If you were ever in doubt that Hong Kong is the world’s handbag capital, a recent auction at Christie’s should put any such lingering uncertainties to rest. At a recent auction marking Christie’s 30th anniversary in Asia, as well the expected range of luxury items – Chinese paintings, high-end watches and fine wines – the event also broke the record for the most expensive handbag ever to be sold at auction.

A rare diamond-encrusted Himalaya Niloticus Crocodile Diamond Birkin 30 by Hermès sold for an astonishing HK$2.32 million. Commenting on that particular sale, Bingle Lee, the spokesman for Christie’s Hong Kong, said: “It was the world record price for any handbag ever sold at any auction, anywhere.”

The bag, originally made in 2008, forms part of Hermès’ Birkin series, a range that takes its name from Jane Birkin, the iconic British actress and singer. The bag itself comes encrusted with diamonds, with a buckle and trademark mini Hermès padlock made of 18-karat white gold. Described by Christie’s as one of the “rarest and most sought after” bags of its kind, it is believed to be one of only three Diamond Himalayas ever produced. The winning bidder has chosen to remain anonymous.

The new record beat one set last year – again in Hong Kong – when a fuchsia-coloured Hermès bag (also, not surprisingly, encrusted in diamonds) sold for HK$1.72 million. Increasingly seen as a sound investment opportunity, designer handbags and their collectors have been taking international auction houses by storm of late.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *