The sparkling Cartier diamond ring worn by the Princess of Monaco is one of the most famous engagement jewelry in the world. But, of course, not the only thing in the box of a Hollywood star. We show Grace Kelly’s favorite rings, which were the envy of many royals.
The Hollywood star and the Monegasque princess has been used to living in luxury since childhood, so it was not so difficult for her to join the ranks of royalty. In the role of the wife of Prince Rainier, whom she married in April 1956, Kelly felt great, although she faced many difficulties of married life. The couple met at the Cannes Film Festival a year earlier, when a group of actors, along with a 25-year-old actress, went to a meeting and photo shoot with the Prince of Monaco, who was instantly smitten by a fragile and graceful girl.
Initially, the prince presented his chosen one with the so-called “friendship ring” from Cartier, decorated with rubies and diamonds, which referred to the colors of the national flag of Monaco. It is believed that precious stones from family heirlooms were used in the creation. The actress proudly displayed this piece of jewelry at a press conference at her parents’ home in Philadelphia in January 1956, when the couple announced their engagement. However, this is not the ring that has entered the world jewelry history.
Shortly after the first announcement of the upcoming wedding, the future Princess was seen with another piece of jewelry — a dazzling ring with an emerald-cut diamond of 10.48 carats, framed by conical baguette-cut stones. It was also created by Cartier, and despite its size, the decoration looked extremely elegant and to this day tops the list of the best celebrity engagement rings.
It is believed that Kelly was introduced to the Parisian jewelry house by Alfred Hitchcock, a jewelry connoisseur who showed the actress showcases in a boutique on Fifth Avenue long before the future princess met her prince. She has maintained a close relationship with the House throughout her life—so close that an entire room of the Cartier boutique in New York is dedicated to the star.
Ring with an emerald-cut diamond of 10.48 carats
Kelly also wore an engagement ring during her last movie appearance. In the film “High Society”, which was filmed at the moment when she announced her engagement, the actress plays a rich socialite Tracy Samantha Lord, flaunting in the frame in a luxurious ring of Prince Rainier. Her partners in the film were Bing Crosby, who played the role of her ex-husband, John Lund, who played the new groom, and Frank Sinatra as her potential lover.
In one scene, Crosby’s character pays attention to the size of the stone, and in another, Kelly polishes the ring and admires its brilliance — all the things she never got tired of in real life. According to one version, Kelly was supposed to wear a large artificial diamond as a movie prop, but Prince Rainier offered to buy her a real one so that she could wear it during filming. She happily explained in an interview: “Now I can wear my real wedding ring in the film, having received approval from the director of the tape.” Grace’s friend Judith Quine also said that the actress understood that a second ring was waiting for her, and she even assumed that the props created for “High Society” served as inspiration for the real diamond ring that Rainier ordered for Grace.
Kelly wore both rings until her death in 1982, and now they both belong to the House of Grimaldi. The larger ring was on display at the main Cartier boutique in New York when Princess Grace’s room was first opened. And an exact copy of the ring, along with other jewelry worn by the royal person, was recreated by the jewelry house specifically for the movie “The Princess of Monaco” starring Nicole Kidman.