This month, Bulgari unveiled its new MAGNIFICA High Jewellery and High-End Watches collection at a week-long event in Sydney. It was the first time that MAGNIFICA – the extraordinary combination of rare gems, craftsmanship and bold design from the Roman maison – has ever travelled to Australia. Comprising over 150 stunning pieces, it was also the most precious showcase of high jewellery in the brand’s history to be exhibited locally.
Held within the storied ballroom of a private residence in Darling Point, the heritage-listed Swifts mansion, the event was hosted by Managing Director of Bulgari Oceania Andrew McLaren with special guest Giampaolo Della Croce, Bulgari’s International High Jewellery Director, who flew out especially from Rome for the event. Guests who gathered to experience the magnificence of MAGNIFICA included the eminent members of the Gold Dinner committee, including co-chairs Linda Penn and Joshua Penn, Francesca Packer Barham and Alina Barlow, as well as VIP guests including Dr Dick Quan, Shane and Penny Moran and Stephanie Conley Buhre.
The star of the collection, the incredible Imperial Spinel necklace, features a staggering 131.24 carat spinel gemstone, the fourth largest in the world by carat weight. This very rare spinel was found in Tajikistan, country of origin of all major historical spinels. These fine gemstones became known as Balas rubies, and some of them were treasured property of kings and emperors. “The Black Prince Ruby”, set in England’s Imperial State Crown, is one of the most famous spinel gemstone in the world, once mistakenly believed to be a ruby.
Other beautiful highlights include an extravagantly named “Divas’ Dream” necklace, which showcases a 15 carat cabochon-cut rubellite set in pink gold with buff-top cut rubies and tourmalines, and the Magnifiche necklace in platinum, which boasts an 11 carat antique cushion-cut Colombian emerald.
These unparalleled gifts of nature are elevated by the incredible craftsmanship of the Bulgari artisans, working from Bulgari High Jewellery atelier in Rome under the inspired vision of Creative Director Lucia Silvestri. With their skilled, intelligent hands, they transform creative ideas and bi-dimensional sketches into amazing high jewellery artworks, some of which require up to 2,500 hours of handwork.