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Vintage Alhambra Necklace
Iconic Designs

Vintage Alhambra Necklace

About the Design

Van Cleef & Arpels had an immediate hit on its hands when the French luxury jewelry house introduced its Alhambra collection, which includes the charming and exquisitely crafted Vintage Alhambra necklace. Call it the result of the elegant design work that is typical of the house as well as a bit of good luck.

“To be lucky, you must believe in luck.” This mantra was a favorite of Jacques Arpels (1914–2008) — the nephew of Estelle Arpels, who cofounded the maison with her husband, Alfred, in 1906 — and this sentiment is embedded in the Vintage Alhambra necklace. The Alhambra collection, as well as its varied subcategories, has come to largely represent Van Cleef & Arpels. A favorite of glamorous icons who range from Elizabeth Taylor to Kate Middleton, Duchess of Cambridge, the celebrated maison’s signature line has never gone out of production. Today, Alhambra includes several new styles, with necklaces, watches, bracelets and rings embellished with various gemstones.

The first Alhambra jewel debuted in 1968. It was an all-gold necklace dotted with 20 gold clovers, edged with gold beads. At the time of its launch, casual and unadorned jewelry was uncommon, and, owing to its simple beauty, delicacy and the fact that it needn’t be set aside for formal wear, the Alhambra necklace immediately garnered the adoration of women all over the world. It’s a classic in the history of contemporary jewelry design, but the origin of its instantly recognizable clover motif has historical significance too. The quatrefoil shape is drawn from keyhole arches that populate Moorish architecture, and the series is named for the Alhambra palace in Granada, Spain, which Moorish poets have deemed “a pearl set in emeralds” for its whitewashed walls encircled by lush grasses and trees.

Within a couple of years of the Alhambra necklace’s debut, artisans at Van Cleef & Arpels were setting the now-famous quatrefoil motif at the center of the series with panels of colorful opaque hard stones, such as malachite, lapis lazuli, onyx and more. What is now known as the Vintage Alhambra collection, which includes rings, pendants and more, is characterized by pieces that feature these stones and a beaded border.

The Vintage Alhambra necklace is also emblematic of Van Cleef & Arpels’s long-standing commitment to fine craftsmanship and its ability to establish enduring trends. With such grand narratives — and prominent figures — linked to the necklace, it is no wonder that it has remained so covetable and beloved since its very first appearance.

Vintage Alhambra Necklace

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Vintage Alhambra Turquoise 20 Motif Yellow Gold Necklace
By Van Cleef & Arpels
Located in Holland, PA
18k Yellow Gold Alhambra 20 Motifs Turquoise Necklace by Van Cleef & Arpels. *** This is an extremely rare, highly collectible turquoise alhambra 35.5" long necklace by Van Cleef &...
Category

Early 2000s Link Necklaces

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Turquoise

Van Cleef & Arpels Alhambra Vintage Carnelian 18 Carats Yellow Gold Necklace
By Van Cleef & Arpels
Located in Paris, FR
Pretty Van Cleef & Arpels Alhambra Vintage necklace in yellow gold with a four-lobed clover pendant in carnelian in beaded setting. Dimensions: 14.60 x 14.60 x 2.30 mm (0.573 x0.573...
Category

2010s Contemporary Chain Necklaces

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Carnelian, Yellow Gold

Van Cleef & Arpels Vintage Alhambra 20 Motif Black Onyx Yellow Gold Necklace
By Van Cleef & Arpels
Located in Miami, FL
Designer: Van Cleef & Arpels Collection: Vintage Alhambra Condition: 1 – Brand New Metal: Yellow Gold Metal Purity: 18k Stones: Black Onyx Motif Dimensions: Total Item Weight ...
Category

2010s Retro More Necklaces

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Onyx, Yellow Gold

Van Cleef & Arpels Vintage Pink Opal White Gold Pendant Necklace
By Van Cleef & Arpels
Located in Holland, PA
18k White Gold Vintage Alhambra Pink Opal Necklace By Van Cleef & Arpels. With 1 alhambra shape pink opal stone: 15mm. Details: Length: 16.75", 15" Alhambra: 15mm Weight: 5.5 gra...
Category

1990s Pendant Necklaces

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Opal, White Gold

Van Cleeef & Arpels 'Vintage Alhamrba' Turquoise Necklace
By Van Cleef & Arpels
Located in New York, NY
Van Cleeef & Arpels 'Vintage Alhamrba' Turquoise Necklace. This necklace has twenty motifs, turquoise plaques, all set in 18k yellow gold with chain, signed VCA, numbered, Length: 3...
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Late 20th Century Artist More Necklaces

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Turquoise, 18k Gold

Van Cleef & Arpels Onyx Vintage Alhambra 18 Karat Gold Necklace
By Van Cleef & Arpels
Located in New York, NY
10 clover leaf 18 karat yellow gold elements set with onyx. Signed VCA 750. Numbered . French assay mark. Original VCA pouch
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Contemporary More Necklaces

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Onyx, Yellow Gold, 18k Gold

Pair of Van Cleef & Arpels Two Turquoise 'Vintage Alhambra' Necklaces
By Van Cleef & Arpels
Located in New York, NY
Van Cleef & Arpels Two Turquoise 'Vintage Alhambra' Necklaces. This pair of necklaces each has ten motifs, turquoise plaques, all set in 18k white gold along with the chain (French ...
Category

Late 20th Century Artist More Necklaces

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Turquoise, 18k Gold

Van Cleef & Arpels Gold and Lapis Lazuli 'Vintage Alhambra
By Van Cleef & Arpels
Located in New York, NY
Van Cleef & Arpels Gold and Lapis Lazuli 'Vintage Alhambra' Necklace in 18k yellow gold. This necklace is composed of 20 quatrefoil lapis lazuli motifs on a 18k yellow gold chain. Ea...
Category

20th Century Artist More Necklaces

Materials

Lapis Lazuli, Gold

Van Cleef & Arpels Vintage Alhambra Rock Crystal 20 Motif Necklace Very Rare
By Van Cleef & Arpels
Located in Miami, FL
Mightychic offers a highly collectible Van Cleef & Arpels Vintage Alhambra 20 motif limited edition necklace. Absolutely fabulous and extremely rare! Set in 18K Yellow Gold. Necklac...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Link Necklaces

Materials

18k Gold

Van Cleef & Arpels Vintage Alhambra Diamond / Turquoise 20 Motif Necklace New
By Van Cleef & Arpels
Located in Miami, FL
Mightychic offers a limited edition rare and highly collectible Van Cleef & Arpels Vintage Alhambra diamond and turquoise 20 Motif necklace. Set in 18 Yellow Gold. Necklace can be w...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Link Necklaces

Materials

Diamond, Turquoise, 18k Gold

Van Cleef & Arpels Vintage Alhambra Rock Crystal 20 Motif Necklace
By Van Cleef & Arpels
Located in Miami, FL
Guaranteed authentic highly collectible Van Cleef & Arpels very rare Vintage Alhambra Rock Crystal 20 Motif necklace. Set in 18 Yellow Gold. Necklace can be worn as a single strand ...
Category

2010s Chain Necklaces

Materials

18k Gold

Van Cleef & Arpels Vintage 10 Motif Alhambra 18K Rose Gold Necklace
By Van Cleef & Arpels
Located in New York, NY
Van Cleef & Arpels necklace from the Vintage Alhambra collection finely crafted in 18 Karat Rose Gold featuring 10 signature clover motifs with a hammered gold finish on a link chain...
Category

21st Century and Contemporary Contemporary Link Necklaces

Materials

18k Gold, Rose Gold

Van Cleef & Arpels Diamond and Lapis Lazuli Alhambra Necklace
By Van Cleef & Arpels
Located in New York, NY
Vintage, limited edition rareVan Cleef & Arpels Vintage "Alhambra" diamond and lapis lazuli 20 clover motif necklace . This necklace is the long version and features 10 motifs of lap...
Category

Late 20th Century Artist Link Necklaces

Materials

Diamond, Lapis Lazuli, 18k Gold

Van Cleef & Arpels Vintage Alhambra 10 Motifs Chalcedony Necklace
By Van Cleef & Arpels
Located in Banbury, GB
Dandelion Antiques Code AT-0818 Brand Van Cleef & Arpels Model Alhambra Date Circa 201...
Category

2010s Link Necklaces

Materials

Chalcedony, White Gold, 18k Gold