Diva's jewellery hits auction block

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 01 October, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 01 October, 2011, 12:00am


Jewellery that belonged to late Canto-pop diva Anita Mui Yim-fong will be auctioned, but the amount raised may not be enough to cover the hefty costs involved in managing her estate.

Forty three lots from her collection will be offered at Sotheby's autumn sale on Wednesday and are expected to fetch more than HK$2.6 million.

But the money could be used up in a year or two, according to Derek Lai, the administrator of Mui's estate, who said more than HK$1 million was needed every year to cover expenses. 'There are three or four properties of hers that we manage,' he said. 'Auditing fees need to be paid for her companies' operations too.'

Mui died of cervical cancer in 2003 aged 40. Before her death, she made a will assigning her assets to the Karen Trust, which provided her mother Tam Mei-kam, 87, with a monthly allowance. She now receives HK$120,000 a month.

Mui's most valuable jewels are included in the auction, according to Lai. 'I don't want to make a guess on how long the sum can sustain operations,' he said.

A star attraction at the auction will be a diamond necklace and pair of matching pendant ear clips tailor-made by Gianmaria Buccellati, Sotheby's jewellery specialist Candice Mak Kwan-ting said. The necklace features carved gold feathers and rose-cut diamonds weighing 16 carats. The lot is expected to fetch up to HK$700,000.

'She intended to wear it at her wedding,' Mak said. 'As she never married, she wore it with a wedding gown at her last concert in 2003.'

That was to symbolise her being 'married' to the stage, she explained.

Other highlights include an emerald, sapphire and diamond necklace she wore when she met Princess Diana in 1989.