Brigitte Bardot’s Riva breaks auction estimate

Brigitte Bardot’s Riva, Nounours, was auctioned on May 23 by RM Sotheby’s. It was expected to bring in $91,000 to $136,000, but sold for $163,800.

The mahogany Riva single-engined runabout was built in 1959 in Sarnico, Italy and its original buyer was Roger Vadim, the film director and then-husband of renowned French film star Brigitte Bardot.

Vadim had purchased the boat for his wife, which was a seemingly appropriate gift, as Bardot had lived in St. Tropez since 1958, in her famous villa La Madrague, which offered private and direct access to the Mediterranean.

The boat, christened Nounours (“Teddy Bear”), would soon become a familiar sight, moored in front of La Madrague and in the old harbour of St. Tropez, where celebrities from all over the world are seen socialising with their friends and family during the holidays.

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