Mrs. Lily Safra
Photo: © Eric Megret
Courtesy of Scott Campbell, The Elton John AIDS Foundation (EJAF) is tremendously grateful to Mrs. Lily Safra for choosing the Foundation as one of 32 charities that will each receive $1 million from the spectacularly successful auction Jewels for Hope: The Collection of Mrs. Lily Safra, held on May 14, 2012, by Christie’s Geneva. 100% of the collection presented for auction was sold, raising US $32 million and greatly exceeding the collection’s pre-sale estimate. Because of the auction’s tremendous success, Mrs. Safra selected an additional twelve charitable organizations to join the twenty originally chosen to benefit from the sale.
“Lily Safra is a dear friend of Elton’s and mine, but more than that, she has been a true champion in the fight against AIDS,” said EJAF Chairman David Furnish. “Her support of our critical work has been invaluable. Elton and I are so thankful for her continued generosity through this wonderful auction, and we are very proud of her longtime, personal commitment to AIDS awareness, treatment, and prevention.”
EJAF Founder Sir Elton John noted, “Lily Safra made an extraordinarily generous and personal choice – to sell her fabulous jewelry collection in order to help others. Her friendship means the world to us, and we cannot begin to thank her adequately for choosing to support the work of our Foundation. We wish her tremendous joy as she watches her charitable investments make a real difference in the lives of those in need.”
The fabulous auction included what has now been renamed “The Hope Ruby,” a 32.08 carat Burmese ruby and diamond ring by Chaumet, which sold for US $6.742 million and set a new world record price for any ruby sold at auction. The auction also featured Mrs. Safra’s collection of 18 jewels by JAR, the largest and most important single-owner collection of JAR jewelry ever brought to market, which sold for US $11.473 million.
At the conclusion of the auction Mrs. Safra stated, “From the bottom of my heart, I want to thank everyone who participated in this evening’s success. I am overjoyed, knowing that so many people in need around the world will benefit. Like the jewels sold tonight, these extraordinary organizations make the world a more beautiful place, and it is a great privilege to be able to support them.”