The Parisian jeweler traveled to Madrid, Spain to show off its exceptional gems. The reason? This year marks the centennial of the maison‘s first jewelry exhibition in the city, held at the Ritz in November 1922. But its links to the country date back even further to 1904, when then-King Alfonso XIII named Cartier the official supplier of jewelry to Spain’s aristocracy.
To this day, Spain’s royals and nobility still collect the brand’s wares. At Madrid’s Palacio de Liria, one of the largest private residences in the city and home to the dukes of Berwick and Alba and their families, there resides an impressive array of Cartier watches and clocks. This includes classics like the Baignoire, the company’s famous desk clocks from the Belle Époque period and even small Art Deco objets.
As a result of that enduring connection, Palacio de Liria opened its doors to house its first public event for VVIP clients of Cartier, press and celebrity attendees such as Vanessa Kirby, Yara Shahidi and Jisoo (the Korean singer and actress behind the wildly popular K-Pop girl group, Black Pink), to name a few. Guests were treated to a swanky soirée that included a lavish cocktail hour and dinner in the gardens, as well as a private tour of the first floor of the residence which included a one-in-a-lifetime viewing of the families’ impressive private collection of works by Rubens, Titian, Goya, Greco and Rembrandt that would rival any world-famous museum. Situated beneath the priceless art and immaculately maintained gilded ceilings were tables and desks carefully arranged with precious objets and intimate, modern family photos—an experience akin to having a private tour of the Queen’s own quarters at Buckingham Palace.
Despite the opulent surroundings and high-wattage crowd, the jewels remained the stars of the affair. At another event in the former British Embassy in Madrid, Spain—which has sat unused since 2009 and which the company totally reinvented for the occasion—Cartier highlighted 97 new jaw-dropping creations. It is the company’s largest high jewelry collection to date and we imagine the clients invited to attend the grandiose event had rather tough purchase decisions on their plate as a result. There was hardly a piece on display that wouldn’t leave even the most jaded tongue wagging. In fact, Cartier hardly needed a courtly setting to drive home the message that these pieces were destined for modern royals, both the literal and figurative kind
Here are some of our favorite pieces, including a selection of the refurbished vintage pieces that were also up for grabs—a slice of Cartier’s jewelry business that the brand says it is intent on expanding.
Cartier Dodone Necklace
A white-gold necklace set with 5 oval-shaped Ethiopian emeralds totaling 86.92 carats surrounded by round-shaped emeralds and brilliant-cut diamonds.
Cartier Rituel Necklace
A white gold necklace set with 25 oval-shaped Mozambique rubies totaling 23.27 carats, chalcedony beads, onyx and brilliant-cut diamonds.
Cartier Récif Necklace
A platinum necklace set with a 17.20-carat Zambian cabochon-cut emerald, a melon-cut emerald, coral beads, cabochon-cut emeralds and amethysts and brilliant-cut diamonds.
Cartier Iwana Necklace
A platinum necklace set with 3 hexagonal-shaped cabochon-cut Colombian emeralds totaling 43.31 carats, hexagonal- and roudn-shaped emeralds, and rose- and brilliant-cut diamonds.
Cartier Trichodoma Suite
A white gold secret watch featuring three cabochon-cut rubellites totaling 17.75 carats, a 3.08-carat D IF diamond, a 0.30-carat D VVS2 diamond, opals, onyx and brilliant-cut diamonds with a quartz movement and a matching white-gold ring with a 10.06-carat cabochon-cut rubellite, a 1.50-carat D VVS1 lozenge-shaped diamond, opals onyx and brilliant-cut diamonds.
A white gold necklace with7 cabachon-cut rubellites totaling 59.56 carats, a 4.22-carat E VVS1 lozenge-shaped diamond, opals, onyx, lozenge-shaped diamonds and brilliant-cut diamonds.
A pair of white gold earrings set with four cabochon-cut rubellites totaling 15.47 carats, 2 D VS1/VS2 lozenge-shaped diamonds totaling 0.90 carats, opals, onyx and brilliant-cut diamonds.
A platinum ring set with a 4.96-carat cabochon-cut Paraiba-type tourmaline from Mozambique, emeralds, onyx and brilliant-cut diamonds.
Cartier Apatura Necklace and Earrings
A platinum necklace set with 3 cabochon-cut Australian opals totaling 21.86 carats, a 2.58-carat cushion-shaped East African orange sapphire, baguette-cut colored sapphires, sapphire beads and brilliant-cut diamonds. The pendant detaches to be worn as a brooch.
A pair of platinum earrings with 2 cabochon-cut Australian opals totaling 2.04 carats, baguette-cut colored sapphires, sapphire beads and brilliant-cut diamonds.
Cartier Nishin Necklace
A white gold necklace with 4 oval-shaped colored sapphires from Madagascar totaling 14.56 carats, pink diamond and colored sapphire beads, sapphires, onyx and brilliant-cut diamonds
A Selection of Cartier’s Refurbished Vintage Pieces on Offer:
Mod before its time, this geometric Cartier 18-karat gold ring set with platinum and diamonds was created in 1942.
Simple, but elegantly striking this onyx beaded necklace from 1931 is accented with hints of diamonds set in platinum.
Remember when fragrance bottles used to look like this? Neither do we, but we’re glad their existence remains preserved well into an era where they have become a true rarity. Cartier is also offering refurbished objets like this 1925 perfume bottle from Cartier Paris set with yellow gold, platinum, enamel, agate, citrine, fluorite crytal, moonstone, nephrite, rubies and diamonds.