’s in-house design services.