News-Antique.com - Sep 02,2011 - As Baldwin’s celebrated their 25th year of trading in the Orient bidders came out in force to ensure that this pinnacle auction was an outstanding success. The one day sale achieved an amazing, $5,256,675 (including buyer’s premium,) the highest total of any of Baldwin’s sales in the Orient and a fitting result for our 51st auction.
Held at The Holiday Inn Golden Mile in Kowloon, in conjunction with the Hong Kong International Coin Convention, the 1064 lot sale contained a plethora of Asian rarities. Some exceptional provenances and high grades were reflected in the prices achieved. Of the 857 lots sold results across the board were strong with a shift in the value of items selling online in recent times becoming apparent, as big ticket items sold to bidders whose faith in live internet bidding has reached an all time high. 14.12% of lots offered sold online for US$526,307 (including buyer’s premium,) with a further 31% selling in the room with an internet buyer as the under bidder. Lot 722, a Sun Yat-Sen Pattern Silver Dollar, Year 18, made in Italy sold online to a bidder in China for US$49,560.
The shift in interest from traditional to alternative investments has seen the banknote market flourish in recent months. The Chinese banknote section of the sale was proof positive that, like coins, well preserved, rare banknotes command high prices. Highlights included lot 9, a Qing Dynasty, Ta Ching Pao Chao, 100,000-Cash note selling for US$35,400 with an estimate of US$30,000 – 35,000. This note was printed in the first year of issue of the largest denomination of the series, which made it a significantly rare piece. Lot 60, a specimen of the famous '5 beauties’ banknote, sold for US$5,900, against its estimate of US$2,000-2,500. The note features five women's bust from the Han, Manchu, Mongolian, Xinjiang and Tibetan tribes of China, two on obverse and three on reverse. It is the only Chinese note with women as the central motif. Lot 71, a Banque de l’Indo-Chine specimen dollar sold for US$17,700 in line with its pre-sale estimate of US$15,000-18,000. A beautiful and intricate banknote in design, and in pristine uncirculated condition, it is not difficult to see why such an eye-catching piece provoked such interest.
The China-Empire coins contained a number of outstanding rarities in high grade that were assured to be popular amongst the bidders. Lot 298, a Hu Poo Silver Pattern 1-Tael was the star of the sale selling for US$271,400 against its estimate of US$140,000 – 180,000. This outstanding lot was one of a number of coins included in the sale that were sold previously through Baldwin’s as part of the Norman Jacobs Collection in 2008. If any more proof was needed regarding the strength of the Chinese market currently then the prices achieved for the ex Norman Jacobs lots included in the sale did just that. Lot 351, a fine example of a Chekiang Province Silver Pattern 5-Cents, was originally purchased from Spink-Taisei in 1990 by Edward