Saturday, May 25, 2024

No Antiques Road Show: Auction of a Few Vanderbilt Trinkets Yields $1.5 Million


You can dig around in your basement and at flea markets for an “Antiques Road Show” find all you like. But you won’t come up with anything like the few jazzy items owned by the late Consuelo Vanderbilt Earl. “Commodore” Cornelius Vanderbilt’s great great granddaughter died two years ago at the age of 107. Yesterday Doyle’s auctioned off a few of her trinkets and came up with $1.5 million.

Among the items: A Cartier “Mystery” clock that fetched $515,000. Description: “8 day mechanical movement, the rectangular rock crystal case with rounded pediment outlined in gold bead decoration, enclosing a white enamel chapter ring with gold Roman numerals spaced by gold florets, the inner rim set continuously with rose-cut diamonds, with rose-cut diamond-set hands, set within a white enamel frame applied with a gold laurel leaf motif, edged completely cartier.mystery.clockwith fine gold decoration, the reverse with similar motif, all surmounted on a rectangular black onyx base with molded edges, case signed Cartier. N.Y.”

A second Cartier clock, made of gold, diamonds and lapis: $220,000. An Art Deco bangle, also Cartier, made of rock crystal, diamonds, and platinum: $81,000. More affordable perhaps: Art Deco Black Enamel and Diamond Cigarette Lighter, Cartier, Paris–priced to sell at $34,375.

Consuelo was married four times, once to her cousin’s ex husband. She outlived the Commodore Hotel on Vanderbilt Avenue (now the Trump Grand Hyatt) over Grand Central.

She would undoubtedly have been a Belieber.

Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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