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The power behind the Christie's name

Christies NYC offices

The entrance to the Christie's building at 20 Rockefeller Plaza in New York City.

By Andrea Lumsden

As an auction-house brand, Christie’s is older than the United States. Its provenance dates back to 1766 — a decade before the American colonies ratified their Declaration of Independence from Great Britain, and the year James Christie held his first auction in Pall Mall, London.

Since then, Christie’s has built an iconic brand with an exceptional pedigree and an unparalleled network in the world of high fashion and luxury real estate.

Today, Christie's holds the world record for the most expensive work of art sold at auction: Leonardo da Vinci’s "Salvator Mundi," which sold for US$450 million in 2017. 

The famed auction house hosts approximately 350 auctions annually in 46 countries and has been home to many of the world’s greatest works of art. However, Christies' reach travels far beyond auctions and private sales to include some of the world’s finest real estate.

The finest estates
The auction giant’s luxury real estate connection spans the globe through Christie’s International Real Estate and its hand-selected affiliates, each directly connected to the Christie’s brand name and trained by its white-glove real estate specialists. Among them is Provenance Properties Cayman Islands, Christie's exclusive affiliate in the Cayman Islands and a subsidiary of Dart Real Estate.

Christie’s International Real Estate CEO Dan Conn says that “through the connection to both the auction house and Christie’s International Real Estate’s global affiliate network, Provenance Properties has the opportunity to help its clients reach high-net-worth individuals whose passions range from the collection of watches and other jewellery to handbags, wine and great works of art, and to the ownership of the most extraordinary real estate in the world’s most important luxury markets.”

Dart's President of Business Development, Jackie Doak, believes the Christie's affiliation puts Provenance Properties and its listings on the world stage.

“When you comprehend the weight that the Christie's brand carries and the access it grants, you begin to understand the value of this alliance," says Doak.

Headquartered in New York City’s Rockefeller Center, Christie’s International Real Estate is a leader in the luxury property market and its listings range from private islands and celebrity estates to one-of-a-kind seaside cottages around the world. 

Christie's affiliates are not franchises, which means its brokerage network is a family that grows by invitation only. 

Impressive sales
Christie's has recorded over US$500 billion in combined sales from its affiliated brokerages over the past five years. 

“That number is impressive,” says Doak. “But it’s not surprising given that one of their current listings is Jackie Kennedy Onassis’ property in Martha’s Vineyard.” 

Once home to the former First Lady of the United States, this legacy estate is a 6,456-square-foot house on a 340-acre coastal property. It is listed with Christie’s International Real Estate's affiliate LandVest Inc. for $65 million. 

Doak says that although Provenance Properties Cayman Islands doesn't have a Kennedy estate for sale, it does have properties available that offer similar beauty and luxury, as well as the privacy and exclusivity of an oceanfront address.

“We are proud to offer our clients access to the island’s finest properties and the same personal service that the buyers and sellers of the world’s most prestigious estates can expect to receive,” says Doak, adding that Provenance Properties' clients benefit directly from a broad range of services offered through the Christie’s International Real Estate affiliation.

This includes tailored marketing of listings and a connection to Christie’s affiliates in 48 countries. It also includes access to qualified audiences through an extensive range of channels such as its quarterly magazine, its "Luxury Defined" blog and highly curated social media. 

A universe of luxury
Christie’s International Real Estate shares an address with Christie’s auction house in New York. The halls and rooms are an assortment of brightly lit spaces encompassing thousands of square feet of museum-like chambers, private viewing rooms and vast galleries filled with precious artifacts, rare jewels and some of the finest ancient and modern art collections in the world. 

But the Christie’s auction and real estate arms share far more than beautifully decorated spaces. They both belong to a finely curated cosmos reigned by Groupe Artémis, a French holding company founded in 1992 by billionaire François Pinault that has consolidated assets exceeding US$33 billion.

Artémis specialises in luxury. The group also owns the renowned Château Latour wine estate in Bordeaux, France, and Kering, a Paris-based luxury group that owns brands such as Boucheron, Gucci and Saint Laurent.

“The value of the Christie’s name is unmatched," says Doak. "Unlike other real estate brokerages, we can proudly say we have the full support of one of the world’s most successful luxury groups. This puts us in the unique position to offer our Provenance Properties clients the best of the best.”

To find out more about the luxury real estate market in the Cayman Islands, email us at or call +1.345.640.7000.

This article was originally published in the September 2019 print edition of Camana Bay Times. 

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