Photo: Queen Victoria Eugenia, Spain
The collection of objects and memorabilia belonging to Queen Victoria Eugenia, grandmother of Spain’s King Juan Carlos, was sold at auction here Monday for 157,000 Swiss francs ($168,000).
Different buyers, either at the Hotel des Ventes auction house or bidding by telephone through intermediaries, divided up the collection that until now had been in the family’s possession and whose various elements have an unmistakeable sentimental and historical value.
These objects made up part of the decorations and belongings of the Villa Fontaine, the small palace in Geneva where Victoria Eugenia lived until her death in 1969.
It was at this palace where, among other things, she organized the marriage proposal of the future King Juan Carlos to Sofia at the nearby Hotel Beau Rivage in September 1961.
The total amount paid for the collection was far from the 2.3 million euros (nearly $3 million) paid last October at another auction for a bracelet of pearls and diamonds that also belonged to the queen.
Among the items sold Monday was a lace fan with her monogram, decorated with diamonds, rubies and emeralds, that Spain’s queen carried during several of her public appearances between 1906 and 1931, and which is seen in a number of her official photos.
Significant for its symbolic value is the Order of St. Olga and St. Sophia, a Greek decoration that Victoria Eugenia wore to the wedding of Juan Carlos and Sofia in 1962, which was knocked down at the auction for 2,900 Swiss francs ($4,500).