The Maharaja of Patiala was famous for his extravagant tastes and lavish lifestyle. He was known to have officially fathered 88 kids. He had commissioned Cartier to make the ‘Patiala Necklace’ which featured almost 3,000 diamonds. He had also got a banquet service specially made by the leading silver and goldsmiths of England that could cater to 200 guests at a time. It was the largest banquet service of its time and also the most expensive. The collection has been thrown open for public viewing as it has been put on display at the Faberge Museum in Germany. Its size, finish and craftsmanship make it the most exclusive banquet service.
The Museum Bought it for $2.9 Million in Auction
Art Daily has carried a report about the service. According to the report the service was acquired by the museum in July 2013 in a Christie’s auction in London. They had to bid $2.9 million to buy it at the auction. The service originally had a total of 1,500 pieces and you could serve 40 different items to 200 people simultaneously. The museum has confirmed that the service is the finest made in England in that period which is considered the twilight of the era of Faberge. The exclusive service holds many records; the largest banquet and royal service in the world, the biggest English service ever made, and the most expensive gold-plated silver service in the world.
It Was First Used in 1922 to Host Prince of Wales
The Maharaja had got the service made to host a state dinner for the Prince of Wales. It was first used in 1922 when the Prince visited India. The service was then packed in 12 extra large trunks. The Maharaja also lent the service to the English court as it was the only luxury dining set that could plate 200 people at a time. It always came back with few pieces missing as guests tended to keep them as souvenirs. It is also perhaps the heaviest service as the total set weighed as much as 1,322 pounds.